Sunday, July 29, 2007

Help Wanted...

(This post by Sandeepa of Bong Mom's Cook Book)
Only a few days ago I had gloated about the “pleasure” in doing everything by ones self for the kids. The blog is jinxed as Kodi’s Mom would say and I am in desperate need of help now. Little S is sick with some viral infection, fevers are running as high as 102F/103F. It’s been like this since Monday midnight. Me and D has been alternating at home. I have no clue how I will manage the next week. Though my hours at work are less, I have to be physically present there at least if I don’t want to blow up all my leaves. The hubby has some people/client coming in next week and he can take off a day and half at the most. Sending S to school is out of question. Even if the fever goes down, she will be very weak because of her “satyagraha” activities. So I will in no circumstances send her to school next week.

The fever has made little S very clingy too. She tries to be cheerful in between but rest of the time she wants to lie down in the crook of my arms. So I lie and think of what I can write in my blog but never get around to writing it.

Also since I have a slight (ahem !) case of OCD, in middle of all this chaos I want to dust the top of the dresser and at the back of my head I have a thought that I haven’t cleaned up the stove top yet.

And what do I want most in such a situation? I want S to be in the comfort of home for at least 2 weeks even when she is better and I don't know how this can be accomplished. I also want some caring person who can watch her at the comfort of my own home or at least take care of the home, for just 3-4 hours while me & the hubby can fleet in and out of work. I see the smirk on your face, the glint in your eyes, the “I told you so”. Ok, but I do not know of any one who meets the norms so it’s going to be me or the Dad, but yes “Help” would have “Helped”…

We are just back from the ER since the fever was really high and the ped had taken the evening flight out to the golden days of vacation. All is fine it seems and there is some kind of viral going on causing high fever for several days. So the liitle girl is back on Ibuprofen.

Some lessons learnt in the process:

This is the first time S is running such a high fever and that too for so many days. So we got a little worried today. But it seems with certain viral infection fever can go up to 103F/104F for several (5-7) days. This is accompanied with loss of appetite and some body aches

Fluids, fluids and fluids. Easier said than done. Try giving a cranky, sick child fluid that has high calorie value and she is going to throw it all over you. But still try you must. The Doc said to give stuff like popsicle, frozen yogurt etc. too. I am not used to giving a sick child with stuffed nose, popsicles from the freezer but it seems to be ok. Also I was avoiding the milk though S wanted it, but again the Doc said to let her have it

No need to force feed a sick child though fluids are extremely important. Listening to my Ma I have tried feeding S Macher Jhol-Bhat (very light fish curry and rice), khichuri and lots of other things. All in vain and precious time was spent in cooking up such things. All she had was a little noodles smeared in Ketchup. It is very good if you can feed and the child wants to eat, else giving high calorie drinks might help

A bath helps. The ice pack on the forehead helps and the bath definitely helps too.

ER can be fine. I generally have a fear of all things medical. So when the Doc said I should take S to the ER I panicked. But it was fine actually. The hospital had a separate pediatric ER and it was cheerful and happy.

P.S: Does anyone know of any agency or something from where help can be hired sporadically ?

To be continued, so watch out in a day or two....


Asha said...

So sorry to hear that Sandeepa.There is nothing worse than a sick child suffering and we cannot take that pain away!
You are following the doctor's orders,so no worries there.Don't try to feed any spicy food even if it's not spicy hot.Give her a protein shake with a flavor she likes,fruity yogurt is good too.
There are some trained nannies who do care for sick child at home, but they can be expensive bcos usually they are part time nurses.Ask in your doctor's clinic,they might know somebody or there are some childcare exclusively take care sick children.
Good luck and hope she recovers soon.Hugs to you and S.Take care darling!

Kay said...

Oh my! yes, find help...please.. as soon as you can.

I've seen advertisements here in Toronto.. but don't know of any in US. :( I wish I could help.

((((((((Sandeepa and her DD)))))))))

Kay said...

Having just gone through with a sick child episode, i can understand how it must be...

A friend of mine found a neighbor who used to run a very small daycare before (say 2 kids) and she was more than happy to take care of my friend's son.. The neighbor was a lovely lady and It worked out well for my friend.

I really wish you can find somebody to take care of her.

indosungod said...

Sandeepa, sorry to hear about little S, it is tough when the kids are sick and we have to worry about going to work. It is scary to visit an ER but glad that your visit worked out fine. Weekends are the worst because thats when kids seems to get sick the most.

Jell O might work too. Have you tried Sulekha Classifieds? But Sandeepa the problem is if you and little S do not know the person before hand, will you be comfortable? Like Kay suggested how about a neighbor?

Good Luck and wish I could be of more help.

Sandeepa said...

Hello everyone
Thanks for all your support.

