Thursday, September 24, 2009

A Girl's Gotta Breathe

The sniffling started on Monday, if I remember right, and it wasn't much, just enough to alert my asthma mom sensors, and start dosing with benedryl every 4 hrs. Little Miss H started to cough a wee little cough by Tuesday evening, and with both she and Miss G still sporting runny noses, they both got a preventative couple 'puffs' on the inhaler before bed. At least, I was hoping they would be preventative. Little Miss H coughed herself to sleep, finally settling in pretty good, only to wake up on Wednesday with a much deeper and more concerning wheezy cough. Out came the albuterol nebs (breathing treatments) and she got a good dose before we headed out for Teenager's violin lesson.

While he has his lessons, I usually take the rest of the children to a nearby park, which we have had mostly to ourselves since the rest of the kids went back to school. The running around was too much, and Miss G needed to come sit still and use the inhaler again. When Miss G starts wheezing, alarms start going off in my head. Little Miss H can cough and wheeze for days, even go through a bout of pneumonia, and keep her stats up like the hearty little trooper that she has always been. Miss G, on the other hand, can start a slight wheeze, that most people wouldn't even notice, drop her O2 level and progress to a wheeze that most people couldn't miss, in the blink of an eye. Ok, not quite that fast, but in a matter of a few hours.

After we got home, both girls started getting nebs every 2 hrs, rather than waiting the prescribed 4. The benedryl dosing continued, the garlic consuming started, and I went ahead and started Miss G on another steroid burst- my least favorite thing about life with asthma, but a girl's gotta breathe, and so a mom's gotta do what a mom's gotta do.

After falling asleep, both girls dropped their O2 stats into the 80s, so I headed to the ER, this time with 2 girls, around 10 pm. After 2 more nebs, only a few minutes apart, they were deemed to have opened up and were moving air well, so we were sent home, with orders to start Little Miss H on a steroid burst as well, as her lungs were making much more 'noise'.

After getting home around 12:30 am, I collapsed into bed with a sudden severe headache and started vomiting, seriously, that's how behind in sleep I have been this week. My body canNOT handle that much sleep deprivation, so Darling Husband had to take over. He got up to watch the girls get settled into sleep, to give another neb in the middle of the night, and to take Miss G back in after her O2 level dipped to a way-too-low 70%, along with some retracting. Those of you that have experienced respiratory crud, know about retracting, and that it's not good. She's using auxillary muscles to help expand and contract her lungs, which mean she's working extra hard to breathe. That's taxing on a little body.

This time they x-rayed and confirmed she had already progressed to pneumonia, barely more than 12 hours from the time I noticed she had started wheezing. They gave her a shot of antibiotics and sent her home with oral antibiotics to add to the steroid burst and frequent nebs, with directions to bring her back (again) is she worsens. Well, by 7 am, her O2 was back down to 81% and she was still wheezy and retracting some more, so Darling Husband took her back, again, for the 3 time in 9 hrs...

This time her O2 had only come back up to 85% with all the waking activity and 'excitement' that comes with running to the ER (which will often result in a higher O2 stat long enough to be sent home, only to drop again when she falls asleep). This time she's staying, she's on oxygen, and she's needing a good sleep just as much as her Dad and I.

Most activity around here has come to a screeching halt, with videos being watched by the youngers, chores and extra helping out being done by the olders, so hopefully Mom can get another nap. I'll update as I hear more from Darling Husband.

Enjoying them,
because of Him,



Anonymous Marla said...

I'm so sorry! I was hoping you could make it further into the season or that it wouldn't hit at all this year. I know all too well, what that level of exhaustion is like and I'm praying for God's mercy and grace. He will indeed give you what you need to get through all these sleepless nights, even though it doesn't seem like you'll be able to make it at the time!
And aren't we so thankful for husbands?!

September 24, 2009 at 3:44 PM  
Blogger Amy said...

How scary. We've had our fair share of medical problems, but asthma and breathing haven't been among them. Bless your hearts! I hope everyone is feeling better today and you have been able to get some rest.

September 25, 2009 at 3:37 PM  
Blogger MarshaMarshaMarsha said...

(((hugs))) praying for deep, sweet breaths and rest for all of you!

September 30, 2009 at 10:22 PM  

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