Today is Festivus, a holiday created by the great Frank Costanza of Seinfeld fame. One great Festivus tradition is the Airing of Grievances, and so I thought that might be a good theme for today’s blog update.
I actually feel great and have few grievances—days off do wonders for the psyche. I have been making Christmas goodies, wrapping presents, playing Christmas songs on my phone all day, etc. Also we had some appointments scheduled, like a pediatrician’s visit for both kids (non-ironic well child check for Jackson, vaccination for Gracie) and an oil change for my car. Also last Friday Gracie spent the day in the ER and I didn’t work, so I had to get some things done for work too. But now, all the work is done, mostly, and I can just relax and update this blog.
Thank you for bearing with me while I was too busy to write. It is sure to happen again, but I’ll probably be back to my weekly updates before too long.
So, anyway, the grievances. Let’s start with the hospital.
Last week, we had a snow day on Tuesday. I got a robocall from the public school at 5:23 a.m. telling me there was a snow day. If the public schools are closed, Jackson’s school closes too, so I knew both kids would stay home that day. On Tuesday, Gracie kept shivering and telling me she was freezing. It was cold outside, but not in the house, so the freezingness was odd. I finally checked her temp and it was 100.2 – high enough to not be normal but low enough not to be a huge concern. I decided to wait and see how she was before sending her to school the next day, but when she woke up in the morning she was fine. Hm.
I texted her helper to let her know Gracie wasn’t feeling well but wasn’t sick enough to stay home and to keep an eye on her, but never heard back. (Actually, I found out later that her phone was broken.) Apparently Grace did fine in school because she was okay that afternoon when I got home. She was okay again Thursday, too. Hm. Okay.
Thursday night was Jackson’s school musical, which was an adventure in itself. Jackson slammed his finger in the car door when we got to school, and it immediately turned red and looked swollen. I took him to his classroom, and between the wound care stuff I had in my purse (because, you know, I carry that stuff around with me…) and a popsicle stick from the teacher I splinted his finger, thinking I would check it after the program and would be able to tell by then if it was okay. When we got home, the finger was feeling much better and I decided to wait to check it until the morning. By morning it was fine – barely a bruise. Jackson is amazing. He has a strong and tough body, just like his mommy.
But I didn’t get to check Jackson’s finger first thing in the morning. Gracie had been moaning in her bed for quite a while when Chad woke me to check on her. She was freezing, again. Her face was cold, her hands were cold, her ears were cold. She legitimately felt cold. I fixed her covers and got her another blanket, but she was still cold. I lay down next to her so my body heat could warm her, but she didn’t stop moaning and writhing. Eventually, my sleep-deprived brain realized it was fever shakes (rigors). I took her temp — 100.8. Technically a fever but not one they would medicate at the hospital (it has to get up to about 101.8 before they want to treat it) but I knew she was still climbing so gave her some ibuprofen. She finally stopped shaking, which meant her body had caught up with the fever and she would reach the apex soon. I took her temp again—103.7. Yikes! That’s a very high fever.
By this time, it was almost 6 on my last day of work before a week-long vacation. I called Gracie’s school to let them know she wasn’t coming and texted my boss that I would not be in the office (with the expectation that I would work from home with Gracie). I decided to take her temp one more time before taking a shower. This time, the thermometer read 105.4.
105.4!!! The only other times she’s had fevers that high, she had raging infections (her knee last summer and the kidney infection of Oct. 2013). I showed the thermometer to Chad and texted her doctor, wondering if I should take her straight to the ER or wait for an office appointment. I didn’t get an answer—at least not right away; it was hours later—and Chad and I started talking hospital. With a fever like that, she would probably be admitted.
I sent Chad for some tylenol and got ready for the hospital, dreading the upcoming stay. Jackson’s birthday was Sunday, and there were little boys coming to our house Saturday, and it was trashed—I had planned to spend Friday night cleaning and preparing. Instead, I would have to spend Friday night in a stinky hospital room on a very uncomfortable bed. Somehow, Chad would have to get all his work done but still clean the house and take care of Jackson and his friends. It seemed hopeless.
When Chad got back with the tylenol, I took Gracie’s temp again. It was down to 103.8—not 105, but still a high fever. I gave her the tylenol and finished getting us ready for our day. We decided that I would take Jackson to school and then go straight to the ER with Grace.
By the time we got to the ER Grace’s fever was almost gone. I think the thermometer read 37.4 at the hospital—99.3. They did bloods and urine, which were both normal, and sent us on our way. We got out just in time to pick Jackson up from his noon dismissal. I was so tired that I took the entire day off work. That is a rare occurrence.
All’s well that ends well, I guess. Gracie had another fever Friday, and another one Sunday night, but otherwise has been fairly normal. She has a weird and unexplained rash on her face, too. She was supposed to get a vaccination at her doctor’s appointment this Tuesday, but we declined because of the mysterious fever and rash. Her doctor is weirdly supportive of this—it actually worries me that her doctor doesn’t think she should get vaccinations. We had a great time with Jackson’s friends Saturday and Sunday, and it was good to have the spotlight on my boy for a change. We have been having a wonderful week at home. Christmas is going to be amazing for all of us.
Merry Christmas, one and all. And a Happy Festivus, too.
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