Gracie was hospitalized again this week.
Jackson’s Cub Scout camping trip was last weekend — the boys left from school Friday to drive into the mountains for some freezing cold camping. Gracie and I had a girls’ weekend. Well, we were going to anyway.
We actually did a lot of running around. Friday night Gracie had ballet, Saturday morning she had a riding lesson, and we were supposed to go to an Amma celebration Sunday morning. Plans changed Saturday night, however, when Gracie got a fever. She was sitting on the couch in our warm living room and shivering, asking for blankets, and saying she was so cold. It was probably 80 degrees in our house but she was shivering. That’s not a good sign! She told me her legs and arms and neck hurt, so I thought the fever was probably viral. There weren’t any major wounds anywhere on her body, so it seemed reasonable to give her some tylenol and send her to bed.
That night, she didn’t sleep well. She moaned and tossed and turned all night. She didn’t get another fever, although at about 6 am she started shaking and shivering again so I gave her tylenol despite her normal temp. She went back to sleep. When she got up, she seemed pretty much like herself. She was happy and playing and having a good morning. Pretty soon, she pooped — a huge, runny mess was everywhere. I took her into the shower to rinse her off, and that’s when I saw her hand.
Her left index finger was swollen to twice its normal size, and there was a prominent red streak all down her hand and past her wrist. The finger was very red, except the tip, which was white — that usually indicates poor blood flow in her. Crap. Crap crap crap. Streaking plus redness plus fever equals about four days in the hospital.
Jackson and Chad were still on their camping trip. They were supposed to come home around lunchtime, and it was about 8 am. I called Chad and told him the horrible news. I asked him not to tell Jackson yet, not to ruin his morning. Unbeknownst to me, though, he packed up the car and left just a few minutes later for the two hour drive home. I let Gracie soak in the bathtub for a while before washing her off. Might as well let her enjoy herself for a few minutes. Truth be told, I was dragging my heels; I just didn’t want to go.
I called Chad again when I pulled up to the hospital, and that’s when I discovered he had left right after getting that first call. He was almost home! If I’d known he was leaving, I would have waited for them. A few more minutes would not have made much difference for the infection and it would have been so nice to see my boys. But that’s not how it worked out…
Grace was in the hospital for three days. She got three IV doses of a 24-hour antibiotic (Daptomycin) and was discharged without waiting to see how she’d transition to oral antibiotics. We came home Tuesday afternoon just in time to leave to pick up Jackson from school.
This hospital stay was rough on Jackson, Chad, and I. Maybe it’s because it was so unexpected; maybe it’s because Grace and I were gone when Chad and Jackson got home from their fabulous adventure. But for the past few days, the three of us have been recovering from our hospital hangovers. We are drained, barely able to muster enough energy to face the day. We all are worn out from our latest hospital adventure — Gracie has a ways to go to heal from the infection and the rest of us need to sleep off our hangovers.