Around the 14th of February Ashley seemed to be coming down with a bad cold. She woke up the next morning and her eyes were really puffy and she just generally felt pretty crummy. So she stayed home the rest of that week. Over the weekend her ear really started to bother her too, she was in a lot of pain! Finally on Wednesday when she had been home for a week I took her to see a doctor. We aren't really the doctoring type around here. Actually when Ashley had to go in for her first sports physical for school we realized that she actually didn't have a Dr! I called who I thought was her family dr and was told that nope...Ashley was not a patient of theirs. Apparently it had been over 9 years since she had seen a dr. So anyway, we went in to see if we could get to the bottom of this. Thanks to my love affair with 'google' I had my suspicions that she may have mono. All the signs and symptoms just seemed to fit. So off to town we went. Because I had a bunch of little kidlets with me I let Ashley go into the office by herself with strict instructions as to what she should tell them. 20 minutes later she came walking out and said..."I have an ear infection & she gave me a prescription for antibiotics" Well that was not really the answer I was looking for so I went & talked to the nurse and told her that I really felt that there was something else going on and I would like them to test her for mono. She sighed very patiently and informed me that the doctor would have ran those tests if she felt they were necessary. So being put politely back into my place as 'just the mother' we went back home. She stayed home the rest of that week and did seem to be improving somewhat, but there were a few nagging things that just wouldn't go away. Her eyes stayed really puffy, she was white as a ghost, and just looked crummy. In fact her looks were the main topic of dinner conversation one night. James & Peter were staying here for a couple nights and we were all sitting at the table kinda shooting sideways glances at Ashley, finally somebody just came right out with it..."Ashley you look like crap!" at which point everybody else quickly jumped on the bandwagon & chimed in with their opinions of exactly how crappy she looked. Not surprisingly with such an overwhelming show of support from all of us she actually began to get quite offended so Bob decided he should reassure her as only he can..."don't worry Ashley, we're just kidding. You're still beautiful.....................on the inside" So now that's become the latest catch phrase in our house. "you're still beautiful...........on the inside" I would love to post a picture of her to go with this but apparently there are some crimes which are completely unforgivable!!
Anyway, Monday morning she headed off to school but by the time she got home she was exhausted. And I got lots of feedback from various teachers and students about Ashley just not looking good. So I made another dr. appointment. From no appointments in 9 years to 2 in a one week time span!! Tuesday morning Ashley texted me from school that her neck had a huge lump on it! Thankfully her appointment was that afternoon. The Dr. took one look at her and said, "well I'm sure glad you brought her back in...I'm fairly positive that this poor girl has mono" YA THINK???? (sorry that was uncalled for) When Ashley laid down on the table in their office they didn't even have to feel for her spleen...they could see it! Her spleen was huge. Dr.s did not want her going back to school while the spleen was that enlarged for fear of it being bumped, poked, etc. But things kind of took a steep nose dive from there. Over the next few days both ears appeared to become infected, the throat developed large soars, the lymph nodes in the neck all swelled to the point where she could hardly move her head more than an inch or two in either direction. Various hives and rashes & random fevers come and go. And walking from the couch to the bathroom or her bed to the kitchen is a huge workout. The past two days things seem to be improving. She has started to be awake more than she sleeps during the day, one side of her neck almost looks normal, and her eyes are just about back to their normal size. Today she even went and took her sheep for a walk and argued with Justin for awhile! Of course that much activity required a lengthy nap immediately following. If things continue to improve we are almost starting to hope that by next week she can start going back to school for a couple partial days! That might still be a bit of a long shot but we're clinging to 'hope':) 24 days is a looooooong time to have a sick teenager. I've been trying my best, really I have, but Ashleys starting to pick up on my waning patience. She had to point out that I'm not as sympathetic as I used to be. Apparently I'm not jumping to cater to her every whim as quickly as i did 3 weeks ago!
She misses her friends, she misses her social life, I thought she would appreciate all this quality time she gets to spend with her mommy but I'm not sure she's feelin it.
And the homework.....oh the homework. Two days ago was the first she felt up to cracking a book even for just a little bit. So I nag constantly and she sighs constantly and little by little we're trying to chip away at it but wow. Not sure how or when she's going to catch up on some subjects. Especially geometry! But for now we're taking it one day at a time. Focusing first on getting better, and trying to be prepared for the possibility of missing not just weeks but months of school. In the meantime even though the teachers are saying they miss her and are commenting on how quiet it is without her, I think that's their way of telling me how much they're enjoying teaching their classes uninterrupted!