valancystirling: (Default)
[personal profile] valancystirling
I'm trying to consciously grant myself permission to slack off today and not even look much at my to-do list. We've had such a crazy and stressful few days that right now I need to do nothing and decompress.

So we had this incident that turned things upside down around here. Jake was painting the window sills/frames upstairs and at some point came down in a panic saying that he had been sanding old paint off and did a lead test and it was positive. We had thought it was a non-issue because even though our hose was built in the 40s, the upstairs was added on in the 90s well past the use of lead paint. So they probably used old windows or old paint or SOMETHING up there. Anyway, being Sunday we had a hard time finding any experts to talk to, so we basically quarantined the upstairs and started living downstairs. We took Topaz in for a blood test (I had JUST gotten a doctor's note to get her a bunch of blood work, including the lead test), and she had a horrible time since she had never had blood drawn before. We had to hold her down while she screamed, poor little thing. We took her out for a hamburger after, and I gave her chlorophyll and nettle tea to build up her blood. ANYWAY, we slept downstairs (still are) and then on Monday Jake stayed home in the morning while we got some answers. Pretty much, Jake was beating himself up for the whole thing and had no idea what kind of a problem we had on our hands, if any. The EPA told Jake that those OTC lead tests you can get at lowes are unreliable and don't necessarily provide any useful information. He got a list online of places certified to do lead tests. So I called around and talked to environmentalists and lead experts and scheduled a comprehensive lead assessment and healthy home inspection for yesterday morning. So I sent Jake off to work because he was freaking out and driving me crazy and there was nothing more he could do. So yesterday we had the inspectors in our house for a few hours checking our air and water and looking for lead and general home inspection stuff. All in all they gave us a discount for doing all of it in one day so it cost $575. Ugh. But I'm glad we did it. Anyway, we won't get any results on the lead test until Friday, and we're waiting on Topie's blood test results. The inspector did say that all our windowsills are full of lead, and every time we open the windows on a breezy day, we're blowing in lead dust all over our kids. FABULOUS. Could I be a better parent? So horrified. The whole house had been painted before we moved in, and for some reason we didn't think it was much of an issue. I have no idea why but that seems crazy now. So yesterday after the inspection, Jake and I had an appointment with a family doctor recommended to us by our pediatrician, so we now have a family doctor. She didn't think there was any reason for us to be checked for lead, but after we get Topie's results, we'll probably get Philip checked too. Poor baby, it kills me to think of him getting poked. But it kills me more to think that our "green home" could be so toxic to our kids.

Also, when I got my car back from being repainted/lock replaced, the inside of my car smells very strongly of paint. It's really bad. I would really rather not put the kids in it at all, and I find myself holding my breath every time I'm in it. So here we are, extremely paranoid about toxic this and toxic that, and our home and our car are TOXIC. Ironic? Fitting? I'm not sure. But this certainly knocks me down a peg and I'll be shutting about about how great I am making my kids' lives all pure and safe.

Philip is crawling. Did I ever mention that? He has been for a few days now. I can't deal with it, soon he'll be walking, then he'll be in college. He was just born like a week ago! Where is the time going???

Date: 2008-11-05 08:20 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Oh no!

From what I understand, the treatment for bringing down lead is to increase iron intake. Seems like a good idea to try that just in case.

Date: 2008-11-05 08:31 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
We're increasing iron and calcium, and there are herbs you can take to help flush heavy metals out of your system. There's a lot of info here:

It's been very upsetting. I'm twitching in my seat waiting for all the test results.

Date: 2008-11-06 03:43 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
If it makes you feel any better, I think our house is similar. We had benjamin tested after we'd lived here awhile and his levels were fine. :) Sure 0 lead in the house would be the best, but sometimes there are things we're going to miss or just not physically be able to take care of all at one time. But I think having kids who are otherwise healthy in what they eat, getting outside time / play, that kinds of stuff, makes them soo much better off to deal with the little toxic things we're just not going to be able to avoid here and there.

Date: 2008-11-06 08:25 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I'm hoping all we're going to find out is that we need to paint window wells and that sort of thing. We can do that. The really terrible part is that at Topie's 1 year checkup we got the order for the lead test and some other stuff, and I lost it and forgot about it...two years ago. Go me.


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