The "blizzard" has arrived and we are surrounded by a true winter wonderland. Spirits and energy are relatively low, however, after a truly awful night with Lucas. He's had his share of sleepless nights (and consequently so have we), but last night was unique. He was thrashing and writhing around, screaming and working himself into such a fit he would cough and choke until it seemed he would vomit. (Wondering yet why you are continuing to read our blog??) Given the occasional "toots" we would hear, there was clearly a gassy belly going on, but he also seemed to be rubbing at his ears. Only yesterday I had commented that he hadn't developed an ear infection with his most recent cold--a first for him, and a first I was crediting to our giving up the pacifier. I hoped the ear rubbing was his simply being tired, and when he wasn't tugging at them this morning, I presumed this conclusion was correct.
At one point this morning I lifted Lucas into my arms and glanced into his right ear. It looked like a lava flow of wax had emerged out his ear and was slowly hardening around the entrance to the ear canal. Mother's instinct kicked in and I knew this wasn't wax--he had burst his ear drum. Matt, the more comfortable snow driver, took him to see the doctor on call who confirmed my hunch. Of course I cried--how could I have missed yet another infection? How can we not even know what is going on inside his little body? Lately I feel poorly equipped to manage the barrage of relatively minor illnesses this little guy contracts. Whether discovering we've been unnecessarily treating a cough as asthma, or finding that little cough we've been ignoring is an all-out wheeze worthy of round-the-clock nebulizer treatments, I always feel off the mark. I'm a remarkably intelligent woman and can navigate any number of challenging circumstances, but I feel completely vexed by some of the symptoms or lack thereof presenting for Lucas. If only medical school held some kind of draw for me--but that is one future path I feel comfortable ruling out!
There's no stepping out of the responsibility, even if we don't feel up to the challenge. Scary as it sounds some days, we're the best this little guy's got. Let's hope that's enough....