“Don’t worry Mom,” said the pediatrician. “It’s the good stuff; the stuff kids like to take.” (Oh, I have no doubt.)
Pink Amoxicillin Suspension. It was on the menu twice a day for ten days…and nobody around here was complaining.
Unless they were screaming…that they didn’t get enough.
Yeah, it’s the “good stuff” alright. It’s baby crack.
Disguised in a bubblegum pink super-sweet liquid with a childproof cap (for, uh, obvious reasons).
But what’s in it? Nothing on the bottle indicates any ingredient other than “Amoxicillin, USP, as the trihydrate.” Whatever that means. There’s a mile-long list of side effects but no ingredients. When I look up the company website they can tell me that “The brand product has annual sales of approximately $63 million” (years ago) but nothing about what makes my toddler flip out.
It’s available at any pharmacy on the cheap, and supposedly wipes out ear infections, which is why most parents are probably (not by choice) all too familiar with it.
I didn’t even know Muffin had an ear infection (she was acting normally, not tugging at her ear, or overly fussy). We were at the doctor’s office for a routine 2-year checkup when a tiny little one was discovered in her right ear. I know, I know, if you’re following this blog, you’re thinking I’m a couple of months behind on vaccinations. I was. But we’re 100 percent caught up now, so the world is safe 🙂
The doctor’s office set up for a three-week follow-up visit and wrote a pharmacy prescription for “Baby Crack”, er…uhm…Amoxicillin.
Muffin was prescribed 2.5 ML more than her last round of antibiotics, so we were in possession of two full bottles this time, plus a half empty bottle from last time. That size stash is hard to hide in the frig door so I was constantly reminded to dose by my observant two-year-old.
Twice a day, she grabs that little syringe from my hand, sucks the life out of it, and waves it at me, demanding more.
Screaming. Throwing herself on the floor . . .
I don’t make this stuff up.
She’s hurled herself down when I didn’t give her more. I have scratches on my chest from holding her when she was beating at me inconsolably, and chunks of hair missing from my scalp, from these post-med confrontations. Some of our walls and floors have taken a beating.
I’m only slightly exaggerating.
The only time my little junkie didn’t lose it when the pink dried up was during our Super Bowl party, surrounded by friends who, already apprised of the phenomena, were ready for it. So of course she didn’t act like a crazed addict. (Go figure.)
If it was just Muffin who reacted so strongly to Amoxicillin, I’d think it was a fluke thing. But Nori is crazy for this stuff too. As soon as she sees any drug paraphernalia come into view and the yummy pink goodness emerge from the refrigerator, she starts an endless campaign: “I’m sick!” “I really am!” “My Mommy says so!” “I need medicine!” (Sure, Nori.)
I endured another round of plaintive cries of an confirmed Amoxicillin addict when I said, “no” to Nori, followed by outrage that I would not treat a sudden ear infection. . . when we had of plenty of pink left in the bottle.
It got downright confrontational: “Why you like Boo Boo, and not me?”
Kids must really need a pick-me-up around here 🙂
And I understand wanting an affliction to get attention or medicine at that age, really, I do. I remember wanting all kinds of ailments.
A boy on our street was in a full body cast from a bike accident. I’d lay in bed at night pretending I couldn’t move.
I burned with envy at the iodine-stained skin of a kid in my class.
I tried to tape a sandwich bag over my stomach to go swimming the day after seeing another little girl’s waterproofed chemo port at the beach.
When us kids rolled around on plastic 55-gallon drums in our backyard (for our floating dock), my sister ended up in the ER with a shattered elbow, I tried (in vain) to replicate the accident.
When someone explained she had pinworms “probably from playing in the dirt”, I went home and rolled in it.
Old people medicine looked like candy to me.
Kids think up (and want) the craziest things…And I thought this was the reason Nori was also begging and crying for Amoxicillin. But when I couldn’t talk her out of it or change the subject…I knew.
It’s just the crack.
We finished our last dose today. And my toddler is still in withdrawals and asking for, “More Med-cin, Mommy. MORE!” And I’m left looking at the half-empty bottle, wondering, “Really? What’s in this?”
All I know is it’s the good stuff, as our supplier (I mean, er, uhm, doctor) so aptly put it.
So maybe I’ll turn up the bottle and take a swig.
See if I start screaming for more.
Update: Whatever is in the baby crack is very powerful. I wasn’t read up on how antibiotics can wipe out your immune system, paving the way for a full blown stomach virus, dehydration, and E.R. visit 🙁 These days, I make our own probiotics with kefir, kombucha, and kimchi. Given what I know now, I probably would have taken a “wait and see” approach with such a tiny ear infection, possibly treated it with essential oils, and maybe kept our daughter quarantined until her body had a chance to build back up immunity. Live and learn, right?