Allergies, Asthma, and Flowers.
Rosie had an appointment today with the allergy doctor.
She’s been complaining about her belly hurting for quite awhile, since early spring of this year. Finally a couple of months ago we realized she was pointing to her chest area and just calling it her belly.
Her lungs hurt, not her stomach.
Tyler has asthma and takes an inhaler. Sometimes he can’t breathe, especially after being outside. We decided to take Rosie to the allergy doctor to see what was going on.
First she had to do a breathing test where she breathes as hard as she can into a computer thing to blow out candles on a computer screen. That went ok, but she only had 75% of her small and medium airways functioning, and only 92% of her major airways. Not a huge deal, but still not 100%.
Second she had to get allergy testing. They did the kind where a sharp plastic object pricks the back, and if you get a hive it means you’re allergic to whatever they put on the prick.
I had to hold Rosie down.
She cried. I cried. Tyler cried.
Ada clapped. Oh Ada.
Here’s her back afterward, while we were waiting the allotted 15 minutes for the full reactions to occur:
(Note: My arms look freakishly skinny in this picture. Um, they are not really that skinny…!)
See number 7 there in the middle? That one swelled up HUGE.
It was grass.
The rest of them didn’t swell up at all.
We even tested for major food allergens. She isn’t allergic to any common foods, not allergic to any animals, and not allergic to mold or dust! I am so relieved.
Just grass. I can handle that.
After the back pricking torture session Rosie had to have a breathing treatment. Then we waiting 10 more minutes for that to settle in her lungs before redoing the breathing test where she blew out the computerized candles.
The doctor said if she has asthma then the breathing treatment will have made a difference in her results. If she doesn’t have asthma then nothing would change from the first test.
Well on the second test her airways were open right around 100%. The breathing treatment made a huge difference!
So Rosie has asthma, like Tyler. Poor Rosie.
I’m so glad that her lungs will no longer be hurting her all the time though. Relieved, really. I bet now she’ll be much happier and ready to go have fun instead of complaining all the time. I’m sure feeling badly had to affect her mood and behavior.
She also has terrible eczema on her knees and elbows, which the doctor said has no cause other than being hereditary. She got that from me. I guess I’m going to try the steroid cream for a little while to get that cleared up so the poor kid stops itching.
I hate the idea of steroids in my little girl–the inhaler and the cream–but she’s been miserable for months now and I’m ready to see her happy and feeling good again.
I made myself and appointment for the end of August. When Rosie goes back in for her one month breathing re-test I’m also going to get the back pricks for food allergies.
I had the testing done for other allergies in middle school and I was allergic to EVERYTHING. Grass, pollen, trees, weeds, dust, mold, horses, rabbits, dogs, cats, etc.
I did allergy shots for years and now I’m way better. I’m not hardly allergic to cats and dogs at all now–no hives, no red itchy eyes, no stuffy nose, and I don’t get sinus infections anymore!
But they didn’t do the food allergy testing back then, so I’m going to have that done. I’m really nervous. What if I’m allergic to everything?
The doctor said the food allergy testing was accurate if the test was negative, but sometimes it has false positives. If I get a lot of positives we can double check it with the blood testing, which sometimes has false negatives. Between the two you can get a better picture of what food allergies you might have.
Ok enough allergy talk.
Tonight Rosie was feeling good, after the breathing treatments, and so we played outside. While the girls colored with chalk I enjoyed my flower bed.
I plant giant Zinnias every year. I *love* them. They are my most favorite flower of all time. (My bearded dragon Norbert also loves to eat their leaves!)
Tyler always makes fun of me for taking pictures of flowers, but I can’t help it. I think they are so beautiful, and kind of mysterious.
Some of them are just starting to bloom.
I think this little white flower looks like it’s having a party in the center.
Streamers, fireworks…do you see them?
I noticed this very tiny colorful aphid tucked in between the leaves.
I’ve never seen one primary colored before. Strange.
And this little bug too…just hanging out on a petal.
Can you spot him in the second picture?
If you missed him, here’s the answer.
For those who keep asking me, sorry I never get time to respond–for my macro photos I use the Canon 60mm 2.8 lens. (I have the Canon 40D camera.)
I’ve discovered the secret to taking good photos of bugs is the aperture. You have to turn it up to the largest number you can. (The aperture is what creates the depth in photos, the bokeh blur behind your subject, or the lack of blur if you want.)
If the shutter speed is too slow for the available natural light you want to use then you can turn the ISO on your camera up higher. Be careful though, the higher your ISO is the more grain you’ll get in your photo. In these photos I had the ISO at 1000.
I had the aperture set to 8 for these photos. For the pictures I took of the baby praying mantis recently the aperture was set higher, I think it was around 14.
Unfortunately the higher number for your aperture means the narrower the opening when you take a picture, so less light gets through. That means your shutter speed will need to be slower keep the shutter open long enough to properly expose the picture. I hold very, very still to get a clear shot.
I love how photography is such a delicate balancing act, and a challenge to find the perfect combination of shutter speed, exposure, aperture, and ISO. It takes a lot of practice–I’m still practicing–but it’s so much fun. I only use my camera in manual mode, once you try it out you’ll never want to go back to automatic