So, as you know, Meredith was sick last week, but is no longer sick. She has an annoying cough. She does NOT have a fever, nor does she have chills. No runny nose. Just a cough. She’s full of energy. She feels great.
1. About an hour ago, Meredith’s teacher sent her to the nurse’s office to deliver a backpack to a child who was going home sick for the day. According to the nurse, “I took her temperature for the heck of it, and she has a fever of 99.6, so you need to come and get her.”
2. This morning, I packed a sandwich bag full of mints, and threw in one Mucinex packet with a note that said, “Please allow Meredith to eat these mints as needed for her cough. I’m also including a packet of Mucinex. She may take it if needed after 12:00.” When the school nurse called to ask me to pick Meredith up, she told me that as a nurse, she is not allowed to dispense medication with only a parental permission slip. She needs a prescription from the pediatrician. So, even though I picked this stuff up at the store and gave the nurse written permission to hand it to Meredith, I still have to call the doctor (who is booked up for the day, I’m sure), have her write a prescription for Mucinex, and fax it to the school. With that said, I am allowed to drive to school, pull Meredith out of her classroom, and dispense the medicine myself (seriously—I’ve done it), but the school nurse cannot give it to her. And I get that, I think. I think.
3. When I arrived at the nurse’s office to pick Meredith up, the nurse said, “If her fever comes back at any time today, you need to keep her home tomorrow.” They have a policy at school that says something like “Fever Today? No School Tomorrow.” And I get that. I really do. BUT, the fact that she said, “If her fever comes BACK” confused me a bit. When we got home, Meredith’s temperature was 98.4. As I sit here at the computer, she’s running around the house feeling perfectly fine.
I’m sure all of this makes perfect sense and Better Safe Than Sorry and it’s flu season and schools are closing and the locusts are descending and whatever. I’m sure it does. I’m just having trouble seeing it right now. You see, I’m a very selfish and uncaring mother who is probably 99.6% (or 98.4%, depending on whose side you’re on) responsible for the flu outbreak at Meredith’s school. There. I said it so you don’t have to.