Can I Get A Witness

J and his yogurt addiction began well over a year ago...

Last night was the first night in I don’t know how many nights that everyone in our home slept through the night. Hallelujah! 

Although it’s technically too early to tell, I think we have a little pill called Prevacid to give the credit to. We gave J his first dose after dinner and maybe it was a coincidence, but I have hope it is what did the trick.

I am convinced J has some acid reflux and it makes going to sleep and eating painful. Short of holding him upright all night in our bed or on the couch – and yes, we done it more times than I care to admit – the only other thing is give him a bottle of water to soothe him. During the day, he barely eats. Sometimes he’ll go days, yes days, with nary a nibble except a few raisins, a couple bites of popcorn, and some Activia yogurt. Everything else is refused. Then on other days, like some binging college girl, he will inhale a mind-boggling amount of “normal” food in one sitting only to have the worst gas on both ends and then no more eating again for days. It’s been a nightmare rollercoaster for nearly 2 years. He used to be the best eater, too. This summer he lost so much weight I took him to Children’s to make sure he didn’t have something like Celiac disease. Turns out he does have a minor egg white allergy, and his diet was modified slightly by the gastroenterologist. Since then we’ve sought out sleep specialists. We adjusted his mattress. We changed cribs. We modified his diet again. We switched diapers. We did everything except have him tested for acid reflux because our pediatrician didn’t think it was warranted.

“He’ll be fine,” she pooh-poohed me. “Just you wait and see.” Oh, I’m certain he will be more than fine, thank you very much; but why should we wait when we’ve seen zero progress? What if we need to do something now to prevent other problems in the long run? I know it takes some children a while to talk. Sister K apparently took a while to be vocal because I was doing all the talking for her as a child. That said, she didn’t have months of raging, recurring ear infections that might have damaged her hearing like J. I already feel guilty for not pushing my pedi at the time for not recommending ear tube surgery sooner. Here we are, nearly a year later and J still doesn’t speak well. In fact, he barely talks at all in clear English. It got to the point that we finally had his hearing tested at MEEI. He can hear but the audiologist recommended an intervention with a speech pathologist. J will have at least one more round of tests because they weren’t very conclusive, but in the meantime I made the speech appointment. In fact, I completely switched all the boys to a new pediatric practice that has a speech pathologist on staff because I didn’t feel our last pediatrician was putting enough resources or concern about his lack of speaking and weight gain.

I’m convinced somehow, someway all of this is tied to the reflux. So, no, I’m not going to wait and see like the former pediatrician suggested. We got the divine intervention and the hope we needed last night with a decent night’s sleep. He’ll take a Prevacid daily and along with some hard work with the speech pathologist, his audiologist, his gastroenterologist and our family I believe we’ll get our Sweet J back up to snuff on his speaking and eating faster than we can say “Stop talking and eat your dinner!” Can I get an Amen!

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Update:: Since I first wrote this morning, I had to check with our insurance company to make sure the speech pathologist is in our network and J’s visits will be covered. As the agent was going over our benefits and double-checking my request, her tone made me wonder if we were going to be denied and forced to find someone else to help J. Thankfully that is not the case. We are blessed to have the very best health insurance. I mean, really, who says that about their insurance company? Thank God for mine.

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