From the Western New Year to the Chinese New Year, we have been sick. It’s hard not to blame it on India. Our trip to, that is, not the great nation in general.

The latest is the cold and cough the kids caught over Chinese New Year. We took Benji in to the doctor because he had fever. Mimi had a slight cough so we tagged her along to be checked as well. It was deemed that she was worse off and needed antibiotics.

Benji recovered, but Mimi’s cough turned into a hackfest every night. She could not lie down without coughing. We spent hours trying to soothe her, but nothing worked. I was pretty sure the antibiotics she was taking were useless.

Weirdly, I recalled croup and how to treat it from a chick lit novel, The Nanny Diaries. Googling Mimi’s symptoms came up with a similar diagnosis and suggested ways to alleviate it. I rushed around trying to steam up her room, or running a hot bath, in the middle of the night. The husband pointed out that I was losing it.

I was. But that is my want when the kids are really ill. I have to do things to at least try and make them feel better. I cannot just lie there and wait it out.

After two days of nights of coughing, I decided it was time to see another doctor. We’ve been going to the guy in our estate because he’s convenient and has a long line in his clinic (which suggests he’s good?). But he is so quick to prescribe antibiotics and I always wonder. Once when Mimi was a few weeks old, he had prescribed a tonne of medication. I finally took her to a doctor in central, who said stop everything. This time I reached out to local mum’s groups online and got a few suggestions. One of them was in the building next to ours, so I decided to take Mimi to that doctor and he was lovely. The only hitch is that he’s not as covered as insurance as the other guy is, but I guess we have to suck it up. Hope we can have a long and beautiful relationship with him, because honestly, I’m sick of the doctor angst in addition to the sickness angst.

In the meantime, the next day Mimi seemed better and I decided to go in to office and get some work done. Caught my sister online and she told me my cousin’s newborn has been diagnosed with acid reflux which is what Benji had. Pinged cousin and we compared notes. It took me back to those horror days that I’m glad are over. One of the things the cuz and I commiserated over was how we just cannot do nothing when it comes to our children, like everyone else seems capable of.

Came home to find Mimi had a high fever. She had a high fever through the night and I spent my night rocking and hushing her. And yes, panicking again. I found myself tearing up, wondering when it would ever end. There’s a bad flu bug going around in Hong Kong – 252 people have died of flu this year (meaning over the past two months) compared with 149 all of last year. And Mimi’s fever seemingly not breaking was giving me the heejiebeejies.

I cannot imagine how my mum did. I used to regularly get high fevers as a child, once resulting in convulsions when I was a baby. My dad was rarely around. How did my mum hold it together all on her own?

To add to things, Mimi has been rejecting J, our helper who cares for her. And J has been happy to step aside and pass her to me. Both of which are worrying. We tried to talk to Mimi about why she doesn’t want Tita J, but beyond resolutely saying “she’s bad” and “says bad things” (which from previous post you know could be anything) Mimi won’t specify. It’s hard to know how to read this because Mimi has done this kind of rejection of me too. On the other hand, when a kid goes off a person you always wonder.

Mimi’s fever did break, though her cough has mutated into a runny nose. Somehow I prefer the wet nose to the dry cough. Of course, would prefer neither.

The husband seems to be getting the bug now. Arrrgh.

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