Saturday, February 25, 2006

Baby’s first trip to the ER

Trust me, I would have much preferred to report that Sam took his first step but this lousy milestone came first. I thought he was getting better after his undetermined illness last week when all of a sudden it came back with a vengeance on Wednesday night. By Thursday afternoon, he had virtually nothing to eat or drink all day and anything he did had certainly come flying right out. I called his doctor and she told us to go to the Emergency Room because she was concerned he was dehydrated. When we got there (in record time) we were triaged and called into the Pediatric Emergency unit in less than 30 minutes. I'm not sure if that was because we were urgent or if there was a lull in business. In any case, it was quick service for us which is more than I can say for the long time obvious smoker who was asleep on the waiting area couch when we arrived and still there when we left MANY hours later. Note to parents who find themselves in a similar predicament in the future: go to the ER late afternoon/early evening. Don't wait till bedtime because it seemed like once we got in, all the other kids started arriving.

Pretty quickly they determined the dude was indeed dehydrated and they did the battery of poking and prodding necessary to do several tests. More self-accusatory thoughts ensued. In the meantime, they hooked him up to IV fluids and he finally got to rest a bit. Bob's sister Sheila arrived, to my surprise, and I was so grateful to see her. Since Bob was traveling, he called her to let her know what was happening and she came to help me. Everything happened too quickly so I didn't call anyone besides Bob thinking I could handle it all by myself. And I could have but it was so nice to have Sheila there with whom to talk things through and to keep me company when I otherwise would have felt all alone.

We were released at 2:00 in the morning or so and after a long night, we headed home to get some sleep. When I called Bob before I went to bed, he was already on his way to the airport to catch an early flight home. Since then, Sam's had a little more appetite and a little less poop but he’s still just on the mend. Most importantly, the smiles are back and that's my best indicator that he's starting to return to his former sunny self.

This afternoon at lunch we tried our own marketing campaign called the “Sammy Challenge” whereby he drinks from each of the cups to choose his favorite. He may be a bit young but I'm keeping this tactic in my back pocket if I ever need it again. But what kid do you know chooses water? I bet it’s the same kinda kid who picks the tennis ball in the parody.

One more thing, I'm willing to share this story with whoever happens upon my website but to my dear family members, as far as Grandma is concerned, mum's the word on the whole hospital visit bit. No need to worry the 'more.

Friday, February 17, 2006

A brighter day

He's definitely still sick but a new day brings with it a happier boy anxious to make up for yesterday's lost playtime in Sammyland. His favorite new songs can't help but start the day off right.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Not your typical Valentine

He was hot and bothered all night and very little sleep was had. Sadly, I'm not talking about Bob, my poor little Sam has been fighting his first real illness this week. Since Monday night he's had a high fever, vomiting and other unsightly symptoms. We went to the doctor today and after several tests, a chest x-ray and A LOT of crying, my dude comes home with a diagnosis of mild bronchitis and a still-to-be-determined-by-lab-results infection. I had to actually fill a prescription for an antibiotic for him which was a first for me in my adult life. After a tsp and a half of what smelled remarkably like Strawberry Quik, he went to bed with plenty of overtired crying. Rough day.

As a parent you experience these moments when hurting your child temporarily is for his benefit in the long run. While he had blood drawn he screamed, the phlebotomist got nervous and the whole process ended up requiring two men and more sticks than should have been. I whisper to him, "trust your Mama" in an effort to console him. I wonder if he understands those words and if so, what he must think about me, his supposed protector, being the one to hold him down while people hurt him. Why should he trust me?

It breaks my heart to think how forsaken he must feel, that his own Mama, would let these things happen. He's aware enough to feel pain, but not enough to understand it's only temporary and in the long run he'll get better faster if we do the blood draw/urine specimen/throat culture. I almost think this period before real comprehension will be the hardest because he can't understand the whys of these tests. That it's pain with a purpose. All he knows is those people in scrubs ALWAYS hurt him and his big sad eyes and genuine crying aren't enough to make Mama whisk him away to the safety of his stroller.

Mercifully, I tell myself he won't remember this experience but I can't help but think subconsciously he'll trust me a little bit less than he did previously. He'll keep with him a feeling in the very deepest part of his gut that for the most part Mama is there when he needs her but sometimes she fails to keep the hurt away. I go to bed tonight with a heavy heart.

Monday, February 06, 2006

Two things for my Dad

The other day I figured, hey it's not too soon to start teaching Sam about the household chores. So I gave him a tour of the dishwasher and how it works. He was a natural. One look at how he inspected the rolling racks and examined the basket and I knew he, like my Dad, would be a dishwashing extraordinaire. Child labor laws you say? Hmmph!

Then last night, we had a little family Superbowl party with just the three of us. Sam, in his Steelers onesie, couldn't get close enough to the action even before there was any. That's the news my Dad will be glad to hear as HE spent the evening wearing a hat with a faux steel beam. Big football fan that I am, I just paid attention to the commercials mostly to see the latest and greatest. My favorite was the easy being green commercial with Kermit. If a company like Ford can go green, by God can't we all? Sorry Dad, I know you're a Chevy man but the closest they come to eco-friendly is green paint.

Saturday, February 04, 2006

Stay (Faraway, So Close!)

While I was here barely surviving the domestic life until Bob got home from a week long business trip, my dear sister Sarah had a brush with greatness in DC. The funny part is that her day started by seeing the Presidential motorcade and waving to the President and Mrs. Bush. That’s not what I’m talking about. Shortly thereafter she found herself in the same hallway as Bono who was speaking at the National Prayer Breakfast. Sadly she was so starstruck that she didn’t get his autograph. She was however able to tell him she loves him -- I’m sure he’s never heard that before-- before he disappeared down the hall. Oh Sarah, have I taught you nothing? I almost certainly would have made some witty comment to make him laugh (or sputtered something unintelligible) and walked away with at least a photo.

Sarah’s recounting of the story made me even more certain that Bono is approaching what I imagine the perfect man to be. The first reason I grew to love him years ago (circa Zooropa) when I was in high school was his musical talent, his song writing and his onstage performance. These days he’s a humanitarian who is using his fame to help the impoverished in Africa. And now, he’s a prayerful man? In my book, it doesn’t get better than that. Well, except for my Bobby that is. He’s my very own code-writing rockstar.

A note to the musically challenged (that’s you, Mom): The first o in Bono is a soft o; don’t you dare liken his name to Bozo the clown.
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