A Poxy Weekend

Wednesday, August 23, 2006 23:29 | Filed in Life, Science, The Pickards

It’s not been the best couple of weeks health-wise. A few relatives have been ill with varying things (but in the interests of preserving their privacy I’ll keep my gob shut about who and what); the weekend before last myself, my wife and both children experienced some form of stomach upset, with varying symptoms ranging from me becoming particularly windy for 24 hours through to the ten month old having three days of, well, shall we say “unpleasant nappies”?

Not that I’ve ever found nappy changing to be a pleasurable experience, but it’s even less pleasurable when you’ve got liquid shit half way up your arm and the little bugger is trying to do his best to stick both hands in it while you’re trying to clear it up. Hmm. I think perhaps I should have stopped with the “unpleasant nappies” euphemism…

And of course, there’s been the episode of the pox.

By that, I don’t mean that I’ve contracted syphillis (that would undoubtedly have been worse, but surely that’s “a dose of the clap”, anyway) but that there’s been a chicken pox outbreak the nursery my children go to. The kids had seemed to be doing remarkably well at avoiding catching it until last Thursday when one of the nursery nurses noticed a couple of spots on the elder lad’s shoulders and I was detailed away from work and to the doctors to get him checked out.

We had some time to kill before the appointment so a quick trip around Saltwell park avec Ice Cream and sans buggy meant that my son was perfectly happy but by the time we got back to the car I was ready to collapse from carrying him. Still, we had a lovely time throwing seeds to the ducks (or in a certain little boy’s case, throwing seeds at the ducks).

The sojourn in the doctor’s surgery wasn’t fun. Imagine: there I am with a two and a three quarter year old, demanding to be entertained but also feeling slightly unwell. My appointment is at half past eleven. When I get there, I’m told they are running quite late.

That’s not so bad, I think, maybe quarter past twelve or so? Nope. By half past twelve there are still about five or six people who were there before me, and it has emerged that only one of the three practice doctors is actually in today.

Not quite what I was hoping to hear.

At this point, one of the people who was in before me turned to me and the little ‘un and asked which doctor we were going to see.

I want to see Dr Who. I like the bad robots Mini-Pickard

Unfortunately, Dr Who wasn’t available, so we had to make to with Dr Rizwi, who in my opinion is an excellent doctor as he actually listens to you and takes notice of what you say, but it meant of course that further disappointments ensued because not only did we have a confirmed case of chicken pox, but there were no Cybermen or Daleks anywhere to be seen in the Surgery.

It’s not been nice for the poor lad: angry red spots on his head, his back, his shoulders and also in other ahem, more sensitive areas. Fortunately by today, with liberal use of an aqueous lotion and a little bit of Piriton now and again (all proper dosages etc) we seemed to have run the course and there don’t appear to be any more new spots appearing, the ones left are fading away quite nicely — he’ll probably be ready to go back to nursery next week or possibly even this friday (but that’s maybe pushing it).

But now of course, we’ve got to wait while the rest of us all catch it too. The ten month old is bound to catch it, as is my wife, whereas at least I’ve got a reasonable chance of missing out on it because I’ve had it before and while it is possible to catch it again, it’s generally unlikely unless you had a particularly mild dose the first time round and/or your immune system is depressed. Although to cheer me up, one of the nursery nurses told me this morning while dropping the littler ‘un off that it was certainly possible to catch it more than once, as she’d had it three times.

Of course, if like me you’ve had chicken pox in the past, there’s always the possibility that there is a reservoir of virus dormant in your body near the base of the spine just waiting for a chance to wake up, infect your nervous system and give you shingles. So I suppose it is a bit like the clap in a way, as the spirochaetes associated with that sometimes act similarly, becoming dormant and reactivating themselves later to attack the cerebral cortex (where do I pick up this useless but fascinating information? In this case, Oliver Sacks book The Man Who Mistook His Wife For A Hat. Yes, really!). So not only do I not want to catch Chicken pox again, but I’d really rather avoid shingles too.

So, all in all, it’s not been a good time for us all health wise. Let’s just hope/pray (according to religious preference) that the rest of 2006 is better. A big lottery win wouldn’t come amiss either. Not the Euro-Afro-Asian Sweepstake, of course, as I found out at the weekend I’ve won one hundred and fifty thousand euros on this. I just need to sigh pay the administration fee and sigh wait while the unscrupulous bastards make off with my bank balance.

So instead I’m off to find something else to read about and regale you with for next time.

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2 Comments to A Poxy Weekend

  1. Matt says:

    August 26th, 2006 at 12:34 pm

    At least he didn’t ask to go and see Dr McKnobChop cos he had heard Daddie telling a joke about him

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    September 20th, 2011 at 1:11 am

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