An Ode to Steroids

October 14, 2009

Oh steroids, how I hate thee
The way you make my daughter acteth like a monster
The dozen of meals I make a day because of you
Make me hate thee all the more.
The kicking, the screaming, the tantrums you cause
You are like an eclipse on the darkest of days
How I hate thee,
Let me count the ways.

Apparently 7 days off of steroids just isn’t enough for them to fully leave Tanner’s system, so now day 2 of this pulse of steroids is really just a continuation of the last pulse… day 9, if you will… which is when all the fun really begins.

Poor Jake said to me today, “Mom, she cares me,” which in Jake-speak means, “She scares me.” He just didn’t know what to do… she would call him into her room to play and then 10 seconds later, scream at him to get out and leave her alone.

On the plus side, she did make efforts to calm herself. She went to her room several times and got under the kitchen table once to try to get hold of herself. By bedtime, she was just a cranky, pitiful whiny mess. John carried her to bed and she lay with her back to him while he sat on the floor and read her a story.

Five more days… we can make it.

She is ravenous, as usual when on steroids, and I am frankly hopeful that she will gain some weight over this week. Her legs have gotten painfully thin and a little buffer to get us through the next 5 weeks of DI would be great.

Yesterday, she ate a corn dog, French fries and a slush at 9:30 am on the way to clinic after having 2 big bowls of cheerios for breakfast. Then, at 12:30 on the way home from clinic she ate another corn dog, tater tots and milk. The nausea then set in and she stopped eating until dinner. Today at lunch, she ate 2 bagels with cream cheese, two gogurts and two helpings of pineapple, got up and cried that her stomach hurt from eating too much. Then, five minutes later, said she felt better and wanted chex mix. I made her wait 15 minutes (really only 10 because I couldn’t take any more whining). Twenty minutes after the chex mix, I came down from putting Jake down for his nap and heard her in the fridge. She was pouring herself a glass of milk and had a cup of goldfish, which she refilled twice over the next hour. I think she is probably about a day away from all-night eating. Insane.

It is a little painful to see her “argue” with herself over the food. She knows that if she eats too much her stomach will hurt, but she is so compelled by the steroids to eat that she literally talks to herself about it. “I’m just going to wait a little bit before I eat this… yes… I’m afraid my tummy will hurt… but maybe just a few minutes, cause I’m really hungry… I really want it… maybe just a few more minutes, etc., etc.”

She takes Dexamethasone, which is 4 times as powerful as prednisone, if you have ever taken that for anything. I have taken the prednisone,and by night 2, do not sleep at all. So far, she is sleeping, but I suspect that will change in the next night or so.

Meanwhile, we’re trying to be patient without letting her get away with murder. She knows that they are making her act bad and she seems very sorry about it and is trying to control it as best as a six-year-old can.

Did I mention it’s just five more days?


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