I've said it before and I'll say it again...parenting is not for wimps! (Actually, I'm pretty sure my mom said that ... and I completely agree with her!) I'm not sure what I envisioned about parenthood - but multiple doctors visits definitely didn't cross my mind. Don't get me wrong, we are BLESSED for sure and are aware that Lo's health could be MUCH worse, I just thought it would be beneficial and a nice release for me to type out our little story and share it with you all. This space has been and still is a place for me to connect with other women and mama's ... and (selfishly) a bit of a stress reliever as well, so THANK YOU for reading :)
The past month we have had WAY to many visits to see our pediatrician. Although he's a lovely man, I'd rather not see him on a weekly, or lately, a bi-weekly basis. London has had her fair share of colds and other respiratory illnesses in her short lifetime and has been diagnosed with a double ear infection and Bronchiolitis twice in just over a month. Most recently, Lo has presented with other troubling symptoms like shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, wheezing, and excessive coughing.
This latest episode, London went to bed perfectly fine on Tuesday and woke up Wednesday morning with a cough and shortness of breath. We have a nebulizer machine at home to use as needed, so I gave her a treatment around 8am which seemed to help for a few hours. She was very playful and had the same rambunctious personality that she always has. Around 11am, things drastically changed. I tried to feed her lunch, and noticed she was struggling to catch her breath. Her nostrils were flaring, the skin at the base of her neck was retracting with each quick inhalation, and she was letting out little gasps. I counted her respirations, which were 66 per minute (normal for her age is 24-30 rpm) and immediately called the doctor. He told me to bring her to the office right away. After her exam, Lo was given another nebulizer treatment, a dose of oral steroids, and we were sent home to monitor her there. A few hours passed, and I hadn't noticed an improvement; in fact, the coughing had gotten worse and more frequent. After a quick call to London's pediatrician, we were instructed to go to the ER.
We arrived at Newton-Wellesley Hospital around 3:00pm and were taken to a room right away. After listening to London's lungs, the doctor confirmed that very little air was moving in and out and thought that another treatment and oxygen seemed to be the right course of action. Long story short, after a few more visits from the respiratory therapist and no real improvement (plus the addition of a low-grade fever), the doctor determined that London should be admitted in order to be properly monitored overnight. I'm not going to lie - I was a bit relieved to know we were staying in the care of amazing doctors that would be able to keep a close eye on our little love.
It was around midnight when we finally made our way up to the pediatric unit. Surrounded by what seemed like a million pillows, I got to snuggle up with London in the hospital bed. Since Lo sleeps in her crib and has since she was about 2 months old - I was weirdly excited to sleep an entire night with her. I also wanted to be as close to her as possible so I could hear her breathing and to keep my eyes glued to the machine that was monitoring her oxygen level. At some point I must have fallen asleep because I don't even remember the nurses coming in to check on Lo throughout the night. (Side note: she was a total bed hog + I woke up in the morning with her arm across my face and her leg around my waist :) ...totally didn't mind).
The next day consisted of a chest x-ray (which came back clear), more nebulizer treatments, oral steroids, and waiting to hear from the doctor. London was a complete ROCKSTAR considering she was on "precautions" and couldn't leave her hospital room ALL DAY. Chris and I were getting pretty stir crazy; I'm not sure how she held it together! The good news was that her breathing seemed to have improved and she was eating and drinking better! According to the doctor, Lo is technically too young for an asthma diagnosis (they don't usually diagnose asthma until 2 years old). They did, however, say that they are treating her as if she has asthma because they do think her symptoms are consistent with it. We were able to leave the hospital early evening on Thursday with a new inhaler for London to take daily, as well as oral steroids for the next few days. Arriving home felt amazing - even though we were only gone for 24-hours, it felt like it had been MUCH longer. We were all exhausted and in great need of a shower. *I failed to mention that the night before, Lo had peed on my jeans and I didn't have anything to change into so...yea, I needed a shower*
I'm happy to say that Lo seems to be doing better + although we have to pin her down to get her to take the inhaler - I would much rather do that than have to spend another night worried sick in the hospital. As any mama knows, It's a crazy helpless feeling when your baby is sick. I swear, I've gained so many gray hairs and new wrinkles these past few months! I'm just trying to take it one day at a time and try (key word, TRY) not to stress about the future. Maybe Lo will grow out of this ... maybe she won't ... but regardless, life is GOOD and as I said before, we are BLESSED.
A question for my fellow mama's ... how do you deal with LIFE when your babies are sick?! I think I worry myself sick (my husband thinks so too) and sometimes I assume the worst! What do you do to get through those difficult times?