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Tuesday, September 25, 2012

I Would Take Her Place

In a heartbeat.  I would take her place.

Since birth, Madelynn has struggled with a huge issue. POOP.  Many of you who have read my blog since February know the battle we have had with her and the poop.  Since birth, Madelynn has always struggled with going "#2" more so than anyone I know. 

Her constipation and poop issues go back to birth.  I have talked to our doctor about it on several occasions.  Madelynn is only three but she poops like a grown man (if I can visualize a man poop in my head, it would look like hers---that is just gross. I re-read this writing and it really makes me gag). 

Although she is now going "#2" on the potty like a big girl, and at least every two or three days (sometimes every day) it is still painful. Either Phillip or I have to help her by pushing her back or tummy to get it out.  She shouldn't be hurting like this, I know. I have tried to explain this to the doctor EVERY TIME we take her in... and...

Finally... finally a doctor witnesses the poop meltdown.  In August, Maddy and I were at the doctor's office getting her physical for pre-school and she had to #2.  She started hitting, kicking, and pinching me.  We walked to the bathroom and she screamed and had a breakdown... right in front of the doctor.  The doctor asked if this happened all the time, and I said not always but when it hurts really bad this is what we deal with.  The doctor finally said, this is not normal but to monitor it to see if it gets any better.

Great.  She is three.  You would think that the pain would go away by now? This kid poops big.  You guys, her poop is so hard and big it clogs the toilet ALL THE TIME.  So, I am glad I get to "monitor" it more.

After going to the doctor, the next morning we headed over to the hospital so Madelynn could have her blood drawn for pre-school.  That afternoon I received a call from our family doctor... I will never forget it...


"Melissa, Madelynn's blood work came back and it looks like she is anemic." 

I said, "How is that possible? She eats well and she gets enough protein." 

The doctor said, "We should monitor it and see if her blood work comes back more normal after she has a bowel movement."

Great.  What could be wrong with my baby?

She had a bowel movement, and again the blood work shows she is anemic and most likely due to other issues besides iron deficiency. The doctor then lists off all of the things that could be wrong... words like Hodgkin's and lymphoma, and Crohn's disease, and a multitude of other things being spit out at me from the other end of the phone... and I sit there in disbelief.

The doctor scheduled us to go in and see a specialist next Tuesday in Iowa City at the University of Iowa Pediatric Specialty Clinic. 

I would lay my own life down to take the pain away from my daughter.  I would rather carry her pain thousands of miles versus Maddy to even have the pain for one more moment of her life. 

Life is so precious.  And even when our kids are arguing with us, being so disobedient, or even hurtful, they are our children and at any moment... we would take their place.  In a heart beat.  That is what a parent would do... unconditional love...

I think part of me is still in disbelief because she is silly, she dances, she laughs... but she does get tired quickly... and her eyes look darker... but she laughs and she talks up a storm (um, last night she used 12 words in a sentence... yes, she did... my little smarty pants).

So, next Tuesday... I wait... one week... Phillip and I will both take off work to take her... her biological father cannot make it for the appointment because he has to work (don't even get me started).   But for now we wait. 

I have faith.  Faith in the swiftness of the doctors at the university for finding out what is going on... faith in God above for watching over my sweet baby, Maddy... and faith that I can be calm and strong even through the scariest of storms.

Please keep Maddy in your prayers as we go on this medical poop journey. 

One lesson learned: Always trust your parent gut.  We took Maddy into the doctor a LOT on poop finding missions... finally, FINALLY someone realized that the issue was more serious than just constipation from a child who doesn't like to poop.


  1. Omigosh! My daughter went through the same thing. I used to get so worried because nothing helped, not prune juice or anything. I remember it would be almost 4 days til she'd go from the last time, and when she finally did go I would have to literally help it out. I used to cry every time. She's 4 now and still has a huge gap in the days she'll go and will still sit on the toilet for a long time but it's not painful for her anymore. I thought I was alone in this! I'm sorry your daughter your daughter goes through that, I know exactly what your going through :(

  2. I think there are more kids out there that suffer from chronic constipation than what we think. When I first started writing about our journey with her regarding it, there were so many people emailing me because they too went through the same thing or are going through the same thing. I wish there was a parent's guide to poop that we could read... lol!