I begin writing this post in a calmed state of mind. This past week and a half now has been quite busy and full of sickness. It started nearly two weeks ago when our daughter started with a fever. We assumed she was just fevered from teething since she was pulling her ears AND those pretty white things are trying to poke through her top side gums. It’s her first set of teeth to make an appearance at 11 1/2 months old and we just assumed since she was so new to this she was just hurting.
Thursday rolls around and she’s still fevered, nose running, still pulling at her ears. Moms, what would you think? Ears! I took her to the doc and of course her fever was down and her ears were perfect. Doctor can’t seem to find anything wrong with her and chalks it up to viral, but asks me if I’d like to get her urine tested.
See our daughter started getting UTIs back when she was just 3 months old. I found in her diaper a few spots of pink, almost looking like that brick dust after baby is born. At first I didn’t think much of it because our son had that but it was just due to long periods of sleeping and nothing to drink (urine crystals). But this kept happening over the course of a couple of days and I finally called the doctor’s office. She was out but the nurse practitioner was in. We scheduled to see her that day. The nurse practitioner was a great lady. She checked over every possible thing, checked her hydration, and so forth. We even checked to see if her poor privates may just be raw or bleeding or rashed. Nothing. Nothing was wrong with my sweet baby girl. Something caused her to want to “bag” her to collect her urine. This is now a very common term in this house. We get her bagged and the urine comes back positive for a UTI–tons of bacteria and nitrates. She sends us to the hospital for a catheter to collect sterile urine.
That was quite the experience. The nurses had to place this slippery, lubed up catheter into a 3 month old baby girl’s urethra. I’m not sure when the last time you’ve examined that area of a baby girl but it is all small and super hard to find her organs! Needless to say this took awhile and baby girl was screaming the whole time. She by no means was in any pain, but the strangeness of it all and being so young, she was just scared. This now has become even more familiar for our family and we are prepared for it all.
But that first time I felt so dirty as my baby girl’s mom. I started questioning my breastfeeding ability (am I making enough milk for baby girl? Is she actually getting enough milk?). I started questioning just how my hygiene habits were for her! It didn’t help that the nurses were “reminding me how to wipe my daughter.” I’m thinking to myself thanks for your advice, but I do happen to have one of those areas down there myself and I manage quite well. I ensure she has no poop or grossness in there and I wipe with a clean wipe every time.
Meanwhile, this first test came back positive for a UTI. She had no symptoms of this UTI other than the pink marks in her diaper. This has now happened quite a few times since that January day. She is a Riley Urology patient and is monitored. We found her to have 2 ureters going to her left kidney and her left kidney is split into two lobes (an upper and a lower) with one ureter going to each lobe. Both of those ureters are taking urine from her bladder and flushing it back into her left kidney in both lobes (VUR). She is on a prophylactic antibiotic, but obviously isn’t preventing all infections because Daylan was diagnosed with another UTI this week.
Poor girl had been battling this UTI for a week, then we went to visit Grandma and Grandpa before Grandpa had a total knee replacement. She was still super fussy, sleeping for 2 full naps (NEVER DOES THIS!), and then big brother came down with a fever. Both children then spent the following Monday at the orthopedic hospital while “Papa” was having his knee replaced, had a late night drive home because big brother had preschool the next morning, and then went to the doctor again Tuesday afternoon.
Doesn’t it just seem like when it rains, it pours? Doesn’t it seem like even though we provide the best, have the best of intentions, and know our child, that we just cannot always provide the comfort they need right away? This mama was stressed, tired, achey and nearly sick myself, irritated at everything, and finally–this very moment, feel at peace and in routine. I hate that my children get sick, but I also like it more when we are in our own home, they have their own beds, our own familiar surroundings that provide no extra stimulation. We can control their comfort needs. It’s so nice to be back home and on the mend!