Also, I'm letting some gray hair grow in. So prepare yourselves. I know it's taking some mental preparation on my end. That, and the knee, and well, I'm experiencing some personal growth around the topic of aging. Also, around not being able to run for a few months. FROWNY FACE, big time.
Most importantly, though, we've taken some more steps toward trying to figure out Nolie's chronic tummy aches and diarrhea. Forgive any clinical tone or medicalia here but I'm still processing.
Remember how Nolie had that parasite (which I keep thinking of as "transvestite" in my head)? And we had to give her that mega-serious dose of third-world-traveler antibiotics? We were hoping that would knock off the tummy aches. But it didn't. And the diarrhea didn't go away, either. So that triggered the next medical step, which was endoscopy+colonoscopy+biopsy.
This means that all day yesterday she got to stay home from school, watch tv, and eat popsicles, jello, 7-Up, and alarmingly large amounts of laxatives. She loved it, up until about 3pm, when the laxatives really kicked in. But even then she was a trooper, and we watched movies, plied her with clear, sugary beverages, and sat with her. She feel asleep in our bed about three minutes after her head hit the pillow. All in all, day one was much easier than I anticipated.
This morning was not so fun. She couldn't eat even popsicles or jello anymore, and the laxatives were really doing their thing. She was pale and dizzy and nauseous and uber-cranky (who wouldn't be). We got to Children's Hospital--which, by the way, have you been there? It's like theme-park-meets-four-star-hotel at that place. Serious disco health care--around 1pm. They have tv's in every room loaded with every Disney movie you can think of and every cartoon channel you can think of and by the time we got her in her prep room she was totally zoned out from low blood sugar. She stopped answering everyone's questions and just tuned into Johnny Test like the television was a part of her. An electronic iv.
Before the procedures, with Ella the Elephant, given to her by Children's.
The worst part continued to be the worst part, in my humble experience, which was when the anesthesiologist put the mask on her. Unlike when two-year-old Addie had it done, six-year-old Nolie was like "fuck you and your lemon-lime flavored gas, this sucks" and spit and spit into the mask to get the taste out of her mouth and struggled and then held her breath. Took a little while for her to go out, and then she went out, and they always look helpless and lifeless when they're like that and that pretty much makes me go catatonic with worry. The anesthesiologist was a little, um, forceful with the mask, too. Then, she woke up a little prematurely and we weren't in the recovery room yet and she was already panicked and bawling when we got there. My jaw was sore I was clenching it so hard.
Long description, I know.
The short of it is that the scopes showed everything to be normal. We saw pictures of the inside of her stomach and intestines, which, ew, gross, but yes, "normal" looking. They took the biopsies, though, because there can be stuff going on there that isn't visible to the cameras. The doctors didn't get specific about what those things might be, beyond the return of the parasite.
So now we wait for results, which should come in some time next week.
Of course, I felt total relief that there wasn't something big wrong. Because that's the fear, right? That your number is finally up and something real bad is finally happening? As opposed to the bunches of little bad things that might accrue but then resolve and you just go on? You fear you might have finally drawn the big losing ticket. The tumor, the organ failure, the chronic disease. This time, that doesn't seemed to have happened.
But then...have you seen The Graduate? Remember the last scene, where Benjamin and Elaine climb on board the bus, all giddy and excited at having gotten away from the horrible wedding, but then they sort of realize what's ahead of them? Well, that is exactly what hit on the drive home from the hospital. Nolie bounced back almost immediately and was crooning fun.'s "We Are Young" in the backseat (I shit you not) and I was limp in the front seat, feeling like I'd just run a race. I ate like a Sumo when I got home, and drank a few glasses of wine, and tried not to ask any questions or look anything up on the internet.
Still, ugh. I'm writing this instead of sleeping. I'm glad we didn't pull the big losing ticket, but I'm still wondering why my kid is sick, and wondering where to go from here.
We'll wait for the biopsy results and the blood work. If those don't tell us anything, well then we'll be grateful. But still wondering. The doctors promise us a plan of attack, but of course you can't always just listen to doctors. You have to figure some shit out. Then the work begins.