Julia's Blogfest » For what it's worth....DC Metro area portrait and event photographer, including studio shoots - corporate and theatrical headshot

Flu has hit us hard

My sweet baby, okay, so he’s not that big of a baby as he’s 6 1/2, underwent his 5th febrile seizure in his short 6 years of life last night at midnight.  This was brought on by a rapid onset of a fever/illness.  I checked on him at midnight as I do every night when I cease working in my dungeon and head to bed.  He felt VERY hot and I administered motrin.  But it was too late as within 1 minute, he began seizing.  Between the ages of 2 and 3, he experienced 4 febrile seizures, all with fever.  We did tests and ruled out any and all clinical problems.  We just had to accept this as our fate and wait for this long nerve-racking ride to end, one day.  We were told he would be 5 or 6 before he outgrew them and on his 6th birthday, we celebrated BIG by going to Disney World.  We really thought we were done and wiping our hands clean of this awful thing.  So naturally, we were blindsided by this event last night.  We ended up going to the ER and even when we were in the ambulance, we were told all of the local area ERs were full so we were waiting to hear which hospital could accept us!  Mt. Vernon was full, Alexandria and Fairfax too.  Ultimately, we ended up at Alexandria and they took good care of us.  Harry’s flu test came out positive and b/c we had the seasonal flu shot 2 weeks ago we were told to “presume” this to be H1N1.  Moreover, the ER physician said he had 12 confirmed cases of a flu that day.  It’s here.

Here’s my vantage point on the way to the hospital.  It killed me to not sit next to him but they were doing their job.


So with that, I am posting some information sent to me by my wonderful mother in law that will help families who are suffering from this flu.  Frankly, I’m less worried about this flu than I am about the febrile seizure.  That’s a hard visual to erase.  Please keep us in prayer.


The only portals of entry are the nostrils and mouth/throat. In a global epidemic of this nature, it’s almost impossible to avoid coming into contact with H1N1 in spite of all precautions. Contact with H1N1 is not so much of a problem as proliferation is.

While you are still healthy and not showing any symptoms of H1N1 infection, in order to prevent proliferation, aggravation of symptoms and development of secondary infections, some very simple steps, not fully highlighted in most official communications, can be practiced (instead of focusing on how to stock N95 or Tamiflu):

1. Frequent hand-washing (well highlighted in all official communications).

2. “Hands-off-the-face” approach. Resist all temptations to touch any part of face (unless you want to eat, bathe, etc.).

3. *Gargle twice a day with warm salt water (use Listerine if you don’t trust salt). *H1N1 takes 2-3 days after initial infection in the throat/ nasal cavity to proliferate and show characteristic symptoms. Simple gargling prevents proliferation. In a way, gargling with salt water has the same effect on a healthy individual that Tamiflu has on an infected one. Don’t underestimate this simple, inexpensive and powerful preventative method.

4. Similar to 3 above, *clean your nostrils at least once every day with warm salt water. *Not everybody may be good at Jala Neti or Sutra Neti (very good Yoga asanas to clean nasal cavities), but *blowing the nose hard once a day and swabbing both nostrils with cotton buds dipped in warm salt water is very effective in bringing down viral population.*

5. *Boost your natural immunity with foods that are rich in Vitamin C (Amla and other citrus fruits). *If you have to supplement with Vitamin C tablets, make sure that it also has Zinc to boost absorption.

6. *Drink as much of warm liquids (tea, coffee, etc) as you can. *Drinking warm liquids has the same effect as gargling, but in the reverse direction. They wash off proliferating viruses from the throat into the stomach where they cannot survive, proliferate or do any harm.


Liz - I’m so sorry about your scary night. 🙁 Thank God you checked on him when you did. Thank you for the flu tips, also, because I think a lot of us are going to need it. (hugs)

Sheena J. - Julia – So sorry to hear about your little guy – hope that he is indeed doing better. Georgia is starting to see a few cases of H1N1, and several cases of the seasonal flu, esp in the Embassy where many families have small children. You amaze me in your ability – even during rough times – to find comfort in your photography. Wishing you and yours well – and thanks for the tips…salt water here I come (Im used to it – sufferer of cronic sinusitis).

Rachel Clarke - Oh Gosh, how terrifying!! I pray that your son is better soon and the seizures never come back.

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