I finally suggested it might be an allergy. I grew up with severe allergies. I was assured by the doctor that she was way too young. I pushed to have her tested. It meant taking her to the Children's Hospital and having them take two vials of blood from her. I couldn't handle it - the nurses were chiding me telling me she was too young to have this test. I had to go out the waiting room and ponder if I was even doing the right thing. I was really an emotional wreck. I called my sister, crying wondering what in the world was going on. A few days later, we found out about her allergies. The doctor told me anything above a 0.3 something or other meant she had an allergy. Her tests were reading in the 30s for eggs, the teens for wheat and I can't remember about the peanuts anymore. Her results were incredibly high for someone of her age. Her egg allergy is so severe, if she were to touch eggs - it could be fatal! I immediately went off these because I was nursing and we watched her skin start getting better. I haven't even cheated once. I have often felt a need to call the nurses at the Children's Hospital and scold them for scolding me! What if I hadn't done the test, and we just thought she had a rash, and she had grabbed some of the scrambled eggs that I cooked often for our family! Shame on them for making me doubt myself!
Three Months - super smiley
this is right when the skin on her face was a mess. We tried going to an urgent care and then our pediatrician, but nothing could clear it up. At this point, it was so bad if she touched her cheek it would bleed. Break my heart!
Five Months - She still has big brown spots on her back, tummy, and even up in her scalp. Even though we've cleared up the rashes, the spots won't go away. Now, our pediatrician recommends us to visit a pediatric dermatologist. We're informed that she has some name that I can never pronounced, but it means brown hives. They are masses of histamines on her back that will last her for at least 2 years. We're shocked, she seems so happy. She has never slept through the night and the doctor guesses that maybe she is just too itchy. During the day, I can distract her from it, but not at night. My poor poor girl. This is something different from the allergies and the eczema. Now the creams and lotions come out. We have about 4 that need to go on her a night. We have no perfumes or dyes in our laundry detergent, soap, lotion, etc.
Six months - I keep thinking that with all this, she should be a very difficult baby. But, she is so happy! She smiles so easily. I was told that these allergies and skin conditions are genetic. I know they come directly from me, which although I understand it is not my fault, still causes me grief. I think I understand her better than anyone, and we become BFFs. She is pretty content to just hang out on my lap and always be near her mommy.
Seven months - I feel like things are running pretty smoothly and I am back in the game. We went camping, we had my in-laws come and went to Grandma's Camp with my mom. And she charms everyone through it all.
Today, she turns one. This means a whole new slew of testing. She has to see the allergist and have all her environmental allergies tested. You know, dust, pet dander, mold, etc. Her test are very difficult. They usually perform the scratch test on backs, but because of her hives, it is virtually impossible. She has to be tested on her forearms. After the scratch, she has to not move them at all for 15 mintues, which seems impossible for a one year old to not move at all. I don't know how we are going to do it and I'm already getting anxiety over it. We have to see the Dermatologist to get a biopsy of one of her hives, which looks like it is coming to a head. And, oh I forgot, her left kidney was enlarged at birth, and we have to get an ultrasound to see if it is still large. If it is, she has to have a floroscopy to see if things are flowing the way they are supposed to. I think that's all the appointments so far.
It has been a super quick, yet tiring year. The thing that most surprises me is the countless times I've been told that others could never have a diet that I do - like I'm some kind of hero. I guess it surprises me because I think any mother would do it. If you were told that the health and welfare of your child depends on whether or not you eat a cookie, it seems sort of a no-brainer. You just don't cheat and I don't even want to. She'll be weaned soon, she hardly nurses anymore. Truthfully, I'm not super excited to start eating "normally." I'm scared. Now that my baby is eating, the food goes directly through her system (instead of through me to her). I notice that I am stricter. We are all eating her diet, instead of just her and me. The whole family pitches in. My little boy asks "is this gluten-free?" so he knows if it is OK to be around M. while he is eating and I. assures me in her pretend restaurant that all the food has no flour, no eggs and is safe for everyone. I'm scared of her getting independent so young, of strangers offering her food, trying to be nice that she can't have. I get scared every time I leave her that she'll get something she's not supposed to have and have reactions while I'm not there.
So, that's what I've been through with my baby in the past year, briefly. I didn't get a chance to mention how she melts my heart and she has her daddy wrapped around her finger.
Happy Birthday Sweet One!