And Kay, thanks for all your efforts, very very kind of you :)

I did look up some nannies at Craiglist but the problem I feel is that since S goes to daycare/pre-school, the nanny I am looking for will not be a regular one. We will need her maybe 4-5 times a year at the most. Now since S is only a 3 year old I am not sure how she will feel to be with someone she is not very familiar with, that too when she is not in full spirits. Also I am not sure how a babysitter will agree to such sporadic arrangements and how her commitments will be if she is not a regular care giver for S. Indo, I hear you

The best arrangement would be something like Kay's friend has in the neighbourhood. Actually since this is the first time I am in such a situation I had never looked out for such options in my neighbourhood.

For the time being I guess I will use up my leaves and a friend or two will pitch in. The friends have very sincerely & eagerly offered to baby sit S but they have small babies too and I don't really want them to take care of one more !!!

The good news is S is much better today so lets see

Gauri said...

Hey Sandeepa

Hope your lil one is doing better now.

When I saw your checklist, a couple more came to mind, so here goes .....

1. sometimes the tendency is for us to wrap up the child in layers of clothes so that they "sweat" the fever out. Bad idea !! Light clothes help. So also leaving the aircon on low. Helps bring down body temp.

2. If the child refuses plain water - try Lucozade/Gatorade instead. Aside of fluids going in, these also have essential salts which help retain balance in the body, thus preventing dehydration.

3. If the viral is a gastrointestinal viral, avoid milk and milk based products. Preferably till about two days after the virus has run its course. I know it sounds weird - don't give milk to a child - but with GI virii, it just makes them throw up all that much more.

DR said...

Hi Sandeepa,
hope S is doing better..
A had the same to, couple of weeks back just after coming back from India and I was very scared too!and this fever stays atleast for 3 days for sure!
he did not want to have rice at all(he is ingeneral not a rice lover),,but had a slice of brown bread now and strawberry juice (which usually he is not very fond of)!

am sure things will work sure help would have helped.Hope you get something in your neighbourhood...

best wishes..

Praba said...

Hi S -

So sorry to hear about the sickness episode and all the related externalities. I am terribly sorry.

I would recommend exploring into the "neighborhood network." Where we live, we found this - it's a neighbor to neighbor helpwanted/help available kind of "service referal" network. Please check to see if you have any like that. I dont know what other link to give you. I feel so bad.

I would also rely on your local desi friends too in situations like this. I really wish I were nearby to help you! :-(

Good luck, S! Scary viral fevers. I am leaving for India in a couple of days - wonder what all I am going to go through..really keeping fingers crossed. I got mine 3 shots this morning..It's so hard to see kids suffer.

Take care.

KitchenAromas said...

I came wandering around and saw this post. So sorry to hear about little S being so ill. Here is a company that provides backup child care

But I am not sure if it has to be provided by your employer..?

SJ said...

Hi Sandeepa, I am so sorry to hear S has been ill. Hope she starts feeling better. I don't know what to suggest - I usually end up using up all my leave :-( My present boss is pretty good in the sense he doesn't consider it a vacation day if I log on and work from home and dial into meetings - but that's often hard to do with a sick toddler.

Take care...*hugs*

Linda said...

Hi Sandeepa, so sorry to hear the baby's been sick... it's hard when we feel so helpless. If she will take noodles, perhaps some noodle soup -- high in sodium I know, if you don't make it homemade, but it's something warm and comforting my kids would always eat when sick. Hugs to you all, and hope she gets well soon :)

gayathre said...

Dear Sandeepa,
i hope your little girl is getting better.dont are supposed to get a better immune system by fighting some of these fevers and stuff.but watching them suffer is the most painful thing.we feel numb when our daughter falls sick and the house becomes normal only when she is ok.
Here doc's say eating frozen/cold stuff is not bad for a fever or,keep her in light cloths and wiping with a wet towel when the fever starts to rise,works very well.ER is a very common thing here and i dont understand why kids get sick (99%) mostly only during weekends!!since regular clinics dont function normally on weekends,we have to go to ER and it is not the "Emergency room" in the real sense.

Sharmi said...

OH Sandeepa, how is the little one doing. I am so sorry to hear of this and responding so late. MY little one fell down and broke his front 2 teeth. I am having bad days too. we had to go and remove his teeth and he will get his teeth only at the age of 7. he is just 3.
hope "s" is doing fine. take care and don't worry.

shweta said...

Hi Sandeepa,
Sorry to hear about the little one.HOpe she starts feelign better.You can try to put little pieces of ginger in tomatao /other soups ,just to get in some amount of it's essence.(if she likes soups) It really helps in preventing throw-ups and also brings back the appetite.Hope she feels better.

Kodi's Mom said...

read in the comments that she's feeling much better today. isn't it awful when they come down like this? your tips are helpful..when mine recovers, I'll add some more to your list.

btw, do you have a theme for august yet? if you want ideas, how abt back to school? so we can talk abt anything from preschool/daycare to college!

Saheli said...

Hi Sandeepa,

Hope little S is recovering from her illness and getting her appetite back. Hang in there!

Here is a site that a friend of mine recommneded. It is new to me too. Hope it helps...