It’s officially the worst time of year. Well, okay … minus the whole CHIEFS GOING TO THE SUPERBOWL thing … but other than that … total rubbish. It’s cold, dark, and depressing. Even The Bachelor is awful this season (just come to terms with it already). What’s worse is that everything in a public setting is just crawling with germs, so even if you try to escape the confines of your home with your offspring, someone is coming home with something. And I’m not talking about $20 worth of stuff from the Target dollar spot.
No matter how many cart wipes I use, or children’s museums I avoid, our family inevitably ends up with the stomach bug at some point during this dreadful time of year. Now, before we go on, it’s important to note that the stomach bug is NOT THE FLU. Please, for all things holy and right, can we stop intermixing the two?!
Here, take a moment and learn about it:
Unlike the flu, you cannot get a vaccine for norovirus. You’re just left to suffer through it in misery until your body eventually fights it off and you can eat more than a few spoonfuls of chicken broth in a 48-hour period.
Now, if you’re reading this, hoping to find tips on how to avoid getting the norovirus or how to get over it quickly, then I’m sorry to disappoint you. If I had those answers, I would be cashing in on that gold instead of writing about my misery here. What I do have are a few helpful tips to help you survive the inevitable.
- Mentally prepare to be sick yourself. This might seem like a no brainer, but as soon as you get that dreaded call from daycare that your precious little is praying to the porcelain god, do not waste any time trying to figure out how you can avoid getting it yourself. Chances are that virus is currently laughing his way down to your intestines, just waiting for the right moment to make himself known. Just accept your fate and be ready to take it head on.
- Cover everything in plastic and/or towels you do not care about. My kids handle illness in completely opposite ways. My sweet daughter is subdued, courteous, and does everything in her power to throw up in the appropriate apparatus. My son, on the other hand, somehow finds the most inconvenient place to get sick and lets ‘er rip. After our recent bout, my husband and I seriously considered lighting the house on fire and walking away. Alas, perhaps a little more prep (and placement of towels) could have helped us avoid the arduous task of cleaning up the aftermath.
- Buy straight bleach. When the bug has subsided, and you’re ready to come out spray bottles a blazing, just buy the bleach. This is not the time to mess around with non-toxic, flowery smelling pretend cleaner. You know how those Clorox wipes say they clean “99.9%” of bacteria? You know what that 0.01% remaining is? THE NOROVIRUS. Those flimsy wipes ain’t gonna cut it. Trust me, the smell of bleach will be a welcome reprieve from the other scents that have been filling your home the past week.
So you’ve got two choices, my friends. You can choose to stay indoors and avoid public places all winter out of fear, or you can escape your house and go out and enjoy all the indoor fun that KC has to offer knowing that if (haha…when) you happen to bring home the norovirus with you, you’ll be a little more prepared to take it head on. Just tell yourself it’s a pretty cheap (albeit miserable) way to detox.