...from whooping cough.
Well, it IS official.
Our family has now become a Midland County Health Department Statistic. After about 2 hours on the phone with the Health Department yesterday (and they were very gracious and wonderful to talk to), they decided, beyond the shadow of a doubt, that the nasty coughing bug that has overtaken our family is indeed pertussis (whooping cough). Our family has been officially treated and we are no longer contagious... in fact, once I started to suspect, I started keeping the kids home to try and minimize exposure to others. Yet, there was that period of time before I had any idea... after all, they'd all been immunized, right?
Thus, if you've been around my gang (and I've not already spoken with you) and someone starts to come down with a "cold" or a cough, please talk with your doctor and let them know that you/your child has potentially been exposed to a confirmed case of pertussis. The treatment typically is 5 days on antibiotics - and believe me when I say that is much better than a full-blown case of the disease. Rebekah and Mary Michelle would echo their agreement.
Although no longer contagious, the kids are treated and Tim and I are in treatment (although we've never had any symptoms, it was recommended), we've got several still having nasty coughing episodes. We'd appreciate prayer for complete recovery... soon! Whooping cough has been one of the scarier illnesses. And although it doesn't pose the threat that malaria, typhoid, dysentery might - and we've lived through all of those - this has NOT been fun... partly because the whole gang has been sick to one degree or another, but mostly because each bad coughing spell makes me wonder if the affected child is really going to start breathing again.
And I'm praying almost nonstop that we've not infected anyone else...