About eight years ago I woke up one day with, what I thought, was a cold sore. I had never had a cold sore before, didn't know how to treat it and I was pregnant with my son so I wanted to get it seen by a doctor. Being it was a Saturday and my doctor's office was closed I went into a little doc-in-the-box place my family uses as an urgent care. The doctor I saw gave me a prescription for an ointment of some sort, told be to use it on the sore a few times a day and it should go away within a few days. Okay, not big deal, right? Wrong! That ointment was like steroids to a muscle builder. By Sunday morning my face was covered with sores. At this point they looked more like chicken pox than anything else I had ever seen and they were extremely painful.
First thing Monday morning, I called into work explaining what was going on and then called my doctor's office and got in as quickly as possible. I had an awesome doc and he was baffled. He said whatever it was looked and acted like shingles except it was on both sides of my face and shingles only affects one side of the body. He was mentoring a medical student at the time so he so left the room for a moment to get her and, apparently, everyone else who worked on the floor.
Did you ever see that episodic of Friends where Ross goes to the doctor to have a growth looked at? The doctor couldn't figure out what it was so he brought in all the other doctors who work in the building to take a look. Ross ends up having a room full of medical professionals starting at his ass. That is what ended up happening that day. I had a room full of doctors and med students staring at my face covered with the cold sores from hell.
After all of that we still didn't have a clue what it really was. He prescribed me the same medication he would use to treat shingles and sent me to a dermatologist. This story could go on but I'll wrap it up now since it's not what I had intended on blogging about. In the end, I saw a handful of doctors, including some at the ER, I missed a month of work, and the shingles medication did what it was suppose to do. To this day we still don't know what it is. It seems to flair up whenever I get hit with a nasty virus or if my skin is acting truly evil (season changes are the worst) hence the name I gave it, the I'm-sick-pox. Typically I can start taking the medication as soon as I have one bump on my face and it'll prevent a full on attack.
Back to yesterday, When I woke up and saw the pox all over me I knew I was sick. As soon as the doctor's office opened I was on the phone making an appoint for that afternoon. I really didn't feel very sick but my glands were a little swollen and my sister and ex sister-in-law (long story) both had strep throat last week so I figured it would be a good thing to get that checked too while I was there getting the meds for my I'm-sick-pox.
Of course, the swab came back positive for strep throat. This was, to me, the worse news possible. The doctor said that there's no way she could allow me to work with children while being treated for strep. So, for the first time in the five years I've been doing daycare, I have to close my business for couple of days due to illness. The great irony here is that I'm on vacation next week. Why couldn't I have gotten sick then, or over the weekend? When I called Jeremy (who was watching the daycare for me so I could go to my appointment) to tell him the news one of my daycare parents was there picking up his daughter. I had Jer relay the information to him explaining that I'm forced to close on Thursday and Friday and, to make it up to them, I was offering all the families either two nights of after hours care or one full weekend of care. While I waited at the pharmacy for my antibiotics I called all the other families and gave them the same speech.
I was so nervous about making those calls. I have a pretty solid reputation for being dependable and I didn't want any of the parents think that I was trying get get extra time off. Whenever I close for vacation there's a little part of me that feels guilty for closing so you can imagine how I felt yesterday making those calls. However, I work with the most amazing group of parents. Every one of them was very understanding and sympathetic. They made those calls so much easier. I think they were all pretty excited about the free after hours/weekend care too. I'm just praying and double crossing my fingers and toes that I didn't share my strep with any of my kids or parents.
|Seriously! If any of you are|
reading this, thank you for being so great!
I'm gong to end this blog with a word of caution. If you have any symptoms of strep, get tested! Don't think that if you don't have a sore throat that you're in the clear. My throat still feels fine. My only symptoms was a headache the night before and slightly swollen lymph nodes in the morning. Below is a little information I copied from WebMD.com
The symptoms of strep throat include:
- Sore throat that comes on rapidly.
- Difficulty swallowing.
- Fever, sometimes greater than 102 degrees.
- A raw, red appearance to the back of the throat.
- White pus on tonsils.
- Tender, high lymph nodes in neck.
Although by definition strep throat is caused by the Streptococcus pyogenesbacteria, other bacteria can occasionally invade the throat and cause similar symptoms. Other possible bacterial invaders include staphylococcus, neisseria, and Haemophilus influenzae.
- Absence of a cough, stuffy nose, or other upper-respiratory symptoms.
Stress, overwork, exhaustion, and fighting off viral infections can weaken the body's defenses and set up attacks of strep throat. And like other throat infections, strep throat also tends to occur during the colder months.
People usually develop strep throat when their immune system is not functioning at its peak. Because strep is contagious, treatment is critical since these bacteria can be spread to others by coughing or sneezing