Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Winning the Sick Kid Lotto

I am going to start this post with gratitude. September was Childhood Cancer Awareness Month and my child is, relatively speaking, healthy. I count my blessings every day.

And, since we're talking about it, we haven't had a particularly easy go of it. "It" being basic health.  I have, almost two years in, lost complete count of how often Baba has been sick. But, it is a lot. It seems she catches absolutely everything there is to catch. Even if there's nothing to catch and everyone around her is healthy as that proverbial horse, she catches it.

Thankfully, she's had only a small handful of seriously tough illnesses and most others have been colds or coughs. But, man those coughs. They are heartbreaking - especially when they last all. Damn. Night.

Backing up to about 34 years ago. This was me. To a T. I coughed my way through childhood and through young adult hood. And, now, I am the healthiest person to roam the earth (again, relatively speaking). Thankfully, I don't remember my own slew of illnesses as having a negative impact on my childhood. I was still happy. This gives me hope for Baba.

See, we're not going to keep her in a bubble. As much as I hate the constant onslaught of illness, I believe that I will do more harm if I keep her away from this opportunity to build her immune system. Unfortunately, she just builds hers a little more painfully than a lot of other kids. So, she's in full time preschool. She travels with us. She camps. She goes to Children's Museums. And, I am pretty sure she has gnawed on a grocery cart handle at some point in her life. Probably recently.

This world is just too amazing not to explore!
At this point, we've tried a lot. We embarked on a homeopathic journey about a year ago. I guess, at the end of the day, I don't know what I don't know. It could be working. But, she still seems to get sick. A lot. So, I'm on a quest to find a balance between constant medical intervention and going natural; so as to keep her comfortable but also to ward off these nasty bugs as much as possible - before they beat her down.

I was reminded last night that, although it's uncomfortable for any Momma to watch her child suffer, it is indeed building up her immune system and one day soon, she will be healthier because of it. Granted, it might not be as soon as I would like, but that day is coming. It has to.

I'm thinking I am not alone in this battle. But, it sure feels like it.

In addition to our previous attempts to avoid the steroids and cough medicine (with codeine - that can't be good!), we found a Naturopathic Doctor. We love her and she is quickly becoming my best friend. Baba doesn't know what to think about her yet, but I am pretty sure she is falling in love every day she goes without illness.

We've recently eliminated cow's milk dairy - a very common agitator of the respiratory system. One month in and it (knock on wood) appears to be making a positive difference.

I have hope. Hope that I can find a delicate balance between medicating and proactively warding off this constant slew of illnesses - naturally.  Hope that I can make small changes that have big impacts. And, hope that Baba continues to thrive, despite the snotty noses and hacking coughs.

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