Awakening

by statia on July 5, 2008

If I were to tell you, that after three days, I’ve began to see signs of my son returning, you’d think I was insane. But I have. We have. Both the Meester and I have witnessed behaviors returning and both of us have noticed other things that he’s never done before.

They’re subtle. It’s not like he sat down and started to solve calculus equations all of a sudden, nor is he saying “Oh hello mama, can you make me a sandwich?” It’s not like, as I told my friend Steph (Hi Steph!), I’m standing up at an altar saying “PRAISE JESUS, MY BABY HAS BEEN SAVED!” No, I really have nothing to gain by acting as such, either.

The Mini has always been very absorbed. But because he was on track developmentally and interacting with us (and others), I figured that was just his personality, and to some extent, it is. When he started to walk, he would often ignore us when out in public, and just run. To the point where it wasn’t enjoyable for me. For one, he wanted to run when he still wasn’t steady on his feet and would often fall on his face. I was constantly walking around holding my breath, with my asshole squarely located somewhere in my diaphragm. But eventually, he’d come running back over and throw his arms around my legs. Over the last month, we noticed a change in his behaviors. A lot more tantrums, especially if we held his hand, which he’d never done before. He wouldn’t stop to look back for us if he was running. He started to check out and avoid eye contact. Again, It was slow to happen. Another thing, was that he started sleeping through the night. And I can tell you exactly the last time he woke up crying, which was June 8th. Just two days after his last round of vaccines. Now, most people would say this was just a coincidence, and most people would also look at me as if I was crazy for complaining about something like that. But this was a child who would wake up at least twice a week, upset, and wanting to be comforted. And it’s no secret that napping was an issue. Yet, both of these things changed drastically. He no longer wanted to be comforted to go to sleep at night, and would roll over and go to sleep without so much as a glance as I walked out the door, and I wouldn’t hear a peep out of him until around 8 or so. Napping was much the same way, and when I would go in to get him, he’d rarely look at me and would run back and forth in his crib. I would call his name 6 million times and he’d ignore me. His hearing is fine. He started to get frustrated really easily. Little things would set him off. He started to do things more repetitively (read: OCD) than normal.

Today, the three of us went to Gymboree. Usually, he generally runs around, climbing, sometimes participating, but mostly just repetitively running up and down a particular ramp, or running back and forth across the mat, ignoring me. Something that was normal for him in general, but had become much more amplified over the last month. Today, he paid more attention. He stopped when the teacher held up the red card, and moved when she held up the green one. He actually paid attention, and looked at what she was doing. When I pointed to the bridge and told him to watch his head as he was standing up, he looked up and crouched down. The amount of times he’s actually looked in the direction that I’ve pointed, I can count on one hand. And the amount of times he’s stood up without listening or looking and cracking his head on a hard surface, well, I don’t have enough hands to count how many times he’s done that.

I realize that he’s a toddler and some things are totally normal toddler behavior. I also realize that all of this could be coincidental, and that he could just be hitting a developmental explosion. But I know my kid. And I know that some of these things are things that he’s never had any interest in doing.

And because it was bound to happen, I did get a comment regarding vaccines, from Thalia. I’m not anti-vaccine, which really is nobody’s business. However, I know that people aren’t going to agree with my thoughts on vaccinations. There’s a big divide, between science and personal experience. I’m speaking from personal experience of what I’ve seen with my own two eyes. And no one can change my mind because of that. I refuse to believe that the preservatives used in vaccines aren’t making some kids sick. These disorders are on the rise, there’s no mistaking that and I’m not pointing fingers at one thing. And anyone who believes that the FDA (and their biased scientific studies) is doing what’s best for us, needs to get their head out of their ass. Because for every FDA study that says there’s no correlation, there seems to be one that contradicts that (crackpot tinfoil hat articles linked in google, don’t count) Eventually, we will resume getting vaccines, once he’s better and once we can map out a schedule that we’re more comfortable with.

And I’m not having a go at you, Thalia for your comment. I’m just using it as an opportunity to voice what I’m seeing.

Let’s face it. He’s a little boy. Boys generally tend to develop more slowly and be more rambunctious (on average), and that’s fine. I don’t care, as long as he develops. But he was stagnated. Today, he said the world “yellow” (deh do), twice. I made him repeat it, because I thought I was hearing things. Tonight, he splashed happily in the tub, and then found it hysterical that he could fart. Which he forced himself to do repeatedly, until he pooped in the tub (I had a good 16 month poop free streak). He refused to nap, instead crying hysterically. He wanted to be rocked to sleep. And if all of that is because I’m rubbing some balms on his spine and throwing some cilantro pulp in with his pomegranate juice, then it’s all worth it.

His poop also smells (potently) like metal. That’s no coincidence.

{ 18 comments }

Deb July 6, 2008 at 4:39 am

About vaccines: I have heard (and it seems you are on this track) that the vaccines aren’t all that bad but that some children’s immune systems aren’t strong enough to deal with them properly…meaning spacing them out further than recommended or until they are older prevents problems. I have been lurking since back in the Tampatantrum and BThon days and have read so much about the Mini, I applaud you on doing what you are feeling/know is right for your own child even when it is hard!

Camille July 6, 2008 at 6:30 am

Vaccines aside, I am so glad that you listened to your God given instincts and stood up for your son when the doctors weren’t listening to you. Yay Mini!! So glad to hear he’s turning back into the boy you know him to be.

Merrin July 6, 2008 at 7:24 am

There is *never* a one-size-fits-all answer, and you’re smart to do what works for you and your child.

donna July 6, 2008 at 8:37 am

I was trying to think of something to say in response to your last post when I saw this one and I got chills. I am so glad that you had an idea of somewhere to take him. I think that most people who had an inkling like you did would just not know where to seek out another non MD opinion.

