Thursday, October 14, 2010

Today is the second in a series of twelve that I will be writing in order to capture my childhood memories for my children. Thanks go out to Mommy's Piggy Tales for creating this project and hosting it. 

Last week I shared about how I was very ill as an infant. The doctors chose to give me a new antibiotic called tetracycline. So what happened after this wonderful new drug apparently saved my life?

Simply ruined my teeth.

Many people talk about their first memory. For most it is typically around ages 4 or up. However, mine is from age two. Yes, two years old. Obviously it was a strong memory.

Tetracycline, while a drug that did save me from whatever infection I was fighting, also attached my growing teeth. This is fairly common with young children who take this drug - or so I have always been told.

My memory consists of crying....a lot. My teeth were coming in "rotten." They were very painful and my two front teeth had to be pulled because of the extensive damage to them. I remember standing in our living room by a rocking chair we had crying because my teeth hurt.

Sadly I was sick a lot even after this.

Another strong memory I have is from about the age of three. I had croup. I'm sure most parents have experienced this at least once with their own children. I did with my oldest son when he was about 18 months old.

On this particular night I remember laying on the couch struggling to breath. My parents took the ironing board and set it up above me and draped blankets over it. On the floor was a big pan of very hot water putting out steam. When that didn't work, I can remember my mother bringing  me in the bathroom and running the hot water to create a very steamy bathroom. Sadly, that didn't work either.

My parents ended up bringing me to the local hospital. I remember sitting in my Dad's lap in a rocking chair while they prepared my room. I seem to recall saying something like, "Well, that's the way the cookie crumbles" about our late night foray to the hospital.  I was soon set up in an oxygen tent.

I'm unsure how many days I stayed. I do know that my parents did not stay over night with me. I remember going to the window and watching them drive away one afternoon.

One of my mom's friends brought her little boy in one day to visit and play with me. They brought me a coloring book and some crayons as well as a little Clifford the Big Red Dog doll. Yes, they had Clifford even way back then.

I did spend a lot of my childhood ill and seemingly in and out of the hospital. However, after my mom fought to have my tonsils taken out (that story was covered in the last round) I was never that sick again.


  1. Oh, how incredibly scary for your parents. My little girl had croup when she was 16 months or something like that. It was so scary! We spent one night in the hospital and everytime her monitor went off nurses would bustle in.

    By the way, do they use tetracycline anymore and what is is used for now, do you know?

  2. Yes, they still do use tetracycline. It's a general-use antibiotic. They typically don't use it for anyone under 12 though. ;-)


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