It came too quietly

​Titus has HFMD. 

It is something you’d read so often in the news but think that it couldn’t possibly happen to your kid cos the schools are all required now to be vigilant.

Unfortunately, Titus’ school failed us.

So now, the virus has swelled his lips with rashes on the outside and ulcers on the inside. Tiny ulcers also cover the roof of his mouth and down his throat. 

His limbs, palms, soles of his feet, groin and buttocks are covered with rashes and some itchy blisters.

All day he’s been weeping and feeling irritable. He’s sleepy but he can’t sleep because of his discomfort and pain, and that adds to his annoyance and spawned many violent tantrums.
He can’t swallow his saliva because of the pain, and eats so little.

Last night was a struggle for us all. He was exhausted but furious about his pain and itch, so he’d thrash about until he was too tired and fall asleep, only to wake up 30 minutes later to scratch his soles and clutch his lips in frustration. It was a cruel cycle for us.

As parents, we are heartbroken that we could do nothing to help. 

And we are seething that his school took so long to alert us. The notice went out only on Saturday morning – as an email on the parent’s portal and as a piece of black-and-white, nondescript printout on the door – after four confirmed cases of HFMD in his class.

The first case was on Dec 8. The second on Dec 12. The third, Dec 14. The fourth, Dec 16. The school had so many days and opportunities to alert parents but did not.

How much time does it take to say “We have our first HFMD case in this class” to every guardian who comes to collect their ward? There are no more than 36 toddlers in his class. 

We were not even given the choice to decide if we wanted to remove Titus from his class as a precaution. 😔

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