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Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Not for the Faint of Heart

So, Isla June got sick. Like, for real sick. She has been teething all during the Christmas break. One tooth popped up, and then, almost immediately, another was right next to it. She was handling this new transition so well. I mean, she was still doing this whole waking up at night thing,(I promise, we'll get to this) but she wasn't fussy or cranky due to the teeth. Like I said, such an angel.

But then, one night, she woke up and Jer went to get her. He brought her to me, and she continued to be pretty fussy. She typically settles down next to me, nurses and falls right back to sleep. But this time, she just cried and cried. I figured that maybe her teeth were actually starting to bother her, and I noticed that she felt really warm. Yep, temp of 100.0. So, I got out the Tylenol. I thought that this would fix the problem. Nope, still fussy. So I tried a wet washcloth (still thinking it was the teeth). And it worked! She stopped fussing as long as she could hold the wet washcloth. Crisis adverted. But, I did notice that she would stop crying whenever I sat her upright......and remember that fluid in her ears. I was worried....
So, the next day, as we were about to head out of town, I noticed that baby was still fussing, so I convinced Jeremy to take us to the Pediatrician. She still had a temp, and yep, an ear infection. What?!?! I was shocked and maybe a little disappointed. Not disappointed in her. She's perfect. Maybe disappointed in me. I didn't do enough for her to make sure that this didn't happen. My mind was racing trying to think of all the things I could have, should have done. I was a little overwhelmed. The doc was talking about antibiotics, writing a prescription and discussing continuing our travel possibilities with Jeremy. I was still reeling.
Long story short, I decided that I needed to stay home with baby and Jer could head to ATL to see the fam. As I had experienced my own ear infection during pregnancy, I knew how awful that this felt and I wanted to have her safe and comfortable at home to recuperate. I, of course, called Mimi to head over asap to assist in operation recuperate baby.
I gave her one dose of the antibiotics and put her down for bed. and then I started to think.....the infection is in her ear, right? So why am I giving her a drug that is going to kill ALL of the bacteria in her whole body (even the good stuff). Plus, I wasn't sure how I felt about the hot pink bubble gum coloring and flavoring. So, like many moms, I immediately got on my computer and googled infant ear infections, all natural ear infection treatments and the like. And after much research, discussion with my sister, the nurse, and talking it over with my mom and aunt, we decided to forgo the antibiotics. Now, at this point I am sure some of ya'll are balking at this idea. But, we do things a little differently here at the Jenks' household. And I always have to do what makes me feel comfort as a mother, and the antibiotics weren't making me feel so comfortable. Now, just because I wasn't going to give her antibiotics doesn't mean I was just leaving her to figure it out on her own. First, I scheduled a Chiropractic appointment for the next morning. I was hoping that this would relive some of the pain. I was also administering Ibuprofen for the pain, which seemed to help, a little. But, I really wanted to find something to attack the infection in her ear. It seemed like the right thing to do- attack the spot that's hurting. So, after some research, and stumbling across this website we came up with a few homeopathic remedies. And yes, I put onion juice in my baby's ear. Crazy, I know. But, I figured it was just an onion (and it's all I had on hand) and at least worth a try, if it didn't work, I had the antibiotics on hand. But, almost immediately, she calmed down and was soothed after dropping in the onion juice. It was amazing. We were also placing warm compresses on her ear to help soothe her, which was also helping. Finally, little lady could settle down and get some rest. We were up a lot through the night, but she was able to sleep quite a bit, considering.
The next day, we headed out to Chapel Hill to see Dr. Bradshaw and get baby put back together. She confirmed our suspicions that Isla June's neck was severely out of place which was causing the ear to fill with fluid (ie-not drain). So, now we found the problem, and Dr. B fixed it. I'm not going to say Isla June enjoyed her adjustment, but really, she wasn't enjoying anything at this point. I was just glad that we found the culprit. Afterwards, we sat in a solar egg thing that emits rays for cell rejuvenation (essentially it is the good stuff that you get from the sun and not the bad stuff.) It is supposed to help boost the immune system. I figured, what the heck, lets try it. She liked the vibrating and took a nap while in there. It kind of made me think of Micheal Jackson and his cryogenic chamber.....
but anywho, it all worked, because her fever broke and didn't come back. Plus, the fussing lessened quite a bit. She still wasn't eating so much, but I figured that there was still some pressure in the ear. We continued with the onion (and it kept calming her down....). I was really beginning to see that we could get on the other side of this. I was a little nervous there for a while, wondering if I made the right choice. It seems that's all I do as a mother is wonder if I'm doing the right thing. But, ultimately, I know, deep down, that letting her little body fight this off, building antibodies and her immune system is the best thing for her in the long run. She didn't eat to much for about 3 days, but then she got back to her normal, eating, playing, talking, happy self. Looking back, I am so happy with the decision that I made. I'm just glad that she is ok, and I'm hoping that this will keep the ear infections at bay. I definitely don't want her to become part of the ear infection epidemic.
Again, I know that this is rather unconventional, and I know that many people will not agree with me. But, let's agree to at least support each other as mother's, knowing that we each have the best interest in our hearts and minds for our own little ones.


  1. I think it doesn't matter what you do to help her, just matters that you did help her to feel better. I am definitely going to be coming to you for advice. Hope you are all well and healthy now! (By the way, all that vitamin C knocked my cold out in just a couple days and it kept it from getting bad)

  2. Thanks Turner. I'm am always here to chat! You will be the best mommy. So glad you are feeling better! I hope I get to see you and that sweet belly soon!

  3. That's awesome!! I love how you take the path less followed - and it worked! Keep writing these things down for all of us. Happy New Year!

  4. This is great - I had so many ear infections as a kid and even still as an adult, I can diagnose myself. I'll try the onion on myself next time and remember it if my little guy gets infected...


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