Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Totally Tubular

Sooooooo… how’s your day going? I just got back from yet another pediatrician adventure, where I learned (shock! gasp!) that BOTH of Jelly’s ears are chock-a-block full of fluid. Since what we’re doing doesn’t seem to be working, I now have a referral for the local Ear Nose & Throat Nice People (the ENTNP). I am going to refer to them as Nice People in a very optimistic manner, because hopefully when I call I’ll be able to get in right away, and get her on the schedule right away for EAR TUBES.

Tubes. Whenever I’ve heard that word from other parents, it’s been followed by ‘avoid them at all costs!’. I’ve heard more horror stories about ear tubes than bad things about bottle feeding (just kidding there, we all know that nothing is more evil than giving an innocent baby formula). I am freaking out a bit. You know how to tell I’m freaked out? I called the biological father. Yep. You know how he knew I was freaked out? He ANSWERED.

It was not a long conversation, so don’t fall off your office chairs or out of the driver’s seat or into the pool (hey, I don’t know where you do your blog reading, I don’t like to assume). I asked if he had problems with his ears as a kid, or if he knew of any family history. I just don’t know where the heck this is coming from – this would have been her FIFTH round of antibiotics since July. What kid gets ear infections in the summer? Oh, right, one who lived in the pool. Do I feel guilty now about taking her swimming so much? Why yes, as a matter of fact I do, thank you for inquiring.

Quiet answered that no, there was no likewise no history of ear infections in his family, and that he’d been just fine as a kid. I very politely thanked him for taking my call (still massively traumatized that he’d actually answered), wished him a pleasant evening, and hung up. So, either he didn’t look at caller ID (no chance, since I called his cell), he deleted me from his Contacts so he really didn’t know who I was, or he isn’t going to be totally incommunicado. So I’m oddly reassured. But, you know, still guilty about the whole swimming-in-the-dirty-lake thing. And for every single time I’ve splashed her. And also for all those baths. Damn you, cleanliness!

Please, PLEASE if you have had experience with tubing a kid, let me know. But say something reassuring, not ‘OMG it was HORRIBLE they fell out/got infected/exploded and the child DIED’. Because I would rather not hear that. I would prefer hearing something like, ‘OMG it was the BEST thing that could’ve happened and the child had no more pain and learned 3 languages and listens to EVERYTHING I say now’. I’ve had some FB friends post things like this that made me feel better already, so I’m back down off the wall, but I’m still looking at it. I called my parents, who put things into perspective by telling me to calm the hell down and think about what it would be like if I were having tubes put in her heart. Or if it were like 100 years ago, and it went untreated and she went deaf or got meningitis. They also reminded me how lucky I was that it was outpatient surgery, since they had to leave their eldest daughter as a baby overnight, alone, in the hospital, and when they got back the next morning she had lost her voice from sobbing and her legs were black and blue from kicking at the crib bars. Isn’t that freaking SAD?! And there’s why I don’t like hospitals, if you are a psychiatrist.

But still. My Jelly girl. Surgery.


MommieV said...

Hi, it's your stalker. We may be facing this too. Her doc alluded to that when she still had fluid after her last round of antibiotics.

If I tell you it's more about the way her ears are made and less about the splashing will that make you feel better? My girl went to the pool once at the end of the summer and still has fluid, please don't beat yourself up.

And I had one of those "OMG he freaking ANSWERED" when I called Caitlin's ... (god, I need to come up with a word I'm comfortable with here) ... male-person-who-helped-make-her once about medical history. I was laughing when I read that.

I've had people tell me their kids started talking much better after tubes.

Still, I'm in a big fat closet of denial about it over here, so I can totally understand.

Jellybean Mama said...

Thanks stalker, I mean MommieV. That does make me feel better (way her ears are).

If Jellybean starts talking better after tubes I'm in a world of trouble. Man, that girl can TALK!

I know it's a very common procedure, but it's not common for -us-.

Ally said...

Going from lurking to commenting for this one. I don't have kids, but as a kid I went through multiple surgeries from a young age, I can tell you, she will not be traumatized for the rest of her life, hate you forever, or die from ear surgery. Also, my little sister just got tubes put in her ears, and she was weirdly excited about it. ("OMG! THEY PUT TUBES IN MY EARS! THERE Ajavascript:void(0)RE TUBES IN MY EARS!" etc). The doctor also said since she's young, she won't need them in more than a few years, and she likely will not need them again once she gets them out. And it IS a lot better than going deaf as she gets older, or having chronic infections, like my poor little nephew.

Like I said, I don't have kids yet, so you can sit over there and go all, "you don't UNDERSTAND!!!!" if you want. Because I don't. But I'm sure she'll be a total trooper, and she'll have an awesome story to tell when she gets older. Well, when she's old enough you're no longer traumatized and can tell her the story, so she can tell other people.

Good luck!

Jellybean Mama said...

Thanks Ally! I will totally NOT say 'you don't understand!', because if a childless homeless man gave me good/nice advice right now, I'd be happy. I am gladly entertaining all offers. People don't have to have kids to share a story or a shoulder or a dirty limerick.

And thanks for commenting! Although, I was a little disappointed by the noticeable lack of squee, which I'm pretty sure I was promised.

dana said...

Two out of my three kids had ear tubes and they were a life saver for us! I remember with Emily we were so nervous but by the time we had gotten our coffee they had come out and said they were done. She did so great that we left there and went out afterwards! NO PROBLEMS! Jake was the same way! It saved us a lot of crying nights of earaches.

Be prepared that some kids wake up angry at the world, but if that happens it will pas quickly once they are fully awake.