Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Hiney Virus

At least that's how we have been pronouncing the H1N1 virus that is wreaking havoc across the universe. Just change the 1's to i's and you have it.

AKA "Swine Flu". Quite the misnomer since you won't get it by doing this:


Normally, an outbreak of flu would rate only a passing 'hmmm' from me, but not this time.

It's our kids.

Those wonderful, special, medically fragile kids at St. Mary's. They have enough to cope with on a daily basis as it is with their myriad of complex medical problems. Now they have to deal with a strain of flu that no one has significant immunities to yet.

3 of our kids have been positively diagnosed as of late yesterday. We were already taking extra precautions all summer, but when you have employees coming and going, you can't isolate everyone from every germ that comes along.

So, extra precautions will be in place in the coming months. We usually have about 1/4 of our kids going out to special ed classrooms in the local public school systems, but they will now stay put and all the kids will get their educational services at the Home. This means a lot of extra work for the program that provides the learnin' at St. Mary's School. They are going bleary-eyed & losing sleep over the logistics of this even as I speak . . . or type.

All outings that are indoors and/or involve crowds have been canceled.


This means that our 3rd annual trip to Blacksburg (scroll to Nov 13th) to take Brandon to a Virginia Tech football game is off for this year.


No trips to the mall.


No going to the movies.


No ODU football (brand new this year - my alma mater got a football team. Whoo-hoo!) or basketball.


Are we overreacting, you might be asking yourself? It is a very reasonable question. And the answer is . . .


If these were healthy kids, maybe, but they are not healthy. They deal with more medical obstacles on a daily basis than you or I will likely encounter in our entire lifetime. A virus that we can shake off with little difficulty can be devastating for our kids, so we will take every precaution to keep them as safe as possible. The CDC is concerned about large outbreaks once school starts back up. Add to that 20+ of our kids in the public school system and you can see the problem.

(Here is their latest press briefing about the virus. And it seems that the buggar is a nastier specimen that originally thought.)

So, as much as I want to take Brandon to the movies, to the mall, and to Blacksburg to cheer on the Hokies, those things will have to wait. We really like our kids, and we kind of want to keep them around. They are worth the extra precautions.

I'll just have to do those things with BS instead. He's okay with that. Really.


Anonymous said...

The Hiney flu?! I swear I worry about you. ;-)
It stinks that the kids have to become more isolated than normal...probably the last thing they want.

Sista G said...

I love your hiney name for it - I'm just mad that I didn't think of it!! I guess this means no Hoyt marathon run for your kids, too???

It all just kinda stinks for them, and for you...