Have Hives, Will Travel

Last week was one of those weeks. The ones where I want to make hot cocoa, curl up on the couch in a throw blanket, and numb my mind in movies all day every day until I can't remember what my troubles are anymore. My husband, J, decided to bite the bullet two weeks ago and start working for a company, rather than continuing to be self-employed. Because of how timing ended up working out, he had loose ends to be tied up from his last two jobs still when he started working for the company on the 16th. As a result, poor J had to work two weeks straight.

Friday was my birthday (and no, I will not tell you how old I turned---although I would be willing to confirm any correct guesses). J was so tired, he didn't remember that until (I presume) the late afternoon. I had expected as much, so it wasn't a big deal. Due to his starting work for a company (and their pay schedule of 2x monthly), and having little odds and ends for his previous projects to finish up, we are broke at the moment. This upcoming Monday, we'll be comfortable again, and it will be even better in two weeks when he collects from his previous projects, and gets his next paycheck at his new job. But, for now, that doesn't change the fact that we're broke! So we went out for a nice Indian buffet dinner at one of our local favorites, Daawat (which means "The Invitation"), and that was that.

The next day, Saturday, was my husband's birthday. Due to our budget, we skipped presents this year. We also skipped cake. Although, in all fairness, half the reason we decided to skip on the cake was that several months ago, our favorite natural bakery closed, and we aren't aware of any others in the city. J was actually supposed to work half of Saturday and a few hours on Sunday to wrap up the last of his projects from before starting with the company. But, understandably, he was completely burnt out. So with a little encouragement, he decided it was best to take this weekend to rest.

We were running a few errands when I noticed Baby E's ear was red and swollen. After reading up on what it could be, the best I could find was that it was an external ear infection, or that he was having a severe reaction to a bug bite. Nothing that said he should be taken to the ER, or even to a doctor. Deciding to keep an eye on it, we proceeded with our errands. Well, about half an hour later, I noticed patches of large red, splotchy bumps on his right cheek and on his neck. His ear was now back to normal. I knew immediately what it was. Hives. Allergies run in my family---my mother had asthma as a child, and to this day gets hives (a very severe allergic reaction that can last weeks---to cockroaches, dust, dogs, cats, and mice), and both of my brothers had asthma attacks in their younger years. But, considering that I never had many signs of that myself (I can count my very mild cases of hives that last only a few hours on my fingers), and since J doesn't have any allergies in his family, I crossed my fingers as all moms do and hope that they won't inherit any of the inconvenient things that may come with our genes. I held my breath when Baby E started crawling several months ago, knowing that coming into contact with many of my mom's allergen sources (namely dust, dogs, cats), he very well could get hives. But nothing ever happened, and I was relieved knowing he had not inherited my family's allergies. That is, of course, until now.

Baby E was so irritated by the hives that first day on Saturday that he did not nap at 10 am as usual, and instead stayed awake until he couldn't manage to any longer, and passed out for a nap at 3 pm. He napped for about an hour, and once he woke, the hives didn't seem to bother him as they moved in patches onto his arms, or chest, or tummy, or his back. But every time they popped up on his face, he was obviously agitated and miserable. Perhaps the only silver lining was that they'd travel quickly, so they wouldn't be on his face for long, and then he would return to ignoring their existence completely.

The icing on the cake (sarcasm here) was discovering that my closest mama friend, B, is moving far out of the city at the end of this week. J will be working half a day this Saturday and a few hours on Sunday since he decided against it last weekend. But, what can I do? I will just take a deep yoga breath, and keep going.

On the upside, Baby E's hives are finally almost gone. I'm hoping by Saturday they will have finally run their course, and return to the fiery depths from which they came. I realized that the night before the hives appeared, Baby E got a hold of my all-natural lip balm, and had managed to eat a little bit of it. I had taken it away and put it away safely, but after looking at the ingredients, I noticed the very last ingredient was tea tree oil. Something I had an allergic reaction to in my teen years when I tried using a tea tree oil facial wash! I'm positive that's what he reacted to, and going forward, I will be keeping him far away from tea tree oil!

Keeping my fingers crossed that things go more smoothly in October. Here's to hoping!

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Baby E on Sunday, with hives on his ear and the right side of his face


  1. I am hoping that your October goes more smoothly too! A BIG Happy Birthday to you though!

  2. that makes you so sad, they are so sweet and cannot tell you how they feel. hope it gets better with fall.

  3. Hope your baby will be better soon, holidays are coming so may be more cakes in October. Congratulations on your Birthdays!!! I can say you have a busy month, but fortunately coming to the end very soon.

    Fan R @TeddyOutReady

  4. It's amazing how you're able to travel with kids! I was having problems with my budget too, thanks god i've found a part-time job as a writer at vip-writers, so i managed to work from home and care my child at same time. Feel sorry for your husband, if his job didn't work out - he can try freelance work!