The Hatchling woke up this morning with a temperature of 103.6. She’s been hovering around 100 for the past few days, but this was high enough to send us to the doctor’s office. The pediatrician took one glance down her throat and said, “Oh, yeah – she’s got some nasty looking tonsils there. She’s got tonsillitis.” Then he started asking all these questions about other symptoms: had she been vomiting? (no) Nosebleeds? (no) Rash? (ummmmm …) See, the thing is, the Hatchling, like her benighted mamala, has a tendency towards eczema, a tendency that is exacerbated during allergy season. In other words, now. So, she does have some red bumpy patches, but I thought they were just eczema. But apparently not so much, or at least not entirely. So the doctor looked at her rash, and then looked closer at the skin on her back and face and said, “so she hasn’t been vomiting …” “Nope.” I said. “Except she did this morning, but that was just because she was really pissed at us for taking her temperature. Why?”
Seems the Hatchling has petechiae on her back and face. Those are those red dots that you get sometimes if you vomit really violently or cry really hard – broken capillaries under the skin basically. Only the Hatchling hasn’t been violently vomiting or crying. So the doctor says we’d better do some tests, because sometimes petechiae are caused by other things, like viruses – he mentioned mono – or, you know, low platelet counts. Gulp. So they swabbed her throat to test for strep and poked her little finger to run various blood tests. Fun times! The results came back negative for strep and mono, with a good platelet count but an elevated white count. So the doctor says keep her hydrated and tylenol’ed and bring her back in if her fever hasn’t gone away by Saturday. Oh, and also keep an eye out for unusual bruising or nosebleeds, because if her platelets do start going down we want to know about it asap. But probably it’s just a virus or combination of viruses.
So of course I’m now totally convinced that the Hatchling has leukemia, only I don’t *really* believe that but I kind of superstitiously think that maybe if I preemptively worry about it now it won’t actually come to pass. Because – let’s face it – I am TOTALLY INSANE. Fortunately, I talked to a friend who had just taken her toddler into the doctor and was told that they’re seeing a LOT of young kids with exactly the Hatchling’s symptoms, and there’s some kind of virus going around. Which made me feel better. But dude: if there are four words I do not want to hear at a visit to the pediatrician’s office, they would be “platelets” and “elevated white count.” You know?