When I was young, I always dreamt of having lots of children.
I dreamt of my boys picking me flowers, playing Matchbox cars on the kitchen floors, wrestling in the living room, pillow and blanket forts, and jumping in mud puddles.
I dreamt of having little girls who would play with dolls, prance around dancing from point A to point B with Barbies in tow, who’d like pretties in her hair, tea parties, and a love of crafting and coloring all day long.
I always imagined my children being a lot like me, mannerisms, likes, tastes, wanting to do things with me, by my side. Being mommy’s big helper, stirring the sauce, mixing the cake mix and licking the spoon.
And while most of the above has happened, and is true, I never, ever, not once considered the bad I could pass onto them, too. The asthma. The allergies. The seasonal gunk and chronic sinus/bronchial infections. I’ve diseased my poor children.
These past four weeks have been BRUTAL for my babies. My poor kindergartner has never been this sick in her entire life. Since she’s started school, she’s brought home everything there is to bring home, much like my third grader when he first started school.
Yesterday, at their doctor’s appointments, the doctor heard her wheeze when listening to her chest, and I nearly died. Her coughing had gotten progressively worse with the downturn of the temperatures, and he decided that maybe she was ready to start an inhaler on top of the allergy medicine she began two weeks ago. She is now just like her older brothers.
I felt my eyes getting wet in the office. She touted it from the rooftops, though. “I GET AN INHALER LIKE BROTHER!??!!”
So proud. So much like a ‘big girl.’ Except she has no idea how this is going to affect her life, her children some day, too.
Excitedly, she asked for it this morning. “IS IT TIME FOR MY INHALER, NOW!?! Like brother!?”
And, together with her spacer, she did a fantastic job inhaling her three puffs. It blew me away how her cough seemed magically nonexistant, both last night and this morning from this new inhaler. I never heard the wheeze, not once. And I feel absolutely horrible that these past few days I’ve spent giving her cough medicine after cough medicine, and it was ASTHMA keeping her from breathing properly.
I, of all people, know what asthma feels like. I have unfortunately passed this unfortunate disease off to them, and I can’t shake this grief.
And as I watch poor Baby V all gunked up, chock-full of teeth coming in and an ear that’s bugging her, hearing her cough and battle with the mucus makes me wonder when she’ll eventually get diagnosed. And what about Baby Dude? He had been prescribed asthma meds for a bout with bronchitis when he was two, will he develop this, too?
I hate asthma. I hate that this is part of the legacy I am handing down to my children. I wish I could shield them from this, I hate seeing them suffer.