Thursday, October 2, 2014


Babygirl is on the fourth (fifth? it's been such a crappy month that it's beginning to run together) day of this ongoing episode of inexplicable abdominal pain.  No fever, no urinary symptoms, one day of vomiting for a couple of hours, some nausea, some weight loss.  Just total, ongoing misery. 

Recapping her school attendance:  Three weeks ago she missed Wednesday through Friday with a severe headache. The week before last she missed Tuesday and Thursday with headache. Last Monday she called Hubby for  ride home from school with a headache and stayed home Tuesday through Thursday with more of them, and Friday with a cold. She began having the belly pain Sunday and hasn't been to school all week.  We haven't seen a home teacher through all of this.

Yesterday I called the school and spoke to the head of the health office and explained where we were.  It was reassuring to hear her utter exasperation when I told her that there was some confusion about how to meet her 504 plan.  I think that she will be clearing that up. 

I heard from Babygirl's advisor that a tutor was available for the evening, so would I bring her to school for tutoring?  Um, no.  The kid is sick.  Get the tutor to our house, okay?  Okay.

I called Nephrology. They reviewed things, heard the story, looked at the dose of the new headache prevention medication (which, at 15 mg twice daily is under the 40 mg/day adult maximum but is more than they usually use in children.  Keep in mind, however, that Babygirl is 15 and adult-sized).  They ordered STAT blood work (at 4:30 PM, with a tutor scheduled to arrive at the house at 5:30 and me still at work and Bible study scheduled at 6). It turns out that among the rare side effects of this medication (rare indeed since I prescribe this drug all the time for over 25 years and have NEVER seen it)  is abdominal pain.  Seriously?

Keep in mind that I haven't seen Babygirl for more than the 30 seconds that it took to wake her up and see that she was too sick to go to school at 7 AM, so I really don't know how she is feeling right this minute, right?

I hover over the fax machine, call AGAIN when the fax doesn't come, grab the papers and run.  I hustle poor Babygirl to the lab and get her home in time for the tutor to arrive.  This lovely young lady has never met Babygirl.  She is expecting that Babygirl has some books, or texts, or papers, or SOMETHING for her to start working on.  I was told that she was going to be given a packet of work for a couple of Babygirl's elective classes to work on.  She had no idea what I was talking about. 

She started to see if Babygirl had any grasp of in this year's math - her most difficult subject.  She was patient and kind, and in less than ten minutes Babygirl had put her head down and was sobbing.  Sometimes you are just too sick to deal with anything, you know?  In all of the time we've had tutors, I think this may have been the third time we've had to send one home because she just couldn't manage.

On a happier note, Citygirl wanted me to come and listen to a band that she was thinking of hiring for a party she's planning.  I collected myself, got in the car, settled into some very relaxing music with a fruity drink and......

The on-call Nephrologist called.  Babygirl's kidney is most unhappy.  Her creatinine is up to 1.34 from 0.8 only two weeks ago.  Her potassium is high and her bicarbonate is low (lots of acid that the kidney is not getting rid of).  Her advice:  Stop the new medication, and stop it NOW.  I check the time - it's 5 minutes to medication time.  I call hubby's phone.  No answer.  Home phone - same.  Babygirl's phone - same.  Repeat all four or five times.  Finally Babygirl answers, and I tell her, "Dad has to change your medicine. Go tell him to call me."  He calls, I tell him, and he says, "But she just took it!"

There is not enough rum and pineapple juice in this world to cope with this, just not enough. 

Screw it.  There's nothing more I can do about it tonight.  I had an appetizer, called it dinner, and enjoyed Citygirl's company and the music, and came home and resorted all the pills.

This morning they will call with a plan. 

All of this is overwhelming enough, right?  But this is the script that runs in the background of my life.  In front of this, I go to work, to the gym, clean my house, spend time with the grandkids, do the grocery shopping, take care of my mom, go to church.  Most of the time I don't feel sorry for myself, but last night I just wanted to turn the clock back somehow - but to where?  There is no point on that timeline that doesn't bring us back to here, since there is no choice I wouldn't make that would exclude any one of my kids from my life.  There really is no 'might have been.'  There is only THIS.  It's just that watching her suffer is So. Damned. Hard.

Citygirl prayed for us all last night.  Something to the effect of, "We know You're taking care of us, but we'd kinda like to see some proof of that...."  I'm sure she was more respectful than that.  And I'm sure He got the point.  And I'm sure I agree.


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