Posts in September 2014

What Shigellosis Has Taught Me

photo 4 (6)Nine days ago, Wes woke up with a badly soiled pull-up. I thought it was just a fluke – he never has accidents anymore – and told him to let me know when he had to next go to the bathroom. He said, “ok,” and acted mostly normal while we had breakfast and got ready for school. In the car on the way to school, he complained of stomach pains and kept saying, “I have to go poop” over and over again. I turned the car around and headed back home.

Without being too gross about it all, we spent the majority of that day in the bathroom. Thankfully, he’s potty trained and could go by himself, but I had no idea what this thing was and might have been overly cautious about washing his and my hands and everything else in the bathroom.┬áThank goodness I was careful.

The next day we went to the pediatrician who ordered a stool culture before any antibiotics or medication would be given. I was sent home with 3 vials, gloves and a toilet seat “hat” collection bucket with a chuckle from the lab nurses. You can imagine the scene there. After FOUR DAYS, we finally got a positive test result confirming Shigella bacteria, or Shigellosis – which is modern-day dysentery.

Since Sunday’s lab result, I’ve talked with the Board of Health, his pediatrician and daycare umpteen times. Antibiotics were finally prescribed after the positive result, and we have to wait until the antibiotics run out (5 days total) until he can go back to school. The difficulty is that it’s now been a week and a half, and his body is fighting this bacteria very well. He’s acting normal and doesn’t even have diarrhea anymore – he hasn’t, actually, since last Friday – four days ago.

Juggling time at home for nearly 2 weeks has been a little workout. Here’s a few things I’ve learned about this experience.

1) If you have a parent in town, thank your lucky stars. And thank THEM. My mom has been a lifesaver, watching Wes many of the days so that Steven and I can work fairly normal schedules. It’s a blessing that she is retired, too. And bonus points for cleaning the inside of the fridge and microwave.

2) Productivity of the work kind is best when the household is asleep. But a great secondary option is to bank on excellent weather and a wireless connection. We’ve spent so many hours outside so that Wes can run off some cooped-up energy while I catch up with email and needed correspondence.

3) A small church family is incredibly supportive. Both Steven and I had obligations early Sunday morning, so we naturally brought Wes with us. We didn’t have a positive test result yet, and I really thought it was just a virus (like his pediatrician also thought) since he was feeling more himself. But, after talking with a few of the leaders, we decided he shouldn’t be around other kids. All of the adults worked around this hiccup and combined classrooms so that he could be in the “quarantine room” and not accidentally infect anyone else. What other church can (and cares enough) to do that for your family? Ok, maybe yours can, too, but I’m grateful for mine!

4) Understanding coworkers makes life easier. I am grateful for the listening ears, flexibility and caring coworkers around me. People genuinely ask about Wes’ health and offer to help – even my coworker who is on maternity leave has offered to stand in as needed! Crazy.

5) You can still have fun when sick. I guess the biggest lesson for me has been to keep each day light and without expectations. Poor Wes truly misses his friends at school and can’t wait to go back. He has been grumpy, bored and irritable on the days where I try to do too much at once. The best remedy? Get on the floor and be goofy with your child. Have a dance party. Bring out toys long forgotten. Snuggle and watch a movie.

_____

Wes has the best little boy humor. He can easily make fun of himself in embarrassing situations, like last week’s crazy bathroom fest. During bedtime stories the other night, he tooted something rancid and giggled at himself for a good 10 minutes.

 

He’s played with trains for days, and he hasn’t gotten sick of them yet. And occasionally, he’ll grab his camera to take some great, blurry photos of trains.

photo (25)

 

One day, we found a grasshopper outside and invited him in for dinner. (We released him before the storm came.)

photo 3 (12)

 

The great outdoors heals everything. Especially when it’s sunny and 70 without a cloud in the sky.

photo 1 (14)

Here’s to 2 more days at home with the best sick kid this side of Indianapolis.

Posted: September 23rd, 2014
Categories: Leah
Tags: , , , ,
Comments: No Comments.

Rubber Robots

Last winter I found two preschool cameras at Kohl’s on major clearance and snatched them up. I gave one to my nephew for his birthday and saved the other for Wes’ own birthday in July.

He was thrilled to receive his very own camera and snapped photos left and right. We brought it along when walking along the canal with friends and quickly filled up the memory card. We took it with us on vacation, knowing that we’d get some good shots, but I also took the USB cord and cables so that we could clean off the camera once we got to our “vacation house,” as Wes called it.

While driving to our vacation destination (Holland, Michigan), Steven and I thought it would be fun to start an Instagram account to display Wes’ photos. Since, you know, 3G makes car traveling so much less lame, I set it up right then and there. “Westagram” and other variations were all taken, so it launched a conversation about possible clever names.

Eventually we settled on @rubberrobots, in honor of Wes’ newest made-up song, which consists of only those two words sung over and over again while shifting weight back and forth on each leg. It’s quite annoying, actually, and it gets stuck in your head pretty easily. It seemed perfect.

instagram

You might be thinking to yourself, “what parent allows her child to be on social media?” Well, I see what you’re saying there. But truly, Wes isn’t the only kid in his generation that has an uncontrollable presence online. We’ve probably ruined this Gen Z crop for good by constantly posting photos from birth. I know eventually we’ll have to figure out how to educate him on privacy and the like, and it might be a weird conversation since there will already be an online presence of nearly every kid in his class at that point. But at any rate, this Instagram account is just for fun, and if for any reason it becomes a concern, it will be re-evaluted.

By the time we arrived in Holland, enough of our own Instagram followers and friends had caught on to what we began and couldn’t wait to see the thread. But then! The stupid camera broke. FYI – don’t ever ever buy Discovery Kids Digital Camera. It will steal your photos and eat them and then quit working altogether. (To my nephew, I’m sorry. I owe you a new one!)

It hasn’t been until NOW that we got a replacement camera for Wes. So, without further ado, I present Wesley’s photography. You can obviously follow him on Instagram or periodically view photos on his Flickr album page.

15136178566_994c0079e6_z

 

14972540430_c473e0c004_z

 

15159215585_fc790ca766_z

Posted: September 6th, 2014
Categories: Leah
Tags: , , , ,
Comments: 1 Comment.


© 2017 | The Shattucks | Leah Shattuck | Steven Shattuck | Indianapolis, IN