Wednesday, 29 April 2009

It's Only a Cough

When my son develops an ailment, of any nature, my world seems to change enormously.

I find the smallest of problems bring about a huge change in my state of mind, my energy level, and my communication skills.

I know this is true for a lot of parents I talk too, and nothing seems to sharpen thinking, yet dumb the mind, like my child being ill.

My son is generally a very well boy, often escaping the bugs that others seem only too quick to submit to.

I do not know if that is born out of luck, a good diet, healthy genes or the fact that I have tried to be sensible with what he is subjected to, not applying a cotton-wool-approach.

But when he does have the odd illness, it is like all the air is released from my balloon.

My sense of humour, the thing I rely on so, so much, takes a complete holiday, my focus on anything other than the basic routine, is diminished to nil, and my general ability to function is severely damaged.


Which is ridiculous, as the rational part of me, another bit that plays a large part in my make up, tells me that a cold, cough or minor infection is under control, and will soon be dealt with.

But while I know we, or he, will soon be through it, moments like it have an incapacitating ability over both of us, for their duration.

Sometime ago Max was diagnosed as possibly picking up a form of asthma via his old man, a man who will be one year older over the weekend (I really should update my profile wotsit).

It is something he might well grow out of, but actually very common in more rural areas, such as the one we now live in.

So much so, that we virtually live in a rapeseed field, and as that crop begins to flower, I am told, by my expert chums, that it can trigger hayfever and asthma symptoms.

Junior has not been right from the weekend, well he has never been right, but you get my drift.

We were parted on Saturday, as I went to watch the mighty Walsall FC rain on the parade one of the country’s least liked football sides, enjoying a few beers either side of that game, with some friends.

When we reconvened my son’s health was a little worse, and he had not had a great night’s sleep. A common complaint amongst young asthma sufferers.

He had also developed a runny nose, and his temperature had spiked the night before, but there was no evidence of this again on Sunday.

But his inhaler seemed to only control the issue rather than put pay to it.

His runny nose dried up with the aid of some other medicine, and he is now a lot better than he was, while still not being at 100%.

He still had interrupted nights Sunday and Monday, so I kept him at home yesterday, keeping him entertained and still being able to find time to write about the delights of Oldham Athletic, and have a look at another couple of writing projects.

We had a nice peaceful day, without the normal laughs, as my humour was still on bypass and laughing in the boy seemed to induce coughing fits.

We shared a bed again last night, and while Max did not sleep without coughing completely, he had a much better night than the previous three.

So I decided that he should go off to nursery today, the ten minute walk there being a good indicator as to how well his chest was holding up.

He was fine, and we enjoyed a gently chat filled saunter round to the village school and nursery.

The nursery leader looked genuinely delighted to see him, and said without hesitation;

“We missed you yesterday, we were worried about you.”

And minus any indecision, and very matter-of-factly, my son retorted with;

“It was only a cough.”

Indeed son, I should just listen to you.



Nicole said...

I feel the same way and my son gets sick quite often.
His dad was very sick as a baby -- asthma as well so every time he starts sniffling or coughing my mind starts to wander through all the possibilities.
..and allows me to argue with his MD. lol
Most recently he's started wheezing when he's sleeping -- very loudly, and you can tell it's coming straight from his chest.
Call me a paranoid mama but I worry. His doctor not so much.. so maybe I should take a cue from you and start to listen.. :p

Yummy Mammy said...

Firstly - a)birthday!!! Have a good un
b) Walsall!!! - jeez and I thought I was bad ;-)

And now to child illnesses. Mine never gets sick (oh don't you just know that I'm now going to get a full on onslaughter of child illness). The odd runny nose but thats it. Nothing the calpol can't sort out. But her Dad is convinced that everytime her nose runs she has swine flu (ok maybe not but you know what I mean). If she is ever at his and her nose runs he hot foots it over to the doctors (who is absolutely crap) and she returns with a dose of antibiotics. I have had countless run ins over this as to me the doctor is just perscription happy and how can someone have a chest infection when they haven't so much as coughed??? Plus we all know at this stage that antibiotics aren't good for kids at all.
Calpol all the way for me :-)

SciFi Dad said...

It can be difficult when your kid is sick. For me, it's the helplessness... like, I'm the DAD - I should be able to take care of them.

EAO71 said...

Does it make me seem a little bit crazy that reading that reading that there is someone else on this planet that is...hypervigilant made me feel normal?

My children are older than yours is, and over the years they have had to tell me more than once "it's just a cold mom."

Jo Beaufoix said...

It is the hardest thing to be worried about them when they are so little so I completely get the loss of humour. There's always that tinge of fear, 'what if' and no matter how much we rationalize our feelings, in the end we just love them and we want to take the hurt away.

It's good Max feels safe and loved and is able to say 'it's only a cough'. He is obviously not picking up on a less funny dad, but a dad who gives him what he needs and doesn't pass on the worry. You're amazing.

Oh and Happy Birthday for the weekend. You're just a youngster compared to my very mature 34....(Not).

Canadian Bald Guy said...

My son currently has a tonsil infection (complete with puss and everything). The problem is that he's only 2 1/2 and still isn't talking in full sentences yet, so he doesn't understand the importance of taking medicine even though it tastes horrible.

The Ex and I had to hold him down last night so he'd take it. Worse. Feeling. Ever.

He forgave us both minutes later with smiles and hugs, but to have to do that is gut-wrenching.

Single Mom Seeking said...

I hear you! I got the "your child isn't feeling well" call today from the school.

I went to pick up the kid, and she had a horrible rash all over her body. Hives? I have no idea. A first. I've been a wreck all afternoon... She's a trooper.

That's so classic: "It was only a cough."

Happy Birthday!!

Crystal Jigsaw said...

Can absolutely relate to you on this. We so wish we could take away the illness with a magic wand don't we.

CJ xx

Momo Fali said...

I love it! The last time my son went to surgery, my husband and I were nervous as can be and my son was kicked back in the bed with his legs crossed and his hands across his stomach. Just TOTALLY relaxed. He wasn't worried a bit.

Have a great birthday! I hope it's wonderful.

Potty Mummy said...

Happy Birthday SPD - and I know just what you mean about when they're sick. You don't want to over-react and yet you don't want to miss something important (which, by the way, it usually isn't). I'm sure that when my sons are ill they wake up more because I'm in and out of their room checking on them, than they ever do because they're actually not well...

Not a soccer mom said...

Happy Birthday to you! Enjoy your weekend.
It is hard enough for me to nurse a cold of my own, but the kids have such a hard time telling us what is wrong.
They are also much more resilient when they are sick. Sounds like you did well.
It also sounds as though it could be just seasonal allergies and Asthma aggravated by those allergens.
I too am an asthma sufferer and he sounds like a strong boy. very important.

Violet said...

You're so lucky that he doesn't get sick much. My daughter seems to suffer viruses back to back, from autumn through to the end of spring.

Rebel Mother said...

We all worry when our kids are ill - a perfectly normal reaction. Wait till they try it on and their perfectly healthy - drives you mad!

PS. I was following your blog, then my blog had a meltdown and lost you. Found you now.

Tismee2 said...

I sympathise with you. Aexander has had hayfever every summer of his life. It does seem to improve a little year by year and touch wood he hasn't started yet so I'm hoping he will eventually grow out of it.
We have lots of rapeseed fields here too. I don't get hayfever but boy that pollen certainly affects my eyes and throat.

Maybe we should all be quoting Max when talking of swine flu. After all "It's just a cough".

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