Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Stick A Fork In Me

I'm done. For Dylan's first four months of life, I took him to the pediatrician quite often, trying to figure out many things. One, why does he have this big bump on the one side of his head - "a hematoma (blood blister)", the doctor said, "it should be gone by the time he is one year old". (It's not gone yet). Two, why does he suddenly, and without warning, scrunch his body up and scream bloody murder, like he is in pain? "Colic", the doctor calmly explained. "It usually goes away at 3 months". (It lasted until he was four months). Three, why is his head always tilted to the one side? That pediatrician said it was "nothing to worry about", so we found another pediatrician, and a neurologist, who then told us, "He needs to go to physical therapy", and handed us a prescription with the word "Torticollis" written on it. No explanation of what this strange word "torticollis" was - that was apparently for us to figure out.

That started our weekly physical therapy sessions every Monday. Since then, we have added a visit to an orthopedic surgeon, who made us wait one hour with a very fidgety kid. At one point, I rolled Dylan out into the hall on the stool on wheels, saying "Helloo, Helloo, is anyone here? Nope. I guess we're leaving". Then we had to endure Dylan getting xrays of his neck, which entailed Jim holding Dylan in the air, while the technician shoved his head up until I thought he had stopped breathing because he turned so red. We also added the weekly, then biweekly treks to get the helmet adjusted. There, we had to have him placed in a scanner to get a scan of his head, so they could make the mold for the helmet.

Recently we have added an early intervention therapist who comes to the house every Thursday to do more stretching, and to teach me how to do daily stretches. At this point, trying to stretch Dylan is a lost cause. I can barely put on a clean diaper, let alone stretch his neck in an uncomfortable position!

Add to all this the fact that the poor kid has inherited my ezcema. The "continual rash" as Jim likes to call it, has invaded my son's body with a vengeance. Since Saturday, when he went on his first hayride, it has really taken over, so I called the pediatrician to get a recommendation for a dermatologist. Every time I call, I start to explain the current problem to whoever answers the phone, and she interrupts me to say "I'll transfer you to the nurse". Except that I never get the actual nurse - I get her voicemail. I swear I could say, "My son is bleeding out his eyeballs", and she would say "I'll transfer you to the nurse". Anyway, after the actual nurse called and gave me a number, I called the dermatologist. After explaining my son's dilemma the nice lady, said "Okay, (as if she was about to be accommodating), we are scheduling appointments for February". "FEBRUARY?!!!"

I think that was the point at which I was done. DONE. I can't take it anymore. I can't smile politely at the receptionist who tells me to fill out yet another form with questions I have already answered. I can't feign interest in the newest idea for a stretch that Dylan will allow. I can't make another phone call to make another appointment. I can't press one, two, three, or any other number. I can't wait in another waiting room. I can't watch as someone else pokes or prods my kid, as the doctor and I make small talk. I can't make small talk with doctors, therapists, surgeons, receptionists, people in waiting rooms, etc. I can't answer anymore questions about why my son wears a helmet.

Tonight while on my hands and knees, chasing Dylan, pretending to be a dog (it makes him crack up), I had chest pains. That's right. Chest pains! I'm done. At least until Monday. Then, we go to therapy again.


Julia said...

Oh! I know it gets so hard sometimes. I watch the Discovery Channel shows to remind me that it could be worse! Its my therapy :)

Maggie has terrible excema and her allergist said to try VaniCream, its not prescription but it is kept behind the pharmacy counter. Its worked great for her.

Have you tried the stretches in front of a mirror? Or the TV? I had a therapist say to let the kid play in a sink of water and do them then while they're distracted. (Abbie has face stretches, which she also hates!)

Good Luck!

Anonymous said...

Hang in there Momma! If nothing else, all of this is ammunition for the guilt trip to end all guilt trips as he grows up!

Sounds like some Daddy and son time is in order while Mommy has a little time to herself . . . feel free to ignore that advice, as I am easily the least qualified to give it, and have certainly never headed it myself.

Jen said...

Julia, I love you. Thank you for the suggestions. You have been through so much yourself - you are one strong woman.

Driving with the brakes on,
Yes, Daddy was a bit worried about me, so I might talk him into having some male bonding Saturday while I (gasp!) get my hair done. Thanks for the support.

Shellie said...

All I can say to that post is AMEN! Sometimes you just need a break from the Chinese torture!