How to know when your kid is playing hookie from school

This last month has been a doozie on my family in terms of sickness. Everytime we finally get one fever quelled and one tummy settled, someone else gets hot and sweaty and starts puking.

Today, my kids are balls of yuck, camped out on the couch with pillows, teddy bears, and Tylenol and so far not a one has even asked for TV, which is astounding to me. But last week? Well…that was a different story. I made the mistake of accusing my oldest child of faking to get out of school.

But last week? Well…that was a different story. I made the mistake of accusing my oldest child of faking to get out of school.

He has been up all night with a terrible hoarse throat, no voice, and every time he coughed it made everyone wince out of empathy pain. The poor kid was definitely sick. At least, at night. By morning, he seemed fine to me. His energy was up, he was his usual argumentative sassy morning self (this kid was born with a grumpy streak in the morning). By all measure, I was absolutely sure that he was not sick enough to stay home for school.

So, I told him to get dressed and brush his teeth because he was going to school.

And then on cue the tears started rolling down his cheek. He pleaded. He begged. He stomped his feet and yelled at me abut how sick he really is. And because I didn’t see any signs of anything, I didn’t believe him.

But as I was getting my shoes on and looking through the bottom of my purse trying to find the car keys, I heard it. The awful sound of a child wretching. My poor kid was throwing up all over the kitchen floor, all while snot and tears were streaming down his face.

I ran over to him and cleaned him up…poor kid. I felt his head and sure enough, it was raging hot. He was telling the truth, he really was sick. So, up the stairs he went and spent the remainder of the day in bed.

To say that I felt like a horrible mom is understatement. I accused my first grader of trying to skip school.

So, here is the deal: if a kid has a fever it really is wise to wait 24 hours before sending them back to school or play. If there is vomiting or diarrhea or any other terrifying bodily fluid making an emergency exit from your child then the 24 hours rule should apply. And, when there is a lull in symptoms; when everything seems ok? Yup, you should still wait it out a bit.

So, this morning when my child said he feeling really sick, I believed him. And thank goodness too, because guess who is currently vomiting into a bucket?