When I had kids, I knew there would be a high probability of lice, pink eye, ear infections and other commonly named maladies in my future. What I didn't have a clue about were all the other strangely named illnesses waiting to pounce on me and my family in the disease-ridden place I affectionately refer to as "Gross," but most people call "preschool."
Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease. Fifth Disease. Sixth Disease. Impetigo. Dub. T. Eff. I'd get all these notices about disease floating around the hallways and classrooms of the sweet Christian day school M attends. "Little Johnny Gross was diagnosed with Fifth Disease last Tuesday. We don't believe he was contagious during the day he was in school, but we still wanted to notify parents."
Just makes me look at all people under four feet as tiny, deadly little incubators for grossness.
I remember the first time I encountered Hand, Foot and Mouth. My daughter was two years old. She developed these little blister-like bumps on her hands and feet. She also had a couple really painful-looking sores on her tongue. Poor little M. I wanted to take the illness away with a snap of my motherly fingers. Still, when the doctor informed me that my daughter had this Hand, Foot, Mouth thing, I nearly slipped and yelled out, "Gross!" Luckily, I was able to bite my non-blistered tongue and refrain from wrinkling my nose into a nonverbal "gross" face.
M recovered after about a week.
Now, once again, the dreaded Hand, Foot, Mouth has struck the Vollmerhausen compound. It's toddling J. I thought the rash was a reaction to the sand, but I had a sneaking suspicion...I thought the fever could be attributed to two molars coming, but I had feeling...Sure enough, took him to the doctor this morning and he's got Hand, Foot and Gross Disease. All we can do is keep his temperature down and wait for the vile virus to have its fun, get bored, and leave.
Still, there is no true end. Next it could be Fifth Disease, which apparently is like a slap in the face -- literally. Or, some other mystery illness that will leave me scratching my head and thinking, "Ok. For real. Who's the douchebag that did a family vacation in an Amazon jungle and picked up some yellow fever nonsense that I've never heard of?"
Sigh. I'm going to rub antibacterial wipes all over my body now, thank you.