Sunday, December 12, 2010

Prisoner of Poop

I am a literal prisoner of poop. Not my own, but Ramona's. (My IRL friends are clicking away now because they are so tired of hearing me talk/obsess/worry over this).

If I'm not sitting around the house waiting for Ramona to poop so we can go somewhere, I'm following her around as she plays (finding a chore to do in each room) so that I can be alert for the change in her facial expression and/or breathing that signals that she is starting to hold it. And if I'm not doing that, then I'm charting when she last pooped, how many times she has held it that day, and tracking the doses of miralax and pediatric milk of magnesia.

And if I'm not doing that, then I'm feeling anxious, or worried, or angry that this issue occupies so much space in my brain. She's had poop issues since she was 11 months old. Seriously, it makes me angry to see how long we've been dealing with this and I haven't fixed it yet.

Yes, you read that right. When it comes right down to the nitty gritty, I hold myself responsible. And man oh man, is that ever a lot of pressure on myself.

I do have moments of clarity. Within the past few days I thought to myself "It's not my job to fix this, it's just my job to manage it" and that offered some relief. But then I find myself slipping into another room to sob quietly for a few minutes because she hasn't pooped in 3 days and yet again she was holding it in while sitting on the potty.

I have been to visit my old counselor because of this. It's that bad. I needed to try and find a way to let go of my bad feelings because I can't fix/control this.

"Don't worry about it?" you say ?

How about a distended colon in a 3 year old ? Is that cause enough to worry ? Luckily, she doesn't have that yet, but she could.

I have gotten lots of wonderful, wonderful, desperately needed sympathy and advice from friends and family. Her teachers at school are very accommodating in working with Ramona (and me). This will just take time.

I know how important it is that Ramona not pick up on my tension. Most of the time I do a fairly good job of that. She still poops in her pants a fair amount (a result of trying so hard to hold it but not being entirely successful since the force is so strong) but I have such a good system for washing out dirty underwear, it doesn't bother me much.

What is reassuring to me is that I have maintained some of my sense of humor. Exhibit A:
Ramona (and Beezus) like maps and Ramona's newest thing is to look at her poop and describe what state it looks like. So, I tell her that if she wants to make Alabama instead of Florida then she'll have to push out more poop.

Search: pediatric constipation toddler baby holding poop


AwwwTrouble said...

I like your mindshift. I wish, for your sake, it was as easy as the eating part - your job is to provide the food, their job is to eat it. A little more complicated with the exiting part.

(Not) Maud said...

Could you just put her back in diapers for a couple of months to take all the pressure off everyone? I know it feels like defeat, but maybe it would give you all a breather.

But I so sympathise. We're really only coming out of the dark days now over here.

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