Turtle had a hospital appointment yesterday. It was an 8am appointment in Omaha, which is an hour and a half from here (in our van, faster with a different vehicle probably). We dressed the kids the night before so we could carry them from the bed to the car in the morning without too much bother.
The Infectious Disease Dr told us his labs are looking good and since his knee isn't as swollen, she thought it was time to take his PICC out. I didn't want to believe it, it seemed to good to be true. The IV treatments had been taking over our lives. Through the day and night, trying to get him to stay still on the bed while I pumped the meds through, an hr and half at a time. And all the home nurse appointments, dressing changes, blood draws were all getting old. His skin is so red raw from the dressing, it looks horribly painful and he signs sore next to it a few times a day.
So when they took his PICC out and sent us out with oral antibiotics to give him 2 varieties, 3 times a day for 2-3 weeks, I skipped into the waiting room and greeted Rene with a huge grin, singing:
I've got no strings to hold me down
To make me fret, or make me frown
I had strings
But now I'm free
There are no strings on me
I was so happy to be done with the tubes and the pump and the syringes. I was elated.
The feeling lasted until I attempted to give him his first dose of clindamycin. They gave him it in capsules to break apart and put in food to disguise the flavor, apparently the liquid tastes worse.
I am telling you now, I can't believe it's true because I highly doubt it's possible for anything on earth to taste worse. This is the most disgusting substance known to man. I'd rather drink a pint of gasoline than to take a dose of clindamycin. I'm not exaggerating.
I was singing to myself, unknowing of the trauma I was about to encounter, mixing up a pot of organic butterscotch pudding to put his capsule into. Turtle was resting on my hip watching me stir, inhaling deeply while puffs of sweet fragrance drifted up to his nostrils. He was kicking his legs, staring at the pot and vocalizing his approval, "yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah YEAH!"
Finally it was ready and cool enough to eat. I put it in a bowl while his patience wore completely out and drool formed in his mouth. Then I opened the capsule and poured it in his bowl. There was a little of the power left, I wanted to test its potency so I put a tiny bit on my finger tip and tasted it.
My tongue immediately reacted to the assault and began trying to make me gag. My eyes almost burst out of my head from the pressure it took to stop me from yelling out in disgust. It seemed that the whole room air was filled with the most intense foul, bitter flavor that I was hopeless to get rid of. In desperation, I began throwing miscellaneous food and drink items in my mouth. I brushed my teeth and swished mouth wash around. But everything I tried tasted like clindamycin, it twas as though I were piling more of the stuff in there with every new attempt to flush it out. The flavor hung around for a few hours yet.
Sacrificially, I tasted some of the medication-from-hell/pudding mixture. It was at least as vile as the initial fingertip sample I had endured. I added tons of raw honey....nope, no improvement. Half a bottle of maple syrup. This is one expensive bowl of pudding! Still just as offensive. The stuff is sharp enough, it will penetrate any flavor. It's undefeatable and nondisguisable. It's the super bad guy of yucky, no no, it's the super hero good guy, because the good guys always win and clindamycin will not be conquered.
I managed to get him to take 2 bites of the stuff, by some miracle. And that was all he was going to open up for. I seriously don't blame him. You can't imagine how disgusting this stuff is.
So today is the start of a new era. Administering drugs through the PICC is a thing of the past, replaced now with trying to force this stuff down him for the next 2-3 weeks, 3 times a day.
We bought tons of unhealthy, strongly flavored and sugared food we'd never give our kids otherwise.
This morning I tried splitting it in 3. One third went into the nutella, another into apple sauce and the last into chocolate pudding. Bless his heart, he tried 2 bites of each of them. I don't know if he'll ever trust me to feed him again. But he'd better, because he's just about due his second dose...
If anyone has any tips on how to make this stuff more...survivable, please let me know and I'll love you forever (how's that for motivation. Everybody needs love). Cause the way it's going just now, he's missing a lot of doses, which is not a good situation. And this might very well put him off of eating ever again, which wouldn't be great either.