Our sweet Jacob. He breaks my heart with his constant “Mommy, can I cuddle wif you.” and “I want you to hold me.” He’s a sponge for affection and can just never get enough. His favorite thing to do at the moment is ask “Do you know what I love?” and after your obligatory “What?”, he throws his warm little arms around you and cries “YOU!!!”. And he’ll do it over and over, even with someone he’s just met. His heart is tender and wonderfully open.
Yet his body is sick, and we don’t know why. He often cries at night that his bottom hurts, writhing in pain. Every week or so I will see blood on tissue when I help him wipe after using the toilet. It’s terrifying. I’ve looked over and over, never to find where the blood could be coming from. He’s been toilet trained since last spring, so it’s certainly not a diaper rash and there is no visible irritation.
We’ve been at the doctor a good bit. I’m sure she sees paranoid parents often. The first time we redid the celiac testing, since our previous pediatrician botched the test. He neglected to tell us that Jake actually needed gluten in his system for it to be conclusive. So we fed him gluten and retested. Nothing. The next time it was a blood test for food allergies. Nothing. Then he seemed to stop complaining and life got busy with four of our birthdays and Jesus’, too. He did well, but now we are back to complaining. It’s more frequent and so are the bits of blood.
So last week we returned to the pediatrician and he was doing the writhing and fussing while we were there. He also went to the bathroom and she was able to see firsthand the little bit of blood. At least now it’s validated. It’s not in my head. Phew… So she did some swabs and we went back again later for some more blood work for I don’t know what. Then I got Strep. Ugh.
The Dr ordered a barium enema to see what is going on in his intestines. My poor little guy! It was scheduled for today and, like I said, yesterday he was to have clear liquids only after 1pm. Coop started at 12:45 so I fed him lunch and geared up for the long haul. I let him choose juice and one of those Vitamin Water things. He chose the ‘endurance’ and hated it but Mommy liked it. May be a good thing. I feel that I could use some endurance right now. So he had his juice and jello for snack at Coop and did so well not wanting the other kids snacks. I heard he found a stray Cheerio and snarfed it down before his teacher could intercept. Such a sweet woman. Luckily the Cheerio caused no harm.
At 4pm I gave him a triple dose of Senecot as directed. For dinner he had 4 bowls of Jello. I can just see him in college (((shudder))). And then before bedtime, I was obligated to administer the dreaded Fleet Enema. Dear Lord this test better be worth it! Well, we did that and I laid on the bathroom floor with him waiting for it to work. I was starting to worry when it finally did it’s thing and cleaned him out. Poor guy didn’t know what was going on. I explained every step. “We’re going to do this to clean out your bottom so the Dr can see what is wrong with it tomorrow.” On a hunch I dug up an old Pull Up for him to wear overnight. Under protests of being a big boy already, I finally convinced him that 3 year old can wear Pull Ups on occasion. Thank God for those little hunches we mom’s get. The little man woke up devastated because he had an accident in his sleep. I explained to him that the medicine was making his body do what it needed to do to clean out, and it didn’t count as an accident. After all that, we had to do another Enema this morning. This test IS important, right? Sigh….
The morning was much harder as the other kids ate and Jacob couldn’t. I sat Selah and Lucas down with breakfast and Jacob and I played with trains and his new wooden tool set. I had, of course, chosen to fast with him.
The whole morning I struggled to do anything amid the begging for food and fussing of his bottom hurting, and the jealousy of a little 18 month old who wandered shy he wasn’t the one getting all of the attention. I held them both for most of the time and we all watched The Fox and The Hound. It took me awhile to realize that there is actually no ‘Fox’. That the hot little girly pup is ‘foxy’ as in sexy…. thus a Fox. Even back then cartoons were really for parents, weren’t they?
Carol was a divine angel, come to save me from the potential of taking all three children to Scottish Rite Children’s Hospital. Looking back at my long day, I can see that it would have absolutely bankrupt my energy.
