The 6-Week Sick Cycle

Aaaaaand, just for something completely different, here we are again. Bean is sleeping on the couch and I am bound to the house and trying to squash anxiety and keep busy. But since we’ve been here before, every six weeks since October, I am starting to get used to this.

I neglected to mention in my previous post that our return from our amazing trip to Australia was less than amazing, when a day or so after landing Gav caught yet another bug. Despite my best efforts to keep him in a sanitary bubble on the plane by scrubbing all surfaces with anti-bac wipes and spritzing him with hand-sanitizer, he still picked something up. On the 3rd day of continuous barfing, we took him to a walk-in to have his ears checked. There was no sign of an ear infection, but he was getting dehydrated and we knew it. Together with the walk-in doc we decided to go to the ER for hydration.

It was probably the least stressful of all of our visits to emerge – although the struggle to get an IV in was really not fair in Gav’s state, it took the nurses FOUR tries. After hydration and a visit with our friendly neurosurgery fellow, who was happy to skip CT as all signs pointed to virus, we were discharged. And of course, Gavin vomited again in the car park on the way out of the hospital. And then spent another complete day being sick, a day for recovery, and finally was well enough to be back at school a week after returning from Australia.

It seems that as soon as he is well and energetic again, he gets hit with something else. A good six weeks has passed since then and he has something new, but it is following the same pattern as the previous illnesses in October, November and January, in that I keep thinking that he is on the mend, only to watch him slide back down-hill again.

After he was sick in January, I called our neuro-onc. clinic to ask if they could shed some light on why he seems to have such a sensitive vomit mechanism and to ask if there is anything we can do about it. The answers were unknown, and nope. My concern is that his weight has remained static for almost a year, as every time he gains a couple of pounds, six weeks later he loses it again! Given that he has also grown quite a bit in the last few months, he is one very skinny beanpole.

I am now ready for winter to be over – we’ve thrown ourselves into enjoying winter this year by getting Gav out snowshoeing, skating and skiing, but the constant bombardment of winter germs I cannot take. The secretary at Gavin’s school told me this morning that each day this week there have been a dozen or so kids out sick, with similar illnesses, but I know that those kids are going to be up and around after 24-48 hours, and my kiddo will still be fighting this thing tomorrow, and into the next, a full 3 to 4 days after it began.

When we arrived in Australia Gavin brought with him his eternally runny nose, and then had two, wonderful golden weeks in which we could leave the house without tissues for the first time since September. (Is life just better in the land down under? Maybe.) Naturally, once we touched down in Vancouver the runny was back and has been consistent since then.

I am boring even myself with this post, an indicator of my current state of mind. Let’s just all hope that the little man is well enough by next week to be able to go on our trip to Florida!

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