Last Thursday morning Eric had a febrile seizure because his fever spiked to over 105. The doctor in the ER diagnosed him with an ear infection, but then two days later, he broke out in a rash all over his body. We took him into our pediatrician's office for a follow-up appointment this week, where he was diagnosed with roseola, or baby measles (there is no vaccine for this because children usually get over it in about a week without severe complications). On Sunday, Zoe seemed to come down with the stomach flu and had a fever, but then she has broke out in a rash too. I did a little reading on roseola, and very infrequently, some kids have stomach cramps and vomiting with it (usually it is irratibility and a high fever). The doctor didn't think Zoe would catch it, actually, because usually after 3 they aren't as susceptible to it. But she did. Two baby measles cases in our family, each with very different symptoms until the rash appeared. I felt like I was trying to solve a medical mystery all week. But it makes sense that they would both have it, rather than two unrelated viruses.
But there have been so many mercies. Number one: God had prepared me that this might happen. A few days before Eric's seizure, I got a text from a girl that I don't keep in close contact with, asking for prayer for her toddler niece that was in the ER with a high fever and who had also had a seizure. I remember thinking when I got that text, oh, that's scary, but it was probably because of the baby's temperature and not something more serious like epilepsy or a tumor. So when Eric had his seizure, I had this tremendous amount of calm. I remember processing it all very matter-of-factly: his temperature is very high, that's why he is having this. Put him on the sofa and make sure he can breathe. Nathaniel came out of the bedroom as I was shouting for him and he stared at me, wide-eyed as he saw Eric. Don't touch him, I told him. His fever is very high and that's what's happening. Go get Josh. And he's our second mercy: he's a second year medical resident, who just happens to be living upstairs for a few months. Mercy three: the kindest, most compassionate doctor in the ER, who was so gentle with Eric and so reassuring to us. In addition, zero wait time in the ER.
So, whew. We've had long days and long nights this week.
But there's been little joys, too.
Two nights ago, Zoe was still having stomach cramps and vomiting, and Nathaniel had to go teach a night class. My mother-in-love, Norelle, saved the day and came to help until bedtime. She sat with Zoe on the sofa while I took Eric and the dog for a walk. Eric is almost 20 months, and what we call our little politician. He double hand waves to everyone he sees. He loves to stand up in the shopping cart and shout a loud, enthusiastic hi, hi, hi, to everyone. He was doing this last night as I carried him in his "pack-pack". I laughed after one particularly enthusiastic greeting to our neighbor and said, you are so friendly! Are you friendly? To which he said, No. Eric, me!
Another joy is deeper: I have been struck, again and again, during this hard week that we are so blessed to be healthy. We can deal with anything for a week. There are so many families that are going through horrible trials of sickness that last for months or years. I am grateful that our sickness has a name and that it will run its course soon. Another reminder to be thankful, for we have been given so much. In the middle of the trial, and this one was only a week-ish long, it was easy to lose perspective and think that things will never get better, will never get easier. But they do, and they did. Thank you, Lord.