Thursday, November 4, 2010


I am not good at taking my kids to the doctor.  I'm not cutting up tree bark in the backyard or slathering them with slug trail to ease their pain, but I'm just not one of those Mom's that calls the doctor a lot.  And I'm not slamming those Moms either, but I'm not one of them.  I know plenty of them & they're all excellent Moms.  I also know that I'm in the minority on this issue.  I guess you'd say I'm cautiously lazy.  Cooper had a cough for the first 18 months of his life.  A nasty cough.  The kind of cough that makes strangers in Target ask if I'm allowing my kid die in Lane 4.  The kind of cough that sounds like I blew cigarette smoke into his cute little newborn face for 3 straight days.  I'd mention it every time I brought him to the ped's office for his well-checks, but his lungs were always clear.  I even made sick appointments after the strangers' comments, but nothing was done because he was in daycare.  It's the Daycare Cough.  He was eating & sleeping while he sounded like he was going to spit up a lung, so I stopped worrying.  Clearly our doctor didn't seem upset by it.  On his 18 month check-up, he coughed up a big one & the doc asked about it.  I explained what I had always explained & he said, "Ok.  You just don't want to become complacent about it."  It's a good thing I have a minor crush on our ped or I would have smacked him.  So I'm used to a nasty cough.  I'm used to not freaking out if a fever is 103 degrees.  I'm used to rashes that aren't real nasty looking.  We just don't call or go in all the time.  We also don't Google.  That will get any well-meaning parent stuck in the nasty "What-if" tunnel of doom.  Mostly Mark hates this attitude, but the kids have never been real sick.  Nothing that a cool bath & slathering of cream won't fix.

But occasionally something comes along that I can't ignore.  Once Becks had a cough that I could tell was croup the second the germs left his mouth.  Another time, he so hot & cranky that it forced the phone in our hand.  If the thermometer went one digit pass 103.9, the doc was getting a call on a Saturday night.  I always forget that taking a temp should never be done the second you pull them out of their warm bed/covers.  Wait 10 minutes & you'll get a more accurate reading.  He was down to 102 after the wait.  Medicine was given & we hovered.  On Monday, we discovered he had an ear infection & was almost over it.  Cooper's cough was the normal nasty hacking until this morning.  There was a wetness that could not be ignored.  And so we went to see the doctor.  He listened & listened much longer than usual.  He determined that it's either just a bad cough or pneumonia.  To me that sounds like we won $5 or $5 million.  Since he's never been on antibiotics, he prescribed some & warned me that they might not make a difference (aka: not pneumonia).  We left & returned to the couch.  A few hours later, daycare called & said Becks had a fever.  And so our day of two medicines began.

I'm grateful for medicine to make my kids feel better.  I'm grateful that we have health-care.  I'm grateful that when my kids are sick, they don't really act like it.  I'm grateful for medicine that taste good so I don't have to gag them to take it.  I'm grateful that we haven't had major sickness yet.  I'm grateful that they haven't puked on me. 

Today.  Puked on me today.  I've been puked on plenty, but not yet today.  And that's something to be grateful for.



  1. amen.
    i hope your little guys get well quick. sick ones are no fun. xo

  2. wow. these images are lovely, even of something so yucky. I knew a story even without your words. Here's hoping for speedy recoveries and healthy parents!

  3. a puke free day is ALWAYS a good one. amen to that. hope they are on the mend and that you and dad escape the germs...

  4. hope everyone is on the mend very soon!
    you and I are of like mind regarding calling the doc.
    love the photos telling the story

  5. erika-
    came over here from the 30 Days of Gratitude group. i love this post. and i love knowing i'm not the only mother like this. i know where to find a fever first on my youngest (her feet), i know about cool washcloths sometimes are better than knock out the fever meds and handkerchiefs cut down on trash, and i know our ped was shocked that my oldest was five years old before she had an antibiotic.

    i'm grateful for a ped I trust, who will talk to me on the phone rather than make me drag them in and that when my kids are sick even if i am covered in puke, i feel like superwoman!

    hoping wellness reaches you guys soon!

  6. hope they get to feeling better quickly and i'm glad they're taking it easy on you.
    our pediatrician is a little odd (okay, a lot - if you ask matt), but he has never been quick to prescribe anything and i really really like that about him. we've yet to experience antibiotics too. and i'm grateful for that.