SOMETHING’S NOT QUITE RIGHT
March 2009: Paige does lots of screaming and shrieking and much of the time I cannot discern the reason. Her moods are often bipolar; shrieking with laughter one moment and in tears the next… It’s hard for me to be sympathetic when she’s obviously upset about something as stupid as taking off her bib. Why can’t she just chill?!
A patchwork blanket lays on the floor and I toss a teething ring, a rattle and Paige’s beloved blanket on it. Paige is almost seven months old and still cannot roll over. I put her down on her stomach to strengthen her neck and shoulder muscles, and hope today will be the day she rolls over.
Or at least stay on her tummy long enough to do a couple of baby pushups.
It takes less than a minute of laying on her stomach and one half-hearted attempt to push up before she lets loose with an intense, high-pitched scream of protest, which turns into muffled crying from her inability to keep her head up.
I keep her that way a couple more minutes, hoping she will try again. She doesn’t. I turn her over gently and her moist eyes accuse me of doing something I know she hates. My eyes fill with tears too.
I probably didn’t time things well. This morning she had constipation that resulted in a rock-hard bowel movement accompanied by screams of pain. I’m not sure what is worse, the constipation or the acidic diarrhea that results in a horrible rash despite how much cream we apply.
Theodora had warned us about these things; however, we have other concerns. Paige is averse to baths. She hates having her diaper changed and protests when we pull clothing over her head.
Andrew agrees that there’s something more going on than drugs being flushed out of her system. Our concerns prompt a phone call to her pediatrician, who in turn refers Paige to a specialist.