Chicken Pox??? Again???
I noticed my arm and hand were sore about a little over a week ago, and on Friday I saw some red spots on my hand that were new. By the end of the day, they were nice, big, blisters. Ow! On Monday went in to see the doc, and got diagnosed with the adult version of chicken pox — sometimes called "shingles".
Basically, when people who had chicken pox as kids wear down their immune system by doing things like working really long, stressful hours, not exercising, not eating right, etc., the chicken pox virus lying dormant in the nerve cells can get busy. My decided to cause havoc with my right hand, arm, and shoulder.
The worst of it, so far, is on my hand. A bit like having a bunch of severe burns. Because most of mine are on my right hand, along the creases, it’s a bit hard to do things like hold a fork, button stuff, make a fist, type, etc. Fortunately, it hurts less now than it did on Monday and Tuesday. I’ve also got a stiff neck, and aching joints along the nerve path that shows the infection. Other than that, it’s like having the flu – fatigue, cloudy mind.
Unfortunatley, there’s a contagious phase. The good news is that I can’t spread this by air as I guess is the case with regular chicken pox. This one I can only spread by touch, and the doc says only when the blisters are open and leaking. Eventually, they should crust over and then I won’t be contagious again.
I’m not sure when that will happen — WebMD says Shingles can go 2-4 weeks. I figure I’m about a week in, so 1-3 weeks to go. I got some anti-viral medicine from the doc, and that’s supposed to make recovery faster and the symptoms less severe, so may be it’ll be closer to a week for recovery.
In the meantime, I’m primarily working from home. I did go in to the office for a meeting today, given I’m not contagious yet, but I’m trying to take it easy and keep to an 9-6-ish schedule. I don’t have the usual energy or clarity, and do actually want to recover!
As for Arlene and the kids, well Arlene had chicken pox when she was little so she can’t get it from me. The kids have both been immunized for chicken pox, so they should be safe. Once I do enter the contagious phase, though, I’ll probably try to keep the leaking hand/arm covered around them just to be on the safe side.
Enough with the sickness around here!!
In other news, it’s picture week at Julianna and Arlene’s dance studio. Arlene went in today dressed in her grass skirt and accountrements for hula class. She’s got a recital in june, and the pics are in costume for the program. On Tuesday she did the tap dance pics. Julianna had her ballet and tap pics Tuesday, too. They both looked great in each costume! I think Arlene took some pics of Julianna, so I’ll try to get those posted soon.
Josh is doing well. His birthday is less than a week off, and we’re trying to figure out how to celebrate. Suggestions welcome! He’s taken to saying "tuna" a lot. I think he just likes the sound of the word. :-)