Hi friends! Wow, it's been a while. I'd like to share a small public service announcement, which explains a small part of my recent absence from this blog, but I don't want to scare you. Please sit down, ready yourself, and read on...
DO NOT GET HAND, FOOT, AND MOUTH DISEASE
Non-parents, you may be thinking: Isn't that just for cows? Alas, no---that's hoof and mouth disease, and I can only imagine that it is far more pleasant than HFMD.
Parents, you may be thinking: Isn't that just for kids? Mostly, yes---and kids' cases are usually pretty mild. As I have discovered for myself, when adults do get it, it can get ugly.
I'll spare you the goriest of details, but here are the basics:
A throat tickle turns into a sore throat, which leads to a high fever and chills...
...which leads to a day of feeling ok, which leads to Wife saying "let me look at your throat," which leads to "ewwwwwww," which leads to examining my hands, which leads to discovering a few spots that really don't seem that bad...
Friday, Saturday, Sunday
...which leads to OMG I MIGHT HAVE LEPROSY AND FRANKLY I WANT MY HANDS TO FALL OFF SO THEY STOP HURTING OR ITCHING OR HURTING AND ITCHING. Also, my throat hurts. I can only eat soft foods in very small bites, and only if I chew really well.
I may be turning a corner. Life still sucks, but I'm not considering knocking myself out with NyQuil so I can sleep through the pain and itching.
I'm starting to feel almost human again, despite the numbness that has replaced the itching in the tips of my fingers. I leave the house for the first time in days, but I wear gloves and make it quick. No need to scare the children.
Seriously, people--don't be like me. Wash your hands every five minutes if you have to.
To help you remember this important public service message, I wrote a song about it (well, I wrote lyrics about it, set to the tune of "House of the Rising Sun"):
There is a germ at your baby's school
They call it HFMD
And it's been the ruin of alabaster skin
Oh please, just take it from me.
My baby's now a toddler,
With a new classroom full of germs.
Now I can't decide which I hate more--
Itchy hands or a throat that burns.
Mothers, tell your children
Not to share their crackers and peas,
Or spend your week in itchy misery
With a case of HFMD.
You're welcome, America.