Saturday, August 28, 2010

Stop and Go and I Don't Know

It has been a very busy couple of weeks.  School started for both Little B and myself, so it's been very hard to keep up with the things I enjoy like working out, blogging about my dairy-free kitchen and being a generally well-rested person.  Life gets in the way sometimes. It pushes you forward and you just keep going and going and going until something stops you.

Like an intestinal strike, courtesy of Little B's digestive system. 

We were finally getting into a groove when everything stopped. Little B gobbled up vegan lasagna made with cashew ricotta, spinach salads, fruits, veggies, almost everything you'd want your kid to eat.  We'd been on about 3/4 of a teaspoon of medicine for 10 days when everything came to a halt. Her tiny little belly ballooned out like a 9 month pregnant kindergartner. Eight days passed - no poop. Not even a skid mark.

We've been in this situation before, remedied by an adult dose of Miralax daily until things got moving.  So for three more days, we gave her the 4.5 teaspoons of laxative as suggested by our doctor.  She's 5 and weighs 34 pounds.  That's a lot for a little girl. 

Aggravated as ever, we got two appointments set up. One with an Allergist/Immunologist and one with a Surgical Specialist.

ME: Do you do celiac panels?

DOCS: Yes.

ME: At the patient's request?

DOCS: Yes.

ME: Even if the said patient isn't experiencing the "classic" diarrhea symptom?

DOCS: What kind of insurance do you have?  

ME: I will pay cash up front. 

DOCS: Sure. We can do that.  

Strangely enough though, since Thursday, we have had diarrhea. Isn't that lovely? In 5.5 years, the only time she had the Hershey-squirts was once while on an antibiotic for an ear infection.  In the last three days, I've washed out more panties than I care to admit, resulting in the purchase of the most expensive, princess-plastered pull-ups I could find. Thank God Little B doesn't like to have stains in her Tiana panties and understands Mama B can only take so much poop in one day.  I didn't think my gag reflex could take much more.  

When we set out on this venture about 6 weeks ago, my mediocre research led me to believe that if Little B had a allergy it was either dairy or wheat. Based on the fact that a test for dairy allergy will show positive results regardless of whether there has been any dairy intake affected the decision to remove dairy from her diet.  Wheat is different.  If Little B does suffer from celiac, she must to have it in her system to show a positive blood test.  Of course, it is only confirmed by a biopsy to check the villi in the small intestine; six months on a wheat-free diet, then another biopsy to see if the villi have healed. 

Doesn't that sound like a super-fun time?

And, it seems that some celiacs, before they are diagnosed, seem to think they are lactose intolerant or test for a dairy allergy. Their digestive systems can't handle the milk because of the damage in the small intestine. So a dairy-free diet will help, but not cure the problem.  Maybe explaining our initial success?  Who knows...

Of course, maybe it isn't either of those things. Maybe my poor child will have to be on a laxative for the remainder of her life. Maybe she'll grow out of it.

I just don't know anymore...and that's tough for a mom.   

I'm not sure if I can say, "Honey, we'll get it figured out. You will feel better soon!"

In lieu of a cure, I settled for what moms do best...comfort food.

I made Macaroni & Cheese and my own version of LARA Bars, a new family favorite.


1/3 c. walnuts
1/3 c. cashews
1/3 c. almonds
2/3 c. pitted dates
1 t. vanilla
pinch of salt
1/4 c. mini vegan chocolate chips

Grind or blend the nuts into dust.  If you like nuts, feel free to blend a little less and leave larger pieces. Set aside.

Blend the dates, vanilla and salt until it separates into balls. Add the nuts. Blend until well mixed.  Fold in the chocolate chips.

Press into a saran wrap lined 8x8 pan and press until flat.

Let set for a couple of hours. Cut into 8 bars and wrap individually.

Make sure to take some to your darling co-workers who have to listen to you talk about your child's intestinal duress and keep the school office stocked with TP and panties. 

Gotta go...I just heard, and I quote, "I got a great, big poopie out!"

We shall see friends, we shall see.


  1. I hope that last quote from Little B was as accurate as every mom wants from her little poop-less child!

    Sorry for all your troubles. When I was about 5 I started having all kinds of stomach troubles, pains and the like. The drs ran all kinds of tests only to find nothing and my mom stopped them at the barium test and instead took me to a chiropractor. it worked. (somthing about pinched nerves that lead to the stomach and intestines or something).
    I'm not saying that is your kid's fix, just wanting to encourage you that all the time and energy you are putting into your kiddo is so worth it when you finally get the right answer.

  2. Bummer for Daphne and the B's....but AWESOME for me who gets to taste all of your deliciousness and for that I thank you! :) Give Daphne a hug for me! :)

  3. Soooooooo where is my yummy bar???? After all, I am the lucky teacher that gets to spend time with Little B at school listening to her most adorable version of Skinnamarinkadinkadink that I can't ever possibly top!!!! Seriously... Mrs. Brown...this essay brought me to tears. You're an AMAZING mother... Little B is such a blessing to you as are you to her. Keep writing!

  4. Don't give up! Don't ever give up! That's your "Mom Mantra"! Keep on keeping on until you find a doc who will listen. I am still expecting to see you guys on an upcoming episode of "Mystery Diagnonsis". Just this weekend on an episode I was watching, they interviewed the doc who had solved this episode's "mystery". He said, "Unfortunately, a lot of the practice of medicine is treating symptoms. When it comes to a dignosis, we are taught NOT to look for a zebra in a field of horses (it's normal, she'll grow out of it, just give her more Miralax, etc, etc). But sometimes, you really need to look for the zebra." So my friend, keep on zebra hunting!!!