Saturday, February 23, 2008

The Waiting is the Hardest Part

On Wednesday our weather here was nice temperature-wise, but rain threatened. Reeling from cabin fever, I threw together an impromptu playdate with another mom from our church and her two little boys. We scarfed a quick lunch and headed to the park to try to get in some playtime before the rain came (funnily enough, it never did - not until early the next morning).

And then a little while after Dave and Ethan left the house this morning, church-bound, I got an email from the mom, telling me that on Friday her littlest broke out with chickenpox.

I couldn't decide whether to be worried. On the one hand, I figure it's a part of childhood, the sooner confronted the better. On the other, I'm on the fence and wishy-washy about the vaccine. Ethan was not vaccinated at 18 months, but he's had the second half of it at his four year checkup. Aidan, on the other hand, did get the vaccine at his 18-month/2-year checkup. And Dylan, of course, has had nothing for chickenpox so far.

If I was going to be worried about anyone, it would be Dylan, I decided.

So I put in a call to the TeleCare nurse. Should we let this run its course, since it's a pretty sure thing he was exposed, or should we try to head it off at the pass with a vaccine? I was uncertain as to how serious the complications could be in such a young baby.

The TeleCare nurse was actually very unhelpful, though she tried her best. I could hear her clacking away on the other end of the line, searching for answers to my questions, but in the end, her Googling skills were no better than my own, and I ended up sending an email to the pediatrician.

While on the phone with TeleCare, Aidan walked up to me with his shirt off, and I noticed a faint spotty rash on his tummy.

So for the rest of the evening Aidan ran around the house unclothed save for his diaper while I watched ever-so-closely for signs the rash was spreading.

So far, it's not. But it's not going away, either.

The incubation period from the point of exposure is much, much longer than just two days. If Aidan has chickenpox, he didn't get it from the playdate. They may have both picked it up from the same place - my guess would be church.

But wouldn't you know it - tomorrow we have a birthday party we're supposed to attend.

I've got a sneaking suspicion we won't make it.


Jamie said...

Not that I want your little boys to get sick...especially Dylan, being so tiny. But I really think being exposed to chicken pox is a "good" thing. When Ida was vaccinated(which I fought!), they told me it would last for 20 years! Now they are getting a booster with their 4-6 year old shots. That huge change has taken place in just three short years.

I would much rather have my children exposed to it when they are young(remind me of that if the time ever comes)and then they will most probably be immune for life.

I have never had them and am not immune. I try not to think too much about it!

Mommy said...

I know - the chickenpox vaccine just seems to me like such a waste. I mean, polio and whooping cough - those sorts of things I "get," but chickenpox?

I let myself get talked into it with Aidan, and into Ethan's booster, which as it turns out I suppose was just as well.

I don't just seems like...of all the things to vaccinate against. Seems kind of silly.

Ugh. Can you tell I'm still obsessing about it instead of just making up my mind one way or the other. I really need to get a grip. LOL