We had some rough times this Summer. No lie. With Eliette, we battled recurrent tonsillitis/strep, and recurrent ear infections. The antibiotics hardly seemed worth it. In the beginning, with her first meds, she reacted to a TRACE amount of soy used as a binding agent in one of the antibiotics. The reaction was pretty bad pretty quickly and I just KNEW that there was dairy in there. Wrong. The BEST pharmacist took the time to hear my concerns, listen to the dietary restrictions for Eliette because of her intolerances, and she called the manufacturing pharmacy for the drug and did all of the leg work for me. She was a rockstar. Found out that it was a soy binding agent, and found us a suitable non-dairy, non-soy alternative. At that time, Gage's Rx copay was for zero or ten dollars. The Rx copay for Eliette being treated for the same thing: $100 because she had to be on this drug that wasn't first (or even second) tier on the preferred formulary.
Such was life....
But, we quickly found that Gage and Eliette tolerate antibiotics in completely different ways too. Gage---throw him on an antibiotic, and no problems, provided you give the medication with food. Eliette? Ugh. Diarrhea, rash, then yeast rash. That cycle's never fun. Then with one of her rounds of antibiotics, she ended up with c-diff. After a different round of antibiotics, she ended up with thrush. I'm still nursing, so I ended up with thrush in my breasts. We've been through it all!
At a certain point, it was obvious to the dr that we needed Eliette to see an ENT because of the recurrent tonsillitis, recurrent ear infection(s), and delay in her speech development.
So....we did that. The verdict: tonsils need to come out, in time. Why? Dr says she's too young right now. They're not so large that they're obstructing her airway, so that's good. Like her brother, she seems to have freakishly large tonsils (my term, not his!), and they swell with every illness, without going aaaaallllllll the way back down to their pre-illness size. So, it's like every time she gets sick, they get a little bit bigger.
The tonsils swell and block off proper drainage in her ears, so they get fluid trapped and infection sets in. Fun cycle, right???
The good news: her food intolerances (which will probably be a whole post of its own at some point) are soooooo improved! Antibiotics---plenty she can take now. And, she doesn't have to go straight to the bad-mamma-jamma-heavy-hittin'-drugs that wipe her out in every way.
The bad news: ear tube surgery would be necessary until she can get her tonsils out when she's a little older. It was a looooong road to get her to her surgery date, and there were MANY many MANY long nights with earaches and sore throats along the way...
So, literally, the night before we were to take Eliette in for her ear tube surgery, Gage started complaining of belly pain. He was already at Memaw's to spend the night so that we could be at the surgery center super early for sister. Well, not only did Gage have belly pain, but he had lower right sided belly pain, and suddenly had fever.
So, I picked him up and we headed to the ER.
When we learned that they really thought he had appendicitis, he started to freak out a bit and he NEEDED Daddy. He apologized profusely to me for expressing this preference, and he was so afraid he'd hurt my feelings. "Oh, Buddy. Mommy's not mad. I understand." He explained that he needed him there because Daddy's bigger and Daddy can protect him better. sniff*sniff. I'm sure I'll do in a pinch, though....
So, we went home. Memaw took care of Eliette the night before when we were in the ER with Gage, and she took care of Gage when we took Eliette for her surgery.
The surgery itself: so easy. Like 10 minutes. I had no time to really freak out or worry because before I knew it, it was over and they were bringing her back to us.
She was pretty p*ssed when she woke up....She came back to me, nursed, and listed to "Peaceful Easy Feeling" on Daddy's phone. It's her jam. For real. No matter what is going on, when that song is on, she stops crying or talking and just mellows. It's perfect. Thank you, Eagles. Owe you guys one....or a few.
In no time, Eliette was perking up...
He wasn't better within a couple of days. In fact, he was worse. So, we were going down the road of thinking, maybe it WAS early appendicitis that they saw at the ER, and maybe now it's time to re-check this situation. We headed to the doctor's office. The doctor was all over this situation. We were treating his fever with Tylenol and Motrin, but only getting it down to about 103. He'd been hanging out in the 103s for 2 days. His tummy was hurting. He was tired. He was miserable.
The doctor sent us to Pediatric ER at Medical City Dallas. Yet again, Gage NEEEEEEDED Daddy. Memaw to the rescue to stay with Sister.
We three headed into Dallas and were there for several hours. He had some wonky labs. I forget now what was so abnormal. He got lots of fluids which really seemed to help perk him up, to the point that he even wanted to color.
Two CTs in one week? Not fun for this kiddo. But---they were certainly easier on him that the abdominal ultrasound. The abdominal ultrasound let us know that he had very swollen lymph nodes in his abdominal wall, but because of that, the view of his appendix was obscured. Kudos and praises to the ultrasound tech and her boss (Dr.....something, I forget her name but she was so nice!) who tried and tried to find the appendix.
In the end, we got to go home; appendix and all.
In the end, still not feeling great, but had to let the tummy bug run its course, and the lymph nodes should (and would) return to their normal size when they were done fighting the tummy bug...
Official diagnosis: Mesenteric Lymphadenitis.
Brother even missed his baseball team tryout, but luckily, they hosted another one later in the Summer. He was also supposed to go to Camp Pine Cove for a week, right as he was recovering from all of this. They were so great to reschedule us for a different week. Poor Gage was miserable for a while. I've never met such a tummy bug! N/V/D?? Not so much. We had fever and nausea ("my tummy feels mixed up") and torso PAIN. At times it hurt him just to walk about. It was awful and freaky....but, he slept a LOT and for that, we were all thankful.
We made it though the worst of Summer 2014.