When Kids Get Sick

November 5, 2021

In September the Mini went to kindergarten. I was piecing together morning care so I could work. The schedule was always changing as I went to doctor appointments and treatment. It has not been a smooth introduction to big girl school.

I always planned to be the warrior mum. The mum that nothing would break. Not even my MS. I can't stress how hard it is to be a single mum when I'm at baseline. During an exacerbation I really struggled. I'd love to say that my moments on the couch doing my "look at all the good in my life mantra" is all I need. 

When I don't feel well, when I'm unstable or have weak hands things are hard. 

Plates break, pans get dropped, boxes of pasta and bins of pencils spill on the floor. 

Carrying the mini becomes almost impossible. Having her sit on me can be painful. The playful jumping into my arms sends panic through me. 

I do just sit on the bad days, reminding myself I have a support network I can count on and a great medical care team. 

On those days there is also more yelling, more tears and more tension. 


After 2 weeks of my mini complaining about her eyesight I broke down and brought her to Dr. B. 

I was concerned about a sinus infection or something else impairing her vision. He was awesome, as always, and did a whole work up. Then found nothing wrong. At the end of the visit he sent us down the hall for a quick vision screen. She had 20/20 vision in May so I wasn't worried. 

She failed. Big Time.

He referred us to his favorite Ophthalmologist.  


November 9

After having her eyes dilated we spent some time with Dr. C.

He did a full vision work up, his team used lots of fancy tools… 

Everything was going great. Until it wasn't.

She made a mess of the vision test.

Dr. C was awesome and took me out of the exam room for a chat.

He said it was psychosomatic. What? $80 in co-pays and she's fine! I want to ring her neck.

But no she's not fine.

He asked me to reach out to her teachers and consider her behavior.

  • Is she making friends?
  • Could she perceive that she is behind her peers in reading? Could she be struggling with a learning disability like dyslexia. He cautioned that she was "too young" for a dyslexia diagnosis but wanted to point it out.
  • Could she be pretending to be sick to go to the doctor like Mummy?

He brought her special eyedrops. Explained that they should help. And if they didn't she would have to stop playing with her tablet to rest her eyes (my idea). We ordered her blue light glasses. 

 

Well everything is my fault, but I ran his suggestions by her teaching team.

  • She's making friends, has positive interactions on the playground 
  • She's in leveled reading groups and progressing

 

So. It really is all my fault.

We did eye drops for a few days. Added her blue light glasses.

Then her eyes were all better.

Hmmm.

 

Here is the rub. Do you "treat" the imaginary illness? This time we did. She needed to be heard. She needed to feel special. She needed a warrior in her corner. 

 

We go back in December and I'm looking forward to it, just not the $60 co-pay.


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