February 2020
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The Hand, Foot, and Mouth Disease That Stole Christmas

So, Lilian has Hand, Foot, and Mouth Disease (no relation to Hoof and Mouth Disease).

In a healthy adult, it manifests itself with cold-like symptoms. In a 16-month-old? Uncomfortable sores. Everywhere.

She’s taking it like a champ, but I know she’s not having the greatest time of it. The poor thing has been sick with various illnesses since Thanksgiving and now she’s all itchy and uncomfortable. She even had a hard time falling asleep last night. She hasn’t had a hard time falling asleep since she was four months old. My poor, sweet girl. ūüôĀ

You know who else is susceptible to HFMD? Anybody under the age of ten. Like, oh say, my four-year-old niece and seven-year-old nephew. And anybody who might have a compromised immune system. Like, oh say, my ninety-something-year-old grandmother who just moved into assisted living. That sounds like the ¬†Christmas gift that would just keep on giving. ¬†Get Grandma super sick and then let her pass the icky germs along to all of the other folks that she’s living with.

Needless to say, the giant family gathering at our house has been cancelled.

I’m trying really hard to have a positive attitude about this all, but it fucking sucks. I took today off so that I could spend time with Lilian over at my Mom’s house. ¬†My sister and her kids are there and we haven’t seen them since this Summer. Why haven’t we seen them since then? Because last time we were all supposed to get together, Lilian and I got sick and we had to spend my vacation days cooped up in our house. Kinda like… today.


There are other people out there who have it way worse than me. People who are missing loved ones who they’ll never get to see again. People who are estranged from their families. People who aren’t sure how they’re going to afford to buy Christmas presents for their kids. This is a crappy situation, but hopefully it’s just a blip in the road. We aren’t going to be sick forever. We’re going to see everybody again. UPS will deliver Lilian’s presents eventually (hopefully by tonight).

We’re still going to spend Christmas Eve with my in-laws tonight.

We’re even going to cook Christmas Dinner with a couple of friends who are staying in town for the holidays and don’t mind getting exposed to our germs.

(What? Would you want to waste a 12-pound turkey?)

Intellectually, I know that this isn’t so bad. Emotionally? I miss my family and I’m super bummed about having to scale back my favorite holiday. Plus, I hate seeing my little girl so sick.

Hopefully, we’ll all feel better tomorrow.

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