Friday, March 23, 2012

LaRue's Hospital Extravaganza

Warning: This is long. I wrote most of it in the hospital. I wanted to write everything down so I would have record. I was massively over tired and there are certain aspects of it I don't remember now because I was SO tired. I'm glad I wrote it down, but it is long!

"Tuesday - What an adventure the past few days have turned into. Ada was sick last week. She did run a temperature of 102. It was a rough week, but she quickly got back on her feet and just had a bit of a cough and little runny nose. We tried really hard to keep her away from LaRue so that she wouldn't pass the germs. We thought we had made it out clear until Thursday (3/15/12) when Rue started coughing a little. Thursday we went out to see my grandparents with mom and I felt bad bringing my sick kids to their house. They did fine. Rue slept nearly the entire time. Thursday night Keith went to a concert and was gone most of the night. I was very worried about trying to survive the night alone so I game Ada some cough medicine to help her not wake up from her cough and then brought the swing upstairs for LaRue to sleep in. Friday LaRue showed more symptoms of being sick. She was congested and starting to really struggle with that. She sounded very stuffy, but nothing came out of her nose. She slept most of the day and really didn't eat very much. A little concerning, but I just thought that she was sleeping to help her body recover. Friday night was ok and then on to Saturday. She was much more congested and slept again quite a bit. By the afternoon she was starting to feel warm. We couldn't find the thermometer, but we had the strips you put on the forehead to get a temperature. It said she was 100.4 degrees. We had dinner and got through most of the evening, but she was really struggling with the congestion now. Sneezing was scary. She couldn't actually finish the sneeze. It seemed like her head was going to pop off she was trying so hard. Her breathing started sounding yucky and I started getting nervous about RSV. We got Ada down for bed and I started texting Andrea to try and get some ideas of what to be watching for. I didn't really understand what she was saying. Rue ate at 8pm and after that didn't go back to sleep like normal. She stayed awake and cried or coughed. Her eyes were so sad and she struggled with the congestion. At 10:00 I tried to feed her again in hopes it would make her drowsy and she would go to sleep. She wouldn't eat. It was then she started wailing uncontrollably and a different harsher cry than before. Something was very different and wrong. I was very distraught and just started crying. I couldn't seem to do anything to help her. Keith got her car seat and decided to take her to Andrea's house and have her check and see if she was showing symptoms of RSV. Andrea lives a block away and her youngest, Ben, has RSV every winter. She is familiar with it and knows better what to watch for. It was hard to sit at home and just wait to hear. I prayed and tried to stay calm (and stop crying). Keith called about 15 minutes later that he was coming back to get me and Ada. We were going to take Rue to the hospital. Andrea said it looked like she was starting to breath like the RSV. Andrea's friend in the ward is a nurse and they called her to come look. She listened to her and said she could hear the fluid in her lungs; it was time to hurry to the hospital. We didn't take time to pack anything. We took Ada to Andrea's house to sleep and headed to Cardon Children's hospital. We checked in at the Emergency room. I've only once been in an Emergency room. We only waited about 20 minutes then they took us back. The doctor came in and checked her out. He said she had an ear infection in her left ear and sounded like she had RSV. He said that because she is so young and there is an infection in her ear near her brain we should do a spinal tap to make sure everything is ok and test for meningitis. He said 4 weeks and under it is really not good to get an ear infection and definitely do a spinal tap. I really wasn't sure how I felt about that. It seemed unnecessary, but I was so overwhelmed. They told us to wait a little bit and they would get us admitted and into a room. By then it was close to 12 and LaRue was very fussy. She had still never fallen asleep (she had been awake for over 4 hours). We didn't know when they were going to move us and I didn't want to start nursing if we were just going to need to move. We waited a few minutes and then I decided to just feed her. As soon as I started the nurse came in to move us. He suggested not feeding because the blood drawing and spinal tap may cause her to throw up. They moved us and we sat in a small room again for 20 minutes. I decided to just feed her and chance it; she was already miserable. She ate, but 5 minutes late threw it all up (she had been throwing up/spitting up after feedings since Thursday). The nurses finally started coming in close to 1am. They had to draw blood and set up the IV first. I was very worried about how I was going to handle all of this. Rue was still awake (so she was going on 5-6 hours of being awake). There was one nurse doing the needle work and another one there to hold her down. They let me help hold and be close to her. I just held her other hand and kissed her head. The iv and blood work was terrible. They had to bend her poor wrist back so far. They just did blood work from one wrist and then put her iv in the other wrist (left). He hand was totally bandaged up to where it just looked like a stump of bandages. It makes me so sad to look at it. After that was all set up then the doctor from the ER came back to do the spinal tap. I was very worried about this. I was so tired and emotionally overwhelmed I couldn't stop crying during it. A nurse held her on her side, bent in a fetal like position. The nurse had to hold her down very tight so she didn't move while he took the fluid from the spin. She screamed and screamed and my heart was broken. I just held Keith's hand and cried. Luckily this was actually done very quickly and as soon as he finished and put a bandaid on her he let me hold her. She was so red and screaming. I snuggled her close and I just kissed her over and over. I hate feeling so worthless and helpless to soothe my baby. Next ,a new person came in with a "holding nurse" to suction her nose and test for RSV. This was actually almost worst than the spinal tap. They had to stick a tube down her nose and suck it all out. She HATED this and screamed the worst I've ever seen. They actually had to stop sucking her out because she was turning blue and not catching her breath. They put an oxygen mask over her face (just