Thursday, June 5, 2008

I'm getting crash courses in botany and first aid ...

Poison Ivy!  It is driving me crazy.   I have never in my life had poison ivy.  To be honest, I wasn't sure how to recognize it other than the saying, "Leaves of three, leave them be." 

Well, thanks to my two boys getting mild rashes of it, I started trying to learn about it.  Half-heartedly.  Until they got a second rash, which has been much worse.  This time, it has blistered up.  This time it just keeps spreading to new areas. 

Well, I now know what it looks like ... although that was hard to figure out since pictures on the internet varied.  (By the way, it's very sad how the simplest words and most innocent search can bring up garbage on the internet.)  But I figured it out, and I found where it is in our yard ... three areas, at least.  I showed the children where it is and warned them to stay out of it. 

But in the meantime, we're researching what constitutes an extreme reaction, and what is a normal reaction.  I was ready to haul both boys into the Dr, thinking they were having an extreme systemic reaction ... with fever and vomiting and migrating rashes.  But, little 2 yo L has the same fever, and I didn't think she had poison ivy.  Now she does have bug bites that seem to be spreading, although she was only outside for about 5 minutes yesterday, and seemed to have gained a lot for that time period.  And today she has a light rash in her diaper area that was not there last night.  I joked the other day that we had chicken pox, and poison ivy.  Now, I'm not finding it funny at all.  Just frustrating and confusing.

So, do I assume we have poison ivy with severe reactions in 3 kids?  Or poison ivy in 2 and some unknown virus in those 2 plus one more?  Or do we really have 3 kids with chicken pox, and 2 of them also have poison ivy? 

I DON'T KNOW!!  I just want the poison ivy to stop spreading!!  I've washed their sheets.  I've washed their bath towels.  I've showered them.  Now what?  Why does it keep spreading? 

I'm having a hard time separating myth from truth.  One person swears it's spreading because the blisters are popping ... but the websites I found on the internet all claim that's a myth.  One website claims that it can travel UNDER the skin and appear in other places.  Most websites say it only spreads by contact with the urushiol oil being passed from body part to body part, or inanimate object to body.  But we've washed them and it's still popping up in new places daily.  And if it's on something in the house, how am I supposed to figure out what piece of furniture or toy or whatever has it?

4 yo M had a large cluster of blisters on his elbow area that formed into a giant blister.  It was bumped and popped, as I knew it would be eventually.  But the skin peeled back, and now we've had to bandage it with antibiotic ointment and a large non-stick gauze pad. 

7 yo J has it on his face!  His cheek blistered up and just popped, so I need to apply antibiotic ointment to it.  But he has it above and under his eyes, and I'm dreading those blistering, and especially popping.

If I was confident the Dr's office could tell me what was going on, I'd take them in.  But I expect the Dr would be just as confused as I am.  At least 4 yo M and 2 yo L both are over their fevers, and no one is throwing up anymore.  Although 12 yo A just showed me a suspicious area on her leg. 

Please pray that my kids get better, and no one else gets it. 

Frustrated but Trusting in Him,


  1. April,

    I just came across your blog and wanted to share what I had just read at the bulk herb store here is the link.

    they list some treatment with some hebs that will help. I will finsih lurking through your blog and will pray for this to end for you.



  2. Oh, that sounds awful-I'm so sorry! Praying it goes away quickly! Holly


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