It’s been a rough last week for me. And my husband. A rough week full of anger, fear and sadness. I knew that I needed to write about it…if anything to help myself to get over it and to try to digest it. To try to make sense of it. And hopefully to get support from my friends. So here it goes…and since it is a long story, I will put it up over the next couple of days in a few posts.
Over the past couple of months the little one has been having stomachaches. Now like most parents since the stomachaches didn’t come with anything else, I just assumed that they were a typical toddler tactic of trying to get attention. But in our case, since they didn’t go away even after ignoring them I realized that we needed to see a doctor about them. This is mostly because intestinal issues run in both sides of our family. My hubby has Chrons disease and several family members on my side have had colon cancer. And I began to notice that the pain seemed to be real for the little one. He was doubling over and having to “breathe” through the pain.
So just after the first of the year I took him to our family physician. And because of the family history she recommended that we take him to see a specialist. After 3 weeks of waiting we finally got in to see the specialist. The doctor was wonderful. She talked with me. Took down the symptoms that the little one had and wrote down our family history.
I didn’t know what to think. Especially because she started talking about his aorta and how it carries blood to his abdominal region and how she should be able to hear it as loud as she was able to.
I couldn’t think. I couldn’t concentrate on what she was saying. All that I heard was aorta and shouldn’t be able to hear it. All of this was coming from a gastroenterologist. I just wasn’t prepared for what I was hearing. I couldn’t ask questions because she was talking about his heart. I didn’t know what to say. I didn’t know how to react. So I just gathered together our things, our paperwork and acted as if I was strong and wasn’t worried. She was talking about needing a CT scan, some blood work, some fecal matter tests. But while I was hearing about these other tests…I wasn’t really listening.
I was worried. I was worried to my core. I was thinking to myself, “What just happened? What was she talking about? She was supposed to look at his stomach and now we are talking about his aorta?” I was definitely in shock.
So armed with my instruction sheet and a note card with the date of our follow-up appointment we headed down to the lab to get blood work done.
And going to the lab wasn’t pretty.
Caleb has had a bit of a cold and was a little dehydrated, so taking blood was not an easy task at the lab. And mommy was distracted. I was still trying to digest what I was told. So, while I was holding him on my lap, I wasn’t as comforting as I could have been. I was hugging and trying my best to comfort, but all that I could do was hold him. Hold my baby boy and try to give him strength though my touch.
He cried. He wailed. And I wanted to cry right along with him, but I knew that I couldn’t. I knew that he needed his mommy to be strong. So that is what I was. But inside I was crying. And still trying to digest everything.
But we made it through the lab work. And then on the way out I was given my to-go bag. It was huge, because since the doctor is still trying to diagnose what exactly is wrong with Caleb and his stomachaches, she decided to test for anything and everything. The bag that we were given for the wonderful home tests (fecal tests…. YUCK) was HUGE. Seriously huge. And it came with instructions. No red meat for 7 days, no citrus fruit for 7 days, no excess Vitamin C, no ibuprofen. Ugh. And so many different vials and collection cups. Ones that can be kept at room temp. Ones that have to be refrigerated, ones to be frozen. It was overwhelming. And I was walking around like a zombie. Still pretending to be strong, but seriously freaked out. All the while trying to comfort my little one, still in pain from the blood work. Outwardly I looked ok, but inside I was a mess.
And then it hit me…I knew that I needed to tell my husband about this…and since I didn’t even know exactly what I heard, I didn’t know how on earth I was going to tell him.
To be continued - Part II tomorrow…