Because I know you are all dying to hear about this. In fact the only reason I am posting this is because 'tis the season for all things flu and yuck and I thought I might be able to help someone else out who might be going through something similar. If you don't have kids at home who might or might not come down with the flu this season feel free to just skip past this entire post.
To recap: The Girl as had horrific diarrhea for the past...um...today is day 6. And when I say horrific, trust me, I mean it. Explosive, water type yuckiness that happens three to four times a day. No fever and for the most part she is acting mostly normal. She is a little more clingy and whiny than usual and for sure she has less of an appetite than normal, but other than that, when she isn't physically pooping, she seems to be okay. In terms of the poop (so sorry...) what has been happening for The Girl is that she starts to cry and asks to have her diaper changed. Generally at that point there is nothing there to change. But about 10 minutes after that happens she bursts into tears and starts screaming, squats down and has "a blast." It literally puddles at the bottom of her jammies if she's wearing them, and if not, then physically goes to the floor. Good times...
So that has been going on for 6 days now and after the fourth time yesterday I decided that I was going to bring her into the doctor to test for allergies or something. This happened at the end of September/early October so this was the second time this type of thing had happened with her and I wanted to make sure that I wasn't giving her some food to set it off, or doing something else that was causing it. Plus I was getting worried about dehydration given that she absolutely refuses to drink pedia.lite, or Gator.ade or any of those other things they recommend and I was sure she was losing weight. So I called the doctor this morning and they said since it was the second time it has happened and we were on day 6 to bring her in.
Bottom line: Stomach flu. As someone who really hates barfing I can thank my daughter that she doesn't seem to have that type of flu. But that appears to be what this is. The doctor said the things to look for and/or worry about are blood or mucus in the stool and dehydration. I asked him the signs of that and he laughed and said, "She's fine. I heard her screaming all the way down the hall. She wouldn't be doing that if she were dehydrated." Point taken. But apparently the signs to watch for are obviously no urine output, lack of saliva in her mouth, chapped lips, no tears...that kind of thing. I asked about the B.R.A.T. diet and he said it doesn't make it go away it just sometimes helps the symptoms. So give her mild stuff to eat but I don't have to be totally anal about that diet (thank God, she HATES it). He said to basically leave her alone in terms of eating and let her do her own thing. Her body will send her cues. Put out a bowl of toasted "O's" and let her snack on them. But don't bug her to eat. Think about how we feel when we have the stomach flu and realize we don't want to eat at all; she probably doesn't either. If she is freaking out about wanting her milk and it doesn't seem to make things worse then let her have milk. But basically it just needs to run it's course. And sometimes this can take up to two weeks.
I asked about having to keep her home from daycare (!!!) and he said she was probably only contagious for the first few days and since we are on day 6 there is little chance that she is giving it to the other kids at this point. So anyway, he won't start worrying unless there's blood or mucus and/or it lasts more than 2 weeks. So continue on, business as usual. Anyway, like I said, since this is cold and flu season I just thought I should post this so that if someone else is dealing with their kids yuck-fest maybe this can help them know what's going on. Hopefully she will be on the mend soon.
PS--To my regular commenter who asked how her daycare would simply change her outfit four times full of poop and not call me...well I had warned them about what was going on and told them to call if she was upset or cranky or causing them too much work, or lethargic etc... And since she was acting perfectly fine in between bouts of poop, they went with it. And I'm fine with that. They know her very well and love her and I trust they would call me if she was in trouble. I am grateful that they are still willing to take her everyday given that she is a walking poop machine. And of course I knew getting into single motherhood that there would be days/weeks like this and I would NEVER change anything for the world. I adore my kids and don't ever question the bad with the good. But I also don't want to sugar coat things either and there are times when it really IS tough to be the only one in a house with two kids when one of them is sick. And I try to keep it real on my blog so I was simply expressing that it had been a LONG weekend home alone with both of them.
Here's hoping all of your kids are flu and poop free all winter long! :)