Thursday, March 20, 2008

OJ and a Vitamin

"He seems better." I told Jimmy's pre-k teacher yesterday morning. "He had been throwing up and feverish; that's why I kept him home yesterday."
"Oh - I thought it might've been something to do with his sinus infection and all." she responded.
"Ya - that's a whole nother ball game in and of itself; he has allergies really bad, but the doctors say he has no infection - just allergies."
"You know, everyday since my son was a baby, I just give him a vitamin and a cup of orange juice in the morning, and he's healthy. He's in fourth grade now and never missed a day of school." she commented.
Ms. Cheryl's words fell on deaf ears.
"OK - I'd better run; Kyla's in the car." and I hurried off, blood boiling and all.

Since then, for more than 24 hours, I've been stewing. Bubble, bubble, toil and trouble. The audacity of such commentary! I've heard similar jargon from others over the years, but I have to say, I've never gotten over it. I hate, with a passion, when Mom's give me their lame-o tips on what THEY'VE DONE, to make their children healthy. Just let them walk a day in my shoes, and let's find out if they have any suggestions after that time.

You see, it's not like I just let my children go and wallow around at the dump, nor do I feed them a steady diet of sugar, lard, and caffeine. Oh contrare! If any of these arrogant moms who delight in sharing their bits of useless wisdom with me had a vague clue of the arsenol of medicines - eastern, western, herbal, homeopathics, natural, alternative - that my pantry housed, they'd keep their mouths shut. Because I can reassure you that the likelihood of my happening to run into another mom who knows more about what to do to treat a common cold, an ear infection, a sinus infection or allergies is slim to none at best. I AM THE EXPERT. I know of NO other person with a vaster array of knowledge on the subject of children's health than I do. And just let me throw out there for the sake of Jimmy's pre-k teacher, if I had stopped at just orange juice and vitamins as a remedy for my children's problems, they would've both been dead a long time ago. I know every possible cure for all the common childhood ailments, and I treat them accordingly, but alas, my kids are just sick kids.

We've all heard about survival of the fittest. Let me just share with you, that I personally am not the fittest, and neither are my children. I live because of modern medicine and penicillin. Jimmy lives because of the uber-latest advances in technology and science AND penicillin. Kyla lives and can still hear because of modern surgery AND again, penicillin. I do my absolute best in every way to keep my kids healthy, but I think some of us are just more susceptible to illnesses.

I first began getting my edumacation in providing the most top notch care and treatment for sick kids the day my son was born. Born at 31 weeks and weighing 3 pounds, 1 ounce - this baby needed a LOT of help. I learned to change a diaper through an isolette, and how to actually turn a baby with no muscle tone whatsoever by turning both their torso and their heads simultaneously with both hands. It was a full week before I ever even held my son. After thirty-nine days of scrubbing down for 2 minutes before I could even enter the room where my son was at the hospital, he was sent home with me - sent out into a disease ridden world. A world where I could NOT for the life of me keep every possible germ from attacking him. That first winter with my baby was my intro to how winters with kids are - everyone is sick for six months. You can try EVERYthing under the sun to boost immunity, and you will still end up sick.

Three long winters and one hernia surgery later, I decided I could handle one more child (I know, I truly believe it was a temporary lapse of sanity too). I thought I had it made when little Kyla arrived full term and healthy last April. But sure enough, right on time exactly six months later, the winter colds began. . and they continued, and continued - except for now there were two children to care for. I took my kids to the doctors' office weekly, and sometimes bi-weekly, and in my spare time I bought books on and searched the internet for every conceivable way to get them healthy - all, to no avail. My eight month old baby, after over five rounds of antibiotics concluding grandly with antibiotic shots for three days straight (and yes, I know all the woes of antibiotics too - so don't get me started), got tubes in her ears. At last check, there was some hearing loss, but they were hoping it would resolve over time.

My point is, a cup of orange juice isn't going to help, and neither is an IV of vitamin C. A flinstone vitamin isn't going to cut it, and neither is another $50 of phytonutrient and mineral vitamins. I do think all of my efforts have helped. Like I said, they'd both be dead long ago had I done nothing. But some kids just are more prone to sicknesses. My advice to any who have advice for me is quite simply to keep your advice to yourself!


Cindy Lynn said...

I don't know Danielle, are you sure? I hear those flinstones vitamins really work wonders ;) hehe What a mother goes through! I remember working in nursery for all those years hearing the moms all talking. It's like they wanted to carry around a badge that said, "Hi, I'm Eileen. I had my children through natural childbirth, with no medication, not even tylenol. I believe in homeopathic remedies above all else. I would never think of doing anything but breast feeding, and I use cloth diapers. My child will go on to do great things because of this." ahahahaahaha

carol said...

I guess some people never get past the "OJ and vitamin" thing!! It took me years to convince my Mother that her grandchild was allergic to "OJ" and giving it to her would just make her symptoms worse. Matter of fact, I don't think she ever really believed me!!!