Real Life Mama:


By Sarah Shrader - Guest columnist



Although I am a firm believer that there is never, ever a good time for a child to get the flu, I recently found out that there is a worst time for a child to get the flu. That time would be three days before Mom starts her new job.

Less than 12 hours after finding out my niece tested positive for Influenza A, Maylie started showing signs. But, I knew before her symptoms even started that she had it. The two girls were practically inseparable that week — two days of cheer camp together, family dinner, playtime and they even bathed together a few days before. So, it was no surprise when Maylie woke up Friday morning — you know, the Friday morning before the Monday Mom was to start her new job — with a fever.

It was like “you know what, Sarah? You have a lot going on this week. Why don’t we take your mind off of it and add in some influenza?”

Because what is scarier right now for a mother than the flu? Seriously, have you seen the many awful headlines? Completely healthy children are losing their lives from this flu! It has been said to be the worst in a decade!

Ugh! Worse than two years ago when we spent a week of fever, three days in the hospital on oxygen, and some of the scariest days of my life with Reagan fighting the flu and then pneumonia?! Cue the panic and anxiety.

And so Friday, every break I could get, I was back and forth on the phone between the doctor’s office and the pharmacy. Typically, they only order Tamiflu if the children are in the same household. Well, we aren’t typical — we are very close. Thankfully, our doc knows that as well and finally approved sending over the prescription. Oh, but no liquid Tamiflu in Lima. Wonderful.

Actually, the alternative did seem kind of wonderful. You see, two years ago, I literally held down Maylie attempting to force Tamiflu down her throat. And she would spit it at me because it was disgusting. In all honesty, you could smell that it was disgusting. So, this year being out of the liquid seemed like a blessing as they did have capsules that could be opened and combined with Hershey’s syrup. And who doesn’t love Hershey’s Syrup?

I’ll tell you who. Maylie.

With the first dose, I tricked her into taking it. Here’s some chocolate on a spoon. Ha! She was no dummy after that. The second dose sent all of the contents in her belly up with it. The little drama queen actually puked. Real life.

But see, sweet daughter, I have to start a new job in two days — you have to take this medicine and be better by then!

Thankfully, I was able to trick Reagan every time. I switched it up between yogurt and chocolate syrup just to stay ahead of the game. And somehow managed to get just enough Tamiflu in my girls.

Oh, and don’t worry, in this social media world of “non-judgmental” moms, you will be made to feel like an awful parent for dosing your child up with Tamiflu. Yes, know the side effects, but do not feel guilty for trying to get your kids healthier quicker. The old fashioned way truly doesn’t work for everyone (especially us working mom’s who unfortunately cannot take off a couple of weeks of work to care for each child with the flu).

Meanwhile, between dramatic medicine taking, I was an overachieving forehead checker and thermometer prying armpit conqueror. Because fevers, although I have read every “good” thing that Dr. Google can supply about them, scare me. And like I mentioned before, healthy kids have had this flu and not survived.

It’s interesting, though, how going through the flu and being in the middle of it causes so much worry and anxiety. But, once you are through it successfully, (you know, for the millions who have gotten it and survived — that you don’t see on the headlines), you are like wow that really wasn’t that bad. But you don’t know that while you are in it. You have no idea how bad it could get or what the next hour will hold.

Thankfully, Maylie did get through it. And amazingly — or with the help of Tamiflu (and of course God) — was fever free by the time I started the new job.

I am now 2 for 2 at this company. Both times I started a new position, I spent the weekend before with sick kids. Which means one of two things: I am staying in this position forever, or the next time I get a promotion, my kids are going in a bubble.

Stay healthy, friends!

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By Sarah Shrader

Guest columnist

Sarah (Pitson) Shrader was born and raised in Lima. She is a Lima Central Catholic and Tiffin University graduate. Sarah is a full-time working mama who enjoys writing about her somewhat crazy, always adventurous life as a mother. She lives in Bath Township with her husband, Paul, and their daughters, her writing inspirations, Maylie and Reagan.

Sarah (Pitson) Shrader was born and raised in Lima. She is a Lima Central Catholic and Tiffin University graduate. Sarah is a full-time working mama who enjoys writing about her somewhat crazy, always adventurous life as a mother. She lives in Bath Township with her husband, Paul, and their daughters, her writing inspirations, Maylie and Reagan.

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