Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Photophobic Child

I came across the most amazing blog-y/Tumblr thing today, and it SO struck a chord with us! is, essentially, a running photographic record of . . . well, I was going to say "this guy's son," but I don't think there's any mention of whether it's mom or dad documenting.  It just feels like a "guy" thing.  Anyway, it's a running record of this child and the broad variety of reasons for his meltdowns.  

Now, this hit so close to home because our boy was a disaster for meltdowns.  And he started early--at just a few months old, he began "sundowning."  That's crying from around 5 pm to 10 pm, with NO break, no respite.  He wouldn't sleep, wouldn't nurse, and refused all efforts at calming or comforting.

There no medical issue, at least none we could find.  And believe me, we had him in the Ped's office.  Nothing helped, and it was HELLISH.  We were living with my Mom at the time, and she was working 5 am-5pm.  The screaming was biting solidly into her sleep time.

At one point, we almost wound up in an emergency room in rural Idaho--we were heading up to Ennis, Montana (a little place called the Riverside Outfitters on the banks of the Madison River) to celebrate my birthday and the anniversary of our boy's conception.  Yes, he was conceived on my birthday.  We had stopped the first night in the Challis National Forest near MacKay, Idaho.  Things went great until around--you guessed it--5 pm.  By 9 pm, I was panicked--we were miles from the nearest town, in the middle of a forest, isolated, with a child who just kept screaming and screaming.  He had screamed himself into a sweat, and felt so hot to the touch that I feared the thermometer was wrong.  Finally, four hours in, I told hubby we were going to have to break camp and drive into MacKay, try to figure out where there was an ER.

Yeah, this was before we had a cell phone, and WELL before we had a phone with web access.

About the time hubby had the tent torn down, I managed, finally, to get the boy to latch.  After HOURS of him steadfastly refusing.

And the moment he latched, it was all okay.  He nursed heartily, both sides, and then fell deeply asleep.  He cooled to the touch, and everything was fine.

I know, right?

We finally figured out the "Sundowning" thing--we started swaddling him.  That would calm him enough to latch, and then he'd be set.

But it didn't stop with that.  Oh, gosh no.

Our boy hated having his picture taken.  Any attempt at professional portraiture was met with sobs, struggles, and all-around devastation.  And so we'd be dancing around with stuffed animals and cavorting and hooting like fools, trying to distract him JUST enough so his face wasn't pulled back in that rictus-like scream we so adored.  And it worked, but only just, and only after 20-40 minutes of parental struggles.  And it wasn't just professional shots--any time he sensed that he was, in any way, being POSED, he lost cohesion.  Here are some examples of "caught him between screams/almost looks like he's happy" shots:

Yes, he's crying
Yeah, he was crying here, too
Yep, tears again
Now, I don't want to give you the idea that our boy did nothing but cry.  Gosh, no--we even have some cheery shots of him.  But you had to trick him.  You had to get the shot in on the sly, with no attempts at posing him or setting up the shot.  Like so:

Minneola love

Yam face
While he wasn't the happiest boy around, he was a lot happier most of the time than his pictures seemed to show. 

And these days?  These days, the challenge is getting him to NOT mug for the camera.  He sees the camera, the mouth twists grotesquely, the eyes bug, the nostrils flare.  It's maddening:

But if I yell/wheedle/cry enough, sometimes (only sometimes) I can get something like this:

And then my heart positively sings.

Came across a review today on Epinions, one covering the new (I guess?) lemon-scented Raid.  And I found myself a bit taken aback.  Not because of the review itself--it's a very good review.  But rather at the idea of making Raid (and anything else that incredibly toxic) smell nice.  There's a reason that stuff smells awful--because it's awful for you.  Same with "happy" scented oven cleaners and the like.  When they smell as bad as they ARE for you, it's a good way to remember to keep those windows open and those fans on.  I don't WANT things that can kill you via inhalation to be pleasant to inhale.  Seems . . . dangerous.


So, another pile of steaming woo BS came sliding across my wall today.  This time?  

The dippy "onions absorb illness" crap.  Holy cow!  This has come up over and over, and again and again it's debunked, only to have some woo nard drag it up again.  This time, it's a guy whose woo is so deep it's a miracle he hasn't drowned in it.

Here's the garbage:  

 Wow- very interesting....Everyone should read :)

ONIONS! I had never heard this!!!

In 1919 when the flu killed 40 million people there was this Doctor that visited the many farmers to see if he could helpthem combat the flu...
Many of the farmers and their families had contracted it and many died.

The doctor came upon this one farmer and to his surprise, everyone was very healthy. When the doctor asked what the farmer was doing that was different the wife replied that she had placed an unpeeled onion in a dish in the rooms of the home, (probably only two rooms back then). The doctor couldn't believe it and asked if he could have one of the onions and place it under the microscope. She gave him one and when he did this, he did find the flu virus in the onion. It obviously absorbed the bacteria, therefore, keeping the family healthy.

