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Getting Her Better: Part Two


For the back story of this drama, please read my last post.

Desperate, I brought Missy to an acupuncturist on a friend’s recommendation. He suggested a complete diet overhaul: no wheat, no gluten, no dairy. Stay away from processed food and cut down the sugar. And no peanut butter — peanuts can contain mold. Good grief, she’s allergic to mold and I was poisoning her every day with PB&J! What else is there left to eat?

Missy was a good sport as we combed the aisles of Trader Joes stocking up on almond milk and sunflower seed butter — all that good-for-you crap that I would whiz by on the way to the wine aisle. We tried our best to stick with the plan. Her energy levels improved, but she still had bouts of dizziness and stomach pain.

Somewhere during this time, she started to throw up when she got home from school. Once on her friend’s arm, who thankfully didn’t start a chain reaction and is still a good friend! The puking went on and off for two weeks.

In mid-March, she got hit with a high fever and woke up screaming from the pain in her arms and legs. Back to the doctor to say that she has the flu. It was passed on to Junior and then eventually me. No surprise that all took place while Tom was out of town and we were meeting him for Spring Break in two days. High on my fever, I packed like a jackass. Apparently we were going to need 26 tampons on our trip.

The eating plan went down the drain while we were in Florida. There was a meltdown by all four of us at Busch Gardens when we tried to find decent options for her. Going to Universal Studios wasn’t much better, but she was a trooper. The sun kissed her face with a few freckles and brought back a healthy glow.  She swam like a fish in the pool and rode the waves onto the beach.

Things were looking up until we got back home.

Missy’s head started to spin again. Acupuncture provided short-term relief and occasional bouts of endless peeing. Apparently, this is common reaction as the toxins are leaving the body. She must have had plenty of nastiness because an entire night was spent going back and forth to the bathroom. I called her in “Sleepy” (as opposed to the other dwarf “Pissy”) to school and brought her in late.

A few weeks ago, the dizziness hit her hard. Afraid of falling, she scooted up and down the stairs on her butt and asked if I could get her a cane. Her head kept snapping forward because it was too heavy. We moved her mattress off the loft and set her up on the floor for her safety.

We head back to the doctor.  I told him the acupuncturist had a hunch this could be migraine-related pain that appeared through dizziness which in turn threw off her stomach. Not know what to do with us anymore, the doc wrote a prescription for migraines and a referral for a GI specialist.

I ran over to CVS and grabbed her drugs. Determined to not make the same “fine print” mistake twice, I carefully read the label. Within seconds, I broke into guttural sobs and laughter at the exact same time…

I am not sure which was the crueler joke: the warning about causing dizziness or my 11-year old not breast feeding.

She took the medicine with lunch and settled in on the couch for the next six hours. Knowing that she was down for the count, I headed over to my ignored son’s baseball game to give him one hour of my attention. It was such a relief to get out of the house even though I had a million things to do before I left for the Erma Bombeck Writers’ Workshop in two days.

I called home from the park to check on her and she answered in tears. She had been throwing up and then collapsed in the basement. “I couldn’t get up for 20 minutes,” she cried. “I feel like a rag doll!”

I raced home in a panic and tried to calm her down. When Tom and Aidan returned, we decided that I should take her to the ER. Enough was enough. She wasn’t getting better and we needed answers.

When we arrived, Missy was teetering so badly that the nurse set her up in a wheelchair. I showed the ER doc all of her blood results and she was just as puzzled. To be on the safe side, she ran a CT scan and put Missy on IV meds for pain and nausea. Thankfully, nothing showed up on the scan but we still did not know what was making her sick. The doctor suggested to follow up with a neurologist and we headed back home at 1 a.m.

The next day, I tried wrapping up projects at work and calling neurologists during my lunch break. One group couldn’t see her until November and I broke down to the sympathetic receptionist. I finally got her an appointment for six weeks later and scheduled a visit with our ENT to see if she had an inner ear infection.

My flight was the next day and I couldn’t find four lousy pairs of clean underwear that didn’t cut off my circulation. I stayed up until midnight doing laundry and printing tacky, homemade business cards for the conference.

I was feeling very sorry for myself and it was not pretty.

This trip was part of my mid-life crisis to finally escape, focus on me and figure out what to do with the stories floating around my head. It was the first time I invested in myself and I had absolutely no desire to go. I knew that she was in good hands with Tom and my parents. I was only an hour flight away, but what if something else happened?

The other part of me wanted to change the ticket to one way. I could reinvent myself in Dayton! Write an Erma & Karen version of Julie & Julia!

