So Evan had rotovirus. Yuck. It started innocently enough--but, just as we were leaving for FL, it got worse. Now, if we had been planning a weekend away, I would have told Chris to go ahead with the girls and I would stay home with the sicko. But no, Chris was going to a conference and I was getting on a plane with two girls and a little boy who was blowing out of diapers like nobody's business. I figured when we got there, he would surely get better and I wouldn't have to worry about it. We got there on Saturday and that night he blew out of two diapers and vomited twice. On me. On Sunday he was a little better and I thought we would be okay for our hugely anticipated trip to Disney the next day (we had reservations for dinner with Cinderella--there was no way Megan was going to miss that!) He was fine for the day, but that night at the hotel, you guessed it...puke-o. So the next day when we got back to my mother's house, I weighed him. He had lost three pounds and was on his 6th day of eating nothing but breastmilk. He wasn't peeing a lot (hardly at all) and now the weight loss. I got very nervous and took him to the walk-in clinic at the local ER. Big mistake.
There, I met by far the worst doctor I have EVER dealt with. Unreal! He walked in and I was sitting there nursing Evan. He said, (with a HUGE air of superiority!) "Your child has diarrhea and you are giving him milk??" I responded, "Well, yes...it is the only thing he has eaten in 6 days, really. He refuses everything we offer."
"Milk is the worst thing you can give a child with an upset digestive tract."
"It is breastmilk!"
"It is basically the same thing!"
"Um...no, it isn't--"
"You listen to me!" (he interrupted) "Is this your first child??"
"Um, no, he isn't..."
"Well then you should know this!"
At this point in the "conversation" I stopped listening. Because when I asked him to double check that there wasn't something stuck in Evan's stomach or perhaps check for some rare intestinal cancer, he told me that there was clearly nothing wrong with him because, "he looks too good." Okay...so you are telling me that my child has a virus and I'm supposed to stop nursing him even though by your own admission, he looks good. When I told him about the weight loss, he said it was all water and that I had to get him hydrated. He suggested pedialyte. When I said Evan won't touch it, he said, "Of course not, you keep nursing him. Stop nursing and wait until he is desperate enough to drink anything." (So you want me to let my sick child scream it out until he desperately grabs for a drink that tastes like sea water??...sure...that won't undermine any trust my child has in me at all--yeah.)
So anyway, after that we left and I had tears of anger in my eyes for a long time after we got home. You've seen those cartoons where smoke comes out of the ears? It was happening to me! I'm in the process of writing a letter to the hospital about the experience--because not only was I treated like the dumbest mother on the planet, but I was told something that was so wrong, it could do serious harm to future patients! I mean, what if I was a first-time mom? What if I went in there with my sick 9-month-old and I was told, in no uncertain terms, that I had to stop nursing until my child was so desperate for liquid they would literally drink anything?? What if I was that uncertain mother who truly wanted to do what was best for her child and actually trusted this doctor to tell me?
Luckily, I'm not that mother and, once it was a confirmed virus and not that rare intestinal cancer I had started to worry about, I took my little guy home and nursed him as much as he wanted. The virus lasted about two more days and he has since popped out of it like a champ. He hasn't stopped eating for the past 3 days and has gained back all the weight he lost and then some.
And the hospital in Dade City is about to get an earful--because I can't imagine someone else having to endure that...or worse yet, actually trusting that.