October 21, 2009

Excuse Me?

This morning, I was sitting in the waiting room of my allergy doctor. Another patient came in with several children in tow and carrying a box of Kleenex. She sat down beside me and put a little girl on her lap.

She then proceeded to look at me while pointing to the child on her lap and say, “She has a cold so you may want to sit somewhere else.”

Excuse me? Who was here first?

Not that I minded moving. In fact, because of the way a simple cold attacks my asthmatic lungs, I was grateful for the warning. And did quickly get up and move. First, to another chair. And then, as I thought about flying in a few weeks… and how uncomfortable it is to fly sick… and the risk on infecting my sister’s soon to be newborn… I got up and moved to another waiting room.

But, as I sit here, there are so many questions that come to mind. First off, if you know that your child is infectious, why would you bring her out in the first place? Especially to an office that treats people, like myself, who suffer severe repercussions from the most basic of respiratory ailments. A cold that comes and goes in a matter of days for the average person can cause an asthmatic months of complications.

I know because at least once a year, I spend a great deal of time on medications and inhaled steroids for the same sniffles that my little guys barely even noticed when they had it.

You don’t need to share everything in this world. Your germs included.

Another question, if I wasn’t trying to prevent a huge scene, that I might have asked this mother was if your child is infectious… and you chose to bring her here anyway… and you feel it would be in the best interest of other patients not to be next to her… why would you not find a place to sit away from other patients instead of asking them to move?

Is it just me or does that seem so… RUDE?

And while we are at it… what kind of mother drags her sick child around town? When I was young, if you felt badly, you were sent to bed, tucked in and nurtured until you felt better. Not only to prevent spreading it to everyone else (a common courtesy and love to our fellow man) but also in order to heal better and quicker.

A day of taking it easy at the onset of symptoms, can often eradicate the bug before it requires a week of sickness and misery. My mother knew that. Actually, it was standard protocol when we were children.

As we enter into the long season of colds, flu and stomach bugs, I am, as I do every year at this time, wondering why everyone thinks they or what they need to do are so important that they can’t take time to stay home and get better when they are sick.


Which shows the love of our Lord? Making sure you are present for every church service, even when you are sick. Or staying home so as not to spread it to a certain elderly church member who ends up in the hospital with pneumonia when the flu hits her?

Here is a news flash. If the person who had it before you had been thoughtful to their fellow man and had the common sense to stay home and rest, you wouldn’t have ended up with it in the first place.

Oh, don’t get me started!



  1. You go girl! The week before my two oldest got the bug, the people in front and behind us were all coughing away! Made us want to get up and leave. I do wonder why people continue to bring sick kids to church, of all places, even when they have fevers! I really think God would understand if you just stayed home!!!
    Praying you stay healthy for your upcoming trip.

  2. Oh I so understand because I have asthma too. People just seem to think "Oh, it's just a cold" and go everywhere.

    At our children's program at church the parents drop their kids off with runny noses, sneezes and a cough that would hack up a lung. I always dread it and just pray that I don't catch it.

    We had one parent who dropped her daughter off and the child started throwing up. One of the little kids said, "Oh yeah, she threw up at school today too" (they were in the same class).

    We called the parent and told her that her child was sick and to please pick her up and she said "But I wanted to go shopping tonight!"

    We said to come pick up her child anyway. After awhile we contact the mom's cell again and she said "Oh, my car broke down, sorry."

    After club the mom's car was fixed.....amazing timing, isn't it.....and she comes and picks up her child. Gee, thanks mom.

    Sorry, didn't mean to write a blog on your precious blog, my friend. Just wanted you to know you aren't alone.

    Oh, and did I mention that I was sitting at McDonald's one time and some woman with a lot of children came and sat down at a table next to me. She then told her two or three year old daughter that "There's not room for you at this table so you'll have to go sit with that lady." and her little daughter came and sat down next to me at my table!

  3. Wow looks like you hit a nerve with a few people! :) I think people should just stay home too when they do not feel good. I agree, if everyone did that a lot less sickness would be spread around.

  4. Oh wow! R.U.D.E. It sort of makes you wonder...

  5. My bambino contracted RSV because a woman brought her SICK child into the WELL room at the ped's office. Some people just don't think beyond themselves!

  6. AMEN!!!!!!!!!!!!! I am sooooo on the same page as you, my friend. Elijah and I are both asthmatic and it drives me crazy when we go to church and get coughed and sneezed on. I always keep my children home if they're sick, as a common courtesy to others. With the new H1N1 paranoia everywhere, you'd think people would be a little more cautious.

  7. No it would have not been rude to say something, even thought I would have done what you did...get up an move. Funny how we think it would be some what rude to say something, when it all reality her actions were SO rude.

    Some times people can't help their coughs and sneezes...some times they are not even contagious...but when you know you have a done right cold...we all need to be more thoughtful.

  8. Oh yea, don't get me started on the sick bug. I so agree if you are sick stay home and get better. I hate it when people send their sick kids to school too. GRRRR!

  9. I have to go in monthly to get B12 shots and I always have trouble staying away from all the sick people. I feel your pain!


  10. I completely agree...espeically sending them to school so they spread their germs all over my room by coughing and sneezing. I go through so much sanitizer and clorox wipes...oy vey!

    ANd I do think that woman was very rude...sad to think that there are so many people who think they are the center of the world. :P

  11. Oh I know!! Did we mention that church we went to a few years ago? You were expected to come to church even when you were sick! If the kids were sick - bring them! Just sit in the nursery with them. You know, get the other kids/babies sick. Yeah, right! Anyway...

    I think that woman was rude. Sorry you had to deal with that. I hate to take mine out when they're sick. Thankfully, that is very seldom.

  12. Kat,

    It just seems like not enough people think of others and only of themselves. In today's age, people are so short on time, these parents can't think of taking a day off of work to care for their sick child because of fear of being laid off and the more kids you have the more days you will likely need to take off.

    Poor parents if society changed it's way of thinking perhaps more parents would do the right thing and just stay home when their kids are sick.

    When Steve and I both worked, we cringed when our kids were sick, it meant one of us would be staying home, however our employers were less than thrilled by our phone calls. There just has to be a better way.

    Love and Hugs ~ Kat

  13. Oh! this topic hits a hot nerve with me! my FIL had some health issues that made his immune system kaput. So our family is maybe more overboard with germs than we need to be. But it's really simple: if you/your kids are sick.. stay home (work, school, church, store)

  14. I couldn't agree more. I volunteer each week in my 5 yr old's classroom and as I sat and tested a boy who obviously had a cold - I thought the same things....and made sure as I left that his seat was nowhere near my daughter's, sneaked her a squirt of antibacterial gel and said a quick prayer on the way out!

  15. I couldn't agree more. I volunteer each week in 5 yr old's classroom and as I sat and tested a boy who obviously had a cold - I thought the same things....and make sure as I left that his seat was nowhere near my daughter's, sneaked her a squirt of antibacterial gel and said a quick prayer on the way out!