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  • Writer's pictureBrittany Hartgrove Mahoney

Four scariest words for me right now:

Cold and Flu season. Scary for anyone.... especially frightening for people like me; CF parents.

I start to look at all purses, cars, baby bags, and every room of the house for hand sanitizer stock. Check, check, check. Double check. Am I crazy?

No. I'm just trying to guard my daughter against the germs that could- best case scenario- rob her of an additional 20 minutes of playtime, in her already packed schedule, by doing CPT 4 times a day instead of the usual 2.

Worst case? Thankfully, I don't know much about it, but it would look something like a hospital stay and antibiotics fed through an IV.

In addition, I'm trying to keep my phone bill down because all of those late night phone calls to the doctor's office add up.... and we also have to call the CF Clinic. Then call the doctor again.

Let's also say that I'm trying to maintain sanity. Mine, my husbands... and well, for argument's sake, the cat's too.

So, it's only December 6th.... and Avalyn has had a faucet face for about three months straight now. Oh, there were a couple week long breaks in sprinkled in there, but I'm really not being dramatic. I have literally worn snot covered sweatshirts around for MONTHS. It's just easier to wipe her nose with my sleeve quickly, or do the Mommy Ooze-pinch with my two fingers and then WIPE IT ON MY SHIRT.

(Lord, were has all my pretty gone??)

5 days ago, I got my first "up all night with a puking child" experience. Apparently there is a virus going around that Avie decided to play hostess to, last Thursday. The whole morning was totally normal, without any signs of squatting bugs, wreaking havoc on my baby.

It wasn't until 4pm that she first threw up. I thought it was strange, but that maybe she ate too much at lunch. I wiped her clean and then started to scrub the floor when she moaned and demanded to be held... in the sweetest, sad little way. I could tell she didn't feel very good so I took her upstairs and sat on the sofa.

That's when the second round "came up". What a horrible sight for a parent to see: your child in such discomfort, you know exactly what it feels like and you can't do a damn thing about it. I attempted to clean our clothes this round, and the next, before I found myself standing in the kitchen at a complete loss for what to do.

We were both covered in vomit and there was vomit in various rooms of my house, but I couldn't put my poor sick baby down to clean anything up. I actually contemplated spending the next few hours sitting naked with her in the shower... and it probably wouldn't have been the worst idea ever.

I have said many times that I am lucky for my friends- this is proof of that. Shannon buzzed right over to snuggle my baby with a bowl under her head, while I ran around and cleaned up. A little while later I thought Avie was feeling better and I sent Shannon home.

Only to be in the same damn situation an hour later. I found a "clean enough" finger and dialed the doctor's office.

No fever. Nothing to do but keep her hydrated and watch for some freaky-ass signs of some crazy rare conditions. Good luck!

My husband finally came home (did I mention he was flying in that night at 9 pm?) and felt horrible for us. Not that he could have done anything, but my life likes to get complicated when he is gone.... like the CO2 detectors going off at 2:30am- immediate evacuation of the house with a toddler and a cat. By myself.

Anyway, he got puked on, too.

We made a pallet of blankets on Avie's floor and I spooned her all night. Tucker was freaked out. He isn't really a huge fan of Avalyn ever since she pulled his tail. But he was pacing all over her room with us. He even started 'making muffins' on her tummy- but she twitched and sent him sky-rocketing away.

So he decided to settle in by my butt.

Sometime the next afternoon, her body decided that fluid was an okay thing and didn't regurgitate it. She was eating again by that evening. But the worst thing for me is that she hadn't eaten a thing for 24 hours, and I could tell that she lost some weight.

Every meal I've given her since is fatty. I'm terrified of losing some of the ground I've worked so hard to gain on her weight chart (no pun intended). I'm sure she will be just fine, but the CF makes it hard for her to gain and keep weight on.

Just another reason why I try to avoid those cold and flu germs.

Oh- and Tucker didn't leaver her room all night Thursday. He even stayed after I left her side on Friday morning. He just crouched on her changing pad until she woke up.

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