Well, whatever it is, Sophia awoke with it at 5am four mornings ago. Red welts all over her legs and arms and she was very distressed, scratching and crying and with a horrendously fearful look on her face. I actually relented and gave her boob milk for the first time in nearly a month even though I swore I’d never to do so again, but after an hour of trying to calm her down without any success, it was the only thing I knew to do that would immediately sooth her and of course it did. (Not sure it’s normal that I should still be able to feed after nearly a month of no feeding though, what’s that about?) The doctor said the urticaria is an allergic reaction to something although we know not what as nothing new has been introduced to her in the couple of days leading up to its appearance, and certainly nothing new was introduced to her as we slept in the early hours of the morning, so it’s all very strange.
To take her mind off the aggravation, which thankfully lessened a couple of hours after dispensing the medicine, I have spent ages playing with hats with her. She hates them, it’s wonderful to see. She pulls them off within seconds of them being placed gently upon her head. But I need her to get used to them as the weather has turned icy cold and her health is far too delicate to go out in this weather without a hat on. I did try the tie under the chin type but she nearly hanged herself in her desperation to get it off, so I’ve reverted to the pop it on quickly type that once taken off can be popped back on quickly again. It seems she’s OK if a hat is placed practically on the top of her head and therefore sticks up like a Russian bearskin so long as it doesn’t go anywhere near her forehead or ears. That, however, isn’t conducive to warmth so this week, as well as urticaria attention diversion, I have been attempting to get her used to hats. So far it isn’t working, but from hereon in at breakfast time (or at least until the end of winter) we’re going to play with hats. Mummy’s hat, Sophia’s hat. Mummy wear hat, Sophia wear hat, Mummy wear Sophia’s hat, Sophia wear Mummy’s hat, etc. etc. I, unlike Sophia, love hats. Interestingly, she happily wore my black suede peaked cap even though it was ridiculously large on her – and boy did she look gorgeous in it – and she wore her own hat perched on the very top of her head which looked hilarious, but as soon as it comes to her hat being pulled down for warmth and better fit, it’s off in 3 seconds.
I love that she’s showing tenacious preference for things she does and doesn’t like now instead of simply accepting everything we do. Mum was playing with her on the sofa last night, Sophia sitting between her knees, and she’d spent ages getting a hedgehog ball to light up shaking it whenever the internal light went out. Mum thought she’d be tiring of that game so gave her a computer styled light-up toy to play with instead. The howls and moans that ensued until she was given the hedgehog ball back, whereupon she giggled delightedly and carried on shaking it for the light to come on. It really is wonderful to behold.
This week has also seen a massive improvement on the drinking milk before bed-time situation. Since stopping feeding I have been unsuccessfully trying to entice Sophia with warm milk before bedtime. I appreciate that many people don’t think full-fat cows milk is conducive to a child’s health (and there is a link between copious mucus and dairy products), but I want her to have her Calcium, Vitamin D and fat. She has her healthy polyunsaturated fats in her daily diet, but her Paediatrician has insisted that I boost all her fat intake including full-fat cows milk to help keep some weight on her and build some energy stores to help her through the winter cold season. I’ve been trying. I have been really trying but she’s been having none of it. And the couple of times I have actually made it to choir practice this past 6 weeks have seen me return to very frazzled babysitting grandparents who have had to cope with a crying, screaming might for almost the whole time I’ve been away until she falls asleep in exhaustion. They literally hand a sleeping Sophia to me as they leave (within seconds of me arriving – I haven’t seen them move so fast in years!) not having been able to put Sophia down in her own bed because she has been howling as soon as she has been left and they haven’t wanted to awaken James. Thankfully they adore their grandchildren and keep coming back for more.
The experiments with flavours this week, however, has seen a profound improvement. Chocolate. Of course chocolate, why didn’t I think of that before all the health additives I’ve been trying? She is her mother’s daughter after all!
I’ve tried different types of honey, including the gold-plated Manuka, whereupon she dry wretched in disgust. I’ve tried malt alternatives, sucrose (reverting to the sucrose good for the brain’s development that Granny read about months ago), she spat those out with great gusto as well. I’ve tried natural sweeteners grown only on mountain-tops amongst the rarest eco systems of the world (or that’s how they seem to promote themselves) – yep, they too were projectiled down my front. So tonight I used the old faithful, drinking chocolate. She guzzled away. So that’s it – drinking chocolate from hereon in from her black and white moo cow cup. I might relent and diminish the amount of powder used granule by granule to see if I can wean her off it onto straight milk. We’ll see how it goes.
And whilst there is absolutely no relation whatsoever between the urticaria and the chocolate milk, just the fact that Sophia is settled and contented has made the weird welts almost vanish. Peace at last.