A Mommy Blog About Raising Men, Not Boys.
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Saturday, April 22, 2017

Idiopathic Just Means They Don't Know WTF

I got my diagnosis from my awesomesauce new doctor and it was sort of like GOOD NEWS AND BAD NEWS.
Bad news, Chronic Idiopathic Uticaria is the reason I'm constantly breaking out with hives.  It's kind of like well you've got this thing and we know some things that make it worse but not EXACTLY why your skin cells are acting like this.
It's a skin condition not an allergy yadda yadda yadda but things you ARE allergic to can make it worse yadda yadda yadda yadda omg DAMMIT.

The good news, she made a switch up of antihistamines and my regimen and VOILA - it's not perfect but DAMMIT it's better. I'm going from pretty much an all day non-stop festival of breakouts on my skin to a few flare ups a day.

I'll take it.

I'm fighting through the tireds and making it work. It's hard to take antihistamines 3 times a day and maintain an active lifestyle, hell it's hard to just freaking get my ass out of bed. But I'm pushing to make it happen. Allegedly these breakouts will stop.

I'm looking forward to that.


Monday, April 17, 2017

I'm Fine This Is Fine

I've been eliminating various things in a half assed attempt to figure out what I'm allergic to prior to going to the doctor. I'm not sure why, possibly I was going to say "I was having all these hives but I eliminated dairy and now I'm cured. I think YOU owe ME some money."

I mostly eliminated dairy, I quit drinking almond milk. I was actually doing pretty well over two days and then.....ERUPTION.

It's been suggested to me that it's stress. I can attest that sometimes, just sometimes, when I'm stressing the eruptions do flare. I reject this diagnosis.
To accept it would mean in some way my body is telling me I can't do things and I'm frankly not having that. I'm in the "doing things" phase. My stress isn't more than it's been. My stress is equi-stress to any other stress the past few years. In fact it might be less.

I say this with arms and hands and back that are literally ON FIRE while I wait for this fargin benadryl to kick in.

No I reject that it's stress. I want a pill to take or a food to eliminate (please don't let it be dairy) and then, THEN I will be fine and this nonsense will stop. I'm holding tight to that idea.

Also, to this image because it looks pretty awesome.
I'm positive my life is that chill all the time. Stress? What stress...

Sunday, April 16, 2017

The One Where I Overschedule Our Day

You might wonder how many things can a family with four kids do in the course of one day. A good answer is probably one, considering the fact that we have two special little guys who need a lot more help than so called "typical" children. In typical ME fashion, though, I scheduled to run my first 5k ever early in the morning and then attend a Special Needs Egg hunt down in Norcross, followed by the family picnic held by that group.
So first I made my family get out of bed at 6 am on a Saturday to go do this thing with me.
I did a fairly shit job. I'm okay with that. I also never did one before and I'm with acknowledging that I'm not good at this whole running thing - yet. I don't need to be told I'm doing better than the people who didn't even show up. I may or may not be doing better than them, I don't know their story. What I know for real is that I'm a beginner at this and I wasn't counting on doing well, I was counting on finishing. So I made my family get up and watch me do a shit job but achieve a goal - I finished a 5k.
After that we went to Krystal and I ate like I had never had food before in my entire life.

It was possibly the best breakfast I ever consumed - which is completely untrue but you might have thought otherwise had you been there.

The special needs Easter Egg hunt was probably one of the best things ever for our special little guys. They held it in an enclosed baseball field - this helps out the parents with runners - and there were an amazing amount of eggs.

Charlie's MO was to run around and stuff as much candy in his mouth right there on the spot. Louis was charged with helping him actually get some into the basket.

Miles understood the drill more, he remembered, but he didn't really want to pick them up. He just wanted to step on them. To each his own, I supposed.
Julia however racked it up. Even with all three of my little kids getting FULL buckets (Louis is of course too big for such things, he says - although jumped right in to help Charlie) there was a ton of candy and eggs left on the field. The organizers REALLY out did themselves this year. Some years I've been to events where some kids got huge heaping buckets of eggs and other kids got about 6. This wasn't like that - there was MORE than enough for everyone which was so incredibly generous. I know it really meant a lot to the parents like me, the ones whose little guys normally "don't get as much" just because they don't quite understand or aren't able to participate at the same level as other children.

It's just candy and it's NOT important yet - the gesture was massive.
Afterward we went up to the shelter to enjoy the family picnic.
This pic makes me laugh - probably bcse Claire took it and couldn't see what she was shooting. She ALMOST got us!
Hot dogs and chips and wee tiny cupcakes were served and there was great rejoicing. I have to admit, by this time we'd all been up for hours and it was showing. We were getting tired. I considered suggesting the playground to the husband, did suggest it and then he looked at me like I'd lost my mind. We didn't suggest it to the children but beat a retreat to the car after we ate.

