How I Became “That Parent”

I try really hard to not be one of those Moms that panics at every sniff or cough.  My oldest son has actually gone without any sick visits between his yearly checkups on several occasions.  We hardly ever use antibiotics and especially try to stay away from OTC children’s medicines.  We toe the line of being crunchy hippies (said with reverence, because I’d really like to be more of a crunchy hippy).

However, my youngest son is an anomaly.  His health doesn’t follow typical routes.  And he has this pain tolerance that is like a super power.  And he can’t tell me what hurts, if he hurts, if it’s itchy, how long it’s been going on, etc.  All pretty typical for little ones on the spectrum, at least in the crowd I belong to.

For instances:

  • When he gets strep he also becomes very agitated and his OCD tapping goes through the roof.
  • When he takes benadryl he gets crazy hyper instead of the sleepy effect it has on most kids.
  • He has gotten transient synovitis not once, but twice.  A couple years apart.  That’s when a virus attacks his hip joint and he is unable to walk.  Recurring rate is pretty low and if it does occur it usually happens within six months of each other.
  • He throws up and has BM issues way more frequently than other children- most likely tied to his food intolerances/allergies.
  • He gets rashes.  A lot.  They can’t always be explained.
  • One time I took him in for a well child visit and the doctor told me he had severe double ear infections.  The kid was as happy as can be.
  • Another time I took him in to check on his cough because he was going away for vacation.  I kept apologizing, “I know the cough doesn’t sound that bad and he’s running around here laughing but I’m just anxious about us being away from home for a while and it turning into something else.”   He had well developed walking pneumonia.

20140528_184430 (1)Today I watched another mystery rash grow  from just the top of his chest, to his belly, to his legs, his back, his feet, and finally his cheeks.  I googled (and don’t do that, I don’t know why I do it, you will have yourself believing your child has everything from measles to some rare avian flu).  I checked his temperature regularly.  I thought about his sleeping pattern.  I thought about what he had ate or what substances he had been near.  I hemmed and hawed about calling his pediatrician, not wanting to be “that parent”.

But I called.  And they were worried it was a strep rash since it’s kind of a bumpy rash and he has a history with strep. So they had us come in.  And Brian was just happy as a clam, allowing them to check his ears and lungs without a single complaint (on most healthy days this is an issue).  And it was just a viral rash.

So here we are back at home, a healthy happy boy just looking a little spotty, but otherwise perfectly healthy.  Today I was “that parent”, but for a little peace of mind, I guess it was worth it.

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Heather Nelson

About Heather Nelson

Heather resides in Rockland where she is busy juggling life as a newlywed, a mom to two boys (one of which who has autism), a part time job in direct sales, and a full-time job as a pediatric occupational therapy assistant. She has a love for live music, karaoke, and cheering on the underdogs.