Tuesday, May 27, 2008

A Pox Upon You

Another week gone by. Oh wait, it's been almost 2 weeks! Damn. What have I been doing? Nothing. Well, nothing interesting anyway. Working, parenting, housekeeping, gardening, socializing with my new and old neighbors (I'm willing to stretch myself a little thin for my friends...I'm giving in that way).

Yawn. Not even a smidgen of drama.

Well, just a little.

A couple of Tuesdays ago, the kids wanted to take a post-dinner dip in the hot tub. Jack shook off his t-shirt to the synchronized what-the-hells of both of his parents. His torso was covered in little, red, blistery dots. A quick check of the girls, and we found several on each of them, with Libby being the least spotty.

This is the first crop of poxes that appeared.

I freaked. No fucking way. Chicken pox? No school for two weeks? Three itchy, miserable kids under foot until they got the all clear from school? For up to three weeks!!!

Oh. My. God.

I was not relishing the thought of nursing three sick kids and trying to work. I know I should have mustered up a little sympathy for them, but really, it's all about me and my self imposed schedule.

I called their pediatrician's office in the morning, now convinced that despite vaccinating them, we had a raging case of the pox. The nurse even made arrangements for us to be let in through the back door, to avoid the accusing eyes of the all the "good" parents in the waiting room.

The nurse did a cursory check of Jack, who's pox was now stretching from his junk to his neck, and gently prepped me for the real possibility that we did, indeed, have the pox.

The doctor, however, having seen a handful of real chicken pox in the last several years, took one look at him, then at me and said, "do you have a hot tub?".

Sweet mother of God. Not the pox?


Now, let's rewind a couple of days, and see how we got ourselves in this predicament. How we clearly lost our shot at winning the "Parents of the Year Award".

The Friday before Pox Tuesday, we finally got the hot tub in good working order. It took rebuilding the pump and replacing the heat exchange (cha-ching), but FINALLY it was actually hot (there's a good reason they didn't successfully market it as a cold tub). We had it running and fully heated that night, but realized we didn't get the chlorine, etc. We made a mental note to get everything we needed the next morning. But we forgot, and who cares anyway? The kids thought we were rockin' the street!

Four of the estimated 7 children who got swam with our cooties.

Sunday was Mother's Day, a day to remember the loving sacrifices your sweet mother has made for you...and to show up at the pool place to find locked doors and a "It's Mother's Day, You Idiot" sign in the window.

Ah, what the hell? The kids loved it, LURVED IT, don't even seem to mind the slightly musty smell wafting from the water. They didn't even bother to mention that with every passing hour, the water began to look a little cloudier, a little less sparkly. But, c'mon now, these kids have swam in worse...much worse...and have an iron constitution. We did say, at one point, that it might not be a good idea to have them in there until it was appropriately chemicalized.


"Don't swallow any water kids."

So, the disapproving tsk-tsks I got from the parents of the kids we allowed to splash in our cesspool cost me almost a hundred beans...$40 for chlorine and $45 for co-pays and prescriptions to treat hot tub folliculitis (a bacterial infection of the hair follicle, caused by improper treatment of the water in your hot tub).

WHATEVER, I said!! At least it wasn't the pox!!


Bird said...

Maybe you should notify Georgie Porgie... sounds like you found the missing WMD!

Martine said...

Ooooh...low cost chemical warfare! If I'm ever mad at you, and invite you over for a soak in the hot tub, it would be advisable to say "no thank you".

Bird said...

Dr. Oz says hot tubs are the breeding ground for ickies and heeby jeebies. But then again he also says never to use toilet paper so what the hell does he know?!

Martine said...

Dr. Oz recommends no toilet paper? Sweet heavens, what does he suggest we use?

winks said...

Our swimming pool is green with black stuff growing on the walls. I can think of a few beings I would like to toss in there and then treat them for chicken pox!

Bird said...

Dr. Oz wants everyone to have a bidet. We went the cheap route and use the garden hose.