We arrived on time and walked in amid reflections from windows tinted in all shades of the rainbow. Jacob was captivated and took several minutes naming each color before he would agree to approach the registration desk. And that’s where I became the hospital mother. Apparently every employee of the hospital believes that I am adopting them, no matter if they are even my senior. Because every where I went it was “Right here, Mom.” “Mom, I need you to sign here.” “Mom, here’s your license back.”… “Oh, thank you, Mom.” I understand that it makes things easier for them, yet it felt quite odd. I was seriously tempted to respond with a “Yes, son?” to the worst offender but I decided against it. I still wasn’t sure which of them was responsible for inserting things into my little boy and I didn’t want to risk pissing anyone off.
We were in the room rather quickly, where my little guy refused to wear the medical gown. He was much more comfortable prancing around stark naked in only his socks, thank you. So that’s what he did. The initial Xrays went quickly. I had to wear the lead jacket and they had this little square of lead that they laid over his tiny penis. My future grandchildren thank you. I held his hands and his trusty sheep lay right next to him to get his Xrays, too.
Then the Barium went in. He was such a trooper. He lay still just holding my hand and we talked about what we were going to go eat when we left. I told him we would have a date and he could choose. He was torn between scrambled eggs from Awful House of a Quesadilla from Taco Smell. It’s not my fault, my husband teaches them these things! By the time they were ready to start the Xrays with the barium, the quesadilla had won out, and my son was fretful and uncomfortable. The radiologist rushed in and at that point I was asked to stand back and just watch. Two nurses flipped his body over into several poses as the radiologist called out… whatever it was he called out. I wasn’t listening. All I could here was my little man crying and saying “Dat’s enuf! Dat’s Enuf! I’m all done.” And eventually just crying because they weren’t done yet. The last part he was on his back and could look at me so I swallowed my sick feeling and panic to tell him all those reassuring things you’re supposed to. You’re so brave! It’s almost done! I’m so proud of you! Just a minute longer.
Finally done, They wrapped his tiny body in towels and handed him to me telling me to get him on the toilet immediately. The bag of barium that they pushed into his system was huge, and his belly was distended like a little starving boy from Africa. He sat on the toilet screaming that it hurt, so I bent down to rub his back and help him relax. That’s when it happened. The poor little guy lost control and peed as all the barium came rushing out. Unfortunately he wasn’t prepared to hold things down, so he peed right in my eye, down the left side of my face and in my hair. Luckily my contact started flipping out causing me to focus on not losing it, rather than the urge to hyperventilate and have a panic attack. My sweet son sat there with barium pouring out of him saying ” Mommy, I sorry I peed on you!” I had to ask the nurse 5 times to find me some saline solution and if she told me ONE MORE TIME that the urine was sterile… oh never mind.
So after 15 minutes in the bathroom and an unbelievable amount of chalky white liquid coming out of my boy, we were able to go get the last set of xrays and then get dressed. I was impressed that Jacob wasn’t traumatized by the whole thing and jumped right up for that last set. Kids truly are amazing.
As we were getting ready to leave the poor nurse brought out a cheep, ugly teddy bear and Jacob would have nothing to do with it. She tried several times to get him to take it, even asking if he could be Sheepy’s friend. Not interested. Smart boy, saved mom a trip to Goodwill. It was a sweet gesture, of course. But yeah, no need for more teddys around here. Smart boy deserved TWO quesadillas!
So the whole ordeal was over. We drove through Taco Smell on the way home for his ‘treat’ of a Quesadilla. He was thrilled that I could roll down his window in the sliding door so he could order it. He’s always begging for his window to open. Yet another feature I LOVE about the 2008!
We got home to the other two down for their nap and Carol relaxing with her daughter Zephora. Jacob finished his quesadilla and was off for nap time to. I chose to err on the side of good manners and spend some time with Carol (good decision, I got to know her a bit better.) But let me tell you I could hardly wait to wash my face again and wash my hair!