Wednesday, March 21, 2007

The Cough Cometh

I don't type very well one handed. I'm slow and clumsy (yet still I think I am faster than my dad's two hands-- probably because I know where all the keys are.) In my senior year of college I tore a ligament in my right thumb (playing rugby) and wore a cast that came over my fingers. I mastered one handed typing then. I am wondering if I can get back some of my former dexterity. To really appreciate just how awful I am at this, I should leave my typos in. It's woeful. I can't tell you how many times I've typed a capital "O" for a capital "I." And it's taken me so long to type that, that I have started wondering why I am using the pronoun I so much. Me, me, me.

I'm blogging! while breastfeeding! But breastfeeding is a slight misnomer. It's more like light sucking which will need to be followed up by some serious pumping. Last night I couldn't get my breasts to shut off! After Cricket stopped eating, the breast just kept going, literally into the air. It was quite a sight to see.

But why isn't our Cricket eating so well? The previously ravenous Cricket is lackluster because he's sick. Sick, sick, sick. The poor pup has a nasty case of broncholitis most likely caused by the dreaded RSV. It started, sadly, on Saturday when we thought all he had was a modest cold. As you can see from the photos, we took him out anyway. Sunday he started feeling warm and axillary temps ranged from 99 too 100. Monday, a cough developed and a night call to the nurse line assured us that this probably meant he was getting better, but as dawn broke on Tuesday morning, it was obvious that getting better was the last thing he was doing. After eating, since he was still eating then, his cough was worse (probably because he was flat) and then the scary wheezing started. I called the vet, whoops, the pediatrician's office and discussed his wheezing with a nurse.

"I don't want to be a hysterical mother," I said to her. I was asked his temperature and admonished for not taking it rectally. (!!!) After imitating his wheeze, she told me to bring him in. How soon could I be there? "Well, I haven't taken a shower yet, but considering that are out of shampoo I could skip it and be there by 10:00."

"Come right over," she said. She told me to say "wheezing" to the receptionist and that would get a nurse right out there. She also told me to go to the "well child" waiting room. Previously I thought we were safe in that room, but apparently not...

Once at the doctor, I felt like he had stopped wheezing, but he brought it out just in time to show the doctor what I had heard. "You aren't being hysterical," he said to me. "He's sick alright." I asked if I was aggravating it by having him sleep on his chest on me, and assured the doctor that I was trying to get him to sleep on his own. The sweet doc, not my own, gently told me that no, I wasn't aggravating anything, and quite possibly I should abandon the sleep projects when he was sick. "Just let him sleep on you until he gets better." Like I wasn't doing that already.

Last night I set a two a.m. deadline: If he hadn't fallen asleep by then, a midnight call was in order because it was all kvetch-cry-wheeze-bark. He fell asleep at 1:45 and slept until about 8:00 am. And then he woke up, ate, and wow, did he ever wheeze hard core after that. His coughs were (are) quite spectacular-- resulting in a totally scary purple face. Accompanied by loud grunts, think female tennis player style, a la Monica Seles, it was really quite concerning. And there was some serious retraction happening, so I called the doc's office again, and again, they said, come right away. And since today he sounded 1000% worse than yesterday, I went even faster.

It's a virus and I know as well as anyone else that there's nothing to give a virus. Except, apparently, Albuterol. And a nebulizer. My sweet baboo did not like that mask over his face. Possibly it conjured up bad memories of the C-PAPP machine, but whatever the case, he coughed his way through his first treatment at the doctor office. It felt like I was gassing my own baby. And although he was still coughing when the doctor checked on us, she assured me he sounded better though the scope. I'm going to start insisting that I get to listen also. That, I'm sure, will really endear me to her.

The cricket is sleeping mostly, which is good because he doesn't wheeze as much in his sleep and coughs even less. I am concerned at the fact that he's not nursing as exuberantly, but hey, when I'm sick I don't really like to eat that exuberantly either.

Okay, that's it for now. I'm going to wrap him up and let him breath some of the moist spring air before the sun sets. And hope beyond hope that even though I had to BUY the damn nebulizer, I never ever have to use it at home.

Oh, and incidently, rectal temperature? Really my issue, not his because he could give a shit. Literally.

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Blogger Jen said...

Oh, poor Cricket! Oh, poor moms! I hope you are all better soon, and second the notion that the nebulizer not get used at home.

Hang in there. Sending love and healing vibes from DC.

7:58 PM  
Anonymous Liza said...

Oh, shit, Katie. At least I had had two of the little buggers before I ever had one pull the RSV business. I'm so sorry--it's miserable for all concerned. I always slip and start to say "vet." That really made me laugh, because I'm so glad someone else copped to it. Tell your son to get better. That and eat, for chrissake. When you're nursing and they don't eat, it's like the bastard child of worry and rejection, isn't it? I'm sorry :-(

11:00 PM  
Blogger Portlairge said...

Sweet Cricket, I wish you a speedy recovery and a return of your appetite. Katie, think of the rectal temp as practice for when you start your new program at school!!!!!!!!

11:41 PM  
Blogger Anna said...

I'm so sorry Cricket is sick, poor guy! I hope he's better soon. I was so nervous to take the Bee's temp rectally, but did finally when he hadn't pooped for 2 days (and my efforts were rewarded). It's amazing that they don't seem to mind! Best wishes for a speedy recovery. xoxoxox

10:01 AM  
Anonymous AdirondackJen said...

He's adorable - sorry to hear he's sick! Here's some been there/done that assvice: The nebulizer? Bought one on Dr's orders when kid #1 had some bronchial congestion wheezy cough episode at age 4, and now we've used it about once a year with each kid - and twice last year for me (bronchitis)! So it's handy, and you'll probably use it more than you thought. Unfortunately.

But fortunately, you've got it!

10:28 AM  
Blogger Kim said...

Oh my gosh, how scary! As preemie moms we live in fear of that dreaded RSV, so I can't imagine actually being told that your little cricket has it, or at least has all the symptoms of an infection caused by it. I wish him a speedy recovery!

8:54 PM  
Blogger terri c said...

Lurker delurking to wish Cricket well soonest! Glad you HAVE the nebulizer and hope that means you never need it, but boy those things are worth their weight in gold when you need 'em.

10:47 PM  
Blogger vwsista said...

I hope little Cricket is feeling better today. Poor little fella.

11:51 AM  

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