Saturday, February 12, 2011

Deep Breaths

We had a bit of a scare with Declan the other day, but since we seem to be over the worst of it, I have a minute to update the blog.

On Wednesday, Declan turned 1 and wasn't feeling very well. I got a few 1 year pictures of him, but he wasn't very co-operative. He didn't eat well, we stayed home from music lessons, and even his first-ever cupcake went over like a lead balloon.

On Thursday, the kids were supposed to go to daycare and I had a full day planned of errands, preparing for Declan's little birthday party on the weekend. But Declan looked awful and coughed his way through breakfast, so I decided to keep him home and just send Talia (along with Declan's birthday cupcakes for his little friends.)

He was pretty listless all morning and even had a little morning nap, which he hasn't done for a few months. Around noon I thought he was breathing funny, although I realized I'd never paid much attention to how he normally breathes, so I couldn't say for sure.... but it seemed like something more than a cold was going on, so I called the Dr. and off we went.

When we got to the Dr.'s office, he seemed to be struggling harder to breathe. The dr. walked in the room and said "He's working way too hard to breathe. Can you lift up his shirt so I can get a better look?" (Declan was wearing a long-sleeved onesie, pants, socks & shoes.) So I pulled down his pants to unsnap his onesie and his legs were purplish-grey, as was his body once I got the shirt off. Dr. Lee said "He's in respiratory distress, you need to take him right to Children's Emergency," and picked up the phone to let them know we were on our way.

So I quickly loaded my listless little guy back into the van, and called Rainer illegally on my cellphone while speeding to the hospital and crying my eyes out. Looking back, it's sort of a miracle that we didn't have an accident on the way. Declan fell asleep on the way, and was so quiet I was terrified of what I might find in the carseat when we got there. Fortunately, the cold air and little nap had done him good, his breathing had slowed down and his colour was better. Of course, that meant that we were triaged into the packed waiting room instead of getting looked at right away. By the time we'd waited 20 minutes or so, though, Declan was off-colour and really struggling again, so I took him back up to triage to be reassessed and we were put right into a room.

By this time Rainer had joined us and I started calling around for someone to pick up Talia from daycare. I am so, so, so thankful for the good friends I made here in town this year. My friend Leslie picked up Talia and took her home for supper & a playdate with her kids so that both Rainer and I could stay with Declan.

Declan was examined by a few doctors. Apparently there is a bad virus going around Winnipeg and kids under 2 are being hit the hardest. It causes bronchiolitis, which basically means their little airways are too tiny to deal with the congestion & inflammation, and they have to work too hard to breathe. At one point this month, every bed in the PICU was occupied by a child with the same symptoms as Declan, only worse. They gave him a breathing treatment and then observed him for a little while longer, trying to decide if we could take him home or not. In the end, the breathing treatment didn't do anything to slow his breathing, but it opened his airways enough that he was exchanging air better, so his colour improved and he was able to come home. He slept pretty well that night, while Mommy & Daddy were up most of the night, counting his respirations over the baby monitor.

The next day was a little up and down. He seemed a bit better in the morning, then got worse again mid-day. We had actually decided to take him back in for another treatment, because he was still very listless and turning purple whenever he exerted himself by playing or crying. Rainer came home a little early so that one of us could stay with Talia and one of us could take D back to the hospital, but by the time he got home Declan had started to come around. He had perked up and was trying to sit up and play with toys, smiling a little bit, and his breathing had slowed down. He even ate a little bit of supper, so we decided not to take him in. He had a steamy bath and went to bed, and had a good night.

This morning he really seems to be much better. He has more energy than he has had for days, although he still tires pretty quickly and had another morning nap. His breathing is much better, and he was interested in stealing Daddy's breakfast and tormenting his sister - all good signs that he's on the mend! He still has the virus, which is basically the worst cold ever, but it looks like the worst is behind us. Phew! His birthday party was supposed to be today but we've postponed it until next weekend - now we have even more reason to celebrate!

1 comment:

Jennifer said...

Oh Trina! I'm so sorry! What a horrible experience, but as you said, the worst is now behind you. I'm so glad he's doing better!