Feeding Tube Awareness Week 2024
Feeding tubes are used for a lot of reasons. Sometimes they are the only way someone can eat or get nutrition. Sometimes they supplement if someone can’t get enough nutrition by mouth. Sometimes they are for meds. Sometimes they are only for fluids. Sometimes they are used to relieve belly pressure and discomfort.
There is no one reason. Everyone with a feeding tube, regardless of what kind, has a different story, a different reason, a different need.
Sometimes, having a kidlet with gastro problems that require a feeding tube means that the school nurse will call because kidlet is complaining of severe belly pain, which is unusual to this degree. Usually when her belly hurts, she can lie down for a bit and feel better. Nothing helped today. So I took myself to the school with kit in hand and drained her little belly. What little she ate for lunch plus 4 oz of air drained in less than 15 minutes. Her Farrell bag was relatively full so I changed that too. She felt a little better so I sent her to class and headed home.
Sometimes, feeding tube awareness means being aware that certain types of feeding tubes and accessories glow in the dark.
Sometimes, feeding tube awareness means forgetting that and getting startled at your passenger seat after an expedition to an elementary school.
Sometimes you can be so aware that you forget it is not everyone’s normal. But it is ours. And our goal is to spread awareness. People fear and mock what they do not understand. A tiny bit of understanding and awareness can go a long way.