Families logo


The True Tale of My Son

By Dawn WestPublished 6 years ago 7 min read
Ian at 2 weeks old

We knew something was not quite right with Ian as soon as I started getting induced for delivery. Ian was running late, which would be the story for his life thus far. The first in a series of decisions that would define his early life, the delivery of newborn Ian was hard. Neither of us were ready. Ian didn't want to leave his comfy place and I did not feel the need to urgently push with him as I did with my daughter. The nurse settled that by urging me to push, even if I was not ready. Ian's birth was hard for him. I will explain the lasting effects of this further in the story. The doctor was mad at the nurse for the hurried pushing. I was grateful to be out of labor. Ian seemed OK at the time.

The next day Ian and I were both tired, but I was met with worried looks from the nursing staff. Before long, they explained that Ian's diaper from the night before was stained a tinge of pink. Not a good sign for a newborn. Ian had to wear a stick-on urinal cup to collect urine for testing. If he had crystals in his urine, as they suspected, we would be in for a fight. I was discharged but Ian was not, so I was allowed to stay in the same room as before. We waited for Ian to produce urine. Then we waited for testing to be done.

After three days, Ian was cleared to come home. He had a tiny amount of blood in the urine from being squeezed during delivery. This would be the first medical hurdle jumped as far as Ian's health was concerned. I was grateful to finally have him home so we could settle into being a family of four now. I had a young daughter that also needed my attention. Life was good for about two weeks before Ian hit his next roadblock to good health.

Ian At 6 weeks old

I breastfed both my kids. I was not a champion at breastfeeding, but I felt that both kids needed the benefit of protection offered from breast milk. About two weeks into breastfeeding, Ian would start screaming after each meal. We consulted the medical staff. They suggested putting a thick blanket over our arm and resting Ian's belly directly on the blanket to help relieve the pain. The nurse practitioner thought he might be an extra gassy baby. This worked moderately well, but I still sought a second opinion from his pediatrician. The pediatrician suggested switching off of breastmilk to a partially broken down formula that would be easier on his belly. I felt bad about no longer breastfeeding, but after a couple of bottles, Ian seemed to gain weight, sleep better, and digest fine.

Everything that I have explained thus far has been linked to his difficult delivery. I just couldn't see it yet.

Ian, growing like a weed at 6 months old

After the breastmilk incident, Ian seemed to be thriving. All of his neurological development had been great. He had been hitting milestones as anticipated and we were really meshing as a family of four.

Then when Ian started crawling, he hit his first physical developmental delay. Internal Tibia Torsion was the name of Ian's first skeletal deformity. It is a condition where the Tibia (lower leg bone) twists inward on itself. It can be common for kids to have early in life. Ian's was a little worse than normal. It looked painful for him to crawl and walk. Upon the suggestion by Ian's pediatrician, we took him to a pediatric bone specialist who measured the bend of his bones. Ian narrowly avoided the straightening surgery by a few degrees and the specialist assured us that he would grow out of most of the condition. We came home happy that Ian had avoided yet another medical procedure. Ian still has slight Tibia Torsion, but the worst of the bending was gone by age four.

My walking man was a cowboy for Halloween

Have we spotted a pattern yet? Emmy, my daughter and eldest child, is a robustly healthy kid. She overcame RSV at two months of age and said goodbye to bad health. Ian, on the other hand, gets plagued with small medical issues. We thought by the time we reached Ian's first birthday the health issues would be gone. Ian had done awesome up until about two years of age. His legs were straightening and he was not have any major digestive issues. And then at a couple years of age, Ian's hard delivery would catch up to him.

Ian started having a myriad of health issues; congestion was always present, pneumonia, bronchitis, many upper respiratory infections. On top of these issues, Ian had many skin issues: bad reactions to bug bites, cellulitis, ringworm, and impetigo. Ian also had shoulder blades that were at least three inches out of symmetry, with one noticeably higher than its twin. Ian would come to me for back rubs daily, complaining of pain. I would do what interventions I could for him at the time and they seemed to help for the short term.

