Monday, October 11, 2010

this boy... and lesson learned in the hospital.

He's been giving us a run for the money.
*disclaimer, I talk about "nursing", "pumping", "milk supply", and "infant diarrhea" in this post.  Some readers may be against such language and stories involving them, and I completely understand.  Reader beware.  hA.

It all started the Wednesday my mom was in town and we were on our way to the big Antique Fair.  He woke up around 6 a.m., per his usual, and I tried to nurse him (again, per usual) and he was ANTI.  Like majorly anti.  It was so weird.  Very unlike him, but thought, "Hmmm... maybe he's just not hungry."  We went on with the morning, got on our way and I fed him his normal breakfast of rice cereal and fruit.  He was happy.  Once we arrived at the fair, I decided, "I'm gonna try nursing him again before we get out to shop..."  Nope.  Not having it.  Anti again.  So weird, but he was happy, otherwise, so we decided that we'd try again later. 

In the hours and days that followed, he has continued to be majorly anti-nursing.  As I looked online, I discovered the term for this action is called a "Nursing Strike."  Apparently, it's fairly common.  Babies who have nursed great for their life all of the sudden decide to stop, cold turkey.  Some babies come back and want to nurse again in a day or two, others a week or two, and others stop entirely.  Sometimes it happens b/c of illness or other events.  Lovely. 

Just in case he decided that he wanted to come back to nursing, I thought I'd better start pumping to preserve my milk supply.  Pumping is no fun.  It stinks.  And takes forever.  And then you have to clean all the parts afterward.  But, for the betterment of my child, I decided to do it---just in case.

Did I mention that Cal is anti bottles, sippy cups and the like? (and in case you want to suggest your favorite sippy cup, let me tell you, I purchased EVERY brand/type at Walmart to try.  Yeah, he hasn't been fond of ANY of them.  Thank you, child.)  Anti formula (similac regular and then I just have been trying the Similac Go and Grow brand).  Anti most juices.  Most pedi-lyte flavors. Anti most soda.  Anti liquid in general... except for WATER and CHICKEN BROTH on occasion.

Nice, Cal. 

Did I mention he also got major diarrhea a day or two later? 

So, with this quandary at hand (him loosing a ton of fluids and not taking any in), the last week and a half has involved me giving him water and broth with a MEDICINE DROPPER.  Wow.  Talk. about. tedious.  

Did I mention we went to Dallas with Aaron in the midst of all this? Aaron had a CE course he was going to, so I thought, "Why not have us tag along too? We'll swim in the pool.  Drive around the city..." 

Big mistake.  Not cool to be couped up in a hotel room with a baby with a diarrhea baby (who, consequently, had mega diaper rashes) who you don't want crawling around on the "mystery stained carpet" and an "active" toddler who likes to push phone buttons and lean against the floor-to-ceiling-wall-of-windows.  Talk about giving her mother a heart attack.  If my memory serves me correctly, we were on the 8th floor.   

(don't mind Tillie's bangs.  I tried to trim them again.  I don't have the hair cutting talent.)

We did, however, get out on the town one evening.  I didn't have the energy to wrangle kids at a restaurant, so we got a box of pizza (delicious), picked up a cupcake at Sprinkles (cute but overrated, if you ask me), drove through some ritzy neighborhoods and admired the amazing homes, ate our pizza and played at a park for a while until the sun went down.   This was the highlight of the trip for sure. 

(you'd never know this kid was a mess the rest of the trip)

I was in touch with our Pediatrician through all of this, fortunately.  She told me to monitor his wet diapers and how many fluid ounces he was getting daily.  The diaper count was just around 4 (the minimum is 3) in a 24 hour period.  And he was only taking in 7 to 10 oz./day (minimum she wanted was 20 oz.). 

After a week's time, even though he was above the minimum, I wanted to take him in to get checked over.

By then we were home from the 3 day "excursion" to Dallas, the diarrhea had stopped, but he still wasn't taking in any more liquids.  She checked him out.  Found blisters in the back of his throat  ?!?!  whaaaat?  how?  who knows.  But couldn't give him medicine for it, b/c it's viral? or bacterial?  and had to run it's course.  She was also nervous about the liquid situation, so she had us take him to the hospital.

I knew I hit an all time low in my life when I finally found a parking spot approximately 5.6 thousand miles away from the hospital (had to wait 20 minutes just to find it).  By this point, Cal and Tillie were zonked in the back seat.  So, I decided that Tillie would get the chariot ride in the stroller, b/c she is heavier (only by 10 pounds, but still...).  I'd carry Cal in my arms b/c my front pack carrier wasn't in the car.  Also, I had a feeling it would be a long day, so I packed extra books, treats, and extra toys for both kids---meaning my diaper bag weighed 75 pounds (or there about).  You know when your bag is so heavy that the straps dig into the flesh on your shoulder?  Yes, this happened. 

So, after I struggled across the parking lot, finally got into the doors of the Children's hospital, and was handing the receptionist my orders from the doctor---guess what words came out of my mouth? 
wait for it.
wait for it.

No joke, I literally said this exact sentence:

"Y'alls parking blows."

Thank you, Texas.

Anyway, we got checked in, and did the paper work.  Tillie was darling and helpful.  Calvin was happy.  That is, until the 15 year old nurse stabbed him with a needle to take his blood and get an IV in.  Bless her heart, she was sweet, but it's not cool that she couldn't get it in after a few pokes on the one side.  In the end, she got it in on his OTHER hand, but honestly, we were all dying by the time that happened.  Tillie kept saying, "Oh, Cal.  It's okay.  It's okay. You gonna be a happy boy soon. Happy boy soon." 
 (poor baby.  get a load of that face.)

