Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Jamin's Hospital Stay

Well, last Monday's visit to the ER was certainly enough to scare us- but unfortunately, the worry over Jamin continued on past Monday evening.  When we were discharged from the hospital we were sent home with some information about fever control and a very sick toddler with croup.

We got home, set up the humidifier and got Jamin as comfortable as possible and he eventually dozed off.  Jud was planning on spending the night in Jamin's bedroom to keep an eye on him and his fever.  About 12:45 Jamin had woken up coughing, very uncomfortable, had a fever back on the rise and he seemed out of sorts.  We both were in Jamin's room and tried to comfort him and give him medicine.  He was completely miserable and getting worse by the minute.  His breathing was becoming more heavy and labored.  He vomited twice.  He was struggling for breath and could not settle.  We stayed with him like this for about 45 minutes and made two late night calls to our pediatrician.   Finally, we decided we needed to return to the ER.

My father-in-law came to watch over Owen and back to All Children's Hospital we went.  I sat in the backseat with Jamin who was struggling for breath.  He had such loud stridors and his ribs were retracting with each breath.  You could tell he was in pain and scared.

"Mommy hold you" he would choke out to me in the backseat with his hoarse voice and arms reaching out.  I did my best to hold him as close as I could while he was in the carseat.  It was a long, sad and heartbreaking car ride.  It's a totally helpless feeling as a momma to not be able to take away the pain.

We went into the ER and they took Jamin back right away.  They began breathing treatments,steroids and treated his fever again.  Then we waited.

We were happy when Jamin was finally comfortable enough to sleep.  But even as he was resting you could hear how hard he was working to breathe.

We thought we would only be in the hospital for a few hours.  In the end- Jamin didn't respond to the initial breathing treatments as well as most children do.  The Dr. told us how about 99% of kids with this extent of airway swelling from croup require one treatment, about 2 hours of monitoring and then they are released to go home. (My family sure is hitting the odds this summer it seems!)

Jamin needed 7 breathing treatments, 2 doses of oral steroids and fever control. They even called for a throat and chest x-ray to be sure there weren't other complications. It was hard to see our little boy in an ER room and confined to a bed for over 24 hours- each breath being hard work.

We were eventually admitted to the hospital on Wednesday morning- after about 36 hours in the ER.  With Jamin starting to feel better and finally have the amenities of toys, cartoons and room to walk- the day was easier on him.

To our relief, he was well enough to be discharged on Wednesday evening and come home.  I was absolutely giddy when I heard the news.  Home!

The entire duration of our time in the hospital was scary and made us worry to no end.  However, even through it all I was grateful that this is not our usual routine.  Jamin is a toddler that is incredibly vibrant, healthy and his energy often seems endless.  My heart breaks for families that have to spend substantial time in hospital rooms and endure the agony of watching their children struggle.

What a blessing health is.  It's a blessing that I certainly take for granted everyday for me and my family and it certainly would be the first thing I would miss if it were gone.  I'm am thankful that Jamin is healthy and able to bounce back to his usual self within a week.  I am still thankful that although we know Owen will eventually have his stay in the hospital to help his hearing and the reconstruction of his ear- that he has an issue that has options and treatments.  So many others are not as fortunate.  I am thankful for family that quickly comes to our side to help and friends who are as supportive as family.

What can I say?  Being in the hospital with your child, even if it isn't the "worst case scenario" can make you reevaluate life a little bit.  When I took a step to look back and reevaluate last week- I am thankful.

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