Now, I heard this story from my hairdresser. She said that several years ago, many of her employees were coming down with the flu, and so were many of her customers. The next year she placed several bowls with onions around in her shop. To her surprise, none of her staff got sick. It must work. Try it and see what happens. We did it last year and we never got the flu.

Now there is a P. S. to this for I sent it to a friend in Oregon who regularly contributes material to me on health issues. She replied with this most interesting experience about onions:

Thanks for the reminder. I don't know about the farmer's story...but, I do know that I contacted pneumonia, and, needless to say, I was very ill... I came across an article that said to cut both ends off an onion put it into an empty jar, and place the jar next to the sick patient at night. It said the onion would be black in the morning from the germs...sure enough it happened just like that...the onion was a mess and I began to feel better.

Another thing I read in the article was that onions and garlic placed around the room saved many from the black plague years ago. They have powerful antibacterial, antiseptic properties.

This is the other note. Lots of times when we have stomach problems we don't know what to blame. Maybe it's the onions that are to blame. Onions absorb bacteria is the reason they are so good at preventing us from getting colds and flu and is the very reason we shouldn't eat an onion that has been sitting for a time after it has been cut open.


I had the wonderful privilege of touring Mullins Food Products, Makers of mayonnaise. Questions about food poisoning came up, and I wanted to share what I learned from a chemist.

Ed, who was our tour guide, is a food chemistry whiz. During the tour, someone asked if we really needed to worry about mayonnaise. People are always worried that mayonnaise will spoil. Ed's answer will surprise you. Ed said that all commercially-made mayo is completely safe.

"It doesn't even have to be refrigerated. No harm in refrigerating it, but it's not really necessary." He explained that the pH in mayonnaise is set at a point that bacteria could not survive in that environment. He then talked about the summer picnic, with the bowl of potato salad sitting on the table, and how everyone blames the mayonnaise when someone gets sick.

Ed says that, when food poisoning is reported, the first thing the officials look for is when the 'victim' last ate ONIONS and where those onions came from (in the potato salad?). Ed says it's not the mayonnaise (as long as it's not homemade mayo) that spoils in the outdoors. It's probably the ONIONS, and if not the onions, it's the POTATOES.

He explained onions are a huge magnet for bacteria, especially uncooked onions. You should never plan to keep a portion of a sliced onion.. He says it's not even safe if you put it in a zip-lock bag and put it in your refrigerator.

It's already contaminated enough just by being cut open and out for a bit, that it can be a danger to you (and doubly watch out for those onions you put in your hotdogs at the baseball park!). Ed says if you take the leftover onion and cook it like crazy you'll probably be okay, but if you slice that leftover onion and put on your sandwich, you're asking for trouble. Both the onions and the moist potato in a potato salad, will attract and grow bacteria faster than any commercial mayonnaise will even begin to break down.

Also, dogs should never eat onions. Their stomachs cannot metabolize onions.

Please remember it is dangerous to cut an onion and try to use it to cook the next day, it becomes highly poisonous for even a single night and creates toxic bacteria which may cause adverse stomach infections because of excess bile secretions and even food poisoning.

Please pass this on to all you love and care about.

And here's the reality:

And the real pisser here?  This guy isn't stupid.  He's not anywhere near as smart as he thinks he is (obviously), he's lazy and intellectually sloppy and taken with things fanciful and--well, and woo-ish.  But he's certainly smart enough to GOOGLE things.  And, really, that's all I ask.  Before you splatter this dull-witted garbage on my wall, take five minutes to research it.


Because, you see, if you don't, then you're the reason why people are getting stupider instead of smarter.  People see your name and assume that you wouldn't lie to them, you wouldn't misinform, that, gosh, you're a smart guy, this must be true!  

YOU.  That's YOU doing that, that's YOU misinforming people, dumbing them down.  So, hey, do us all a favor, would you?


Oh, and since we're here, leftover onions do not, in any way, absorb toxins, biological or otherwise, thus becoming poisonous.  Grow up.


And that's all.  Do me a favor--remember these pictures and the written stuff here is mine.  If you want to use something, you need to ask me.  Thanks.

Do not reprint without permission. © KAQ

1 comment:

  1. Your boy is adorable. Despite the difficulty in getting those pictures, they look better than my nieces incredibly fake smile that she cannot wipe off of her face any time there is a camera near. One of my other nieces? Loves the camera so much that even before she could talk, she'd insist I take a series of photos depicting her various expressions. She's quite the ham, but it raised eyebrows when I had pics of a toddler smiling beatifically in one picture, and rolling her eyes and baring teeth in the next. (her angel/devil poses)

    I know who you're talking about with the onion cure and other recent "woo" postings. He IS smart, and he's a writer, so he ought to get familiar with Google. Worst part about those medical myths though, is that his father is a doctor. Yeah. So he should know better.