Thursday, January 17, 2008

Bye, Bye, Bananas

The probationary period for green beans was over yesterday so we decided to add banana baby food to Alex's portfolio. We were also looking forward to getting him on a three meal a day schedule, and I thought that making him eat peas or green beans for breakfast would just be cruel.

So when he woke up (at 6:40, darnit) this morning, we took him downstairs to eat his first "real" breakfast. I strapped him in and mixed 1/2 a container of bananas (yum) with about an ounce of rice cereal. He always opens his mouth wide at the sight of a spoon, which totally cracks us up. In this case, he didn't even know what the stuff on the spoon was going to taste like and he was still excited about it.

The bananas elicited the usual confused expression that appears whenever something new makes contact with his flavor-deprived taste buds. But he eagerly gulped down each bite, usually opening his mouth for another spoonful before the previous one had even been swallowed.

So he's a fan of bananas, it seems. (Does that make him a "fanana?" Or maybe a "banana fana?" I know, I'm such a dork.) We had an appointment at noon to take him back to the pediatric clinic to get his shots, so when he woke up from his morning nap, I went in to get him dressed. I noticed that his belly was a little irritated and made a mental note, but dismissed it as the result of his jammies rubbing against his belly when he was flailing around in his crib.

I changed him into his new black onesie from Grammy and the [bad apple] lounge pants that Granny B bought him way before he was born. I thought he kind of had a Woody Harrelson/yoga instructor thing going and considered getting him some baby bongos to complete the look. But we didn't have time for that. Once he was dressed, we headed to the clinic. It had snowed a tiny bit last night and it was freeeeezing cold out, so we made sure A was good and bundled.

He really enjoyed watching the fish swim around in the aquarium at the clinic. It was his first time ever seeing such a thing, so I can imagine why he'd be so fascinated.

We waited for about twenty minutes before they called us in. But A was very patient and funny and entertaining, as usual. Poor thing, he had no idea of the fate that awaited him...

We always meet with the same two nurses that run the study - Jennifer and Tiffany - so Jennifer called us back and let Alex know that he must not have prayed hard enough because his medicine had come in, and he would, indeed, be getting his shots today.

When we got to the exam room, we stripped off his pants to expose his pudgy thighs, aka "the injection sites". While Timothy, Alex, Jennifer, and I waited for Tiffany to bring the medicine, I mentioned to Jennifer that Alex's belly was sort of splotchy this morning. We took his shirt off to show her and noticed that the "little bit of redness" had turned into a nasty patch of red bumps. She poked at him for a few minutes, and as we watched, the rash seemed to spread before our very eyes. The little bumps all started to run together to form one giant, welty red splotch in the middle of his belly. The bumps that had not succumbed to peer pressure started migrating up his arms and around to his back. She had a few theories, including banana allergies or a virus, but decided to consult our pediatrician for a second (or first) opinion.

Dr. Silvey came in and took a look at him. The redness and welts did seem to indicate an allergy of some sort, although we all agreed that bananas were kind of a strange thing to be allergic to. Some type of virus could also be to blame, and if so, there was really nothing we could do about it. He suggested that we hold off on shots for a few minutes and observe whether the rash would continue to get worse. It was at that point that I had to wonder...

...were these symptoms psychosomatic? Maybe Alex used his mindpower to conjure up some bizarre rash so that he could avoid his shots again! Maybe he felt guilty for eating bananas this morning considering one of his best friends happens to be a banana (albeit a plush one) and he devised a plan to eliminate bananas from his diet and assuage his guilt, as if the rash was a penance of some sort...or maybe he is just weird and happens to be allergic to bananas.

Whatever the case, the doc came back in after a while, and although his condition had neither improved nor gotten worse, he suggested that we go ahead with the shots since they wouldn't affect nor be affected by the rash. So Alex's plan, if he had one, was foiled, and he ended up getting stuck with needles anyhow. I sat in a chair and closed my eyes while the nurses pricked him and then Timothy got to console him (which is only fair since he is the one holds him down when he gets shot). He cried for a grand total of 3 seconds, only as long as it took them to administer the shots, then he was back to his normal, bubbly self.

Other than his bright red and bumpy body, that is. He kept scratching at it so the doc suggested that the nurses give him a mega dose of baby Benadryl, then advised us to hold off on bananas for a month or so. They also reiterated to call them if it got any worse, like if his eyes started to get puffy. And, of course, to call 9-1-1 if he was coughing a lot like his throat was swelling up and he couldn't breathe. GULP. I had been taking this whole potential allergy thing pretty lightly until I heard that. For some reason, the gravity of the situation didn't occur to me until the words, "nine-one-one" were uttered...

A was practically asleep by the time we got out to the car. I gave him a bottle when we got home and put him to bed, although I was a little apprehensive about putting him to bed...alone...where I couldn't monitor him every second to make sure he was still breathing...But I sucked it up and did it anyway, with the comforting thought that I could check on him as often as I wanted to. And so, that's where he has been for the last three hours. Awww, my poor, sleepy, drug induced baby...


Looooonnng story short, Alex had bananas, liked 'em, got bumpy, went to get shots, got bumpier, got shots, stayed bumpy, got drugs, got a bottle, got some sleep. So hopefully he will awake refreshed and bump free. BTW, tomorrow's breakfast will be pears and rice cereal...

2 comments:

Chatter said...

Just letting A know that I hope his belly is feeling better and the shots aren't bothering him too much. He's such a good baby. Although I'm not sure I'd enjoy those early mornings of yours :)

Have a great night!

hillarykey said...

I hope the rash has disappreared. I am sorry to hear that bananas might be absent from his diet. However odd it may seem, I am sure this too shall pass.