Okay - so it looks like the girls have it. They definitely have some sort of flu. Nasal swabs showed negative, but according to my doc they come back negative all the time when they shouldn't. (I'm not sure I understand why they even use them...)
The older one had a chest x-ray - no pneumonia! The little one is exhibiting early symptoms. The doctor has said that day2 and day3 are normally the worst days. According to the H1N1 instructions that were given to me by the doc, I am to push fluids and keep my eye out for certain symptoms that indicate further medical action:
Not waking up
Fever with rash
Improving of symptoms - and then return of symptoms with fever and worsening cough
Pain or pressure in chest
Severe or persistent vomiting
Grizzly Mama has her Grizzly Eyes on the situation.
The girls' school has had a policy since the beginning of the year: If a child has a fever they must stay home until 24 hours has passed with no fever and without the aid of a fever reducing medicine. Accordingly, I kept my oldest home yesterday because she woke up with a low grade fever. The little one had no fever yesterday but woke up with a low grade fever today. The oldest one felt pretty good until about 7:30 pm yesterday when she started coughing and fever spiked to 102 degrees. Today she woke up and her fever had spiked to 104.7 degrees and she was so totally sick and miserable that my Grizzly Instinct was seriously alarmed. A cool washcloth to the head, some Tylenol and plenty of fluids were pushed. Getting her dressed to get to the doctors office reminded me of the days when she was so little that she couldn't dress herself.
They're both feeling pretty good now, but I expect spiking fevers are in our future. I normally don't give anything for a fever, unless it gets to be over 102 or so - and also depending on how they feel. Even at 102, if they're feeling okay I won't give a fever reducer. Fever is the body's way of killing that bug and it is something that I don't mind dealing with. That 104.7 freaked me out a bit, though.
It's hard for a mother when the kids are sick. They suddenly look much smaller than normal and more vulnerable. Especially with everything being said about this flu - that the people dying are not typical for seasonal flu deaths. One can't help but think of the worst and realize that, even if we like to think that we have control, there are a lot of things out there that we have absolutely no control over at all.