Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Drug Reaction

Last week on my birthday, I was delighted to be able to pick up the kids at afternoon carpool, for once.  Until I had to sit in line for twenty minutes.  I was thanking my lucky stars that I had morning drop-off duty, and afternoon was handled by Ike and various other family members.  Until John and Sicily saw my car, and acted like the President himself, or maybe SpongeBob would be a more age-appropriate analogy, was picking them up for school.

Sicily climbed in the back and I asked her how her day was.

"Mom, something bad happened.  I lost my apple because of Julian."

I was alarmed and confused.  Sicily doesn't eat apples.  And even though this was only day two of school, I could tell she had a yen for Julian.  Day one she couldn't stop talking about how funny he was, how weird it was that he ate sushi for lunch, and how he addressed her as "mister."

I asked her to elaborate.  She explained that all the kids have apples on the tree, and if you break a rule, you have to take down your apple and put it in the basket for the day.  I asked her what she did.

"I wasn't listening to the teacher."

"Who were you listening to?"

She sighed.  "Julian."

Tonight, after Sicily and I circled six blocks twice after dinner,  her biking and me running to keep up with her, she was getting ready for bed and I was waiting to read.  All of a sudden she turned around and said,

"Mom, my ear just popped really loud and now it hurts really bad."

Since she hasn't been able to breathe for two days, I was immediately worried.  I pulled out the otoscope, which was handy since I had just used it Sunday to locate a tiny pebble against John's eardrum that had to be surgically removed on Monday morning.  It's been a bad ear week.  I can count on one hand the number of ear infections Sicily has had in her life, and I think it has been a couple of years since her last.  But sure enough when I looked, the eardrum was cloudy and opaque and there was a rim of redness at the base.

Luckily, we had antibiotics handy at the house, and dosed her up.  She was still complaining of pain, and we were out of Tylenol, but I located some liquid Tylenol with codeine at the back of the medicine cabinet that had been prescribed for John when he had his adenoids out in February.  We had filled the prescription, but never used it.  I looked at Ike and said, "This should be OK, shouldn't it?  It'll knock her and the pain out.  I'll get someone to stay home with her tomorrow."  He agreed.

I suspected something was awry when I was trying to read her book.  She likes her reading time, and can focus easily at six, unlike John.  Instead of reading, she wanted to play "Miss Mary Mack" hand games she was learning on the playground, and I remembered most of the words, so I complied.  She kept becoming more manic and confused in her elaborate clapping and crossing gestures, and I couldn't keep up.  When I came back to sing to/with her, she wanted to talk about Julian instead of song, and started telling story after story of their daily interactions, comments, and facial expressions to each other, all the while flopping around on the bed and rolling her eyes around in her head like a possessed child.  After each story she would demand my comparison with loud, clipped speech:  "Now mom!  Which one did ya like better?  Huh?  The one where I sneaked up on him in recess or the one where he looked at me like this in Spanish class?  Which one?  Huh?  Tell me, tell me!  Now, I have another one."  After I put that to a stop, she insisted on song anyway and despite her calm choice, she thrust her foot in my face, insisted I use it as a microphone, and grabbed my foot to sing along a potty humor parody of the beautiful tune.

After I finally thought I settled her down, she started coming out of her room every 30 seconds with a complaint "My ear still hurts!  There is a bad taste in my mouth!"  It was reminiscent of John's worst three year old moments, and very uncharacteristic of her.  I told Ike, "It must have been the codeine.  I can't think of any other reason she would be acting like this.  It's my fault."  So when she collapsed in hysterics on the floor of the den after toothpaste would not cover up "the sickness in my mouth," I finally went in to read and lay down with her until she fell asleep.  As her body twitches announced her entrance into slumber, I sighed with relief.  And vowed that I would never again give her codeine.

I'm gonna have to meet this Julian.


Unknown said...

its been a rough week for the shyder children!

I have a similar reaction to versed - which is weird, b/c it used to not be that way.

Although the taste part is odd - I wonder what that was about.

Gizabeth Shyder said...

It has been. She complained of the taste every minute for almost an hour. I even got her super-sensitive palate to try mouthwash, she was so desperate to be rid of it. You can imagine that just started a new round of spicy, burning complaints.

John was up at 4 a.m. with the same froggy voice she has had for a few days. I kept them both home.

rlbates said...

Hope they feel better soon. Usually it simply too large a dose of the codeine. When my patients react that way, if I half the dose the get pain relief without the other. Tough on adults, must be even worse for your poor daughter.

Gizabeth Shyder said...

Good to know you have experience with this, in your practice.

This morning, when I gave Cecelia her antibiotics, she said "No, mom. No more of that for me."

I explained to her that I wasn't giving her any more of what freaked her out last night, and she sighed with relief. I reached into the medicine cabinet and tossed the codeine in the trash.

christie said...

I so wish you had a video of the foot-as-microphone event. Please update us once you know more about Mr. Julian!

Hope both kiddos are better soon!

Gizabeth Shyder said...

She is truly smitten. She said, "Mom, he makes me laugh all the time." He had her convinced that a boy in the class was his twin. I saw that they didn't have the same last name on the roster and told her I thought he might be pulling her leg. Then she started plotting her own April Fool's.

Her best girl friends are Emory, Morgan, and Briley. She's not totally boy crazy, thank goodness.

ts said...