Right now I am on day two of antibiotics and starting to feel some relief from strep, otherwise known as the most-horrible-plague-like-illness-I-have-experienced-outside-of-pregnancy. From now on when people say, “My child has strep,” I will shout out in horror and weep for them. This strep business is no joke. As soon as I knew that was what I had, I went in to mommy lock down. No more kisses for my babies, no more touching their food or getting them a glass of water. Daddy took over in the hopes that the strep would end with me.
Then Emma came home yesterday from Girl Scouts feeling “tired” and complaining of a “tummy ache.” I was taking a glorious nap during this time in the hopes of warding off the plague so I wasn’t there to remind my husband that he should take Emma’s temperature before sending her to lie down. When she woke up, her fever had spiked to 102.5 and she was a complete mess. She’s home from school today and feeling “fine” as she flits from one craft project to another, her temperature floating around the 101 mark despite a steady stream of cold water and fever reducers. If you ask her what’s wrong she says it’s really just the bad goosebumps. If you ask me, strep is the devil and it’s got her under its spell.
So this afternoon I’m sending my husband to take her to the pediatrician for a strep test despite the fact that she claims nothing is wrong. With seven years of parenting under my belt, I’ve been the crazy parent more than my fair share of times. It’s my husband’s turn. Hopefully the test will come back positive and we can deal with this thing head on, because the antibiotics have made my throat quickly transition from a pocket full of razor blades to an assortment of tiny knives – much much better. Maybe while my husband is playing crazy he can get them to just go ahead and prescribe antibiotics for my son and for him as well…
Now before my comments fill up with tales of the evils of antibiotics, I get it. I really do. In fact, I’m pretty sure my daughter has only taken antibiotics one other time in seven years. But this strep isn’t something to be messed with. I feel knocked out, steam rolled, weak, hungry, nauseous, pain. It needs to end!
Now to be resourceful!
What are the symptoms of strep throat?
– A horrible, horrible, HORRIBLE sore throat with white marks on your tonsils and no other cold symptoms. Oh yeah, and forget swallowing or eating food with dimension. I could even taste the grit in chocolate ice cream.
– A fever over 101 degrees.
– Swollen lymph nodes in your neck.
Kids especially may also feel nauseous and even experience vomiting and may actually not complain of a sore throat because apparently that is a description that is tough for kids to pinpoint. But let me tell you. MY THROAT HURTS.
How to prevent strep:
I caught the nasties by going to my primary care provider for some blood work and an exam because I was trying to be a conscientious adult, but I apparently should have also taken along a surgical mask and some gloves. Strep is highly contagious, and it was just waiting for my tired body to attack. If you have strep, be sure to sneeze or cough into your elbow, not your hand, and wash your hands often. The best way to prevent catching strep or any illness is to be sure to eat right, get plenty of rest, and wash your hands often and thoroughly. The surgical mask probably isn’t necessary. Probably.
And where is my daughter right now? Oh, she’s fast asleep. Because I guess bad goosebumps make you tired, too…