It’s Not All Mary Poppins

That’ll Learn Me to Bend the Rules…

“Anna has something that looks like pink-eye, and I was wondering if she could still come?”

I do appreciate when the parents phone in advance with something like this. It’s far easier to tell them “No” over the phone than it is to send them home from your doorstep. Doesn’t mean I can’t do it face-to-face. Certain (devious, manipulative) parents have brought very obviously contagious kids to my door, hoping that compassion and social awkwardness would force me to accept their tot. I’ve had to develop a spine of steel to deal with these types. No problem. Having dealt with their children all these years, I’ve got that.

So, “No” was the answer. That was yesterday. Today I get the call again.

This time I have some questions. When did she start her eye drops? Yesterday morning. Oh, Boo. Not long enough. I can hear the tension in mum’s voice – she’s worried about missing another day of work, and she was responsible and kind to me yesterday, so I’d like to cut her some slack.

“Normally I have parents wait for 48 hours after the drops. But… are her eyes still secreting? Is she rubbing her eyes?”

No, and no.

All right then. Bring her in.

“Are you sure? Maybe I’ll just bring her around so you can have a look at her, and then decide.” Now she could be doing this because she doesn’t want the responsibility if everyone else develops pink-eye, but I choose to see her as one of the Good Ones. The parents you love to have. The parents who share the responsibility and inconvenience of a contagious child. Unlike the parents who stress out and see me – not the child’s illness – as the cause of their dilemma. Yes, Anna’s mum is definitely one of the Good Ones.

Anna turns out to have very mild redness in the corner of one eye. No glop, no rubbing. Yes, she can stay.

She gives her mummy a hug and a kiss – well, she graciously receives her mother’s hug and kiss, in the way of many under-twos. Waves bye-bye.

I lift her onto my lap to give her a good-morning hug.

And she coughs.

And spews saliva.

Right into my eye.

RIGHT into my eye.

And the countdown begins…

April 17, 2007 Posted by | daycare, eeewww, health and safety, parents | 14 Comments