Thursday, April 22, 2004

Mashed Banana, Mashed Banana*
*the blog entry title only a parent could love -- or recognize!

Manicotti. Corn. Plain pasta. A frozen banana, pulled off its stick and pulped but hardly eaten. Red Gatorade for rehydration; syrup peaches for desert.

It's hard to forget the red Gatorade. Or the peaches.

The rash started just above her diaper line two nights ago -- the day it suddenly hit ninety. We thought it was heat stroke at first.

Then it spread to her thighs, and up her belly. Thanks to the graphic wonders of the misinformation superhighway, by last night we thought the now-heavy anger blotched across her tiny legs and body was rubella.

This afternoon, the doctor said that as long as there didn't appear to be itchiness or bruiding, the rash was likely viral, and would have to run its course unassisted. Had there been any other viral symptoms -- fever, or loose stool? We allowed as how there was a few more slightly looser poops than usual today, and left the office feeling reassured.

She didn't start spewing until after her bath. For a while there, it was a like a neverending slasher movie: just when we thought she'd thrown it all up, she'd prove us wrong with a belch and a vengance.

For the last hour and a half, she's been clutching her stomach and groaning tummy hurts. Darcie rocked her by the window, and fed her ice chips, and stroked her brow. Later, she fell asleep on her mother's breast listening to Julie Andrew sing to Kermit on the television, and staring at me.

When it comes out, it's red, of course. Red, and everywhere bright with yellow cling peaches.

How dare her illness be beautiful, and simultaneously so heartbreaking. How dare her body betray us, make us helpless. It's so disempowering to want so much to take on her discomfort.

posted by boyhowdy | 7:39 PM |

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