I was going pretty crazy trying to get any kind of medical diagnosis. Our local allergy center was not the right fit for us. They ran a 60 needle allergy test, pulled blood for a cancer diagnosis. None of these tests were positive and we were desperate to see why Ian was so sick with this many things.

My four year old looks so healthy! At this point, he was complaining of pain daily.

Two things happened around the time of Ian's third birthday that changed Ian's health for the better. At this point, Ian's poor health and DAILY complaints of pain have been consistent and constant. I took a phone call from my mother who suggested Ian see a chiropractor. She recommended the one she was seeing and we still see him every two weeks. The second thing was: I got pissed off at the ability to receive any diagnosis from our local allergy clinic. I told the allergy clinic in our town to transfer Ian's records to his current allergist at University of Michigan Hospital.

The chiropractor explained that since Ian's birth was so difficult he had pinched nerves in his back from birth and was majorly out of alignment. This unaligned system was causing DAILY severe pain and a lack of feeling to the bladder. Ian was still in a diaper at age three because he never felt the urge to urinate.

The chiropractor then told me that Ian was the most misaligned kid he has ever seen and for Ian to complain of pain daily it had to be really bad. Trust me, I cried that day. Hard. I felt like the biggest loser: "non parent of the year!!" When I was done crying, I also felt relief for Ian that at least some of his conditions were getting resolved.

By the second chiropractor visit, Ian's bladder nerves were unblocked. For the first time, he knew when to use the bathroom. I never had to potty train him. He just knew when to excuse himself for the restroom. After two months of chiropractic treatment, I had a more joyous, energetic little boy! I never knew that level of energy existed in such a little person.

Ian next to his obsession! Trains!!

After getting Ian's structural disorders figured out, we saw his allergist for the rest of his breathing and skin issues. I love his doctor! She has worked with both Ian and myself since the first visit developing treatment plans for Ian. He was diagnosed with moderate asthma. After some medication changes, Ian is a tightly controlled asthmatic on two daily medications. She has hopes he will grow out of it when his lungs are stronger and bigger. We are also hoping for this day, but if that does not happen, we can handle it together.

As for the bug bites, his allergist is still figuring that part out. At least once a summer, Ian has to visit the hospital for treatment. Once he is bitten, Ian will swell up and the tissue will not return to normal.

Ian bit by a mosquito last summer.

As you can see in the picture, Ian was bit by something. My husband and I saw it happen. Ian was bit by a mosquito. As soon as we walked the 100 yards back to our tent, Ian's face looked like this. It is not with every bite, only certain ones, but this does happen every year. We are hopeful for knowledge of a cause as this type of swelling always requires a steroid to kickstart his own immune system into working.

So that, thus far, is the medical part of the full story of my boy. Ian is a sweet, funny, cuddlebug who loves trains, his friends, and family. I wish his beginning story were different, but it doesn't define who he is right now. Now, we have more good days with perfect health. If we happen to have any bad days, we handle it as a family.

It felt good to write the story of Ian's beginning. The story has been wanting to come out and be told. It is cathartic in the way you look back at a long journey and see how far you've come. Until next time, I hope you hold your family dear and maybe write part of your own journey.

The fam!


About the Creator

Dawn West

Hi there! My name is Dawn and I have forged an alliance with writing. I am a mother of two crazy kids. I am also a licensed nurse and practice aromatherapy. You can view my blog Oilwitch here: oilwitch.wordpress.com

Reader insights

Be the first to share your insights about this piece.

How does it work?

Add your insights


There are no comments for this story

Be the first to respond and start the conversation.

Sign in to comment

    Find us on social media

    Miscellaneous links

    • Explore
    • Contact
    • Privacy Policy
    • Terms of Use
    • Support

    © 2024 Creatd, Inc. All Rights Reserved.