31 Jul 2021

Give Me Fever...

Jo Emmerson

When Ollie was a year old, we began a hideous monthly cycle. Every month he would come down with a new bug. It might be a cough or a cold, but something kicked in to give us all three weeks of disturbed sleep and sad baby, a week of 'normal' and then a new bug would appear - and repeat.

Unless you were wisely hiding in a cave, you'll recall that summer 2018 was HOT.
It was 'sit around in your swimming costume, under a damp towel, in a shady room' kind of hot.

We had Ollie in nothing but a nappy for weeks on end, we didn't leave the house as the pushchair and carrier were both too hot. Ollie was hot to the touch, but we were all hot to the touch, it was just hot, we didn't think anything of it until one afternoon Ollie started signing 'cold' and 'bath' and 'cold drink'.

It made sense, he was feeling warm and knew that cold drinks and a cold shower would help - and he was able to tell us that's what he needed, so we obliged and popped him under a cold shower. It wasn't until after the shower when we realised that his temperature had not changed, that he was still hot to touch. We took his temperature - a reading of 40c 😱

Later that day, after the maximum doses of Calpol, and a call to 111, we decided that a family day out to Whittington Hospital was probably in order.

Ollie had a lovely time signing all the animals he saw painted on the walls, and endearing himself to the staff. It turned out he had Roseolla (Never heard of it? Give it time, it will probably pop up at some point).

It wasn't life-threatening, just a nasty viral infection, but one we might not have caught, might not have been able to relieve the symptoms if he hadn't been able to sign for that cold shower.

Not for the first time, I have been immensely grateful that we stuck with the signing. The things he could tell us before he could speak are the things I will always be gladdest of.

How has signing with your children helped you?

Jo x

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