Monday, October 26, 2009

H1N1 No More At Our House

Today was Mike's first day back at school after contracting the H1N1 influenza virus.
It was a long and bumpy road lasting a total of 12 ill days. We kept him home an extra two days from school as it was almost the end of the week and continued at home for the remainder of the weekend for safe measures.

As I have said in a past post - this is a bugger of a virus -. I have spoken to Dr.'s and nurse's, school personal & school medical staff. The one thing that I continued to hear from them is " keep your child at home even after the symptoms begin to improve for a MINIMAL of 7-10 days".

This was reiterated to me constantly along with the instructions, that if parents would keep their children home and follow the guidelines this would not be spreading as it is.

Please keep in mind that if you have other children that are exposed to H1N1 in your home and even if they are not symptomatic at this time, you need to keep them home with your ill child and follow the guidelines. I was told that by doing this we could significantly cut the risks to other students.

I know, I know....I say this with a understanding that as a freelance writer I do not report to an office everyday. I have the ability to remain at home and not have it effect my job. With that said- find a way.

I missed several board meetings, a newspaper interview, some book promos, and a concert that I was to attend with my oldest son. I purchased the tickets over 6 months ago. Let alone social engagements, and pampering appointments. Boy, do I need a manicure :)

Yes, I work from home- most often. Not always and furthermore, let me tell you that while Mike was home, I was getting zero work done. My attention was on him and his needs and trying to keep my home as germ free as possible. I have scrubbed and washed everything I could during his illness. That along with little sleep for a total of 16 days I was not getting my "writing work" done.

I realize that it is a sacrifice, but it is what you need to do. I was here in the house for twelve days before I felt that it was OK for me to go out into public to do a bit of shopping. I wore my gloves ( it is cold here in MN ), used the cleaner at the store to clean the cart handle, talked with no one and did my best to have no contact with others. My kind and generous Mother came several times to my home and dropped off supplies during the first twelve days. I soon ran low on Tylenol, bottled H2o ( all that Mike could keep down ) basic groceries, more cleaning supplies. With our her I would have been in a real snag. Granted, more friends stepped up and offered anything to help. Thankfully, we did not need to call on them because of my Mother. We did use good sense and she brought supplies to the door and left them. It may be a bit much to some but hey, who wants to catch this let alone be the one to give it to someone? One person sick can start the trail for hundreds or thousands. It has to begin somewhere.

I am glad to report that neither Jim nor I got ill. I received the original "swine flu" vaccination in the late 70's. I was told by my Dr. that the current H1N1 virus is not the same to the "T" but has many of the same components and may offer just enough of a resistance to cover me from getting the H1N1 virus and getting ill. Thus far it has done just that for me. We still do not know if Jim got the immunization in the 70's that I did. What I do know is I got it in school, when I was in the 2nd grade. The entire school got it. I remember this only as it was the first time I got a shot at school and they used a gun type of shot. It is the first and only time I ever had that or saw one. To be gross I also remember several kids
who wore short sleeve shirts that day with blood running down their arm before a cotton ball and band aid was applied. It is strange the things that one remembers from their youth. I recall bringing a small slip of paper to the library for the shot with my name and my mom's signature on it. My parent's also got the shot. They went to the public library in our town and got it too. My mother has remained well also so far.

I should run here, Mike will be home in about ten minutes from his first day back. I am anxious to read how it went and how the day was. I have LOVED the day alone for a few hours. I was in much need for some quiet today and the opportunity to read and write a few things, this being one of them.

Stay healthy !!


Sunday, October 18, 2009


Mike has the flu and it is believed to be H1N1.

We had a wonderful Sunday afternoon last week. The Viking's were winning on the TV and we had guest over for dinner. After a great meal and chat time with friends, I started to gear up for the week. At about 6:30 P.M. I got Mike dressed in his P.J.'s and noticed that all of a sudden he looked pale and felt warm. It was a fever. A bit of Tylenol hidden in some juice and he went off to sleep. About 11 P.M. I heard him up and went in to check on him. I asked him if he needed to go to the bathroom, he did- and then he vomited. A temp of 102.7 and again more Tylenol. The problem was, with in a few minutes of juice with Tylenol, he was vomiting again. This went on all night.

By morning he looked even worse. Asking Mike about his symptoms gives no results. They say the H1N1 often starts with a sore throat. Asking that question gives no answer. Asking Mike about his stomach is the same. I could only go by what I could personally see. He had a fever and was vomiting.

Monday and Tuesday were rough. His fever was hard to control and getting meds in him impossible. I called the ER at 11 P.M. Tuesday night as his fever had come down and now again spiked to 103 and we could get no meds in him to stay down. He looked just awful. The ER and the clinic did not want to see him unless he had a fever of 105 ( I know I was shocked too ) and/or he was turning blue when he tried to breath. They told me to give him a cool bath and try rubbing alcohol to bring the fever down. The cool bath helped but he was miserable. His breathing was fine this entire time, however he had bouts with hard coughing.

It is now Sunday and he ate for the first time besides a few bites of jello. He only wants water to drink and is scared to eat anything.

Mike was exposed to the H1N1 virus at school. His symptoms were those of the virus. It was a hard virus to deal with and parents should be cautioned. Not panic, just be cautious.

It is Sunday again - 1 week from the onset. I am exhausted. No one else in the house has symptoms of the virus. I have slept so little and could just sleep for days I think given the chance. I plan to keep Mike home again from school tomorrow. He is still coughing a bit and rests in the afternoon this past week. This has taken all of the vinegar out of him. He just wants to lay in bed and watch movies and rest. He did fire up his PC and did a bit of drawing today he has left his bed open and crawls in often to just rest. He is willing to drink water but food is slow going. When I think he is well rested, able to make a full day of it and is back to eating well I will send him. We are only on week 6 of school and he has missed over 2 full weeks so far this year.

My mom was a lifesaver and brought us fresh supplies this week as we have stayed home to keep from passing this on to others.

A bit of FYI- the H1N1 shot comes in 2 forms. The shot DOES have mercury in it. The nasal one DOES NOT. We will still have Mike immunized with the nasal when it is available.

If you have concerns talk with your Dr.

I should go and check on him and offer him more ice water.

Stay healthy!!

Monday, October 5, 2009

Back to School For Mike

Mike is a 3rd grader! We are excited to embrace the school year and hope for the very best. We believe the key to Mike's potential is in his education. We have had many bumps in our road with Mike's education. We continue to be positive and hope for the best. It is our goal that given a bit of time Mike and his teacher's will find their groove.

Here is a photo of Mike the 1st day of school 2009-