hovering) for a little while till she wasn't so blue around her mouth. There was so much stuff in her nose and it was horrible to watch them have to suck it out, but she sounded so much better afterwards. After that was over they left us in the little room until the room upstairs in the children's ward was ready. It was around 2:30am and we were both getting very tired. I was able to rock Rue to a fitful sleep. She kept jolting awake crying. It was silly for both of us to stay and get no sleep. One of us needed to get rest so we could survive the rest of the day. I told Keith I was fine and to go home and sleep. He was hesitant to leave us, but I was able to finally convince him to go home. He left and I put Rue on the bed and tried to lay there with her. Around 3am a nurse came in to move us to our room. We put all our stuff at the foot of the bed (LaRue was at the top) and I walked beside the bed as we moved upstairs. We were put in a quaint little room (#419). There was a hospital bed/crib for her and the couch pulled out into a terribly uncomfortable bed. The nurse weighed her; just over 9 pounds. After a few more measurements and basic tests we got her settled into her bed. Sometime after 4am I laid down on the terrible bed and tossed and turned until 6:30 when she ate again. i think I fed her sometime before that, but honestly…I think I was so tired I don't really remember. Apparently during the night a huge storm had come through and rained. I didn't hear any of it, but Keith said it kept him up quite a bit. They started Rue on antibiotics for the ear infection. They said it was a general antibiotic so it would get anything else that might be there. RSV is viral so there was nothing to do for that but wait it out and suck out her nose when it got bad. I hate having all these cords attached to her. She has her IV and an iv attached to that one with the antibiotic. She had a wire thing attached to her foot to measure oxygen and blood pressure. I tried to keep feeding her on her normal schedule to bring some normality to her life. Keith's parents came around 11:30am. They had to wear face masks because there hadn't been any results on her spinal tap (which was checking for meningitis). Our door has a sign on it and all the nurses and doctors that come in have to wear masks and this little paper shirt thing. Keith's parents stayed for a little while and it was nice to have someone here. I so appreciate them making the effort to come over and visit. Keith's dad brought me an article by Elder Oaks about Priesthood Blessings. I was very glad. It was Sunday and I really wanted to do something to make it feel like the Sabbath. Keith came just after his parents left. Ada was with Andrea and seemed to be doing well. Keith stopped by to drop off diapers and such before coming. Keith said she was super sad when he left. We just spent the day watching over LaRue and trying to get some rest. Keith left around 6 to go eat dinner and get Ada. He picked her up and took her home to play and go to bed. She just needed some time with one of us to feel secure. After Keith got her down for bed he had the neighbors watch over her and came back to the hospital. I know there isn't really any need for both of us to be at the hospital, but the support of having Keith there with me was so helpful. He just held me and let me be emotional. I missed Ada, my baby was sick, and I had only 4 hours of sleep in 48 hours. He left around 10:30pm. The night was terrible. Nurses kept coming in to check on her and LaRue couldn't get back to sleep after that. She woke up 2-3 times during the night (instead of the 1 that I was use to). I couldn't sleep on the terrible want-to-be bed. It was very rough. Monday I had to drop off diapers for a diaper study I'm doing with Ada. Keith and Ada came to the hospital. They only good thing about being there was I was feed by the room service because I'm nursing. Yummy food that I didn't have to make or clean up. Ada was worried about her sister, but wasn't afraid of her in the bed attached to all the machines. Keith stayed with Rue while I went with Ada to drop of diapers. I thought she would be excited to spend time with me but she screamed most of the time. I called my mom crying and frustrated. She assured me that Ada was probably just retaliating because of the upheaval in our lives with me being gone so much. Mom said she would come down to the hospital to help me get some rest when I got back there. I really didn't want to go home and sleep. I couldn't stand leaving Rue here at the hospital without me. Keith took Ada home and they spent the rest of the day there. Mom came and I was able to shower and then lay down for about an hour. Not long, but enough to keep me going for a little bit longer. Nurses came in off and on all day. The Pediatrician came in too and checked her. She said there wasn't any fluid in her lungs and that she sounded very good. I had them suction her nose twice. It wasn't the tube in her nose, just a little machine that sucked out the mucus. Keith tutors on Monday evenings and luckily we were blessed by loving family and friends. A friend in our ward brought dinner over for Keith and Ada. My neighbor watched Ada until Sherry could come and take care of her. Sherry stayed there and got Ada to sleep in her own bed. So grateful for everyone helping us out right now! When Keith finished he came by the hospital and stayed with me for a little bit. I was SO exhausted. I fed Rue and tried to go to sleep early. Sadly, the nurses came in and woke us all up again. The "aide" nurse didn't seem to know what she was doing. It took her 10-15 minutes to get a blood pressure. Then when she weighed her she said she was 13 pounds. I told her that was wrong. There was NO way she gained 3 pounds in 24 hours. It was rather frustrating. When we finally did lay down to go to sleep (11pm) someone decided to start doing rearranging of furniture right outside our room. It was very noisy for about an hour. Then Rue woke up to eat. She did go back to sleep, but woke up again at 4am this morning. I fed her but now she wont go back to sleep. She just screamed and cried off and on for 2 hours. I finally tried to feed her again at 6:30am when the nurses came in again. LaRue finally fell asleep around 7:30pm. The new day nurse came in soon after that and I was super ticked off. Luckily he was sensible and saw she was asleep and said he'd come back a little later and let her just sleep. THANK YOU!! I debated trying to go back to sleep, but honestly at this point it isn't worth it. The Pediatrician is suppose to be here soon to check her and dismiss us. I can't wait to go home. I'm SO tired and I just want my baby off these machines."

