My sweet Lovebug has been sick for a couple days with allergies. Nothing major for most people…a little runny nose, a few sneezes & sniffles, and some coughing. However, for a kid with SPD, it makes everything seem so much worse. That barely there runny nose feels like someone smeared Vasoline under your nose. The cough has made her throat hurt like what I can only imagine sandpaper on my tonsils would feel like. She also really got down because she thought she was the only one dealing with these allergies. No one else ever gets sick like this! As hard as it is to believe, she really had it in her head that she was the only one this was happening too. This is something she does…she gets fixated on what’s happening to her – allergies, a paper cut, a blister – and she thinks she’s the only one this ever happens to. Like she’s got the market on complaining about this particular ailment. But, it’s not in a drama queen sort of way…she really feels like it’s only happening to her, and she gets frustrated and confused about why no one else is struggling with this. Once I remind her that lots of people deal with that issue, and assure her it’s “normal”, then she’s more able to move on.
We are a very natural remedy kind of household, so I’m breaking out our favorites for these symptoms. Warm lemon & honey water to drink, spoonfuls of honey to help the cough, Ricola cough drops to soothe the sore throat, Vicks vapor rub, and lots of water and rest. Normally we can knock out sinus and allergy trouble quickly this way.
Yesterday went great. She drank the lemon & honey. She loved the smell of the Vicks so much that she didn’t complain about the feeling of it on her chest. We made some progress.
Today was another story. After a night of restless sleep due to coughing, a busy morning at church, & an entire afternoon of coughing she was worn out physically and mentally. We had a meltdown in the bathtub tonight because she couldn’t get the lid back on the bubble bath. (Did you know that the “Lefty-Loosy, Righty-Tighty” thing only works if you are looking at the TOP of the circle you are turning….not if you focus on the bottom of the circle! Go ahead, look for yourself.) She was frustrated…and tired…and frustrated….and tired…not a pretty combination.
We finally got out of the bath after getting the lid on the bubble bath (which was now empty because in all the frustration it ended up floating, top off, in the tub while we were in the next room dealing with the meltdown), got her in jammies, and went to blow dry her hair. At some point during the blow drying, she was thinking about how cold she was, which led to thinking about her favorite feet PJs from the last 2 winters (she didn’t grow much). She asked where they were, and I reminded her that a) they were finally too small, and b) she refused to wear them most of last winter because the seams on the feet bothered her. She started crying sad tears like she had lost her favorite puppy. That ended with me reassuring her that I still have the feet pajamas in the keepsake box, and me agreeing to go to Target soon (tomorrow?) to see if they have feet pajamas in her size that feel comfortable to her.
All good? Moving on….
Time to get ready for bed, but first a nice warm lemon & honey to calm her down and help her throat/cough. This girl that LOVES lemonade started complaining that the lemon & honey was “too tart”. I adjusted it once with more sweetener, but really, it was fine. She was just tired. So I had to put my foot down and make her drink it. It’s SO hard to know when to stand firm with a SPD kid. Is this just typical child behavior, or is this really a sensory issue? Gotta pick the battles carefully. I decided based on her past performance and lemonade consumption that this was just typical tired child behavior and decided to make her drink it. We watched Daddy read a bedtime story on the computer while she drank it. It took a lot longer than it should have, but she got it down.
At this point, it was about an hour after she should have been in bed. I wanted to skip the rocking her in the swing and singing to her so she could go straight to bed, but I know that the change in routine would only cause worse problems than me just sucking it up for another 5 minutes. Again, her sensory issues, and her Aspie tendency to freak out if the routine changes have to take priority. I have to look at the situation and determine if she’s so tired she can’t handle the rocking/swinging, or if it would help. Would breaking the routine cause more problems than dealing with an overtired girl for a few more minutes?
We did the rocking. In the cuddle swing in her room, with me pushing while singing 2 songs. Then to bed.
That went well, but then I put the Vicks on her chest. Last night, this went completely fine. Tonight, the Vicks was too cold, too sticky, & too smelly. I finally convinced her to let it soak in a bit, then wipe it off on the jammies and at least inhale it. After a few minutes of inhaling the vapors, I took her in a baby wipe to wipe it off, and another spoonful of honey for the throat. Probably should have rinsed the teeth after that, but I wanted it to coat her throat too – tough call.
All in all, it was a rough 2 hours. However, I will say that it was so much better than before the gluten-free diet! I’ll be posting more detail about the improvements we’ve seen very soon, but there were so many times during this evening that I thought, “this would have been SO much worse a couple months ago!”. I’ll take it!