My daughter is four, and she is a puzzle to me. She has always seemed so strong, so robust, so determined, so healthy (unlike my son). Yet she also shared the repeated summer time flu and frequent sickness of my son up through January of 2009, after which her health was excellent. Despite this, to be sure, we got her tested, and her test results were ambiguous, like his. She otherwise seemed fairly healthy, except for frequent complaints of stomach pain that we tended (perhaps too easily) to blame on her clear wish to emulate her brother on all fronts.
As a result, we decided (with input from the doctor) to do a test on her that involved giving her antibiotics and then testing her urine for lyme DNA. This provocative use of antibiotics normally goes on for a week, but the doctor recommended treating her for a month and then revisiting things. This was because her test results combined with her history were worrisome. Since then she also tested positive for mycoplasma, a co-infection that may be associated with Lyme disease. It was thought that treatment (for a month) was safer than the possibility of Lyme symptoms developing.
At first, treatment went fairly well, with my daughter having a much easier time downing the drugs (at least on the surface) than my son did. However, over the past couple of weeks, she’s had more trouble with it. About 10 days ago, she got the flu and couldn’t hold the drugs down, and after we restarted them, she seemed to get more and more unhappy with them. At the same time, she did not seem to recover her energy, and her belly pain became more and more of an issue. It is so strange to see her actually acting sick, to the point that it sets more than a temporary limit on her activity levels, that my husband and I decided to stop the drugs (without input from the doctor). We speak with him tomorrow and I don’t know what he will feel about our decision, but my gut said that the antibiotics were hurting more than they were helping and I went with it.
What’s particularly unusual about my daughter is that, at a time when my son seems to be coming out of his shell in so many ways, she suddenly seems to have sunk into hers. Normally a robust, outgoing child, right now she desperately needs to be close to us, reacts to even the slightest bump as if she’d drawn blood, and is very fatigued. There are dark circles under her eyes, and tonight she was so tired that she volunteered to go to bed without a book and before her brother, an unheard of event. Even her dreams are plagued by strange worries. Her most recent one shocked me with its darkness — she dreamed that all the creatures on earth (“the people, the animals, and even the gnomies”) were dead. Even more wierdly, it’s as if she’d read my mind — I just finished a book about climate change that sent me to bed with the same worries.
I know about herxing, I know that sometimes you get sick before you get better, but she got better on her own, before we started any treatment, and now she seems worse. It is impossible for me to know what caused anything in her case, and I certainly don’t have any answers except one — with both my children, I have to keep following my gut. I just hope that she recovers quickly, whatever the cause of her symptoms.