 (gotta love Tillie's flared nostrils.   She thought it was a great afternoon.)

After four books, two jars of bananas, an emergency potty run for Matilda, a spilled tupperware of crackers, 45 attempts for Tillie learning to open the garbage can with the foot lever,  and a 8 "cc's of yoo-who" (name that movie) pumped into Cal's body---we were told we could go home.

In the end, he checked out fine.  What?!  His electrolyte levels were normal.  His fluid levels were fine.  There wasn't some rare disease they found (although I was sure there would be).  I almost felt a little stupid walking out of the hospital after the whole ordeal.  You know what I mean?  It's almost like you want something to be "wrong" so it can prove there was a reason why you went through it all.  But, I quickly pushed that thought out of my head and said a silent prayer of gratitude that everything, in fact, was okay. 

I decided, in the end, that is better to be safe than sorry.  

The sunset was a little more beautiful that night as we trekked the 5.6 thousand miles back to our car.  The hamburger at Wendy's tasted a little more delicious than it normally did.  The traffic on our way back home didn't annoy me as much as it usually does. 

So, while Calvin still does best with a medicine dropper, one day this nine month old will learn how to use one of his 17 different sippy cups.  Until then, Tillie is enjoying them all.  And, one day, we'll venture back to Dallas.  It's only a few hours away, after all. 

Things are on the up and up and as my broddahs from another moddah say, "Iz all good."


The Tengelsens said...

Have you tried soy formula? Heard some kids love it!

sarahwjones said...

Jack has been on the fence with the whole dehydration bit the last couple of weeks... I can so relate to this post! Love how they send you home to "push fluids" and make it sound so easy. Jack would have NOTHING to do with liquid of any sort.

Luckily we have bypassed the hospital/IV...and your post makes me all the more grateful for that!

Glad everything is ok! You deserve a month long nap!

Kel said...

Oh Melis, the next time this something like this happens, call me and I'll come get Tillie and make your life a tad bit easier. Holler at us if you need anything!! Hugs!

racharooo said...

So glad Cal is okay!
But a very entertaining and relatable story. My favorite part was when we realized that you are a full blown Texan. At least you have an excuse...during my internship I had to teach some nutrition classes, and would break into a texan accent. Nerves, I guess? It hasn't really happened since, thank goodness :)

The girl said...

Oh my. Poor Cal. I'm glad he is OK. But I love your re-telling of the whole fiasco. Very entertaining! I mean, I'm sorry that all happened...but thanks for sharing it :)

Tyler and Erin said...

I'm so sorry. :-( I hope he gets better soon and starts drinking!

Becker said...

Y'alls kids are awesome. :) What a sweetie being happy through his rough time. The day after Caleb's 1st birthday he puked and puked and puked and puked and then had diarrhea for 3 straight weeks. We had to take him to the ER where they gave him a tiny little baby IV to pump fluids into him. SO--moral--I feel you. I hope Cal gives up his nursing strike and can get back to proper fluid-ing soon. :)

OH! And I need to learn how you made those bridesmaid paper dolls. Help?

And P.S.---Bacteria can be treated with antibiotics. It's viruses that have to "run their course." Just a heads up. :)

Lyssa said...

The same thing happened to my cousin and her little boy just barely and he was about the same age. he just refused to eat anymore...but wasn't as picky as little cal..poor you! I can't imagine going through that!
And kate went through the same needle poking in vegas for blood testing for sad.
Have you just tried a normal cup or straw? Luke favors the cup...but I sneak in some sippies now and again.
Glad to heat that all is healthy and I hope you can adjust to this weird phase!

Kristen said...

oh. dear. Melissa, that is a day you call your friends and they will be more than happy to watch tillie for you so you can go to the hospital with the other one without double stress of keeping TWO happy. I know your syndrome though, I have it too, it's "i hate to inconvenience anyone" syndrome. But that was so cute her saying "happy boy soon..."

Lily did the same thing too when she got a cold and didn't nurse for several days. my feelings were hurt like she was rejecting me. but it all went back to normal when she was well again, as I'm sure with cal when he feels better...hopefully soon!

Scott and Tiffany Evans said...

That is one of those weeks some people would never believe. But from mom to mom you sit back and take it in. Realize oh yes, other people have to deal with the same sad stuff I do and then you cherish the moments when life isn't out to get you!

I think weeks like that are what makes the good ones great. Hope everything gets better and back to normal for you. I am not going to give you any advice because I know you are probably trying EVERYTHING AND MORE so let me just give you some hope. With one of Scott's little brothers he wouldn't nurse from the beginning (something about his sucking capabilities) so she had to feed him drop by drop from her pinky! No joke. But eventually he learned how to drink from things.


Tim and Melissa said...

Oh my! I'm so sorry you had to go through all that...or still are. I can't believe it has gone on for so long. Good luck! Good job for sharing the story. You'll be glad you did when you can read back on it in the future - when it is all over. Wish I was there to help!

Kirstin - Klinton - Max - Krieg Starr said...

Well, all I can say is good job surviving. Sometimes on days like this it just takes surviving. I remember the first time I had to get Max poked and poked and poked and poked, I think the final count was 87 to find a vein to draw blood (that was after the allergy prick test). You survived and now you are so much smarter than when you started.

You are an amazing mom and Calvin and Tillie are so lucky to have you, so that "terrible, horrible, no good, very bad" day seemed like a fun adventure to them.


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