Sunday, May 27, 2012


HF&M, otherwise known by the scary name Hand, Foot, and Mouth Disease, has invaded our fun holiday weekend and CRASHED our BASH. Instead of going to the hot air balloon glow and having a party, we are quarantined with a rather uncomfortable, grumpy toddler. Our days have included lots of Disney movies, lots of cuddling, a good bit of crying (from the toddler), a good bit of sleeping (more from the mommy than the toddler), and some swimming thrown in to beat the heat. It's been nice to have Mike home through this, since B thinks he hung the moon and we've been able to tag team. It hasn't  been so nice that this is how we are spending his time off. The poor little guy looks pitiful. I'll spare you the pictures, but it's actually quite scary looking. Thankfully he does seem to be feeling better today.

This is one strange illness. I don't remember ever hearing of it until the last few years. It sort of seems like what Chicken Pox was for our generation, but maybe less dangerous and reoccurring.  I've heard other moms talk about it, and always hoped we wouldn't experience it. Once we did, I was glad I knew of others who had gone through it. As these things always happen for us, I realized B had HF&M about 4 o'clock Friday afternoon, the start of not only a weekend but a long holiday weekend. I was able to find some info online, but some of it was contradictory. I did find enough info to know without a doubt that he had HF&M. I also realized it's a pretty lengthy illness.

Thursday, 3 a.m.: B woke up crying. He felt really hot to the touch but didn't have a fever according to the thermometer. He went back to sleep quickly.

Thursday, 9 a.m.: B woke up an hour later than normal and was clingy. He ate and became very excited to run errands with us. He was a little sick to his stomach, but it seemed more like sinus issues.

Throughout the day Thursday he became lethargic, wanted to sleep earlier than normal, and generally acted ill. He would also perk back up on occasion and seem normal. When I asked what felt bad he would say his mouth (my first clue it might be HF&M).

Friday he woke up acting normal and feeling good. At the grocery store he was really quiet, and then suddenly yelled out that his foot hurt. He took his shoe off and wouldn't put it back on. His feet looked normal. Later in the afternoon he got sick to his stomach again. I also noticed a rash when I changed his diaper. A couple of hours later the rash started on his hands and feet. He also had blisters on his arm and leg.

So about 36 hours after this all began, we finally knew what was going on. I had suspected an ear infection, but thankfully didn't let him play with anyone just in case it was more. The start of the rash also started his major discomfort. Friday night we gave him Benadryl, but he still didn't sleep until the second dose about 3 a.m. He layed around almost all day Saturday. Finally, Saturday afternoon he got a burst of energy and was wild. I had called the doctor to find out what the best pain relief was, how long it would be contagious, and if he could swim. I knew we were all going to need some relief, and swimming was the answer. The doctor suggested alternating Tylenol and Motrin. He also said B could swim at home with us, but did not suggest it in public. He said the contagious part was a little tricky, but basically 5 or 6 days.

Today he has gotten several more sores. There are none on his torso, but basically everywhere else. He hasn't been sick to his stomach again, and is eating and drinking ok. Especially the "rich dark chocolate cake" I made for his "party" today. I read that the last day or two were the worst for sores, so we are still in that stage I guess. It's not the weekend we imagined, but we are getting a lot of restful, family time.

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