We started the drive home - and then Rita's happened. The car is still jacked up from the accident and we haven't been able to get the air conditioning fixed because everything is taking forever. So we were hot. And the car was hot. And the air was hot in the world. And Rita's was on the way home so...
Eventually we got home, and I collapsed asleep like the dead.

I don't think I was ever that tired in my entire life.

Doing lots of things sucks.

But it was totally awesome.

Friday, April 07, 2017

The One With Allergies From Hell

I have had this thing going on for weeks where allergies break out all over my skin. Well, not allergies but rather the result from allergies - rash, hives, whatever you want to call it. I'm allergic to something. Something erupts on my skin several times a day in a most disconcerting fashion. It makes me feel like this.
Ok that's a Fiji Mermaid. But that's about how I feel despite the fact that I have to remain civil and attend meetings and act like a grown up all day. First my skin starts to burn. That's the herald that it's incoming. You can't see it when the burn starts, but I could outline where it's going to erupt based on that burn. Then up it comes, in red splotches, dots, stripes etc. It stretches up and down my arms, my neck, back, legs, abdomen. Hell once it crawled up my neck and onto my face - during a meeting.

I thought my boss was going to have a heart attack, he looked up and said "Oh my god are you okay?" I smiled and glanced back at my laptop, "Yeah it's just allergies." Move forward- nothing to see here.

But WHAT allergy? WTF is doing this to me? I went to my primary doctor and he ran the gauntlet of tests. My SED rates were all nice and low so it's not autoimmune in nature. He put me on three different antihistamines to keep it under control This had the effect of pushing me into a zombie like trance,and doing nothing for the hives.

Well that isn't completely true - I had some serious relief for about 3 days. About day 3 whatever the allergen is said AH HA HERE I AM! Then my arms blew up in deep red burning and itching rash.

It seems likely that's its a food allergy. According to the internets, where everything is true and nothing is ever wrong or blown out of proportion, DAIRY is the most common food allergy because of all the shit they do to fuck with cows and our milk. So...I've given up dairy. I'm on day five I think? I don't know. I'm not counting per se - it's just recent so not hard to keep track of.

Once again I had three days of relative improvement, much like when I started antihistamines. Then yesterday my arms blew up like there was some "Miss Rash of 2017" contest they were participating in. My shoulders and armpits had a go as well. It was delightful.

I'm going to the allergist on the 18th so 11 more days until I hopefully learn something. If she says "contact dermatitis" I'll pretty much throw myself off a building as that's clearly not it. But allergist and dermatologists love to say that. Here, have some cortisone cream. You'll feel better.

It burns and it itches and it looks like shit.  As I lay in bed at night succumbing to the two benadryl required at bed time, I can't help but wonder if this is my new normal because folks if so we may have found the thing I'm not stronger than. I can't sustain with this level of sedating drug inside me. It's exhausting me. I'm struggling.

The Fiji Mermaid knows. That's why she's making that face.

Sunday, April 02, 2017

The Places You'll Go: Go Karts, Bears and Breakfast In The Cold

On the day it snowed it was around 28 degrees in the morning. I don't really remember how cold it was, what I do remember was that we didn't have winter coats with us AND that we decided to go drive Go Karts.
Why? I'm not sure. We went to breakfast and ate it shivering a bit despite the nearby heater. The breakfast place was Gatlinburg famous and the food was really good.
After breakfast we ambled down to a tourist trap to view bears who had an enclosure they were living in. We'd steadfastly avoided such places in the past because who the HELL would approve of such a thing? But then we learned the story, of how these bears were rescued from a HUNTING CAMP where they lived in a special reserve where they only lived there to be hunted. WHICH IS FLIPPING HORRIBLE. Was their enclosure as awesome as living out in nature and being free? Of course not. But there wasn't any doubt that they were loved and cared for - and their enclosure was large and nicely made. So yeah, not the best - but definitely better than what fate had in store for them initially.

Also at the tourist trap we purchased fudge, tervis tumblers and some other stuff. Why is it we have to buy fudge when we travel? Fudge is always the same, always with some sort of "local" flair on one or two flavors right? I wonder why it's a thing but I don't really even care. Fudge is really good.
By the time we were done shopping and seeing bears the snow was not only stopped, you couldn't tell it had happened that morning at all. It was cold but not the worst.

The oldest boy and I drove a car with the girl riding along with me to help me steer. She was tremendously helpful.

I have to say that there was something about flying around that track in the blistering cold, feeling my hands getting chapped and numb, letting the back end of that car get loose as we hit the remaining ice patches, that was in it's way life affirming. I'm alive. We're alive. Feel that wind, let it come so hard it HURTS. Feel the rush as you slide around the corners, as you barely miss your own kid in his own car. Death wasn't there. I'd put miles between me and death.

At least for the time being.

What do we say to the God of Death? 

NOT TODAY.