Oh My Kate

For Kate, 2014 so far has been the year of viruses. She has had the endless cough (still has it — it’s endless!), random fevers, vomiting, and on top of all that, she’s currently harboring a double ear infection (probably; scheduling an appointment with the pediatrician later today).

She’s been waking up at night; she is still having separation anxiety (if you ask me — again, she is wholly undiagnosed, which means I’m a mom talking out of my ass); behavior is still an issue, but we’re working on it.

Her pediatrician suspects her waking up is probably a form of sleep apnea. Her tonsils are HUGE, and she snores like a grown man when she sleeps. She’s been evaluated by an ENT. His preliminary assessment is that her tonsils and adenoids are going to have to come out, and ear tubes are going to have to go in. She’s on a course of allergy meds to see if that reduces the crud in her head, and it looks like she’s going to get antibiotics if she has ear infections.

She has a follow up appointment Friday to see if anything helped.

She’s missed five days of school (at a conservative estimate) this year. If we decide to have her tonsils out before summer, she’ll miss at least a week.


Kate had non-stop ear infections once she started full-time in daycare. (M was the same way.) In the year after she turned 1, she had at least ten infections — or three or four really long ones. She caught a break in the summer, because she didn’t have the runny nose endemic to children (and especially to children in daycare). But October hit, and she started right in with them again.

She had ear tube surgery the April after she turned 2. And it was like a miracle. The look on her face was pure amazement. She could *hear* things. The world was full of *sound*. At first she started at every little thing, but eventually she got used to this new reality. Her language development exploded. Within two weeks, she went from her occasional word to complete sentences.

Now, I stand in her room at night, and I listen. Children are beautiful when they sleep, in case you didn’t know. Kate is a vision: her smooth cheeks, rosy lips — open so that she can breathe — blonde hair all around her little face, dark lashes resting on her skin. And then she’ll twitch, her snoring will pause, and she’ll toss or turn, snort, and resume her snoring. It’s heartbreaking. (It also drives Flora straight up the wall. If she doesn’t fall asleep before Kate does, she’ll sometimes go sleep in our room. Even earplugs don’t always help. Kate snores LOUDLY.)

Is it too much to hope that having her tonsils removed would have a similar salutary effect as ear tubes? That taking out her adenoids would be as miraculous? I have no doubt that some of her behavior issues stem from the simple fact that she is TIRED. Being fully rested, and, especially, not being in pain from ear infections or sore throats (more from mouth-breathing than infections, but still) could change her world.


I just want her to feel better physically. I worry about my Kate, worry about how these physical issues are effecting her emotionally. I worry about how missing school is affecting her socially, or if it’s having a negative impact on her education.

Of course, Kate sucks a lot of my bandwidth the way she clamors for my attention. Getting rid of her tonsils and adenoids won’t change that, but at least if she’s rested we can all be more reasonable. One hopes, anyway.