Pink Eye: A Timeline

Sorry. No weekend list. Went with this instead…


10:00 a.m.: Receive an email at work from Greg that says “Charlie slept late and I had to wake her up to take her to daycare. Her eyes were kind of pus-y, but I wiped them off and she seemed fine. Aneke (Room 1 teacher; pronounced “Anika”) noticed and said she’d keep an eye on her.”

2:50 p.m.: Receive call from Aneke. Charlie’s eyes are swollen and “goupy” after nap. Must pick her up.

3:00 p.m.: Call Kaiser and leave message for pediatrician. Wait for call back.

3:15 p.m.: Receive call from nurse. Dr. will call in prescription. Leave to pick up prescription and then Charlie.

4:15 p.m.: Arrive at daycare. Charlie seems fine. Eyes are a bit red, but she’s in good spirits.

7:00 p.m: Greg arrives home from work and the two of us attempt to put in Charlie’s eye drops. Holy cow. Wrestling a greased pig would be easier.


1:00 a.m.: Charlie has uncharacteristic bouts of crying. The first thing that hits me when I check on her is the smell. She has thrown up — remnants of curdled milk and grape skins are all over her crib. Greg wakes and strips down the crib while I clean up and comfort Charlie. She throws up a little and heaves a few more times. I spend a good part of the night holding her and eventually fall asleep with her on the couch.

4:30 a.m.: I finally put Charlie down in her clean crib and head off to bed.

8:00 a.m.: I wake and cannot open my left eye; it’s crusted shut. Curse repeatedly. Call Kaiser and manage to get an appointment for both Charlie and myself.

10:20 a.m.: My appointment is first. A diagnosis of pink eye is confirmed. Super.

10:45 a.m. Pediatrician thoroughly checks out Charlie who now seems just fine. I mention the myriad of recent minor ailments: the throwing up, the red eye, a back rash, two weeks of constipation. The doctor assures me that she is fine except for the pink eye. I am instructed to just keep giving her plenty of water for the constipation, and the eye drops for the conjunctivitis. I ask for helpful hints on that nearly impossible feat and am told that there’s no need to pry her eyes open. Just aim for the inside corners. Thank you, doctor!

1:00 p.m.: Arrive home and call my school to arrange for a substitute for Friday. Commence with self-quarantine and obsessive hand washing. Wash all pillow cases and towels. Begin new round of eye drops for the mother/daughter duo. Charlie’s prescription says drops four times daily. Mine says twice daily. Call Greg to fill him in.

6:00 p.m.: My left eye is so red and swollen, I can barely see, and it’s all I can do to keep from scratching out my eyeballs. Every time I touch my face at all, I run to a sink and wash.

8:00 p.m.: Put Charlie down for the night. She sleeps twelve hours with barely a whimper. Praise Jesus.


8:00 a.m.: My left eye feels and looks much better, but my right eye now hurts and the beginnings of the telltale crust is starting to form on my lashes. More cursing. More laundry. More hand washing. Serious lotion is needed to mend my dried out, over washed hands.

11:00 a.m. Round of phone calls to chat with people to keep me from getting cabin fever.

1:00 p.m.: Take Charlie out in the back yard to play. She LOVES being outside. (Grumpy would be proud). Charlie’s eyes look fine.

8:00 p.m.: By now Charlie recognizes the eye drop bottle as soon as I pick it up. It takes Greg pinning her flailing arms and legs and me aiming the drops toward her eyes while my elbows attempt to hold her thrashing head. Put Charlie down and a normal night with just a few minor crying jags ensues.


8:30 a.m. My eyes don’t feel much better. Commence disinfecting with reinforced vigor. Wash all sheets, all towels, sofa slipcovers (and about twelve other loads of laundry). Use disinfecting wipes on all hard surfaces, all doorknobs, drawer handles, and toys. Throw out all face cream and make-up. (ouch!)

10:00 a.m. Finally put on a pair of glasses to read actual eye drop bottle for dosage information. Unlike the box (which says twice daily), the bottle instructs using every few hours initially. Eureka! Let the antibiotics flow!

3:00 p.m.: Go to Target armed with sunglasses and sanitizer just to get out of the house.

8:00 p.m. Put Charlie down for the night. She wakes up crying repeatedly.


3:00 a.m.: Charlie has not slept for more than an hour at a stretch. She is crying and rubbing her eyes. More cursing (but quietly with baby in my arms). I hold her but sneak off intermittently to wash the crust off my own eyelashes, and yes, WASH MY HANDS! We finally fall asleep on the mattress in the den.

10:00 a.m. Charlie and I finally wake after a rough night. Her eye is a little more swollen and red. My eyes are about the same. I pray, but it’s not a nice, humble prayer– it’s more of a “Come ON, Lord!”

12:00 p.m.: Continue with eye drops, hand washing, laundry, disinfecting. Assess situation. Charlie’s eyes are slightly red and slightly puffy. The swelling in mine has gone down, and they feel a little better, but I still look like I’ve had twelve too many El Coyote margaritas. And they still itch. Bad. Greg, so far, remains unaffected. Bastard.

To be continued (unfortunately!)…


  1. lisa says:

    Oh you poor thing. Casey & Eileen just had a similar trade off of pink eye. NOT FUN! Good luck that it passes soon. (and after this post I will not harangue you that you have not reviewed my resume) :)

  2. Minimeltdown says:

    I’m so sorry. I just dealt with throw up in the crib from a potential shrimp allergy. That was super fun. I have also dealt with repeatedly reinfecting myself with pink eye and the constant vigilance required. Oh, and throwing away all eye makeup, especially when you buy the expensive stuff, is SO painful. I’m guessing that there is something else going on here besides pink eye. There are other symptoms and they don’t seem to be going away. Can’t wait to hear the resolution.

  3. trogdor says:

    Sorry, man. For the dry hands, try Aquaphor or this Avon lotion (ask Debbie D. about it at work–she gave it to me. I’d tell you what it’s called, but it’s in my car right now.) Take care. Hope you end the cycle of infection soon.

  4. Helene88 says:

    Oh KELLY……… what a NIGHTMARE. Reminds me of the day we moved from New York to California and 3 days later, at Disneyland, Melissa came down with the chicken pox. So we probably infected half of Southern California before our stuff arrived and yes, as we started unpacking and moving in, JJ came down with them too. Now it’s funny, THEN? Not so much. Hang in there sweetie. Be thankful you only have her and you to deal with. I don’t know about Greg, but men in general aren’t very good patients!