What's going on with Isaac? [Part 2]

So.  If you're following along from Part 1, you know we're going to try to get Isaac in to see the doctor on Monday.  Monday morning his symptoms (diarrhea, sore throat, hives, joint pain) were pretty much the same, and he had also woken up with really swollen, puffy eyes.  He looked like he had two black eyes, with swelling across the upper part of his nose, sans the bruising.  Mark had been carrying him up and down the stairs, and he needed help even to roll over in bed, because his hips were in so much pain.

Handily, Monday was Mark's day off, which means he stays home with the kids and does school with them and I get to have a break.

I went to a coffee shop and journaled.  I read Psalm 95: 1-7, which brought me such comfort his past summer when I was dealing with some health issues:

Come, let us sing for joy to the Lord;
    let us shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation. 
 Let us come before him with thanksgiving
    and extol him with music and song.
 For the Lord is the great God,
    the great King above all gods. 
 In his hand are the depths of the earth,
    and the mountain peaks belong to him. 
 The sea is his, for he made it,
    and his hands formed the dry land.
 Come, let us bow down in worship,
    let us kneel before the Lord our Maker; 
 for he is our God
    and we are the people of his pasture,
    the flock under his care.

and I prayed through that passage prior to the appointment, trusting in Him, our great God and Creator of all.  I love that last part about how we are the people of His pasture and the flock under His care, and I know that He is trustworthy as our Shepherd during this time of uncertainty.

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[Confession: I don't love taking my kids to the doctor.  My experience with doctors hasn't been great. Ideally, I think physicians should know their stuff, and be able to explain and define things well (and especially to a child; I think it is so important to communicate to a child what is going on, what this is I'm doing and why, etc....), should listen well to the patient/parent, taking time with them and asking questions, they should genuinely care and have compassion, and they should follow up.  (Am I missing anything?)  This just has not been my experience, save one doctor ever in my life.  So I end up frustrated with most visits to the doctor, feeling like a number instead of a person, and disappointed that they seem to be light on the listening and heavy on the prescribing of drugs and getting you out their door.]
Isaac's list of symptoms.   
So I was prayed up going in to our appointment.  Isaac had written out a list of his symptoms to discuss with the doctor.  We saw a new-to-us doctor (because our "regular" pediatrician wasn't in), and I was pleasantly surprised.  He took a lot of time with Isaac, asked good questions, listened well, talked through each symptom at least once, and just seemed very thorough over all.  He ordered up some labs (blood/stool) and patiently talked over some of his concerns with us.  He seemed primarily concerned about the stomach issues and joint pain.  He had checked Isaac's joints, which were "hot" or warm even to the touch.  He talked about it being either (A) an infection or (B) an autoimmune disease, like Inflammatory Bowel Disease, or Crohn's Disease.  He consulted with a specialist and then ultimately referred us to a Gastroenterologist (sp?) at Seattle Children's hospital.  I called my pediatrician friend from the doctor's office for my own consultation, and she confirmed that she thought they were checking out the right things.

We remained to get the lab work done, and then slowly made our way home.  (I say slowly because at this point Isaac is moving like he's a 98-year old man, very slowly, cautious with each step, because every movement is painful. We made it home and settled him on the couch.

That evening the doctor called us (follow up!) and had spoken with someone at Children's and had gotten some of the lab results back (and they didn't point to anything conclusive).  His loose diagnosis after talking with Seattle was the autoimmune possibility (IBD which includes Crohn's is what he mentioned, again.)  Also, he didn't want us giving Isaac ibprofen for pain until they figured out what was going on with his stomach.  And he assured me Children's would call first thing Tuesday morning and hoped we could be seen within 1-2 days.

Monday evening was a REALLY rough night.  Isaac could barely move, and with each movement he was wincing from the pain.  He asked for help to move his arm, roll over, and to bend his knees.  He needed help up from the couch.  Mark was carrying him up and down the stairs.  His throat was really sore, and his hives seemed to be settling down, maybe?  Less splotchy, less itchy.  Still diarrhea, with the gel-like stuff going on.

I couldn't believe how quickly his body seemed to be deteriorating.  It was surreal to watch him now in comparison to the running/laughing/climbing boy he was just days before.

It was really difficult for me to see him in so much pain.  He was a champ, and was more worried about how worried I was for him than he was for his own self.  He kept reassuring me and telling me that I didn't need to worry, that he would be okay, and that "God has my back, mommy.  I'm okay, really."

We barely slept that night.  I set the alarm so that we could check on him every two hours, and Mark and I took turns checking in.  He was awake every time we checked in on him but once.

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[This is getting so long that I'm posting this and moving on to writing Part 3.]


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