Monday, February 09, 2009

The Sickness That Never Ends...

I am a bad mom. Why? Because I said something about how Chef Jr is a pretty healthy kid to a friend the other day. And he is, usually.

Except for this past week. I jinxed the poor kid.

Wednesday night, it began. He had his hot dog for dinner and not twenty minutes later, he told me he didn't feel good. Next thing I know, I hear unpleasant sounds emanating from the bathroom. "Boo? Are you doing what I think you're doing?" Yes, was the weak reply. He spent the next five hours alternating which end decided it didn't want what it contained anymore. A one gallon bucket that once held some ice cream became his companion.

Finally, around 1am, he went to bed and was able to get some uninterrupted sleep. At 7:15, I went in and woke him to ask if he was up to going to school. Understand that this is the kid who loves to sleep, he gets his 10-12 hours nightly. To cut that amount down drastically was bad. He looked up at me and said "I want to stay home." Whoa. He never wants to do that. (unlike his brother, who has to be told only fever, vomiting or spots will keep him home).

At the time, we suspected food poisoning, either the prior day's school lunch or maybe that hot dog. I called the school to notify them of his absence and the secretary told me that no, it sounded like Chef had the stomach virus that had been going around. She cautioned me that the other secretary's son had it and it was three or four days before he was well enough to return to school.

So, Thursday. Chef wakes up and complains of hunger. He is advised of the BRAT diet and promptly complains that it sounds 'boring'. Remember, this is our gourmand. Negotiations ensue, and we agree on a meal. It is consumed. It is rejected by the stomach. Crap. Virus it is.

And so went the rest of the day. The child hovered between acting *almost* well, being his happy, jovial self, and lethargy. No fever. I made chicken broth at dinner and was urged to put macaroni in it. He liked it so much, he had a second bowl. Again, the stomach said none shall pass. He hugged that bucket to himself like it was his bestest friend in the whole wide world.

Friday, he's given the choice to stay home again and takes it. We had to run an errand and take him along and suggest some chicken noodle soup. Alas, we got to the chosen destination (Harry's) and the soup of the day is Ham and Bean. Negotiations again to determine what he should eat. Of the choices, I come up with a grilled cheese, thinking the proteins are a little gentler on the stomach than milk would be.

It is consumed. There is much rejoicing. We know he's starting to feel better when he snarfs portions of my patty melt, but he turns up his nose at my Pecan pie. He doesn't want pecan pie? He is NOT well.

Friday night, Pizza. Instead of his usual portion, he takes one slice of cheese. he does not ask for more.

Nothing rebels on him from either meal. I was hopeful this was over.

Saturday, he decides he is able to return to his usual, hyper ways. No fever, no vomiting and I let him go out to play after consuming half a bagel and sitting watching TV all morning. He returns after a half hour's time, clearly out of sorts. He curls up on the couch and vegges. This thing apparently hasn't finished messing with him.

We rent a movie from Redbox, and roll through a drive through, where he asks for breadsticks and says he'll consume it with an apple. He definitely isn't back to normal, because he ate one breadstick and three bites of a small apple that normall would be considered an appetizer. Still, he's happy to watch the movie, snuggled on the couch near me. He asks if he can take my body pillow from my bed to snuggle on and lays on that (it is soft flannel, the only thing that doesn't send my RSD into overdrive. I'm thinking he's getting a taste of the freaky nerve endings with this virus) He speaks of going to sleep when the movie is over.

It ends at 7:30, well before his bedtime. Instead, the TV goes on and Food Network is put on 'so we can both enjoy this, Mom'. No amount of tossing and turning to find the best way to sleep works-until he climbs on my back as I sit nestled into my corner of the couch. Within seconds, he is asleep-and stays that way for the next two hours. I decide that it's a good thing I have the bladder of a camel, because I was NOT waking this child.

This morning, it really seemed like we had our usual Chef Jr back. His friends came by in the mid morning, as they'd missed having him run around with them for days now. He convinces them all to come in and watch another viewing of Clone Wars. Once it is over, he goes out with his friends and plays for a few hours. Relieved, I think he's fine to go back to school tomorrow.

Around 4:30, he comes home and promptly lays his butt down on the couch, clearly worn out. Okay, he's still not 100%. I have to go run the movie back to Redbox, and instead of wanting to hop in the car, he asks to stay home. Once I return home, I look at him and he is out. of. it. Glassy eyed, seems to not understand what I am saying, cheeks bright red. He's burning up.

Temperature is taken. 103.4. Oh, crap. Not enough children's motrin liquid for a growing boy, he hates the Tylenol meltaways, but I'm able to get him to take them (three), have a cup of ginger ale and he consumes half of an ice pop I'd purchased when he first got sick) Twenty minutes later, he's cool to the touch again, but when Ed got home a little after 7, he's 102.2.

Off to Walmart for better meds. The children's medication aisle is WIPED OUT. Seriously, it looked like the milk and bread aisles when a blizzard or a hurricane is coming. The choices are limited and we've reached the transition stage for a kid. A bottle of the liquid stuff is now two doses for him. Then I look at the meltaways he hates, calculate the dosage for his weight and realize that he's now at the 500mg Acetominophen threshold for one adult extra strength Tylenol. I buy some rapid release gelcaps and head home. Not before hitting the home decor aisle and grabbing him his own body pillow in green, because in all this sickness, he's requested his own that wasn't 'smooshed flat'. This one is big and poofy.

I figured he'll have no problem with the gelcap, because Gameboy has no trouble with them. The difference is that Gameboy has been taking some form of medication in pill, gelcap or tablet form now for eight years. Chef Jr, the healthy kid, the heretofore unmedicated for his ADHD child, has never had to take a pill for anything. To Chef Jr, this was a horse pill. He had a hard time getting it down and his body rebelled.

An hour later though, he happily consumed a dinner of country fried steak, corn and mashed potatoes and it stayed down, even if he was still running a fever.

So the dilemma again. Do I send him to school? Probably not. Even if he's got no fever tomorrow, he's worn out by the past few days. At least he's in bed now, sleeping atop his poofy body pillow, with his friendly bucket nearby.

I will say that as your kids get older, they handle their sickness on their own, carrying and cleaning the pail (we only had to clean up one 'protein spill' of all of the events since Wednesday) He's said the pail is his friend. You know the drill, and are thankful that ginger ale is clear and thus, won't stain the rental carpeting.

But you still worry about your little boy, that he's not himself and is feeling so yucky...

6 People talked back:

daysgoby said...

Oh the poor kid!!

ligirl said...

Mah poor bay-beeee!!! Please give him a hug and kiss from me and tell him I hope he feels better soon!

Joyce-Anne said...

Stomach viruses are just icky! Hope he feels better soon.

Jientje said...

That sucks!! I hope he feels better soon!

Janna said...

Stomach Viruses are the worst. I hope he's feeling better now!

Suzanne said...

Update: He was out of school Thursday through Tuesday. He got back to school just in time to take our state standardized tests, the FCATs.

It's so unusual for him to be so sick for so long...

Thanks for all the well wishes. He got lots of snuggle time, which makes me a better mom (or perhaps an incubating an illness mom, time will tell!)