Crazy-ass family

You just can't make this stuff up

Sunday, January 08, 2006


Well, Aidan has caught our cold. No big deal, right? Allow me to elaborate. Aidan is a puker. Just a hint of a fever, and we're running for the tupperware (aka emesisware around here) for the poor kid to carry around with him.
As an emetophobe, I'm wondering right about now if I'm being tested or something. Since we had Caleb, I've dealt with enough vomit to last me the rest of my days.
If you're easily nauseated, I'd advise against reading the rest of this. 'Cause I'm pretty sure it'll be gross.
Let's start at the very beginning!
(It's a very good place to start!)*
Caleb, born seven weeks early, had severe reflux. I mean, I'd hold the kid against my shoulder to burp him and the carpet 5 feet away would get soaked. Feed the kid four ounces and he'd puke six. I'd breastfeed him and we'd both end up soaked with partially digested milk every time. I kept taking him to the doctor, and he kept sending us away, saying it was "normal". By the time he was four months old, the poor baby associated feeding with pain, and he refused to nurse at all unless he was asleep. I had to nurse him lying down for months...not so fun when visiting friends. "Is there somewhere I can lie down to feed the baby?" Oh, and road trips were a blast. Trying to feed a baby lying down in the back seat of a VW Golf can be a little uncomfortable.
At six months, we discovered (surprise!) that Caleb was losing weight. I demanded a referral to a pediatrician, and the doc. could not refuse; I was armed with a stack of internet research and, despite the doctor's claims that "children do not get reflux", I knew that my son had it, and had it bad.
Caleb threw up three times during the appointment with the pediatrician we were referred to, and he said, "That baby has reflux". I cried. He prescribed zantac and prepulsid (which required heart tests before he could take it and is now off the market) and Caleb began to improve. The pain diminished and his appetite seemed to rebound a little. But his vomiting did not improve.
When we started feeding him solids, we thought we'd get some relief from the constant spitting up. Not so. At least the vomit varied in texture and colour, though! Until he was two, I had to follow him around after ever meal, cleaning up the little puddles he made. Oh, and he also had a habit of storing food in his cheeks (unbeknownst to us), and then depositing it on the floor up to an hour later. At six years old, he still has food issues.
Aidan and Liam were/are better. Both were finished taking zantac by four months, and Liam's spitting up is minimal, as compared to Caleb. But Aidan, at three, still barfs. A lot!
The pediatrician suspects that he's still suffering from reflux. Occasionally, he awakes in the middle of the night, pukes over the side of his bed, and calls out for us to come clean up. He's usually completely fine the next day. Once, when I was pregnant with Liam, I came home from a movie and went to check on the boys. I was hit with the familiar stench of vomit as I entered the room, and was shocked to find Aidan sleeping in a pool of it, covered from the waist up. His pillow and blankets were saturated in it, and his hair was stuck together in clumps of it. I bathed him (after I woke him up!) while Jim cleaned up the bed. He was fine the next day.
We flew home to Nova Scotia in October, and on the plane Aidan greedily scarfed two chocolate cookies, only to puke them up minutes later.
Note: best smelling barf: recently consumed chocolate cookies. Worst: partially digested minigo.
On that very same trip, we visited my father. Aidan was a bit hyper, and careened head-first off the couch and into the coffee table. Reaction: to puke all over my Dad's kitchen floor. Dad announced that that was the first incident of barf since he'd moved in. Congratulations, Aidan! Before Christmas, Aidan decided he wanted to try a chocolate cherry after he finished his supper. He didn't like the texture of the cherry, so puked his supper onto the living room carpet. THEN he went to the bathroom and spit the cherry out into the toilet. He had conveniently stored it in his cheek while he barfed.
So now that you understand, you'll see that this cold (complete with fever) means more than just a cold when Aidan is involved. However, I see faint signs of improvement: yesterday, he announced during lunch that he was about to barf his veggie dogs up. I yelled for him to run to the bathroom, and when he was stationed over the toilet, I said, "AIDAN! DON'T BARF! JUST SPIT OUT THE STUFF IN YOUR MOUTH!" He did, and all was well! He did puke his tylenol up in the middle of the night, though.
Today, he seems much better, as long as we keep up with the ibuprophen. But the barf receptacles are always nearby! We've learned our lesson.
Hmm, I'm feeling a little queasy. Must stop discussing puke now!
So, how was your weekend?