(She didn't wear clothes the whole time we were there because they had to keep checking her. The other picture is when she was getting ready to go home)
The Doctor did release us and the nurse came in soon after that to take her off all the machines. Taking off the iv was yucky! There was tons of tape holding it on and she just screamed. He was a wonderful nurse and so careful and thoughtful. We got her all unattached and I was able to hold her. I was So very anxious to go. As soon as I got her calmed down I called Keith to come get us. I quickly packed our things and awaited Keith coming. We made it home alright and tried to get things back in order at home. Keith let me sleep for a while and kept Ada downstairs. Now looking back I don't remember much from the day other than cleaning up a bit, sleeping, and crying. I was very worried that Rue's schedule was totally ruined. I fed her at her 9:30pm time and we got her down. Luckily she went right back to her schedule. She slept till 3am and then I got her up at 6:30pm. She has been the same ever since we got back. I was also VERY grateful to be back in my bed. I hate sleeping with Keith. I hate sleeping on something uncomfortable. I was so glad to have Keith beside me in our comfy bed! It has been almost a week now and she is doing great. Her cough and congestion is basically gone. She took her last dose of antibiotics last night. I'm so grateful to have my baby home and well. What a scary and horrible experience. I'm grateful for those that helped, grateful for prayer, and grateful for Priesthood blessings.
(this picture kind of shows her iv stub. It was awful trying to hold her and feed her with cords attached to her everywhere. I'm grateful for the iv and medicine, but so glad she doesn't need it anymore)

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