Thursday, August 6, 2009

This Sucks

My absence over the last two days was due to my little one's stomach bug that appeared out of nowhere and, um, erupted all over the backseat of my brand new car.

Fever, puking--it's all part of the Mama contract, I know. But I feel like my little one has had more than her fair share of these foul experiences. Wondering if it's actually true, or if I'm just feeling sorry for us, I asked a Mama friend, who is also an M.D.

Me: The Little One pukes more than your kids, doesn't she?

Dr. Mama: Yeah, I think she definitely does.

Me: WTF?

Dr. Mama: She doesn't have a really long recovery time though, right? She recovers normally?

Me: Sure, she bounces back like a Tigger. Sorry, I'm tired and my new car smells like old vomit.

Dr. Mama: Does she still suck her thumb?

Me: Yep.

Dr. Mama: That's it. Get that thumb out of her mouth and she won't puke half as much.

Get that thumb out of her mouth? With what, exactly? Plastic handcuffs? I know she's right. And breaking this habit will likely make school easier (and less infectious) for her, too. But I don't know where to start.

When the whole thing started, she was about 3 or 4 months old and it seemed like a great idea. No more chasing around after fallen pacifiers. It was actually the more sanitary option. She hardly touched anything, while the pacifiers would always seem to drop on the floor of a public restroom or some equally disgusting location requiring Hazmat clean up on the pacifier. The day she started sucking her thumb, I felt like throwing a party.

But here we are, multiple fevers, upper-respiratory infections and one rotavirus later and I'm more than ready for this to stop. I'm open to advice. What works better? Reward? Punishment? Amputation? I'll take whatever wisdom you have to share, Mamas.

Because this thumb sucking? It sucks.


SZ said...

While I'm ashamed to admit it, I sucked my thumb until I was 4. I was also, it must be said, a puker. Never made the connection until now.

Anyway, here's what worked for me: my dentist, of all people, gave me magic markers and told me he'd take them back if I ever sucked my thumb again. They must have been some pretty cool markers because I quit immediately. I remember putting my fist under my pillow when I went to bed to prevent any thumb-sucking. Jeez, what willpower!

Hope this helps, and sorry about the car. That, um, sucks.

Stefania said...

Poor O! I think it will be tough for both of you... Maybe gear her confort towards her lovey Moutton? Maybe she could pet him whenever she needs confort instead of sucking? Help her make the association of confort with something other than her thumb. Just a suggestion!

Ruth said...

Sorry, dealing with puke is never fun. Hope you little girl is feeling better.