*Please tell me I'm not the only one who gets songs from The Sound of Music stuck in her head. Will and Grace did it the other night; the songs have been running through my head since. The negative side of that is that Jim is suffering with my high-pitched warbling morning 'til night. On the plus side (and this, I'm sure you'll agree, is a big plus!), I get to sing "How Do You Solve a Problem Like Maria" in high falsetto and sing words like "flibbetygibbet" and "will-of-the-wisp"! And I get to yodle! Ok maybe those are negatives, too...


At 10:08 PM, Blogger s@bd said...

omgsh!! omgsh!!
I'M AN EMETOPHOBE! And I didn't even know it. Thank you for enlightening me!!

And in other news: I sing ALL SoM songs at random intervals. On any given day, I can be heard wailing one or the other of those bad boys at my children.

I CANNOT BELIEVE you had more than one child. I mean -OH MY GIDDY AUNT- I SO SO SO would have stopped WAY WAY WAY sooner ...

You brave woman, you.

At 7:17 AM, Blogger Tree said...

Ah, emetophobia. A nasty beast. I have come to realize that the fear of vomiting is actually worse than just going ahead and doing it! Logically, anyway. In all other ways, vomiting is the worst thing EVER.
My poor kids are made to watch the SoM periodically, though they can't hear the Von Trapps over my singing. ;)
Yes, yes, I am brave.
Or crazy...

At 9:21 AM, Blogger Jennboree said...

My husband is a total emetophobe so I had to deal with my daughter's reflux as well as my husband's "sympathy" puking.

You just dashed all hope of any future children of mine NOT having reflux. *sigh*

At 9:52 AM, Blogger Tree said...

Oh no! Let me give you some hope: Caleb, my first, truly was the worst refluxer. After you've dealt with that, you can handle anything! Although Aidan and Liam had/have reflux, too, it's nowhere near Caleb's calibre! :) And although Aidan still suffers, it really is just a laundry issue; he has no pain associated with it. Liam, my third, is now virtually unaffected by it, besides having to have his clothes changed three or so times a day.
There is hope!

At 10:29 AM, Blogger LoriLaurieLauri said...

Probably not funny to you but I am LMAOOOOOOO at the holding the cherry in his cheeks while he barfed and then went and spit the cherry out in the toilet!!!!!

My kids never had reflux, but I have been spit up on, barfed on, and pooped on so much that nothing bothers me anymore. Steven thought he could scare me one day by pretending to wipe a booger on my sleeve and I just stood there waiting for it. lol! A booger is nothing!

At 10:49 AM, Blogger Tree said...

At the time it was more maddening than funny that Aidan stored the cherry, the very thing that made him puke, until after he was done. I can see the humour now, though!
You're right, boogers are so not gross now. I mean, I've had barf in my MOUTH. Another person't barf. Boogers do not frighten me.

At 4:45 PM, Blogger Lisa said...

Oh my !!! I wish I could have helped you out !!! Puke doesn't bother me as much as poop ( though I am pretty much immune to that now) !!!

I threw up for 8 mos straight with # 1 so any puke issues were gone after that. Funny , Zant's bio Dad was terrified of throwing up and it was his baby that made me throw up !!! I didn't realize there was a name for it.

Take care , I hope you are all well soon !!!

At 5:27 PM, Blogger LoriLaurieLauri said...

How do you solve a problem like Maria?

Just wanted you to know I have been singing this ALL DAY!!! lol!

At 6:43 PM, Blogger Tree said...

How do you catch a cloud and pin it down?

Oooh try getting this one out of your head: High on a hill is a lonely goatherd...

You'll be yodeling all night.

At 8:26 PM, Blogger kt said...!
but the cherry in the cheek is HI-larious! sorry.
poor kid. he's prob so used to throwing up now he has a very sensitive gag reflex!
stay strong!
btw: even thru 3 kids, OTHER PEOPLE's barf, urine, poop, farts, runny noses VERY MUCH DISGUST ME!
God bless,

At 10:50 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

wow tree... i did't know caleb had it so bad as a kid...and aidan?? i knew about him but holy cow lol you once found him layin in bed covered in barf and he was sleeping?? wow....barfing doesn't phase him much eh lol maybe this is a good thing..if he keeps it up barfing will be like, so normal to him and his chances of getting emetophobia will diminish lol
i say it's reflux...especially the night time barfs..laying down is bad bad..monitor everything he eats and drinks before bed and never give him anything right before bed...hell i'd not let him have anything for like 3 hours before bed just to see what would happen but u dont wanna starve the kid lol jenna


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