Monday, February 18, 2008

Slowly Emerging from the House of Yuck

In my last post, I indicated that some illnesses in our home slowed my stitching last month. I believe that I failed entirely to mention that I felt terrible and was definitely coming down with something. And I did not specify that both kids were sick. Angie spiked a high fever one night, but recovered after a day of rest at home. Kian was unlike himself and was unbelievably grumpy--or perhaps because he is normally so chipper, his general crabiness seemed worse than it was. We went to the Doctor and were told that although he had fluid in his ears, he had no infection therefore no medication was necessary. We just needed to keep a close eye on him. That led to working short days while I drove Angie to and from school--two hours of driving each day. It was exhausting and I became worse.

Kian seemed to recover and even began giggling again. After waiting a week, I went to my Doctor and was put on an antibiotic. That night Chas turned to me and said, "I've noticed that Kian is poking at his ears. What do you think we should do?" So we have another trip to the Doctor to learn that Kian has infections in both ears. Antibiotics, twice a day is the plan.

Over the weekend, my course of antibiotics ends, and though I feel less foggy, I'm definitely not cured. I become more ill and have trouble breathing at night. Kian despises his antibiotics and fight diaper changes as his poor bottom turms bright red. Then Chas turns to me again and says, I don't feel well. What were your symptoms?"

On Monday I stay home from work and place several calls to my Doctor to get another antibiotic. After the second call, the receptionist tells me that the order will be ready at the pharmacy between 2:30 p.m. and 3:00 p.m. Chas and Angie, who is the only healthy person in the house, trek out to the pharmacy. No prescription. The pharmacy calls the Doctor and we learn that she has not even seen my message from 10:30 a.m. During my next chat with the receptionist, I am told that it should be soon, but her phones are cut off at 4:30 p.m. so she won't be available to help after that.

I finally hear from the nurse who informs me that "The Doctor will be calling in the prescription and oh by the way are you breastfeeding?" Yes. "Well you can't breastfeed while on this antibiotic so you'll need to pump and dump for the next ten days."

I almost cry.

Then I ask if there is anything else I can take because he is sick too and I'd like him to have the immunological benefits of breastfeeding in addition to his antibiotics. She tells me that he is probably getting my illness through the breastmilk and hints that I should stop for the duration. My husband is reminding me that we have plenty of frozen breastmilk so we wouldn't need to put him on formula.

I stand my ground, because while the young nurse (who has obviously never had to pump and dump around her own sick infant and who probably doesn't have kids yet) clearly thinks it's no big deal to pump and dump, I can imagine the horrors that await me if I have to push Kian, in need of milk and comfort, away for ten long days. Not to mention how uncomfortable pumping all day for ten days would be.

The nurse promises to check with the Doctor after she finishes with her patient. 4:30 p.m. comes and goes--we hear nothing. Dear Chas is annoyed. I'm searching KellyMom (bless them) and the LactMed Database for info on breastfeeding compatible antibiotics (and I'm horrified at the side effects of the proposed antibiotic--Psychosis? Hallucinations? Suicidal thoughts? I don't want to take it even if I'm not breastfeeding).

At 5:00 p.m. Chas has me call and I get the most unhelpful answering service for a Doctor ever. Apparently, I'm out of luck and they are gone for the day.

5:30 p.m. arrives with a call from the nurse, I propose an antibiotic, which is rejected, but a prescription for a breastfeeding friendly antibiotic will be called in immediately. We eat dinner quickly and Chas and Angie venture out once more.

I feel yucky, but vaguely victorious.

Chas decides to go to the Doctor the next day, so I stay home until lunchtime. Chas now has his own antibiotics, or he will when goes to another pharmacy later as I received the last of the antibiotics the previous night. Concerned about the kids (I saw Angie pulling at her ear before school and Kian's bottom is scarlet and painful to the touch) I call their doctor before I leave. We are to watch Angie, but bring Kian in. I go to work and call Chas later. Kian's ears are not much better, and certainly not enough to justify what the antibiotic is doing to his diaper region. So we get a new antibiotic (thankfully a smaller dose once a day) and a prescription for butt paste (nystatin, Aquaphor and minty Maalox).

Yes three of us are now on antibiotics but at least Angie stopped pulling on her ears and seems well.

Did I mention through this last week, I'm the hotline Magistrate who is on call 24hours a day, seven days a week? Or that the house is a disaster and Chas's parents will be arriving on Saturday?

Slowly, the antibiotics start working, the house is presentable and we're feeling human by Saturday. Yay family.

Sunday night, I'm thinking to myself that at least Angie is okay and we'll all be better soon.

At 3:00 a.m. today Angie wakes me tearfully to say that her ear hurts. We go to the Doctor today. Angie has an ear infection. Sigh. We have lunch with Chas's parents before they leave then we go fill yet another antibiotic prescription (if you're counting, we're up to six antibiotics since February commenced).

I have surfed the net to learn that Nicki and Janet both gave me an award. Thanks ladies--that was a sweet surprise. I'll post my favorite blogs later.

I've been slowly stiching Angie's Tooth Fairy pillow and hope to finish it by the end of the month. I put a few stitches in my HAED Challenge piece, but all other stitching has suffered greatly. I am inspired to stitch Paradigm Lost over one after seeing Nicki's The Token framed. I think I have just the fabric....

I hope February has been gentler to you.

Come on March!

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At 2/19/2008 8:47 AM, Blogger Nicki said...

{{{hugs}}} What a horrid sounding month so far :( I hope you all get better soon.

You must do a Long Dog over one! I'd forgotten how much I loved the end product until I pulled it out again to frame it :)

At 2/19/2008 9:52 AM, Blogger Catherine said...

That is "yuck!" I hope this round of antibiotics does the trick and you're all on the mend very soon. {{{hugs}}}

At 2/19/2008 12:38 PM, Blogger jymisgurl said...

BIG HUGS! Y'all seem to have been to hell and back this month. I sincerely hope you all feel much better very soon!

At 2/19/2008 2:36 PM, Blogger Maree said...

Wow, that sounds awful! Good for you for sticking to your guns with the nurse. I hope you're all feeling much better :)

At 2/19/2008 10:04 PM, Blogger Janet said...

Big hugs. I'm exhausted just thinking about it. What a nightmare!!! Fingers crossed things settle down soon. Glad you stood your ground about the antibiotics and here's hoping the nurse remembers you when she is put in a similar situation herself years from now and finally understands the whole breastfeeding thing!!! I share your frustration at people casually saying "oh, just express and chuck it" it's that easy!


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