December 4, 2009

Vaccines (and I'm going to talk about baby diarrhea, just FYI)

At the beginning of November, we took Luke into get his 2 month vaccines. And I do mean "we." I made Travis come with cause I knew I was going to have a hard time with all the shots. I don't mind getting shots myself, I'm not squeamish about giving blood, nor do I have trouble with most things medically related. (If I did, giving birth and the subsequent drama was enough to cure me from all phobias. I've never been stuck, prodded, or poked as much as I was that 24 hour period.) Back when I wanted to be a doctor in high school, I even spent the day following an orthopedic surgeon around and watched him amputate a foot. That's right. A foot.
My point is, I'm tough. But watching my sweet baby get stuck twice?! That was too much to handle alone.

The shots ended up not being a big deal. He cried while it happened, but I was able to nurse him right after, and it was like he forgot all about it. We went home and he slept a good portion of the day, which was unusual for him. About 9 that night, which was about 12 hours from his appointment, he had a massive diaper that was really loose. After that, he perked up and went back to his normal routine. But the bad diapers persisted. After about 4 days, I decided to call the doctor and just make sure it was a side effect from the vaccines. The nurse said it probably was something else if it kept going on, and to come in if it lasted for more than a week. Luke was fine and for the most part everything else was normal. However, by the next week, he started to get more fussy and the diarrhea kept happening, so we went in. He checked out totally normal, but the doctor said the rotavirus vaccine may have gotten his stomach out of whack and it just needed a little help to get balanced back out. So, we started adding some probiotics twice a day. We did that for another week with no difference, and we were starting to get green diapers. After checking with the doctor again, she counseled us to continue with the probiotics and for me to cut out diary from my diet.

For anyone who knows me, diary is an important part of my life. I don't eat a lot of meat and I have a great love for cheese. It wasn't hard to stop eating it at first, or so I thought. And then I started paying attention to the labels of things...Milk or "Milk Ingredients" are in EVERYTHING. I thought I'd been diary-free for like 2 days before I realized I was still eating it. After I legitimately gave up all milk, it was much harder. It also coincided with Thanksgiving. And that sucked. No butter on the roll, no mashed potatoes, no dressing, no PIE, no to a lot of things. Yeah, it was hard, and it didn't seem to be making any difference. The bad diapers were persisting, but Luke seemed a lot less fussy, so I kept it up.

Two days ago, we FINALLY had a normal diaper, almost a whole month after the vaccine. I can now start adding diary back in slowly, THANK GOD.

It wasn't a fun month for Luke or I. But now here's my dilemma: We will be going back for his 4 month check-up at the beginning of January and I am pretty sure we are scheduled to take the 2nd dose of the Rotavirus vaccine. But after all we went through with the first one, I'm thinking about asking to not take it. I haven't talked to his doctor about this yet, so I don't even know if it will matter. His stomach may have developed enough that it won't even be an issue, I don't know. I am definitely on the side of giving vaccines to my kids as opposed to not giving them. But the Rotavirus is a little different, don't you think? It's not like a Polio or Hepititus vaccine. It's just to prevent a disease that causes excessive diarrhea in them as babies, and well....a month long case of diarrhea seems pretty excessive.

So, what do you think? Should we continue to get the Rotavirus vaccine? Have you had any experiences with it and bad side effects?

December 2, 2009

November recap

November has passed by in a blur, just another month that vanished before my eyes. We were pretty busy with birthdays, picnics at the lake, and Thanksgiving travel. All of which would be a good enough excuse for why I haven't written much, but if I'm completely honest, the real culprit is FarmVille.
The kids in our youth group started talking about it and I decided to see what it was...and poof! I got addicted, and any time I had on the computer went straight to plowing and harvesting and trying to figure out how to make my farm look as impressive as all my neighbors.
But here's some photographic evidence that we did have a good November.
We took the kid and the dog to Latta Plantation for a picnic lunch and short hike at the beginning of the month when the weather was still nice.
Then later, we took our first plane trip with Luke when we visited Travis' parents in Salt Lake City. I was a nervous wreck the entire week before we left. I kept imagining these awful scenarios where he screamed the whole 4 hour plane trip and how people in the adjacent rows started throwing their peanuts at us. In actuality, he was a great traveler and we had no more than 5 minutes of fussiness on all 4 flights, except for the very last 10 minutes of the last flight, when we got stuck on the tarmac at Charlotte Douglas...and really, I couldn't blame him. He'd held up his part of the bargain, and it wasn't fair to get stuck on the plane those last 10 minutes.
I cooked a turkey for Travis' mom using the foolproof* Alton Brown recipe that I swear by.

Luke apparently has developed my slightly shy/anti-social behavior and when confronted with an overwhelming amount of people, he just took a nap. I sometimes wish it were socially acceptible for me to do the same. (And I swear I didn't wear this sweater every day in November)

*Foolproof so long as you check the temperature accurately. I apparently did not, cause it was still a little undone in places. Oh, well. The first two times I used this recipe, it was perfect, so this was definitely a user error and not anything to do with the recipe. The cooked parts tasted good!