Here’s how yesterday went down.
Knowing that Owen may have been fighting off a bug or teething (since he had a slight fever the day before), I took his temp in the morning. He had a SLIGHT fever (well below the threshold where daycare asks you to keep children at home), and he was acting happy as could be and didn’t have any other symptoms of illness. I gave him some infant Motrin to make him a little more comfortable (NOT to drug him and force daycare to take him when he was sick, as many commenters on yesterday’s post implied). When I dropped him off, I spoke to his teachers and explained the situation — that he had a slight fever the day before and that morning, but seemed completely unaffected by it. I wrote a note to ask them to please watch the fever and call me if it got any higher or if any other symptoms developed. I gave them my cell phone number so they could reach me even if I was in a meeting. I rushed to work and started working as hard as I could, knowing that I might need to go pick Owen up at any moment if things got worse.
At 1:30pm daycare called and said his temp was a little higher than the morning, but still not anything to worry about. He was happily cooing in the background during the call, and they said he was acting a little clingy, but “happy as a clam”. Happy as a clam and a low-grade fever does NOT warrant rushing home from work to go pick him up. At least not in my book.
They were about to put him down for another nap since he was rubbing his eyes, so I asked them to take his temp upon waking and let me know if it was higher or if he seemed uncomfortable. As soon as he woke up, they called to let me know it had spiked to a higher number. I IMMEDIATELY, WITHOUT A SECOND THOUGHT, shut my laptop and headed out the door to go pick him up. Ahem. Despite what some of the commenters on yesterday’s post might think I would do. Even with his elevated temp, Owen was still, as they called it, happy as a clam.
I ran into daycare to find him happily playing with one of the daycare teachers’ hair while she smiled at him and held him in her arms. Exactly what I would have been doing if I had rushed to pick him up earlier in the day. Or not sent him to daycare at all. Except this way, I got a lot of work done, and was in a really good place to be able to leave work and spend the entire day Friday and entire weekend with my baby 100%, and not thinking about the work I still needed to do.
We immediately went upstairs to the doctor (side note: choosing a doctor/daycare in the same building was one of the best decisions I ever made). The doctor confirmed the high temp and gave Owen some infant Motrin. She checked him out and confirmed that his ears were fine, his breathing was fine, his general gestalt was fine. He has a stuffy nose (that he has had since the first day he started daycare, no joke). Her best guess is that Owen is fighting a virus. Totally normal. And/or teething. Also totally normal. And for both of those things, you don’t do much else other than keep him on Motrin to keep him comfortable, and make sure the symptoms don’t get worse. Oh, and encourage him to eat and sleep as much as possible.
Exactly what daycare did yesterday. And exactly what I’m doing today. Just for the record, I think the decisions Benjamin and I made over the last few days were balanced, realistic, and exactly right for our family at this point in time. And Owen is still happy as a clam.