Monday, July 11, 2011

Parenting Oye Vey

This past Friday afternoon I was just about to walk away from my desk to grab my lunch when my phone rang, it was Sara. When I answered the phone, it took her awhile to make words, with sniffling and that breath I knew something was wrong and the words that came out made my stomach drop quickly. "It's Jackson....he's not doing well, somethings wrong...he's not responding." Those were the first words. I calmly tried to ask for more details. "He was napping, we at parents, I heard a strange noise, he was vomiting, but was laying down, his eyes are pin points, called doctor, they said call 911." Deep breath on my end, calmly ask where is your mom. "She's gone, dad is here, dad feel his head...  keep it up..  I don't know what to do." Is an ambulance on it's way? "Yes, should be here soon...I am scared, I don't know what I am supposed to do, he breathing?" What hospital are you going to take him? "Should we St. Clair, or Children's? St. Clair is closer..." I answer with let's wait for the paramedics to get there, St. Clair doesn't have a pediatrics, they will ask you where you want to go, we want Childrens.. Tricia did not have a good experience at St. Clair, don't worry about how close...  Is Jackson awake? "He is drifting in and out, I don't know what to do..." It will be OK honey, just try to be calm. What did you guys do before you went to your parents? Did he bang his head at all today? "We went to the gym, they came and got me, he was crying and when he saw me he went and banged his head, but not any harder than normal." OK, well maybe it was on the right spot and he has a concussion or something, but everything will be OK. "I think they are almost here, I will call you to tell you what hospital, I love you." I love you too...  

Inside I am freaking out, but I am still at work and need to let my boss know. My team lead is online, I shoot her a quick chat to let her know I have an emergency and I send an email to the boss to let him know I have left the building. I text Sara to let her know I am on my way to the car, call my cell phone and not my work phone. I have a 5-10 minute walk to the car, but to honest I think it only took me 2 minutes. Get in the car, drive out of the garage, pull over and waited for the call. Sara calls not too long after that, "We are going to Children's, my phone isn't working well, I will see you there." Children's is not far from my work, but far from where the ambulance is coming from.  I am still freaking out inside and stay calm on the outside. As I am pulling into Children's phone rings and it is Sara's dad. "Jackson is OK, but it is good that he going to the hospital. He isn't acting himself, but don't worry everything will be OK." I answered back, that is good to hear I am at the hospital now. "Sinky is on her way, but the ambulance will probably get there first, she was running errands in South County." I answered, well I hope she don't try to rush, I am sure everything will be fine. "Yeah, everything will be fine, I will let you go know, call me when you can give me an update."  Will do I say as I pull into the parking garage. 

Why is it when you are in a hurry at a hospital, you can't find a spot? Also you pass like 5 potential spots, but the a-hole has taken up two spots because they can't park...  I would get a ticket or towed if parked that way, but anyway, finally a spot I can fit in on the 5th floor.  The ER at Children's is on floor one and even though I am sure I have arrived before the family, I am in a hurry. Go through security, check in at front desk. They say the ambulance should be here in 6 minutes, I can wait by the windows and watch them pull in. I am nervous as all get out as I look out the window and see my mother-in-laws car fly into the garage. Somehow I  knew she would get there before the ambulance. LOL!

Before she walks to the ER two ambulances pull into the garage.  My heart is jumping out of my chest. Sinky checks in at the front desk and rushes over to me. I let her know they just pulled in. She has a look of utter panic on her face. We discuss the bits and pieces we have been told. "Gosh I hope everything is OK." I assure her that everything is fine and that if things weren't the paramedics wouldn't have left and they pulled in without lights or the sirens blaring. Finally here comes Sara and Jackson. Sara looks scared, but is doing really well all things considering. They have to check in at the nurses station and I finally see Jackson's face. He sees me, quick little smile, but he doesn't look like himself. Sara signals me over as we go into the nurses station and she answers all the questions. I am holding Jackson and he is really lethargic. Nurse takes his temp, it is 99 under the arm. Nurse hands us some Motrin and asks more questions. I am not hearing her exchange with Sara, it was like the school teacher in Peanuts cartoon. Nurse take vitals, weight, helps with Motrin and gives us a pager, has us take a seat in the waiting area. Jackson is cuddled in Sara's arms as Sara answers Sinky's questions. 

