Sunday, March 10, 2013

Greetings from disease central

Good.  GRAVY.

I think I still own horses.  I'm pretty sure I do.  I feed them everyday, and they nicker their recognition and hungry welcomes.  I pick up a lot of manure and the interior of my truck is covered in shedding horse, yeah.  I'm pretty sure I still own horses.

But for the past two weeks, I've been working hard being human and a mother.  It started with me taking a Thursday off because I was completely drained feeling.  I wasn't exactly sure what I was feeling--sick, maybe?  Sick-ish?  Since my youngest had a cold and my tummy had been iffy, I figured it was a virus and took my first sick day for myself (but fifth this year--ah, motherhood) to lounge on the sofa and watched a marathon of RuPaul's Drag Race.  Yup, while I didn't go to work that day, I did go to werq!  

Then I picked up my eldest son at school, and he was sobbing in misery.  I thought it was just a fever, until I heard his breathing.  Shit.  A few times in his life, his body freaks the hell out at a virus and he goes into respiratory distress.

I brought him home, checked his temp (101.2), and started the nebulizer as his breathing was wheezy and he was whimpering with each struggled breath. As he watched his favorite movie (Spirit, Stallion of the Cimarron--hooray, horsey movie!) after the nebulizer treatment, I watched him breathe. His stomach would push with each breath, and his ribs would go in instead of out. Uh oh. I called the pediatrician, who sent us straight to urgent care. In hindsight, I wish we'd gone straight to UC, or an emergency room, from school.

Hubby took Boy 1 while I stayed home with Boy 2, feeding, bathing, and bedding him while anxiously checking my phone for updates. 

Boy 1's oxygen levels were low, so they immediately put him on O2 (which scared him, even though it didn't hurt--he was afraid of wearing the tubing), and then they started him on an IV of a potent anti-inflammatory medication to get his lungs to calm the eff down. When hubby texted me that, I moaned--putting an IV on this kid was NOT going to go well for anyone. And in fact, it didn't. It took three pokes and three locations before they got it in, and got it in to stay. In his panic, his blood pressure raised enough that his vein "blew out" the second jab. 

But, they got it in, and they then started him on a double-dose albuterol treatment on the nebulizer. Exhausted and feverish, Boy 1 fell asleep while his body was soothed by the welcome presence of oxygenated blood.  

Poor baby
After all that, the doc still could hear something in his left lung, so he was sent for x-rays to check for pneumonia. Thankfully, they were clear. 

Hubby expressed deep gratitude that I had called the doctor and sent Boy 1 on to UC--seeing how much he was still struggling to breathe, after all that treatment, was unnerving to my stoic hubby.

Four hours of treatment later, my super-wired-from-medication boy came home with a new Matchbox set, two prescriptions, and a worried mommy's arms.

Wish I were as resilient as he is
From what we've been repeatedly told, he doesn't have asthma; just "reactive airway disease," which is more or less a catch-all term of this sort of thing. He can go months, and as much as a year, without an episode. It isn't triggered by allergies, heat, dust, or physical exertion--it always, always follows a viral respiratory infection. This is by far the worst he's ever been, and I swear it came out of nowhere.

Five days laterboth Boy 1 and myself started running a fever as the flu hit us full throttle.  I assume whatever it was that made me lethargic and sent Boy 1 to urgent care is to blame, as that bastard drew its claws and just shredded us with high fevers, severe body aches, skin pain (seriously?  WTF is that about?), nausea, and a paaaaainful cough.  Crap.  Guess we're staying home that Thursday, too.

Friday morning, Boy 1 and I woke up feeling worse.  Then Boy 2 showed up with bright red cheeks and ears, and I groaned.  He had a 102 fever as well.  Sick momma can't handle two sick kiddos, so hubby stayed home to help out.  The next few days were a blur of pain, fevers, nausea, and Boy 2's vomiting spells.  Four days later, I managed to drag myself to work--and then hubby woke up with a 102 fever.

I oozed into my classroom, dutifully digging through the mess that even the best of subs leave behind, and was greeted by substantially smaller class sizes.  The virus wreaked havoc in particular on my afternoon group, which had six out of 31 absent Monday and seven out on Tuesday.  The rest of the week, we watched as some returned and others went out, and by Friday, we counted 14 of the 32 of us (when you include me) that had been leveled by the bug.

Thursday, I figured enough time had passed that I could go ride my damn horse.  It had been over three weeks when you account for Trilogy's inexplicable lameness (that mercifully resolved with a week of Bute and stall rest) and the infirmary my home became.  I lunged Firefly, turned her out, then tacked up Tril and lunged him before getting on.

I made the ride simple, figuring Tril was going to be strong and I was going to be weak.  We only spent about 10 minutes in the arena, trotting, circling, bending, before my shaking limbs directed Tril out to go on a brief trail ride around the property.  We paused to stop and talk with a friend, and after a few minutes, I noticed a hot, queasy feeling in my stomach...soon followed by a feeling of cold water pouring over my head.  Uh...oh...  I quickly dismounted and handed the reins to my friend and lay down on the ground (how interesting that must have looked) to avoid passing out.

Apparently, while I certainly felt better in that I no longer felt like shit, I wasn't truly better.  My friend confirmed what I read later on--this virus takes weeks to recover from.  Suuuuuuuper.  After about 5-10 minutes of lying there, I was able to get up and slowly hand walk Tril home.  I felt icky the rest of the night.

I disapprove.

I hope to ride this weekend, but admittedly, more than anything I just want to lounge about with my laptop inbetween naps.

We'll see.  Here's hoping I get to experience my horses again soon.

1 comment:

  1. :( I hope you guys recover quickly and completely.