Headaches, and “Who’s that lady with black hair like me?”

Zoe fell unconscious in our driveway in June, but she seemed fine after that. Her doctor said we should wait and see what happens. If she didn’t have any more issues, she didn’t think testing was necessary, so we waited.

Noah started kindergarten in August, and he has had strep throat three times. When this happens, he gets lots of attention and sometimes get to sleep in our room. Around the same time, Zoe started saying she had headaches. At first I thought maybe she was just sick, too. She didn’t have strep, but maybe she had something viral. Then the headaches continued, but they were kind of at suspicious times (at bedtime when she wanted to sleep with me), so I became convinced she was just saying she had them for attention.

Noah has been well for a while now, and Zoe keeps saying she has headaches. Once she told Christian it felt like her “head was going to go all crazy.” We have not ruled out the possibility that this is just for attention. She was excited when I said I was taking her to the doctor. She can’t answer questions about exactly where, it hurts, how long it hurts, or how often. When the doctor asked her if it hurt “a lot or just a little,” she answered, “medium.” However, those questions probably are hard for an (almost) five-year-old to answer, and this has been going on for a long time now, so it’s time to do something. With the combination of the headaches and the fall, I’m worried.

She is having a CT scan on the 28th. A friend recently told me about how her daughter the same age was able to hold still for the test, but that’s not the norm. And, since Zoe couldn’t even hold still long enough for the nurse to take her blood pressure or for me to put a pony tail in her hair, she will have to have anesthesia.

I hate that we may be doing this when there is probably nothing wrong, but of course I would feel worse if we didn’t do it and missed something. It’s all so scary. I know I’ve said this before, but I really wish we had some family history. I wish we knew if anyone in her family has trouble with anesthesia or has a history of migraines or seizures. I think my stomach is going to be in knots until the procedure is done and we get the results.

On a related topic, the kids’ pediatrician is African-American (from Nigeria). We’ve seen her for a little over a year. Colin and Noah have probably seen her more, but I know Zoe has at least seen her a couple of times. After the doctor left the room, Zoe said, “Mommy, who’s that lady with black hair like me?” This surprised me for two reasons.

1. She knew we were going to see “Dr. O” and we’ve seen her several times before, so I don’t understand why she didn’t know that was Dr. O.

2. Dr. O has very dark skin, so it was interesting that Zoe commented on her dark hair, but not her skin.

Maybe it’s because we talk about how Zoe, Colin, and Mommy all have black hair? Still, I know for sure we have talked about brown skin and peach skin before. And, she always says, “She looks like me!” when she sees and Asian woman or child. I know she sees the differences in skin color.

Later the same night, I was watching “The Daily Show” and she came into my room with a “headache.” I let her lie down for a minute. Jon Stewart (my secret boyfriend) and Aasif Mandvi (who is originally from India) were doing a bit. She pointed to Aasif Mandvi and said, “Mommy, who’s that man with the black hair?”

I said, “The one with the brown skin? His name is Aasif. The other man with the peach skin is Jon.”

She said, “You mean the one with the white hair?”

In my head I said, “GASP! Jon Stewart, my secret boyfriend, does NOT have white hair. He has distinguished-looking salt and pepper hair!”

To Zoe, I said, “Yes, his name is Jon.”

She said, “He doesn’t have peach skin. He has kind of brown skin, too.”



7 thoughts on “Headaches, and “Who’s that lady with black hair like me?”

  1. I hope Zoe’s test comes back ok. Poor thing–headaches aren’t fun at all. And that’s very interesting about her focus on the hair (she does have a thing for hair though–wasn’t that what she stuck up her nose with her lovey? )

    • That’s an interesting observation, Ally. I hadn’t thought of that. It was her Strawberry Shortcake doll. In fact, right now she has a thing for redheads. She sleeps with Strawberry Shortcake, Jessie from Toy Story, and Ariel.

  2. Hey Tracy! It’s been awhile! As I was reading this post about headaches I was wondering if you have had Zoe’s eyes checked? Sometimes kids get headaches from having difficulty with vision. Seems like she is noticing colors around her, but it’s just another avenue to check out! We are dealing with headaches around here too, but so far we think it’s self induced stress of an 8 year old girl – girls at school provide LOTS of drama. Hopefully your almost 5 isn’t there yet! Aimee

    • Hey Aimee! I’ve missed you. I was just telling someone about shopping cart surfing the other day and thinking of you!

      Yes, we did have her eyes checked. Actually, all three kids were checked a couple of weeks ago. Luckily they were all fine.

  3. So sorry about her headaches, if they truly are real. What about her sinuses? I know that I get wicked headaches when they flair up and of course Sunshine suffered for over 2 years before we know hers were such a mess. Good luck!

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