So thank you for sharing this with all of us. Your experiences will undoubtedly help other parents going through similar things.

Out of curiosity, what sort of practitioner did you take him to? How did you find her?

donna July 6, 2008 at 8:41 am

Oh never mind, I just found the link in the other post. Ignore me.

Steph July 6, 2008 at 11:48 am

You know, people are just going to be divided on this one. MANY good folks turn to medication for EVERYthing. PERIOD. They just can’t comprehend others not doing the same. But when you have to include disclaimers and side effects lists that are pages long with drugs you sell, well, anyone with common sense has to wonder if putting something into your body (or your kid’s body) that creates more problems is worth it. If there is an alternate (read: NOT voodoo – lol!) route you can try – why not? Sometimes I think we’ve stopped doing our own thinking on this planet. {Getting off soapbox}

Really, I’m glad you are talking about this and I think it’s awesome that the mini is having such quick results. That just proves that mama’s intuition is for real and makes you wonder about what caused all these changes in the first place.

Tuesday July 6, 2008 at 3:00 pm

I am very leery of vaccines given to my children, I am not against them, but I do think that overloading anyone system with a bunch of toxins before their immune or nervous system is mature is ridiculous and bound to have side effects.
I just broke up with my pediatrician about my vaccination schedule for my baby.
I do know someone in the NY area (I know you are in PA) that specializes in “detoxing” from vaccinations if you are interested email me.

mrs spock July 6, 2008 at 3:49 pm

I am curious as to what the diagnosis of the Ayurvedic practitioner was and the reasoning behind the cilantro pulp.

There was an article in Mothering magazine recently by Dr Bob Sears with concerns about the amounts of aluminum in vaccines, and the lack of studies on how much is absorbed by children when given multiple doses IM.

Suzanne July 6, 2008 at 4:59 pm

I think you should ALWAYS trust your mom instincts, your pediatrician sees your kid for a few minutes every couple of months (at best) so who is better positioned to know if something isn’t “right.”

Your “might help, can’t hurt” approach seems sensible, you have to do what you are comfortable with.

My mother has an autoimmune disorder so I’ve done a lot of reading on immune response as well as autism and vaccines. Gotta say though, I think the aluminum is a red herring just like thimerosol. Babies get more aluminum from breast milk or formula than they get from vaccines. But it also seems like leading theories point to genetic predisposition and environmental trigger being the more likely cause of autism. And perhaps the body’s immune response to the vaccine is the trigger. There’s some recent evidence that this may be the case for children with mitochondrial disorders. The body’s immune response isn’t well understood on many levels (ask anyone who has an autoimmune disorder)

jesser July 6, 2008 at 7:53 pm

I’m glad you’re seeing improvement and feeling good about your decisions. I honestly have no clue what’s best I just think we all need to do what we feel is right for our kids. Kudos to you for sticking to your guns.

Christine July 6, 2008 at 10:19 pm

Momma knows best. The end. Really- we all have to do what is right for our child and common sense and mom’s intuition are truly “where it’s at”. If other people freak out about it, that’s their problem. Don’t ever doubt yourself when it comes to your child (that goes for every parent!). You carried him, you nurture him, you’re the one who knows him best. Health care providers, whatever the flavor are just there to help us determine the right avenues to travel.

Tonya July 6, 2008 at 10:39 pm

I was someone who went for acupuncture twice a week for well over a year while TTC this last time and while gestating Tiny Boy, so I do firmly believe there are other approaches out there that DO work. And very well!

And this might just be totally insulting to mention, but something you wrote struck me about how the Mini lost some skills then seemed to suddenly regain them. I have noticed that same thing as developmental milestones come up for each of my kids; it’s almost as if the entire being is consumed with the conquering of the new territory, then they seem to come back again. This could be part of what you’re seeing, but again, I do think if you are seeing progress with your Ayurvedic doc, then more power to ya! It makes me wonder if I could help my girl with an approach like this. It’s seeming more and more like she might have an ADHD diagnosis in her future, in addition to all the rest ‘o the crap.

You are such a great mom, and an incredible advocate for your boy! I can’t wait to hear how it goes for you.

Helen July 7, 2008 at 7:26 am

throwing some cilantro pulp in with his pomegranate juice

Now I want some pappadoms.

Seriously, if you notice a difference and it’s something as simple as homeopathic remedies, then groovy. It’s not like you’re taping lightning rods to him and having him run through storms, I view homeopathy as can’t hurt/might help, and it sounds like it is.

I wish you luck for your intervention, babe, I’m sure you’re nervous.

Lisa in NJ July 7, 2008 at 10:46 am

Hi,
I’m right next door in NJ, can you please send me the name of your Doc. I’m not sure weather to call her/him a doc, what is the correct term? I would love to do some research and maybe see him/her if they are not to far way. Thanks. :)

Erin July 7, 2008 at 4:14 pm

I don’t know if you’ve read The Vaccine Book by Robert Sears but I highly, highly recommend it. It maps out several alternative vaccine schedules (one of which I use for my kids).

millie July 8, 2008 at 10:28 am

I’m so glad you’ve found something that seems to be helping the Mini. Or that the Mini has hit a good stage. Keep paying close attention, listening to you gut and being a good mom.

Tanya July 8, 2008 at 10:52 am

Yay!!

Also, what does metal-smelling poop mean?

Deltus July 9, 2008 at 10:18 am

I still laugh when I fart in the tub, too.

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