Sunday, March 13, 2011

52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy & History - The Case of the Mysterious Spots

Week 11 - Illness and Injury - Describe your childhood illnesses or injuries.  Who took care of you?  Did you recuperate in your own bed, on the couch in front of the television, or somewhere else?

The mysterious red spots and the hammer up the nose...and these were the days of my life!  Those "mysterious red spots".  Seriously, that's what we referred to them as.  I already had chicken pox and a decent case of them so it wasn't a recurrence.  It turned out that what those spots were was a case of the German measles (rubella), but I wasn't actually told that until I was older.  We just kept calling them "mysterious red spots".  As if it isn't hard enough being a kid, but to think that you've got some odd disease! :)

So there I am the kid with the mysterious cooties, and my clumsy Irish side comes out.  I'm around 7 or 8 years old and I'm at my neighbor (and godparents') house.  Their son was hammering nails into a step and removing them with the back of the hammer.  So of course, I had to see what was going on "up close and personal".  So there was a trip to the emergency room (one of my only as a dad was a cheap-skate and you'd have to be dying to go to an emergency room), because I got a hammer claw up my nose.  It wasn't broken, but it was bleeding something horrible.  I guess a life lesson learned is to not be so close to the claw of a hammer and a 7 year old when he's practicing his mad hammer skills.

Apart from that I don't know of any other illnesses that I had.  My sisters and I all had chicken pox at the same time, but nothing exciting.  I haven't found anyone in my family that succumbed to the Great Influenza pandemic of 1918 (and I looked!  I suppose we were very lucky).  I did find out that my uncle had polio when he was a little boy.  If I remember the story correctly (and my memory has never been what it should be), he was walking home and dragging his leg awkwardly.  He (obviously) recovered from it and went on to become a doctor, a great husband, and wonderful father!  I need more details on that story because it sounded like a good one at that!