After his very first week of school, my five-year-old came home for a long Labor Day weekend. Over the course of his three days off, I noticed he felt a little warm and had some mild cold symptoms. We took his temp every other hour and it was a steady 99-100 for one solid day. My Kindergartener got Covid and this is what happened.
My suspicion grew as I knew he may have been exposed that week, he experienced a new environment with new people – many more than had been in his summer circle of friends and caretakers. This mama’s sixth sense told me to get a rapid test over the counter to rule out what I knew was true – he had Covid. Here’s how it all played out…
Minimizing the risk of giving Covid to others
First and foremost, we had a duty to those around us – especially the other children and staff at his school. Once the school was notified, we contacted his pediatrician’s office and asked if he needed to be seen or if they could provide us with advice on how best to care for him. Palliative care as with any virus was her answer. She’d be reporting the Covid case to CDC.
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Second, friends and family needed to be notified. It was then we learned the virus had ravaged his nanny’s family. Her elderly parents were not faring well and both ended up in Intensive Care within a day of his positive test. When contacting close friends, we found out the virus had also infiltrated their households about a week or two before ours.
Third, we worked to distribute rapid tests to those that came in close contact. Luckily, as restauranteurs, we have a steady stash and a few employees to help make porch drops. We stopped short of trying to engage in ‘contact tracing’ because it was apparent to us it was from our close circle, likely not his school.
Finally, we gathered palliative items and home-schooling supplies via Favor contact-free deliveries. We followed CDC and his school’s protocols and holed up for ten solid days.
Since he tested positive after a 48-hour period of being in class the school notified all parents and gave the option to continue in-person learning. His teachers provided me (and any parents wishing to quarantine as a precaution) with very thorough support for ten days of homeschooling.
Gathering kid-friendly Covid care items
Boosting immunity – before, during, or after a COVID infection:
- Elderberry lollipops – You can make your own at home to have on hand, but we went with a store-bought version of Lolleez Immuniteez – these pops (or variations of them) are available at our Natural Grocers, CVS, and through Amazon Prime. Walmart also carries them in the Equate brand. These are also good to have for the regular cold and flu season.
- Zinc – Hyland’s Sniffles ‘n Sneezes 4 Kids works well for both immune-boosting as well especially for children ages 2-12. Its primary active ingredient, Zinc. The Hyland’s zinc also helped soothe the coughing he experienced with his infection. In addition, we give him dōTERRA a2z Chewables as a daily vitamin supplement. We did this before and continue to give them after his virus recovery.
Keeping a sick kid hydrated:
- Pedialyte – This one is a mama’s tried and true. No explanation is needed.
- Organic Chicken and Veggie Broths – I made some broth at home, but I also got a supply of Organic Central Market broths available at HEB. If you would like to make your own broth at home, here is a simple recipe.
- Amy’s Organic Fruit Juice Popsicles – These fruit juice pops and the Elderberry lollies were his (and my) best friend in relieving his mild sore throat. I didn’t hear complaints of discomfort nearly as often with one of these in his hand. Giving him real fruit juice made me feel better about giving him these treats.
Overcoming fever and fatigue:
- Ibuprofen – The good old-fashioned fever reducer came into play. Three days prior to his return to class we eliminated this from the regiment to show his fever had naturally subsided.
- Melatonin – My favorite melatonin supplement for sleep is Mommy’s Bliss Kids Sleep Chewable. When our kiddo had aches that kept him from relaxing himself to sleep, we reached for these. I prefer these tablets because they contain not only melatonin, but also a mixture of calming herbs – organic chamomile, lemon balm, passion-flower, and magnesium.
Talking to our child about losing a loved one
This was by far the hardest part of the ordeal. While Everett’s case was mild and near asymptomatic after the first few days of quarantine, many of those nearest to him did not fare as well. His nanny (who has been with us since he was three months) fell very ill. Her parents, very close to our boy, also fell ill and ended up in the Intensive Care Unit. One recovered. The other chose hospice care over life support knowing he was looking at his last days. He elected to go home to be with family and the rest went very quickly.
Everett asked about heaven, we talked about it at length – our family is one of faith. We also went through the stages of grief with him. We explained that he may experience a few, but his nanny would be going through them all. It helped him to understand the finality and the reality of death.
His realizations during our discussions about what happens after death sunk in for him quickly, and my heart broke into pieces for him.
Vaccines and antibodies in kids, what comes next?
While Everett was ill and his father and I were quarantined with him, our Moderna vaccines did their job. My husband and I never tested positive. Now that the FDA is applying for emergency use authorization for kids as young as five, parents have some big decisions ahead of them. With that in mind and the kiddo’s COVID-19 case behind us, his father and I are still considering a vaccine for him if approved. That’s our call as his parents, I cannot claim to know what’s right for you or your child, but I do know we are open to it.
What’s the takeaway?
However you approach this pandemic as a parent, now more than ever, we have a duty to keep our kids home if they have even the mildest symptoms of Covid. The stakes are too high for us not to.
When in doubt, grab a rapid test. It’s not worth taking the chance with your child’s health or the health of others because even if the symptoms seem mild, for some, they won’t be.