This past week has been a whirlwind.. Let me just start by saying I am PRAISING God that he kept me strong through all of this, sent me an "angel" help things out on the home front, and most importantly; Kept my baby strong, gave him an already apparent ability to be a fighter, and gave him an amazingly adorable smile to keep us all going.
It is a rule of deployment; Anything that can go wrong, will. Up until this point, nothing major. Huge vet bill from Miss Smarty Pants eating some Dcon.. Heater freaking out and not turning on on a very cold evening (joys of home ownership!).. Huge dentist bill for me next month..
It started last Monday night. I was spending the week with my Parent's. My children got so spoiled from Santa that it was going to take two trips in my SUV just to get everything home. The plan was to drive the hour and 40 minutes to my house, unload the car into A's bedroom upstairs, eat a quick dinner and head back before bedtime.
I took A out of his car seat right when we got home to change his diaper and took his pants off. Looked away for maybe 30 seconds and when I looked back down, A was not breathing.
It is a little blurry, but I know that I picked him up and hollered at my Mom that he wasn't breathing. Handed him off real quick while I ran to my room to get the suction; first thought was that he was choking on spit up. After about 40 of the longest seconds of my life, he caught his breath and lots of fluid/snot/foam came out of his mouth and nose. At this point he was sitting up and still struggling to catch his breath. He would take one breath and then couldn't again. When he started getting stiff and pale, his eyes started rolling back into his head and I told my Mom to call 911. The operator was going to instruct her through chest compressions, but at this point he had caught his breath and was letting out a big cry. Big Brother was doing his part in watching out the window for the firetruck.When EMS came in, they recommended taking him in, just in case. So off in the ambulance A and I go, while C and my Mom stay behind.
I was fully unprepared after waiting 5 hours to see a doctor for them to admit him. We finally got a room a little after midnight. We didn't get much sleep in between a nurse coming in every hour, monitors beeping every few minutes, and a baby who had already slept his long stretch while Mommy sat with drooping eyes waiting to hear..well, anything.
We ended up staying 3 nights. MRIs, chest xrays, swallow studies, EEGs. I have never hated needles so much in my life while witnessing heels get poked countless times, veins getting blown out, blood being drawn. All I know is I have one tough little cookie.
We left the hospital in the middle of a snowstorm with enough oxygen bottles to last a few days, sleep apnea monitors and a pulstat monitor.
He hasn't been officially diagnosed with anything, but I think they are leaning towards gastoesophageal reflux and sleep apnea. He has fluid in his lungs from either not swallowing right or reflux backing up into his lungs. He aspirated on the swallow test but that's a given considering he isn't too skilled on the bottle. We have a new home oxygen unit that he is to be hooked up to for every nap and nighttime, along with the monitors whose beeping I am learning to resent. Medicine that will lower acid in his stomach. Watching for a cough or fever since he is a very high risk for pneumonia. Nothing makes this Mommy's heart ache more than watching your three month old sleep with oxygen in his nose. PJs are now picked with buttons so that the cord from the monitor on his foot can stick out. I now nurse practically laying down so that letdown doesn't drown him. He is never to be laid on his back- quite the task especially during diaper changes.
All the "what ifs" fill my thoughts .. What if he had stopped breathing while we were sleeping? What if my Mom wasn't here to watch C and I had to venture to the ER by myself with both kids? What if he wouldn't have caught his breath?
I have a new profound love and mercy in my heart for Mommy's whose babies have a terminal illness. Yes, I was given quite the scare and life is a tad more difficult now than it was before, but I still have a smiling little boy with a bright future. I will never ever take my kids for granted again. Pray that his throat and nose heals from all the acid. Pray that pneumonia never comes our way. God give me the strength to nurse him back to healthy all the while giving C the attention he needs.
R&R can't come soon enough....