Wednesday, February 1, 2012


Rachel here.

My ma mentioned in her last post that Maxine has been diagnosed with MRSA. As anyone who's familiar with that difficult mistress knows, this means there's been a ton--TON--of cleaning in our house lately. Like, every single thing, every single day. Needless to say, cooking has taken the back burner around these parts. We have remembered out of necessity and a desire not to wash anything extra that a good portion of our refrigerator is happily and deliciously consumed raw. Yeah, these are the salad days.

I have a question for all of you dear readers of ours. Part of our daily routine now involves shoving medications up Max's nose and down her throat. The nose part sucks, but the kid is happily rewarded for her willing participation by being granted access to my jewelry. Last night--no joke!--she was walking around in strings of pearls with an arm laden with my grandmother's gold bracelets and pajamas. It was pretty cute and the sparkle seemed to help her forgot her burning nostrils. The hard part--and this is where I'm pleading with you for your own tricks!--is getting liquid meds in her. We've tried putting them in her food. We've tried milk with honey. We've accepted that the taste is too foul and the quantity too great to expect her to take them on their own. I know some of you have kids. How have you navigated this dilemma? We'll try anything.

Thanks guys! Go team!


  1. I just read about something called Flavorx. You can buy it at the pharmacy......many different flavors to disguise the taste. (Max's cousin, C, was the worst to dose. We finally got a syringe, divided the dose, and gave her two quick shots, past her taste buds, followed by a nice, tasty treat.)

  2. Hello! You didn't think I could pass this one up, did ya? So, I read your call for help this morning and I thought up an answer. And then that answer exploded into a blog post. And then that blog post took a couple odd turns and now I have no idea where I am - mired deep in some thoughts that are taking me awhile to sort through. But, then I remembered, "Rachel asked a pretty simple question - just go answer it. Let your blog sit for a bit." So here I am. Back.

    1. Elsa's steroids are the MOST foul tasting medicine of all time. Literally, of all time. I tasted them and the bitter, burning taste was stuck to the back of my tongue for days. This seems like adding insult to injury as their side effects are so rancorous.

    So the steroids are the ones that give us the most problems. Our final solution was to mix 1/2 a dose with a full 10cc. syringe of orange juice and give that to her twice. So 1.4cc. of medicine + 8.6 cc. of OJ. Repeat. We tried chocolate syrup and strawberry but she seems happiest with the OJ. (P.S. Steal about 500 oral syringes from the doctor next time you go, in a variety of volumes - 5cc. 3cc. 10cc.) She fights for the first few days, but we make it clear she is not getting out of it so she eventually relents after a few days. There may or may not be bribing involved with a variety of treats (mostly "na na"). Thankfully, the steroids are transient.

    2. We taught her to give herself her medicines. She learned how to put it in her mouth and push the little plunger. I draw it up and then give it to her and, so far, we have only had a couple of accidents where she has squeezed it out all over herself. This makes her EXCEEDINGLY happy because she is "doing it all by herself" which is the goal for EVERY single activity in her life these days. It also gives her a sense of control over the activity which is another goal throughout the day: give her control over things without actually giving her real control.

    3. We have a strict medicine routine. Elsa thrives on dependable routines and shit falls apart when we don't follow one. So, she always sits in the same place on the kitchen counter to take her medicine. We always fill a shot glass of OJ for her to sip on/spill. I always tell her which medicines she is taking: "Now, your Bactrim. [Sip water.] Now your Neurontin. [Sip water.] Now for chemo pill. [Sip Water]. Now for banana medicine (Nystatin). [Sip water]" The list gets longer sometimes, but those are our three staples. Banana medicine always comes last and signals that we are done. I tell her what they all are because I would eventually really like her to know her medicines inside and out so that, in case someone else is taking care of her, she can police the whole medication giving process. Plus, again: CONTROL! Love it.

    This is officially an inappropriately long comment. I should have written it as an email. Alas. Hope that helps a bit and that this gets easier!! Love you.

    1. Georgia-

      Best. Comment. Ever.

      There are so many useful things in here. I absolutely love it. Routine. Control. Involvement. Yes! Yes! Yes! A thousand thank yous for sharing your wisdom.