It was such a beautiful day with the leaves turning colors that fall, it was so nice to be home from the hospital with my healthy baby boy. A few days after arriving and settling into changing diapers and breastfeeding I had noticed a small bump on my leg. At the time, I thought I had a mosquito bite since they are jokingly considered the Texas state bird…and it looked like the bite might be getting a little infected. What I didn’t know is that I had taken home an unwanted guest from the hospital… a dreaded Staph Infection.
According to WebMD:
Staph Infection and Cellulitis:
A staph infection is caused by a Staphylococcus (or “staph”) bacteria. Actually, about 25% of people normally carry staph in the nose, mouth, genitals, or anal area.
These staph infections range from a simple boil to antibiotic-resistant infections to flesh-eating infections. The difference between all these is the strength of the infection, how deep it goes, how fast it spreads, and how treatable it is with antibiotics. The antibiotic-resistant infections are more common in North America, because of our overuse of antibiotics.
The “bump” on my leg had turned into a boil within hours, and after checking with my local doctor I was sent to one of the best infectious disease specialists in Houston. Once I had arrived at the office and he examined the boil they decided to try and expel it from my leg with a needle! Ok, so let’s just stop here for a moment, my leg has an open raw boil on it that’s the size of a doughnut and they proceeded to stick a large needle in it and pull out the head of the infection. I almost came off the table!! Going through childbirth didn’t even compare to the excruciating pain that had just taken place! After me begging… then pleading… then demanding that the doctor stop, I was sent me home with an IV in my arm full of antibiotics that I had to take for 2 weeks.
While rolling an IV around full of antibiotics, I was not allowed to hold or even touch my baby for fear he would get the infection and die! Not being able to nurse or bond with him was one of the hardest things I have ever had to do as a mother. During this time I was blessed to have a live in nanny/housekeeper. Rosa was a godsend for me, and we all would not have made it through this difficult season without her, as she took care of Caden day and night. Due to all the antibiotics, he could not be fed the breast milk I had pumped… so I would throw it away (now I know all you breastfeeding moms out there know how difficult pouring your precious milk down the drain was for me!)
I had gone through the 2 weeks of antibiotics to find that the Staph infection was not gone, and in fact I had MRSA Staph. MRSA Staph is an antibiotic-resistant form of staph. Not only was I still dealing with the infection, but my daughter, her best friend, and then my son and husband (at the time) had all contracted it as well. Everyone in my house had it except for Rosa and my newborn. We all had boils and had been to several doctors and couldn’t get rid of it. Over a course of 2 years we fought this deadly infection. There were many times we had thought we conquered it, when all of a sudden one of us would get yet another boil.
So out of desperation for my kids, I went to the family pediatrician to see if she could provide some help that I couldn’t get from these infectious disease doctors. I was only at the pediatricians office for 20 minutes and she knew exactly what we needed. This amazing doctor prescribed a medicine that we took internally and a cream that we had to put up our noses. At this point I didn’t care where we had to stick the medication I just needed it to work!
I can say that it has now been over 8 years since we have dealt with this nightmare of the Staph infection, but I am always reminded of the living hell we went through by the large scar that the boil left on my leg.
I am so thankful we had help during this time in our lives, and so blessed that Caden and I have bonded and he doesn’t remember the traumatic first few years in his life!