Well, I thought we were through the worst of it.  I thought that when Matthew’s temperature went up on Thursday, we were seeing the last of the hard part of the Two Weeks Of Travel.  I was wrong.

Thursday afternoon, Matthew reported that he did, indeed, have the stomach virus that Samuel still had.  Since my brother was just about to leave the airport in Brenham for an overnight flight to Dallas (and planned to stay with us), I felt he should be forewarned.  He wasn’t concerned about the virus, just needed to ask if his co-pilot, Mark, could stay with us as well.  Of course, we have plenty of room, I told him.

Then I hung up and realized “We’re having company!”.  Thankfully, I’m in a happier place in my life, a place where my family takes precidence over my vanity.  I did not clean.  I took care of my kids instead.  And with no regret or guilt, I’m happy to say.

As we picked the pilots up at Addison airport and headed home, I made 2 requests of them: #1: please feed yourselves dinner, since I will only be cooking things that fit into the BRAT diet and #2: please run to the grocery store for me while you’re out feeding yourselves.  I needed more bananas if we were all going to get the virus.

They were happy to comply and were very easy visitors, spending most of their time in the media room.  When they learned they could even pull out the couch and sleep in the media room, I think they briefly entered Nirvana.  I was happy to oblige.  I also learned an effective way to communicate with people in the media room: text messaging.  My brother and I swapped a couple of texts while they were up there and I realized that some day, that will be my son texting me from the media room to ask if dinner is ready.  It made me so happy that we didn’t waste money on an intercom system!

At 3pm, I ran to get Peter at school and was surprised when his teacher came to tell me a red rash had appeared on his face during the day.  He had visited the school nurse twice, but everyone thought it was probably sunburn from P.E. or maybe even a heat rash.  They told me just to keep an eye on it.

It was on his cheeks, mostly, and also on his neck, just above his collar, so I could see why they thought it was sunburn.  But it also had red bumps in it, and when I asked Peter about his sun exposure, he told me it was in the morning.  Odd.  But I figured it would go away.

It did not.  The red bumps went away, but his cheeks were still very red the next morning.  I debated whether to send him to school, but figured that without any other symptoms, I couldn’t justify keeping him home.  Turns out, I should have.

Just as I stepped out of the shower (and with about an hour until we needed to leave for the airport), I got a call from the school nurse, asking me to come get Peter.  They thought it was Fifths Disease, a virus that causes your face to turn red.  He also had a very slight fever.

On my way to pick up Peter (wet hair and all), I called the pediatrician.  Thankfully, they gave me an 11:30 time slot – just the right amount of time to get the pilots to the airport and get back up to Frisco.  I could see God’s hand working everything out, but I have to admit to being a little panicked about whatever Fifths Disease was.

Well, turns out, the rash is just a different manifestation of whatever virus the other boys have had.  Apparently, viruses have a way of acting differently in different people, and in Peter, it caused the rash.  The doctor said there was no reason to run any tests because regardless of the results, they would simply keep an eye on him and make sure it just ran its course.

I was so relieved.  And even better, Brad sent me a text as we left the doctor that said he was on the 12:40 flight home instead of the 3pm he was scheduled to be on!  Praise God, he is home and thus ends our Two Weeks Of Travel.

Oh yeah, and I am now officially a fan of text messaging.