Monday, December 3, 2018

Matteo's Neck Pain

Tracy: We found ourselves in the ER this afternoon after picking up Matteo in tears unable to move his neck. My mom-gut told me muscle pain but his hysterical cries and unwillingness to move his neck warranted a call to the pediatrician, who sent us to the ER. Fast forward... the doctor came in, examined him, and said all the blood work looked good, so muscle spasm is the diagnosis. At this, Matteo’s entire body relaxed and he murmured, “So I don’t have to have brain surgery, I don’t have Chiari?” The ER doc looked at me like what the heck and I had to explain his little brother has Chiari Malformation and just had decompression surgery. Never once did it cross my mind that Matteo thought his neck pain meant brain surgery, chronic pain for an unknown time, headaches, wheelchairs, etc. The anxiety those thoughts caused him must have escalated his pain beyond what he could handle. This is what the books don’t tell you when raising special need kids with siblings. How the siblings suffer, how the pain of their siblings becomes their own pain. And they worry about things other kids wouldn’t even have knowledge of. That a simple neck pain or head ache is no more than that, but a child who has watched his brother live in pain and under go so much, these simple symptoms become very scary. One co-pay and an afternoon later I now know I need to check my kids anxiety and see what is contributing to the pain before rushing off to the ER. #chiarimalformation #thingsthebabybooksdonttellyou #inthisfamilynoonefightsalone

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