Someone comes and gets us and takes us back to a room. Sinky is still asking Sara questions and a nurse practitioner comes in. More questions, Jackson is wanting to sleep, uncomfortable, and fussy. He will not let us put him on the bed or in a gown. Nurse practitioner lady says, don't worry about the gown...just take his clothes off down to his diaper, I will be right back to examine him. This always has always puzzled me why doctors or nurses leave the room. They are going to see you in the buff anyway, lets just save some time and I will strip down while you ask me more questions. Right! Any way, back she comes...  Jackson is staring to look a little better, but wants to sleep. Nurse pract. lady examines Jackson in Sara's lap and asks a bunch of questions. He is crying a lot, but not because of what the nurse is doing, just because he doesn't like her in the room with us as she learned the first time she was in. She is thinking something stomach viral, without the diarrhea, not ruling out a head injury at this point. She is not worried about dehydration, he has been drooling this entire time. She thinks we should try seeing if Jackson can keep liquids down first, then if he doesn't keep them down or doesn't improve, then we can try CAT scan. She is going to have the attending doctor on staff come down and discuss the options. 

Jackson starts to sleep after the nurse practitioner leaves the room. Then the doctor and nurse practitioner come into the room. The doctor listens to the nurse and asks a few more questions. He kind of walks around the room a little bit and observes Jackson as he doing so. He says he doesn't think it is meningitis or anything serious, understands our concerns with the possible headbanging, and suggests we try some Zofran first and give him some liquids. If he doesn't hold that down, then we go for a CAT, but that it is up to us what we want to do. To this the nurse practitioner adds that what she would do in our situation...  and that CAT scan...blah blah radiation... blah blah. Sara asks how do they do a CAT on a toddler that doesn't sit still. The doctor says they will strap them down,strap the head, and it is real quick the hardest part is the strapping down. I think that was all he had to say, but Sara still looked at me, "What should we do?" I say lets try the Zofran first. To that a nurse shows up with the dissolving magic pill. Jackson wants nothing to do with it, but we get him to finally take it. 

Sara's mom calls her dad to let him know what is going on. Sara calls the FX doctor's office. We wait.. 30 minutes later comes the melting Popsicle in Powerade.  Jackson wants nothing to do with it, so the nurse practitioner leave it with us. We try a few more times and he is turning it away, he is super uncomfortable and fussing. We try the TV, but even with 13 children stations, nothing is getting his attention, where is Mickey Mouse Club House when you need it most. Nurse lady comes back in, still not taking it we tell her. She asks if we have something he will eat. Sara whips out a Go-Go Squeeze (a genius squeezable apple sauce) and Goldfish. Nurse says, only let him have just a 1/4 of the applesauce, Jackson starts sucking on it quickly and Sara has to pull it from his lips. We give him a few crackers and wait. After 30 minutes and no more puking later, nurse practitioner checks in. She is thinking he is doing better, as we are all at this point. Fever seems to be gone. Talks about letting us go home and what we should do if he starts vomiting a lot. Sara isn't too sure, she saw him at his worst, but the nurse pract. gives us some more words of comfort and says we can stay as long as we want, suggests following up with our pediatrician in the morning if they have office hours.. Jackson on the other hand is ready to go, he is giving us the bye bye sign, trying to walk out of the room. After a few more minutes we decide we can go, if we need to we can come back or go see Jackson's doctor in the morning. Nurse practitioner gives us paper work and instructions, we are on our way home. Jackson is looking so much better, he of course wants to eat a bunch, but we have to go slow with that.

We make it all the way home and Jackson doesn't get sick any more that night. On the way home the patrician's office calls to check up on us. We also get a call back from the FX doctor who is ready to switch his medication to help with sleep. We give him some Motrin before bed and have our same going to bed staying asleep troubles. It was a weekend full of fevers and a few more vomits (time to get rid of couch). A visit with our pediatrician was good, reassures we did the right thing because of the lack of response. She tells us she has had a few patients with same fever and stomach issues as Jackson the last few weeks. 

Today I can report no fever and no vomit, back to normal self. 

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