hand, foot, mouth, hoof, etc.

joyous day, calloo, callay, to borrow from my beloved dr. seuss.

it appears that we have a wild outbreak of hand, foot and mouth disease in this house. (or, for those of you who like the beavis and butthead-sounding name, coxsackie. uh huh, she said coxsackie, uh huh. yeah, whatever.) yesterday, we confirmed that the fever and the bumps all over jools’ legs were not a reaction to his ridiculously-rare flu shot but were, in fact, a result of this lovely virus. best of all, one hour before i was going to leave for the pediatrician’s office, the school nurse called me and informed me that BC was suffering from a fever and could i possibly come and pick her up?

after waiting to see whether BS could pick her up (he couldn’t because some not-so-nice-person had their car blocking his at the parking lot and couldn’t be reached), i whooshed over to BC’s school, only to have the school nurse MIA while my daughter slept on the cot. meanwhile, a helpful second grader informed me that the nurse would be back soon. nice to know there’s supervision going on in that there school.

so the nurse returns and decides that she will go find BC’s backpack. considerate and sweet of her, right? wrong. after 10 minutes, i nearly sent out a pack of dogs in search of the nurse, who clearly traveled to Honduras to look for this little princess backpack. (there are only 4 kindergarten classes in the school.) long story short, we went searching for the nurse, the nurse missed us, and voila! more time wasted. ultimately, we found each other and raced out the door. i had 30 minutes to get to the pediatrician’s office, a 20 minute ride when it isn’t rush hour. which, btw, it now was.

but wait. there’s more.

we walk to the car in the parking lot. i open the car door for BC so that she can climb in. “mama,” she says sleepily, “where’s my car seat?” yes. my beloved BS removed her car seat and put it in the other car that morning. he did not replace it with anything, not even folger’s coffee. now, BC is a month and a half shy of 6, which is the age when kids can officially be car-seat-less in our great Commonwealth. however, on this date, there happened to be 50, yes, 50 police officers across the street from BC’s school. some wild protest was underway, and they needed a flock of folks in blue to monitor it lest things get ugly, i suppose. my luck. i am breaking the law, and there are many, many cops to witness it.

somehow, i managed to slink by the whole lot. i raced home, found the other car seat, threw it in, got everyone safely belted up, and raced for the doctor’s with 20 minutes to spare. only, sadly, the two slowest drivers on G-d’s green earth were in front of me. fortunately, BS dozed off in the car. jools, being a toddler, doesn’t quite grasp mama’s guide to colorful speech. although, i suppose, if i hear him utter the word “fuck” this week, there will be no way of telling his caregiver that he is trying to say something in spanish. i don’t think that excuse will work this week.

so whoopee! 2 for the price of 1 at the pediatrician’s office. 5 minutes late for my appointment with an office jam-packed full of germy kids. life just doesn’t get better than this. and nevermind that i was there two weeks ago with a daughter who had contracted fifths disease. both kids officially have coxsackie disease. nevermind i have been without sick leave since april 1. nevermind that mama has a huge contract to negotiate at work. we can’t be bothered with such minor bits. we are far too busy contracting all of the great pediatric rashes of the western hemisphere.

today, hand, foot, and mouth. tomorrow, beri beri.


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