Thursday, February 03, 2005

The ENT consult

When my son C. was around two, I took him to a speech therapist. You know how mothers have all these middle-of-the-night fears, like where they picture space debris shooting out of the sky and exploding in the crib, or menacing uber-bugs slithering out of the sink trap and infecting that sweet baby with Diptheria or whatever? I was convinced that C was partly deaf. I'd sneak in his room, crouching down so he couldn't see me coming, and then make a noise to see if he reacted (like, "AIEEE"--god knows what N thought I was doing). Or I'd watch to see if he hummed along with songs. Mostly, I worried because he wasn't talking. He'd smile and giggle and wave his little fists, but no goo-gooing. No DAda. Finally I took him to the speech therapist. In my best not-an-alarmist rational tones, I explained all my observations. And then she examined him. And then she said, "Say "good". and C said, "gud!" and she said "say....". and so on through all the "f" and "th" and "l" sounds, and he said. Every. One. And as the test went on, I felt dumber and dumber, and finally the therapist came to her conclusion. He was the victim of having a sister one year older than himself; as a result he NEVER got a word in edgewise. She talked non-stop from dawn to bedtime, and then some. What did C need to say? She'd already said it: "C wants a cookie" and "C wants a drink" and coincidently, so did she. Given a chance he babbled away with words I don't think she knew. It was humiliating and eye-opening. I tried hard to rein in the midnight heebie-jeebies.

But when R was 6, I had her at the pediatrician's. I was convinced she had diabetes. N said I was imagining things again, but I was sure. So before the doctor even came in the room, they tested a urine specimen. Negative. So when the Dr. came in and gave me that word, I gulped, and then said, something's still wrong. She wets the bed, not a little, but buckets. Her pulse is visible in her throat. She's hot all the time. She's too thin. AND LO, Mom was right. R had Graves Disease, hyperthyroidism. They started treatment that same week, and although she will always need to take her thyroid med, she's right as rain now. Left untreated, a long scary list of complications. SO there! Sometimes (ahem) MOM does knows best.

But not, apparently, enough. After falling down the stairs 5 days before, I crawled into the ER; dignosis, broken ribs. It hurts. A lot. and I think it will for the forseeable future. I'm off to see if I can score more drugs, so I can actually sleep. Why me?

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