Im tired, so tired, I need some good rest, and I mean a proper rest. In fact me and J both do. But seriously as a parent to two small children do you ever get to rest really well? What about when they are unwell? You still need to get on with things.
I have written before about BB, who suffers with a bad cough every time he has a cold, but this last week has been particularly exhausting.
The last few days for BB have involved a ride in an ambulance and an overnight hospital stay, because of the said cough. His cough developed into a wheeze, which made his breathing more difficult.
I feel like a mean mummy, because on the day that this all kicked off, I sent him into preschool as normal, even though he was upset, telling me his cough was making him feel unwell. I was thinking that he was being dramatic, I even told his preschool teachers this. Also I had made plans to see my sister in law and her little boy, and I didn’t want to have to cancel that as I was looking forward to it. I did think that BB would be ok, but I did have that feeling in the back of my mind that I should of kept him at home that day.
Whilst enjoying my morning at the soft play, I received that call from the preschool telling me that BB was not himself, and that I needed to come and get him. Even then as I was out, I asked my MIL and FIL to pick him up (they were due to do this anyway) and I thought that as they were closer to the preschool this made more sense.
Sometimes we let our plans get in the way of more important things, I should have been there for BB straight away, he wanted his mummy.
When I saw him, he was finding it hard to breathe and was really wheezy, not like I had heard before, and after some great wisdom from my MIL we ended up at the Doctors. Its good to have other people around you when you feel unsure about what steps to take when your child is poorly. I think that we hear and read so much about what constitutes an emergency and when you ring up the Doctors they ask ‘is it an emergency?’ Very often I am left thinking, I don’t know if it’s an emergency, but my child is struggling and I need to come and see someone.
After some time waiting at the Doctors, BB threw up just at the point when we were called in. Poor BB was sick down his trousers, on his shoes, all over the reception waiting area and I got some good splash back. It’s that point where you can see it happening, but you have nothing to hand, so you just have to go with the flow (so to speak).
In the Doctors room after examining BB, he decided that the situation warranted an ambulance and that we should be referred straight to paediatrics to get him checked over. At this point my heart sank, I was glad that I wasn’t overreacting, and that bringing BB to the doctors was the right thing, but I didn’t think it would require a hospital visit, and I didn’t want him to become upset or worried. As it turns out he thought it was a great adventure.
In the ambulance BB needed a nebuliser, and having already used an inhaler in the Doctors was already doing much better. At this point I felt like we were frauds somehow, that we didn’t warrant an ambulance, that the Doctor had just been overcautious, and that we were using up valuable resources. It sounds a bit silly really, of course we weren’t, BB needed this help.
On arriving at the hospital the nurses were wonderful, undertaking all the necessary checks, giving BB inhalers, and some steroids and explaining that we would be here for at least another 4 hours, unless BB required a nebuliser or more inhalers during this time, which would mean a longer stay. BB was getting bored now though, saying he wanted to go, it wasn’t so much of an adventure anymore. Unfortunately they were not happy with BB’s oxygen levels so it was decided an overnight stay was needed. J stayed in the hospital with BB as I needed to be at home to sort out LP. I had rushed home earlier before the decision was made about BB staying, and after the paramedics had mentioned it earlier in the day I had to bring the obligatory happy meal (and maybe a couple of other meals) to the hospital for our dinner.
BB had his own room, with a fold out bed for J. He was enjoying himself again (I think the happy meal helped with this), and with the nebuliser and inhaler effects, it was like our son was on something. I’ve never known him talk so much and so fast. He could not sit still, he was like some sort of jumping bean.
The next day BB was ready to come home, and we were given some medication and a wheeze management plan (who knew there was such a thing?).
The first evening that BB was home was a relief, its always so good to get home. However me and J were still very aware of BB and his breathing, and you start to become a bit paranoid. For us this was so much so, that later that evening LP woke up coughing and wheezing, sounding like he had a 20 a day habit. He sounded awful, and we were both panicked. It was late at night, and we didn’t know what to do. (Why do these situations always occur at night!) I told J to call 111, and he explained the issue to them. Their response was to send a paramedic. We waited for around 45 mins, by which time LP seemed absolutely fine, and again I felt guilty for the fact that an ambulance was on its way to us.
The paramedics arrived, all three of them, and came through the door concerned asking how LP was, only to see him, and pretty much instantaneously say he was fine. Now don’t get me wrong I was completely relieved and definitely did not want to be going back to the hospital again, but a small part of me thought they would find something wrong, so that we hadn’t wasted their time. We explained why we were so worried, and they were great, and actually said for us to call 999 directly next time. They checked LP thoroughly, and all was well. LP was cute, and charming and smiled at them all, turning on his cute factor whilst he showed them his crawling and walking skills, while they made ahhh noises and laughed.
As I write this, I am thinking to myself I couldn’t make this stuff up, it seems to all happen at once.
The next morning we needed BB to take his final dose of steroid medication. He is generally ok at taking medicine, and will ask for the strawberry or orange flavour. This one did not taste nice though. I had dissolved the tablets in some squash, but that really didn’t mask anything. Seriously if anyone had seen us, I think you would have thought that we were trying to poison our son. He was spitting the liquid out, crying, screaming, shouting at how disgusting it was, sobbing so much. Me and J were like good cop, bad cop, we seemed to take it in turns. One moment we were calm the next we were so cross with BB. As parents we knew that all our son needed was to drink the drink quickly and it would all be over, but try as we might nothing worked. Trying to reason with a 4 year old is not easy. I got really mad, at which point BB decided he just wanted to cuddle me. I know that he was appealing to my emotional side, but I was also so cross, I wanted him to be well, and I didn’t have any idea how to make him take his medicine. Thankfully J was able to use superhero power tactics, and told BB that he needed to turn off his superpower tastebuds, to which he drank the medicine, slowly and with a lot of encouragement, but he still drank it.
Trying to get BB to calm down and not run around over the weekend was tough, and a few days on, he is still coughing, and we are having to increase his inhaler then decrease his inhaler and so on, and then we had to take another trip back to the Doctors. I wonder when this will all end, and how long it will be, before we are all truly well again.
During this time we have been so grateful for the support that we got from our families and friends. We asked people to pray and we know when we do this that they are on the case straight away. Knowing that friends and family are there to lift you up when you are struggling is such an encouragement.