Sunday, August 3, 2014

Famous last words...

As you read in my last post we were feeling very confident about this parenting two kids things. Settling into a groove and patting ourselves on the back. HA! That is always a recipe for disaster, right? 

First, let's rewind back to all the FUN happenings and then we will get to the not-so-fun part. To begin, Allie came to visit!!! It was such a treat to have her in California. Unfortunately she had to leave Eli, Jillian, and Justin at home, but it made for a very mellow trip of getting to catch up and love on her baby, Cora. We didn't really do much other than hang out around Menlo Park and relax. Once the babies are a bit bigger we will get them all out here and conquer the Bay Area one attraction at a time. The only real bummer about her trip is that it came to an end and we had to send her back to St. Louis. Noah loved having Allie here (she is fantastic at playing!), and I just wish with all my heart we lived closer. There is nothing like a childhood best friend. 
How cute is Miss Cora?!
Love her!
The day after Allie left we got more visitors! My parents and Katie both landed the following day. Katie and I set to work immediately to plan last minute details for her bachelorette party that weekend. While I wasn't able to leave for the entire weekend (a two month old, breastfeeding, baby pretty much makes that unrealistic), I was able to sneak away for Friday day/night in Napa to celebrate Kate! It was a seriously fun day of wine tasting and adult conversation. 
I failed to mention that my parent's visit started with a trip to urgent care for my mom (foreshadowing?!). She got stung by a bee (foreshadowing?!) the day before they flew and the above was the situation when they landed.
Favors ready for the bachelorette!
A quick little side note about that Friday...I almost stayed home. Friday night was rough for my little Cooper as he had a really stuffy nose and a bit of a cough. I was really nervous to leave him but Scott gave me the kick I needed to go. I am glad I did as he did great while I was gone and seemed much better when I got home. Famous.Last.Words.
Pumping on the way to Napa. I am sure the people stuck in traffic next to me were a bit confused! I might have also scared some of the ladies on the trip who don't have kids yet with the constant pumping!
All the ladies with our limo!
After a few days of fun with Grandma and Papa, Tuesday arrived. We went to Cooper's two month check up at the pediatrician and got his first shots. He still had a bit of a cold but the doctor said his lungs sounded great and he was his happy, smiley self. He rocked his shots and had no noticeable reactions after coming home. No extra fussiness, fevers, etc. Just business as usual. We gave Coop his bottle and sent him off to dream land at about 9:30. At 11pm I awoke to him seriously a mess! He was making horrible breathing noises, coughing, and was super congested. These early minutes are a bit of blur but I know after trying to nurse, cuddle, rock, walk, I decided I needed to get him into a steamy room so I had Scott turn on the shower so we could sit in there and hopefully help some of the gunk clear out. 
It in the bathroom.
Success! After sitting in the bathroom for 15 minutes he seemed much better and fell asleep in my arms. We were both pretty toasty so we left and I laid him back down. The happiness lasted for about 5 minutes before the horrible sounds came back. Mostly he sounded like a seal who couldn't breathe (clincal name: stridor). Truth: I started to panic. I tend to be fairly calm in "emergent" situations but I looked at Scott and said, "I don't know what to do". He was cool, calm, and collected (as usual) and told me to call my mom over. She came over and after a few more minutes of all of us trying to sort out what was wrong we decided it was time to see a doctor. 

This was far and away the worst part of the night. My mom and I scrambled into clothes (Scott wasn't able to come as he was predisposed with a medical prep that required him to stay close to a restroom...I'll leave you to your own conclusions there!) and we then attempted to get Coop into his carseat. It.Was.Awful. He freaked out, cried harder than I have ever heard, couldn't breathe well, was foamy at the mouth, his mucus was out of was just plain bad. 

