Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Day three and counting

House date (I hate star dates, space bores me silly, except in Galaxy Quest): January 25, 2011

Today is day three of Hannah's third illness in two and a half weeks.  We started a few weeks ago with the delightful virus with a gastro bonus feature, had five days of normal eating and living, then Hannah's first bout with strep throat, probably courtesy of big sister who gets strep if someone talks about it, and after six days on antibiotics she got sick AGAIN.  Like God, she was supposed to rest on the seventh day but maybe because she can't read yet, she did not get the memo.  This would be your basic streaming nose and eyes, coughing (OK, hacking), high fever kind of virus.  Bonus feature add on: hands, lips, and nose turning blue when she either is cold or feels cold despite actually being 105 degrees.  Lest you think I am a crappy mother, I will tell you I asked Metabolics about the blue hands the first time it happened, when she was not actually even sick, and they sent me to Neurology, who said it was not CP related since it hit more than her affected side and so it must be metabolic, who again denied coverage.  My regular old garden variety pediatrician says it is vascular and inexplicable and not to fret.  A win for the GP!  Inexplicable!  Woo-hoo! But I digress . . . The strep was sort of anticlimactic, Hannah had a fever but never considered reducing her food, she was too busy catching up from the previous weekend.  Strep was small potatoes in her mind.  We were concerned she could get sick again without having even finished the pink stuff but a check yesterday says no UTI, no ear infection, just a suspected bone chilling, lung shattering, neck baking, snot making virus.  On the upside, the only body fluid currently distributed about my face and shirt are all snot or spit/snot related.  Hannah is napping right now, and just coughed so hard she said "Owie!" in her sleep, which is cute but distressing.  So far, in order to get her to consume enough calories to fuel this fever I have used the following: Polycose added to milk or in juice (a blend of secret not sweet sugars that have both quick and longer acting molecules to add calories) which is new to us, I have served almost all of her most favorite foods (many of which elicited no response at all, including pot stickers) I have squirted syringes of liquid in her mouth while sleeping as well as inserted bottles of milk until she remembers she doesn't want it, I gave her home-made buttercream frosting (hardly painful for me at all) and tonight I will try The Soup of Healing and the Rice of Togetherness (egg drop soup from my favorite Chinese place, which I swear really does have healing properties, and we need the rice of togetherness because if Lord Honey fails once more to understand my dosing instructions about Hannah and fever reducing medicines this family will have a reduction in force, effective immediately).  I just remembered marshmallows, and that I could perhaps offer her two big fat ones right before bed so I could feel I could safely sleep though the night.  I might make some brownies and frost them with buttercream frosting.  For lunch I made tea sandwiches (she wolfed them down the last time I made them for a party) and she managed to eat one third of the triangle which was 1/4 of a full sized sandwich minus crusts.  Success!  But I will please Claire with my tea sandwich efforts, and that is worth something. 

So a colleague in my office emailed me to ask how Hannah was and I gave her the update.  She wrote back how the coughing could make a parent feel so helpless.  I told her how empowered I felt when I got the child to eat nearly 1/12th of a sandwich.  She thought it sounded like I'd have Hannah mended soon.  I pondered whether I knew anything at all about any of this.  I decided I felt more like a fat old Idaho salmon, trying to get upstream to do my duty but not having a fucking clue how to work fish ladders when I don't have hands or feet. 

After trying to draw you out of your shells I had planned to be bitingly funny, poignant, witty, maybe even worth forwarding.  Oops!  Someone is calling "Mooooommmmyyyyy" so I must fly.

Edited: updating with the news that she can now cough enough to lose her lunch.  Lovely!


  1. Our MCAD DS is coming down with something and refuses to eat! How frustrating. I find for him, when he has a cough, I figure his throat is also sore, so I give hime no-fat yogurt. The coldness soothes his throat, and it gets some calories in him (like today).
    Crosses fingers that we all stay out of the ER.

  2. Feeling the need to fly to SLC and give mommy a break... should be there shortly.

  3. Antie E - yes, one go-to food for us is yogurt, in fact that was our only successful breakfast choice today. Sometimes she'll take jello or mango sorbet under similar circumstances. We are thinking of you too today - let's collectively think sweet positive thoughts for each other, and anti-ER thoughts.

  4. You frickin' made me LOL for realsies, so well done. Well done and bravo and I bow to your incredible parenting patience because OMG.

  5. Oh mama. You even make this misery sound funny. Sick kid sucks, but sick kid with metabolic issues... well that is stress to the nth. xoxo

  6. Oh the salmon thing just made me want to come and give you a big salmon hug.

    I hope your days will soon be illness-free again. x