Waves of guilt and exhaustion consumed me before the nerves completely took over.

It suddenly occurred to me that for the next four days, I would be surrounded by 350 humorists.

Thinking of being funny was downright depressing.

Permanent link to this article: http://www.mom-mom-mom.com/2012/05/02/sickchild/

15 comments

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  1. Arnebya

    Gah. I am so sorry Missy is going through this. Damn. I hope a treatable cause is found soon. The not knowing has got to be nerve wracking.

    I hope you enjoyed the conference. I hear so much about it every time it’s held, but I’ve never been able to afford to go. Maybe 2014 will be the year of the unforeseen, use it on yourself monies.

  2. tracey

    I am so sorry,Karen… She is lucky that she has parents who are so dedicated to her. I hope part 3 includes some wonderful ER doc figuring it all out…

  3. Amy

    I am so sorry that your daughter is going through this. I do not want to sound like “the Italian Physician” (that’s what we call my dad who is not a doctor when he diagnoses illnesses), but have any doctors mentioned crystals in Missy’s ears? Apparently we all have crystals in our ears and if they get dislodged they can make you extremely dizzy and sick. All it takes to put them back where they belong is simple head movements by a doctor. Just something to look in to…

  4. Ronnie Ashline

    Oh Karen-that sucks! I dealt with migraines, ear infections, colds, stomach aches and dizziness for 25 years until my (I am not kidding) gynocologist told me to see a Gastroenterologist. It was celiac disease. It took a long time to get completely better (although I did see some improvement immediately), and I still have a few bouts when I am under a lot of stress. You need to find yourself Dr. House!

  5. T

    Oh. My. Goodness. I have no words. You are doing everything you can,tuck that thought away for when you need a mental-mommy-lift. Hope she’s having a better week. Looking forward to seeing you Sunday, btw. 🙂

  6. Carol Early Cooney

    Karen,
    The person above talked about the crystals in your ear. She is right there are and they can get out of place and cause extreme dizziness. Yea, I had it. The way to cure it is the Epley Maneuver and a video of how to do it is at the following web site: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7ZgUx9G0uEs&feature=related. It does not hurt and is fairly simple and if the problem is the crystals (we called them rocks in the head…) It is a quick fix.
    Michael (son) had migraines that started around age 13. He was in class one day and knew he had a headache and suddenly threw up (EVERYWHERE). I guess the cool kids don’t do this in school. We headed off to the pediatrician. I have had migraines since 5th grade (back in the dark ages) so I didn’t think that much about it. Well, we had to go to the neurologist who sent us for an MRI. This started a long hard road which you don’t need to hear about right now because it doesn’t fit your situation.

    I just remembered that when I was in high school, I had a terrible spell with my migraines. It was because my wisdom teeth needed to come out.

    Last but not least, we also had a siege with Meg and head pain. In the end, they injected the back of her head with a pain killer (the Dr. told her she was now a numb skull – I kid you not) because the nerves in the back of her head “got turned on and could not turn off” She was in agony for about a month and a half before we ended up with the pain Dr. at Childrens. She had the injections twice.

    Carol

  7. Bange

    Who is the ass who told you to go to an acupuncturist? Lol

  8. Karen

    Thanks and I totally relate to the “use it on yourself monies.” This was my Christmas, Mother’s Day and Birthday present for the next five years! I appreciate your support and kind words~

  9. Karen

    Holy crap — never heard of this! We took her to the ENT and he did not see an inner ear infection. Calling him today. I’ll listen to the Italian Physician any day if it will help her!

  10. Karen

    Carol, I can’t thank you enough for posting this. I feel like I have serious rocks in my head after trying to figure out what the hell is going on. We took her to an ENT and he did not find an inner ear infection. How did they know that you had crystals? I am going to watch the video again and try it. Nothing to lose at this point. Stay tuned…

  11. Karen

    Egads – thanks Ronnie! I thought it was celiac disease, too and the tests came back negative. But I we are going to see a GI specialist if the neuro doesn’t have any answers. It all has to be related. So frustrating, but I am glad that you are getting healthy!

  12. Kim @The G is Silent

    🙁 I am so sad for her!!!!! Please please please keep the updates coming. (((hugs)))

  13. Kathy Swezy

    So sorry to hear about all of this! I feel badly for all of you! Hope you weren’t put-off by my FB message. The show sounds like it was awesome. I am glad that there is something fun going on in your life to counter-balance the other stuff. 🙂

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