We made it to the Stanford ER and they wasted no time getting us into a room. Side note, the ER at 1am is a not-so-fun place. You don't go to the hospital just for fun at this hour :-(. ANYWAY, we immediately started seeing doctors, nurses, interns, med students, etc. Standford is a teaching hospital so for every one person you see, you see about four. We recounted the night's events and timeline of Cooper's cold at least 10 times while in the ER. During this time, they also did deep suction (that royally pissed Coop off, but it made a huge difference), and hooked him to up to heart and oxygen monitors. His heartrate was pretty high at this point but oxygen sats were great (a relief after hearing how labored his breathing was). 
Coop was in great hands with Grandma.
We were all so tired and Coop kept trying to sleep and even kept trying to smile between all the people checking him out. He truly was a perfect little patient. At some point they wanted to start an IV as his heartrate was still a bit high for their liking (which can apparently be a sign of dehydration). It wasn't mandatory at this point and so I decided to decline and just keep nursing him in hopes we could avoid a stick for our boy.
All hooked up in the ER.
By 4am they had made the decision to admit us and we were off to Lucille Packard to get our room (I made the decision that if they still wanted to start an IV upon seeing him upstairs, I would say ok). After a slight detour to the wrong wing, we got settled into 3West and started meeting our team. Again, teaching hospital, lots and lots of people! After seeing a doctor, or four, I went ahead and sent my mom home to help with logistics there and to make sure she got some rest. 
A sight for sore eyes.
And then it was just Coopie and I. We did a lot of snuggling. And, luckily, no one ever mentioned an IV again. His heartrate would get slightly high but nothing crazy so we were able to avoid the stick! PHEW!!!! Early Wednesday morning the decision was made to go ahead and give him a dose of steroids as the leading theory (among about 25...RSV, pertussis, structural abnormalities, etc...) of what was wrong was Croup. It looked like Croup, and sounded like Croup, but apparently it doesn't really start showing up in kids until they are six months so they were all a bit perplexed. 
He looks so small :-(.
As the steroids began to kick in, we saw marked improvement in Cooper. He was resting better and nursing better as well. He still wanted to be snuggled so we spent most of the day in the recliner. I got a few minutes of sleep here and there but was thrilled to see Scott walk through the door at about 4:30pm that afternoon. Not only did I get to get a little sleep (still hard with staff constantly coming in and nursing), but it was also just nice to have him back by my side and be in it together. My parents delivered dinner later that evening and I finally got to see my big boy. I felt so bad that I just disappeared in the night so it made my heart so happy to get to see him, even if just for a couple minutes in the car (Coop was in "isolation" so Noah wouldn't have been allowed in the room). 
Resting. A fun fact, that night Scott and I shared that little bench bed. A far cry from our king sized bed at home!
This is already really, really long, so I'll wrap it up. The steroids were a miracle worker. They kept us overnight Wednesday night for observation (I was very happy about this as Coop tended to get worse at night and I didn't want another ER trip) and we were discharged Thursday morning with a loose diagnosis of Croup and instructions to give him some TLC and follow up with our pediatrician. 
Best part of the week...a cupcake date after school with my big boy...just the two of us!
Check.Check.Check. Follow up went great. As the steroids have worn off his cough has come back a bit, but nothing compared to that first night. He pretty much just sounds like a baby with a cold now. 

A few take aways from the whole thing:

1. We were SO lucky my parents were here. I seriously don't know what we would have done otherwise. It was invaluable to have my mom with me (both for support and her nursing experience) and my dad back at home to keep Noah happy (Papa is his absolute favorite person). They were able to jump in and help with all of the logistics of the house, drop offs, pick ups, meals, etc. Someone knew what they were doing having all of this happen when it did. 
Noah's hero.
2. We are also incredibly lucky that Stanford is 10 minutes away from our house. To know that we were getting some of the best medical care in the country (as a result of geography!) was reassuring every step of the way. It was also kind of fun to feel like I was in an episode of Grey's Anatomy when the team did their rounds and talked through Cooper's chart! 

3. I am so grateful that our stay at the hospital was as short as it was, for supportive care only, and that we made it out without so much as an IV (steroids were given orally). Being on the pediatric floor of the LPCH made us count our blessings that was got to walk out of there after only one day with a healthy baby boy.  

So, now we have our first ER visit crossed off the list. Not exactly a fun thing to "accomplish" but probably something we were going to encounter at some point. I am just glad it all has a happy ending. Also, this all sounds extremely dramatic but, honestly, once we got past the rush to the ER portion, it wasn't all that horrible. We were in great hands and it was really just a lot of snuggling our little guy and allowing the medicine to do its job. Again, we are very fortunate.
Tired but oh so happy to be home.
Kind of. HA! We got home Thursday, and Friday my parents flew home. That night we were having dinner and the back door was open. We saw a fly buzzing around so I grabbed the fly swatter and sat back down. We saw it again and Scott got up to get him. Before he could, we noticed it was actually a bee. At that point it flew right into Cooper's head (in his rock n play) sat there, and stung him. I was literally two feet away from Cooper and couldn't get it off in time. SERIOUSLY?!?! What are the odds of this?! Coop screamed bloody burder and we immediately began Googling "bee sting in infants". Luckily he didn't have any kind of reaction but I spent the next few hours examining every inch of his little body for any sign of anything that indicated otherwise! 
That white dot is the baking soda paste we put on to hopefully draw out some venom.
So, that concluded our crazy couple of weeks. Hopefully things can settle down a little bit now and we can resume our life as "a settled family of 4"!

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