Thursday, January 23, 2014

Waving the White Flag

The Germ
A mighty creature is the germ,
Though smaller than a pachyderm.
His customary dwelling place
Is deep within the human race.
His childish pride he often pleases
By giving people strange diseases.
Do you, my poppet, feel infirm?
You probably contain a germ.
       -Ogden Nash

Lu went back to school last week for the first time since Christmas break. Inevitably she got a little tiny cold that produced an indescribable amount of snot that has been making her throw her feeds up off and on since Sunday. She has no other symptoms, seems fine, but is so congested that it seems her belly is fully of mucous and makes her throw up when we put milk on top of it. I took the above picture on Monday. Her hair is all pulled back to avoid it getting soaked in puke, and in the picture you can see one of the two towels I had her swaddled in. She looks a little paler than she has been looking on her new diet of sufficient calories and nutrition. We have not left the house all week because A.) It's freezing outside, but B.) it is taking over two hours for each feed so she doesn't throw up and then time afterward to let her belly settle. 

Lucy has been sick more in the past 5 months than she has been in her whole life total.  It has felt like we spend most of the time just trying to get her well again from whatever germ she picked up at school. I know that kids get sick a lot when they first start school, but I believe since Lu has not been able to get all of the calories she needs, it has made her even more susceptible to every single stinking germ that comes her way. So, after much discussion and weighing of the pros and cons, Chad and I are throwing in the towel on school. We are waving the white flag, laying down our arms, and admitting defeat.  The germs have won. Our hope is that by gaining some weight, and having months of proper nutrition under her belt, Lu might be able to combat at least some of the germs she would encounter at school, and we can make another go of it in the fall.

When Lucy started throwing up last weekend, Chad commented it was obviously because she went to school that week and got a bug. I told him I was basically waiting for him to give the word that it was time to give up on school because honestly, I had decided in my heart, long ago, what I felt about school at this point. However, most of my reasons are far from the most logical. The main one being, I just like Lu to be home with me. I also wasn't 100% sure that she was ready for school, once we actually started. Other than the constant illness, my reasons for wanting her to stop going were more emotional, and not necessarily the most reasonable. So, as is often the case, I was just waiting for Chad to make a logical decision, because I would know that it really was time if he said so. Lu loved her friends at school and the kids loved Lu, and I hate to take that away from her. However, she is only three. She has her whole life to make friends and "socialize".  I'd rather she miss her friends and not get pneumonia than the other way around. 

So, on the heels of one big decision, the feeding tube, now we have made another one; no more school for Lu right now. It was hard. Her team of therapists and teachers have worked so diligently to try and make school work for her and we appreciate it so much. But, I am looking forward to keeping Lucy healthy, and happy, and whole, right here at home.

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