Have you ever felt like your family was being taken over by germs? That’s exactly how I’ve felt the last few months, and I’m so ready to be rid of all these Kindergarten germs.
My 6 year old, Ellie, has been sick the whole school year. She came down with a cold a few days after she started Kindergarten, and the non-stop cycle has continued for months. Colds, pink eye, Hand Foot and Mouth (both strains), stomach viruses…you name it, she’s had it. Of course many of the germs have passed through the family, and we have all had a rough Winter. With constantly sick kids, battling my own colds, and taking care of a sick husband who has coughed so much he cracked a few ribs, I feel like I’ve become a full time nurse.
We have tried everything under the Sun to get Ellie to a state of wellness for more than a few days at a time. We’ve tried home care with OTC meds, and I even jumped on the essential oils bandwagon in the hopes that I could find something to help.
That’s not counting the almost weekly (sometimes 2-3 times a week) appointments with our family doctor. My child who previously had 3 runs of antibiotics in her lifetime has been on so many antibiotics this year it’s taking an even bigger toll on her immune system. We’re pumping her full of probiotics and vitamins, but it doesn’t seem to help. Then there are the multiple allergy medicines she’s taking in the hopes that something will help. At times I feel like such a horrible mother for pumping her full of so many medications. I feel like Ellie will never make it through Kindergarten at this rate. She’s missed 18 days so far because of the almost constant sickness.
At the doctor I’m reassured we’re doing everything right, it’s just a horrible year for everyone. We’re told there are multiple patients going through the same thing, an unusually high number of adults coming in with ear infections or pneumonia from this same cold bug that seems to last for weeks.
During parent conferences I feel as if I’m being scolded (in the nicest possible way of course) because my child is constantly sick. I’m being pushed to add even more referrals and doctor’s appointments to put an end to it all. I feel like they don’t believe I’m doing everything I possibly can to get her better.
I feel like I’m being pulled in two different directions, and my poor sick child is the one suffering.
I had a conference today with her Speech therapy team for a mid-year followup. The speech therapist commented on how Ellie seems to be feeling better, and how nice it was to see her this morning without a severely snotty nose. When we left the meeting I commented to Ben, “I wish they could see that she always seems to clear up when she’s away from school for a few days. It’s almost as if she’s allergic to the school!”
The truth is, that’s really what happens. The doctor puts her out of school for a few days, and she gets better. She goes back to school, and within a day or two she’s sick again. She had a long weekend to recover thanks to an early dismissal day Thursday and teacher work day Friday. She felt fine again by Friday evening. Of course, one day back at school today, and her nose was pouring yellowish green again when I picked her up from school, she complained all evening she didn’t feel well, and she’s been restless all night from her inability to breathe.
Is it really so crazy to think it’s something in the school making her sick? Her poor immune system just can’t handle all those germs that are constantly being passed around from one snotty nosed kid to the next. I can’t wait for the school year to end and Summer break to arrive so she can get a break! And you can bet this mama is once again considering the option to home school next year. Until then I just wish I knew what to help my baby girl feel better!
Did your child have a rough first year of school? How did you push through it?
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