Sunday, June 16, 2013

When it rains it pours...

The last two weeks were a real challenge. Some of the hardest I can remember as a mom. Two weeks ago Matt left for CA on a work trip and after dropping him at the airport I took Dean to the doctor. He'd been complaining for three days of his stomach hurting and he had a bit of a cough. They didn't seem too concerned with his cough and she was going to chalk his stomach pain up to constipation even though she couldn't feel any hard lumps. I asked her to do a strep swab even though his throat wasn't red. She did and he was positive for strep. So he started antibiotics. The only problem was that he started getting worse rather than better. His symptoms were erratic; he would seem normal with a cough and then a few hours later he was moaning and groaning and lethargic. He'd take 3-4 hour naps in the afternoon and then wake up feeling fine again. His fever came and went. It was all very confusing. I kept thinking he was getting better and then he'd start declining again.  He is a very dramatic sick person too, so it was hard to tell how bad he was really feeling.

On Monday night Edward took a bite out of a mushroom in our yard. I'd already put Dean to bed for the night by 6 because he was feeling so bad. I called Matt, panicked, and he told me to pack up all the kids and take him to the hospital. I was not about to do that. I went to one of our neighbor's and asked if she could come to our house and stay with Dean and Walt while I took Ed to the hospital. They recommended trying to get him to throw it up and to call the poison control first. She came over while I was on the phone with poison control. They told me to just watch him and that he probably hadn't eaten enough to do major damage. Maybe just have some stomach irritation. Our neighbor went home. Matt was still very concerned and felt helpless since he was two states away. He still thought I should go in. I put him to bed and he never threw up even, so I was relieved.

Friday rolled around and instead of coming home, Matt flew to UT to pick up a new van for us.  It was very random. My sister-in-law's mother who lives in WA heard that I was looking for a very specific van in a specific price range. She told me her friend in UT was selling her van since her husband just passed away a month ago. She linked me to the friend's daughter's page with the pictures of the van. We were on the phone with the lady within a few hours and were committed to buy the van. The work trip was perfect because it allowed us to pick it up without having to pay for a ticket out there. Matt drove the twenty hours home.

Meanwhile, here at the house, by Friday Edward started getting really sick. I took him in to the doctor and he was diagnosed with croup. More medicine. More sick kids.  Humidifiers. It was all very stressful taking care of it all by myself. And Dean still wasn't getting better.  He woke up screaming at 1:30 on Sat morning saying his ears hurt. He had a fever also. Luckily I knew where some ear drops were and gave him those and ibuprofen and he went right back to sleep. Just as I was getting back to sleep, Edward woke up with his croupy cough. I went up. I held him, rocked him, tried to have him sleep on me. It wasn't working. I laid him back in bed and he was calm as long as I stay, but had a crazy coughing/crying attack if I tried to leave. So I slept next to his crib on the floor from about 2-6am with my arm inside the slat of his crib. He'd wake up periodically and I"d put my hand on his back and he'd go back to sleep.

Matt wanted me to take Dean into the hospital for his ears and fever since he wasn't getting any better on the antibiotics he was one. I was going on nothing at this point and I point blank refused. I couldn't conceive of taking all three kids into the ER, one with croup and one with a mystery illness. It just wasn't happening. I borrowed some essential oils from the neighbor who I'd asked for help from earlier that week. They seemed to work for his ears, but he was still not getting better otherwise. On Sat. night Dean fell asleep by 5 and woke up at 8 ready for some food. He ate some dinner and read some books. I let Walter wait up too since Matt was nearly home. I felt like the heavens opened and angels were singing we he pulled up at 9:30pm with our new van.

On Sunday Walter and I woke up sick. I was scheduled to teach in RS, and I felt well enough to do that since I was in the early stages.  Matt stayed home with the three sick boys while I just went into the last hour of church.  On Monday I felt worse. By Tues. this week Dean STILL wasn't getting better so I took him in again. She still was saying, "Well, maybe the stomach pain is from constipation" and I wanted to shout at her. Luckily, when she listened to his lungs, she said there were a lot of crackles so she wanted him to take an X-ray to see if he had pneumonia. No pneumonia, but they said it was probably Bronchitis. So they gave him a nebulizer  breathing treatment there and headed off to Target pharmacy for the 3rd time in two weeks. Within a day he seemed much better, so I am so glad I finally went back in!

We were scheduled to go back and check his lungs on Friday. He got a clean bill of health, but while we were there, I asked the doctor to check Edward's ears since he'd been pulling them. I figured it might be teething since he has 4 teeth coming in, but no, it was an ear infection. Back to Target and more meds. My ears were filled with pressure by this point and I felt like crap. Two weeks of too much sickness. But Sat. rolled around and I woke up feeling only mostly alive rather than mostly dead and went for a much needed run after Dean woke up but before Walter and Edward woke up. I did three miles and it was nice and overcast, so I came back, got Edward, and went for two more.  We're mostly on the mend now, but boy! It was a horrible way to start Summer vacation! Hopefully from here on out we'll just get better and can enjoy our neighborhood pool and have friends come over and play!

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