Monday, October 21, 2013

Where have I been?!

Let me update you.

I had the stomach flu the day after my birthday.  It sucked.  It sucked the life out of me and I was left languishing on my couch for two days.  Yuck, yuck, yuck!  And, I don't think I mentioned it, but last Monday and Tuesday, Evie had been home sick with a really bad throat infection.  I couldn't believe I was living in a den of bacteria and disgustingness.

That weekend, however, I was back at it.  We got to enjoy watching sweet Evie kill it on the soccer field.  She was fantastic!  It was like I flipped a switch.  She wasn't afraid of anyone or anything.  She got in there and owned that soccer ball, even when facing a much bigger opponent.  I seriously had tears in my eyes because I was so proud of her!!!  Even the coach declared her the game's MVP.  Of course, she had no idea what "MVP" stood for, so I had to explain it to her. 

She seemed unimpressed.  But, eventually, she figured out that she had an amazing game when all of the other parents came up to her separately to tell her how great she played.  She was on fire!  So proud!!!

And to make the weekend sweeter, George scored TWO goals too!  They earned candy and lots of hugs!

But then, Monday rolled around, which was Columbus day and all three kids had the day off.  I thought it was going to be a great day!  In fact, I scheduled them to have their flu vaccinations so that we wouldn't have to endure another week of sickness at some point this winter.  Unfortunately, George had been complaining that his stomach hurt since Sunday.  Of course, being mother-of-the-year, I ignored his paltry cries about his stomach.  Until later in the day on Monday when he was writhing on the ground, whining about the pain, and asking to go take a nap.  Wearing my other hat --- Nurse/Doctor --- I quickly diagnosed his abdominal pain (see how I used the medical term there?) as constipation.  He had no other symptoms after all.  I proceeded to treat his symptoms by feeding him apples (the only fruit he will eat) and telling him to drink more water, and then encouraging him to use the restroom. 

It didn't help. He continued to complain morning, noon, and night - and especially in the middle of the night.  He and I were soooo tired!

And then on Tuesday night he was once again writhing in pain, crying, and had broken out into a sweat. Long story short (or shorter, anyway), I ended up taking G to a pediatric urgent care center where they took an x-ray of his abdomen to confirm constipation.  Unfortunately, they said he looked clear, but had identified a possible culprit in his appendix.  Well, holy shit.  That did not make my week.  We were sent home on "Appendix Watch 2013".  And, let me tell you, we learned some interesting things about appendicitis symptoms.  We were told to watch for high fever, vomiting, and the inability to jump up and down without causing pain in his side.  Oooo-kaaaaaay.

The next night was the same and again without any apendicitis symptoms.  The only difference was this time Chuck got to witness the crying and writhing, so it was decided that we needed to go see our regular doctor the next day - Dr. Murphy is amazing. You know it's bad, when your own kid asks to go see his doctor.  I mean, he would curl up on the floor of the grocery store, or on the sidewalk in front of L & E's school (like in the picture below).  It was bad.

So, Thursday morning, George was doubled over holding his stomach announcing, "I am not going to school today" (I had sent him every day that week).  It was time to get some answers, so we visited Dr. Murphy (for the third time in a 10 days).  He also ordered an x-ray and tested G's blood to see if appendicitis was an issue.  After having two additional collegues review the x-ray, George was diagnosed with constipation (in contradiction of our urgent care diagnosis) and appendicitis was officially ruled out.  Seriously, I obviously could have stuck with my original diagnosis from Monday.  Plus, we went through some unnecessary stress when watching for appendicitis.  And on top of that, I discontinued all constipation treatments after the urgent care doctor told me it wasn't an issue.  So, in the long run, I probably allowed his diet to compound the situation.

I was so relieved to have a diagnosis and a treatment, until Dr. Murphy handed me a couple pairs of rubber gloves and instructed me to go purchase some Miralax and a Fleet enema.  I took a deep breath and repeated in my head, "I love being a mother. I love being a mother. I love being a mother."  Then I gratefully accepted the gloves, studied Dr. Murphy's hand-drawn diagram of what was to come and what was expected of me, and I pranced out of the office, holding my head high and my back straight.  I could do this.  And if I couldn't, then I knew plenty of nurses I could pay to come do this . . .

Turns out the "procedure" was "productive" and no nurses were needed.  All I needed were the supplies shown above, plus one constipated little boy, a towel, and a boatload of patience.  Best part: I didn't need the gloves!  After about an hour, I had my sweet George back in his true form! 
It's been clear skies since then!

As a result of this miserable experience, I have discovered that my kids like bran muffins.  I thought it was going to be a long shot to convince George to eat these muffins in order to keep things moving, but it turns out he absolutely LOVES them!  I don't think they taste that great, but how can I argue with the fact that all three kids are willing to gobble them up?!

So, even though I don't usually share recipes on this blog, I feel compelled to share the recipe for what we are calling, "Movin' Muffins".


  • 1 1/2 cups self-raising flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 1/2 cups wheat bran
  • 4 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 4 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 1 apple, grated (I grate it in the food processor)
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon


Preheat oven to 375°F. Spray a 12 cup muffin tray with PAM and set aside.  In a medium sized bowl, mix the self-raising flour, baking powder, wheat bran, brown sugar and cinnamon.  In a separate smaller bowl, mix the egg, vegetable oil, milk and apple.  Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and using a spatula, fold together until all of the ingredients are just wet. Do not overmix or the muffins will be heavy.  Using a 1/4 cup measure per muffin, fill the muffin tray. Mix together the topping ingredients and sprinkle a teaspoon of the topping on each muffin. Bake for 20-25 minutes.

Viola!  Feed your kids.  George cried Sunday morning when I told him he had eaten all the muffins.  He waited impatiently as I made another batch.  Then he ate two as soon as they were cool enough to eat!


Joan said...

A digital disimpaction is no fun for either participant. I am so proud that you were willing to put on the glove if needed.
Welcome to my world;-)

Waylon Buser said...

This is a subject near to my heart. Being a lawyer is supposed to be that high paying job where you have all that time off, yeah right. I not only work in the office 60 hours a week, I bring my work home at night too. This means my kids are growing up before my eyes and I can not slow things down.

Waylon Buser @ U.S. HealthWorks - Oakland