July 2009


Iris has been learning to walk for the past two months and now she is getting better at coordinating her legs, steps and her shoes.  I have bought her several pairs of walking shoes that often end up biting her tender feet and after the excitement of walking (and kicking and stomping on a dead dried lizard plus some attempts to pick up disposed stuff on the road), my heart ached when I saw these red marks on her tiny plump feet but she doesn’t seem to mind. Bad shoes! Bad shoes! And often I ended up looking for something more delicate for her feet.

Mind you, she refused to walk unless she has something to hold on to — my hand, her nanny’s hand, plastic chair, my computer chair and her beloved grandma’s wrinkled fingers. Heheh.  I believe she can walk on her own now but she just refused to try harder.

And when she walks, she walks with her belly forward, not looking up (instead looking at the ground where she is pacing) with very big steps — as if that one single step covers a mile! No wonder her progress is very slow. Her mummy (me) started to walk independently at 9 months! Try to beat that.

Anyway, the pics will come in later.

Standing on her own two feet

Standing on her own two feet

Big steps! It is a must for her routine walk every morning.

Big steps! It is a must for her routine walk every morning.

Evening walk (optional) with her papa.

Evening walk (optional) with her papa.

Can't explain her obsession with gates...

Can't explain her obsession with gates...

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Iris’ little body was rather warm on Sunday morning and I suspected fever. I didn’t rely on the thermometer to tell me that something unusual is happening to her body despite her being as glee and playful and cheeky as she can ever be. After one year of experience, I could tell from my crude “measure” her temperature is above normal and it is best to get the reading using a recognized tool: the thermometer and the type that I have at home requires me to add 1 degree to the displayed reading to record the actual internal body temperature.  Plus we need to wait until the reading stops for 15 seconds before we can actually conclude on the exact temperature. And my daughter usually will not keep still for the entire process. However, the reading that day was 40 degree and that was the first time it peaked to that level. We immediately put her on syrup paracetamol 2.5ml 6 hourly and sponged her entire body while the cooling pad intact on her forehead.

It was after several hours later, her body heat reduced by 1 degree which was still very high, which called for the last option: Rectal PCM. I was told it works like magic and brings down the temp super fast. However, I have never used it. The hardest part was to insert the thing into her rectal when she was crying pitifully and it is very important to locate the right “entry point”. We were struggling and failed to push the damn thing in, maybe because we were not determined enough and didn’t want her to be in pain. Eventually we abandoned the idea and sponged her repeatedly, but that too, only worked like for a short period of time. She was jerky occasionally. We need to bring her to the doctor.

And what is it with kids always getting sick on Sundays? Why do they have to fall ill on the day most clinics are closed? That very question has been playing in my head for a while now and I could not establish the connection between both. Thankfully Dr Tan’s was operating that night. We were given antibiotic, some rectal PCM (again!) and syrup PCM. The occasional jerks was a sign of VERY HIGH temperature. Another new input obtained that day. Never assume that it is normal for a baby to be “terkejut” when he/she is feverish. There is a bigger reason behind it.

Her daddy postponed his trip back to Sri Aman that day and decided to go back early in the morning. I didn’t sleep that night to monitor her temperature. Had to give her medicine every 4 hours and I was never far from the thermometer. She was sleeping well and by then her body temperature was much reduced. Din left that morning feeling much better about his daughter’s condition.

The following day (Monday), she was in the care of Kak Halimah while I was at work. Her nanny was rather surprised when Iris greeted her with a huge patch on her forehead.  I assumed everything will be OK as she was recuperating. Later that evening I was greeted by Iris, also with a huge patch on her forehead and her temperature was rising.  Silly me for thinking that she will recover in one day.  With Kak Halimah around, we resorted to the ultimate final option — the rectal PCM and Kak Halimah took the liberty to insert the very first PCM into the anus. That was her first ever attempt as well. Iris was more relaxed and therefore, the torpedo shaped thingy slide in smoothly. I was positive of the result and both of us sent Kak Halimah to the ferry point.

That night marked another sleepless night for me as her temperature was stagnant at 39 degree albeit the number of sponging involved and the PCM intake. From tap water for sponging, I moved to iced water but the effect was insignificant.  Whenever I checked her temp, the device displayed nothing different from 38 degree (eq 39!). By then, I was adamant enough to insert the second PCM with the notion in mind “it is now or never, don’t want to be sorry later…”  First, you need touch the tip of the PCM with KY Jelly to make it slippery so that it can go in better.  Less friction means less pain and faster process.  Iris was sleeping soundly so it was a very easy procedure.

Yay!! I inserted my very first rectal PCM!!! And now we wait…

True as my bro (the doc) claimed, the temp went down within one hour and so was my pressure. Feeling much better (both of us — her physically and me mentally), I settled to catch a couple of hours of sleep.  I have a class in the morning and need to pick my aunt up later in the afternoon.  Iris was getting better and she slept later that night as 4yi po was there to entertain her.  She settled at 9pm while me and my aunt went to bed at 12. My aunt woke me up sometime at 2am as Iris was whining in her sleep. Oh ya, did I mention that I upgraded my thermometer that day? I purchased an ear thermometer from Cosway (cost me 1 RC coupon + RM105).  She was burning alright at 39 degree. Another rectal PCM went in and a wet towel was placed on her forehead. I was so tired that I woke up at 7.30, merely half an hour before my class! And I am only living like 7 minutes away from campus. Hehehe. Can still take my time.

And now is Thursday, 3.07am — it is the 5th day and her progress is OK.  Iris is currently sleeping.  Her last thermometer reading was 37 degree (an hour ago).  After this experience, I think I will cope better whenever she gets sick, as I have acquired a new skill — inserting rectal PCMs.  Hahah!

Thanks to my brother who is always on standby mode to advice me accordingly. Try calling him at 4am, he will surely pick up the phone. Also thanks to Yuwana and Gan for the tips regarding rectal PCM, Gina and Elena for providing info about Dr. Tan’s clinic, and finally to Iris’ 4yi po for keeping sharp ears even when you were asleep.

Thank you ppl and good nite. And the reason for the prolonged fever? I suspect teething. Notice some swell in her lower gum, maybe her two fangs can’t wait for their public appearance.  For this reason I was told, the fever usually lasts a week.  Duh!

p/s: Ear thermometer at Damai Pharmacy (Omron: RM269.00), Guardian (RM189.00), Cosway (1 RC + RM105.00). The price of a pack of 2 cooling pads (Cool Fever: RM5.80), Bye2 Fever (RM6.00) — Cool Fever sticks better and lasts longer. 1 unit of rectal PCM at Damai Pharmacy (RM0.80).