Tuesday, May 27, 2014

A Special Needs Pet Peeve

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Without question we purposely avoid places that could expose Noah to germs of any kind between October and April of each year.   However at some point, you have to allow your children access to the world after what you think is a safe time (typically late spring and summer months) where the risk is significantly lower.   We decided to venture out to both the Butterfly Pavilion and the Aquarium over the weekend.  Usually we go once a year - mostly due to the sheer price tag that is associated with admission.  And we lack the financial resources to hold anything other than a zoo membership.   Maybe we just picked a bad weekend.  Flooded with people, really most of which who had little regard for a wheelchair, pushing their way ahead of us.  

I was amazed at how many sick children there were.  Coughing, noses running, eyes watering.  Some looking beyond miserable.  Yet, there they were out in public.   That was not social etiquette when I was growing up.  If you were sick you parked your sick butt between the couch and your bed, while having your mother make chicken noodle soup and sip beverages of all kinds to keep you well hydrated.  The last thing you'd find is our parents dragging us out and about. 

However, now days the theory is, little Johnny has a cold.  We don't want him to have cabin fever, or since we have to be off work anyway because he's sick let's go have a fun day and expose the world to his germ.  After all, who cares really if I'm infecting a medically fragile child or a frail elderly lady.   Their problem, not mine as long as my child is having a good time while snot flows endlessly from his nose. 

Little Johnny should be home, recuperating while he's sneezing, coughing, complaining of a raw throat with throbbing ears.  Not at the Butterfly Pavilion and not at the local aquarium spreading his illness to hundreds of people.  And if he should be going anywhere it should be to the doctors because you failed to recognize that his head cold has now moved congestion into his ears and has settled in his lungs after society has convinced you that antibiotics are overly prescribed and that everything including pneumonia is JUST A VIRUS!

So as you guessed it, I sit here with two sick children who came down with a cold at the exact time.  This wasn't even a case of little brother giving it to big brother (which often happens simply because Luke can touch his face, eyes, and mouth freely where Noah cannot).  This time it was literally like a timer going off at the same time!  

 And if I sound mad, it's because I am.  This sleep seeking mom is so over people not being considerate of others.   I am over that no one can even think about how their actions will effect someone else.  No one ever considers a medically fragile child in their decision-making because well, they don't have one.  But I can guarantee you if the shoe was on the other foot and this was your journey you'd be fuming mad that you can't even take your children out to a child's place for fun without coming home with a germ.  All because those who have sick kids don't have the common sense to keep them home. 

So surviving on less than an hour and a half of sleep while I cling to a pulse oximeter, (and no that's not the name of a new planet found by NASA).  It happens to monitor your oxygen saturation levels or to simplify that - how well you are breathing.   I also get some other fun things to do like rescue Noah from every snort as he struggles to adjust to the growing mucus down his throat, because he can't sit or even move properly to clear himself like other people can.   Imagine your typical child sick times ten!  And don't forget I do indeed have a typical child to care for as well, who is seeking out comfort when I have to run to rescue the other one who is gagging because of his nasal drainage.  

While I sit her contemplating face planting myself in a bucket of coffee, I will hope that this post reaches at least one parent that will never take their sick child out in public again to expose them to others that can't recover as easily as their child can. 


Noah's Miracle by Stacy Warden is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.