Archive for the ‘sickness’ Category

From yesterday:

Nothing says “Top o’ the mornin’!” like your four year old barfing in your doorway at 4 am. It was that kind of day here.

Luckily, Gideon was only sick the once and after a day of convalescing in front of the TV, he is quite recovered. I only hope the rest of us have escaped the germs.

The exciting incident also led me to scrub the floor, we have laminate in most of the house, from our bedroom to the bathroom. I figured while I was on my hands and knees I should finish the job and now I have clean floors. I hate cleaning the floors, but they do look nice.

It continues to be a zoo at my house. Who knew two large dogs and two boys had the ability to sound like the entire wild Africa section of the zoo? Sometimes, I think I live in the ape house. Not the monkey house, mind you, because monkeys have TAILS.

So here is wishing you a barf free week. May your floors be clean and your sleep uninterrupted.

p.s. We are now a barf free zone.


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EEG Results

I just got off the phone with the nurse and she said Gideon’s EEG was all normal. She did not tell me that Gideon was an above average bear but I do not need a test to tell me that.

This morning I told him he needed to go find something to do. He told me, “I want to keg beer with Daddy.” I informed him that we did not have any beer to keg but that Daddy would be happy to know that he wanted to help.

Gideon has almost fully recovered from his bout with bronchitis. He is eating his normal amount of food and then some. It is beautiful, blue, and sunny outside. Today is blessed indeed.

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On the Mend, I Hope

Gideon had a follow-up visit to the doctor today. She said his bronchitis is getting better. You can hear the mucus moving when he breathes. It sounds bad, but I do think he is feeling a bit better. Gideon is acting more like normal, though his appetite has not returned. He nibbles here and there, but he does not eat much. I assume it is too much of the aforementioned mucus.

We have been mostly stuck inside together, Gideon and I, this week and I think we are both fairly sick of it. We have watched many, many episodes of Wild America and the same Animal Atlas episode (Go Fish!) about a million times. I wish I was exaggerating. I am not. A million times. I do not mind the Wild America, but I am not used to having the TV on so much during the day and it gets in my nerves to have it on so much. I must be getting old.

I am looking forward to the weekend. Because of the plagues, I am about two weeks behind with the book, which is due so soon as to be looming in my vision every day. With Ries home, I should get something done.

I am so thankful that Gideon is a mostly well child and that our bouts of sickness are few and far between. It is not so much the sleep that I miss most, it is being able to leave the house and the stress of having a sad, whiny child attached firmly to you 24/7. (I originally typed that 27/7 and it does seem like the days drag on FOREVER.

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It seems like lately the Smith house just can not catch a break.

Last week, Gideon had a check up on Wednesday and got a clean bill of health. This was good.

Pullo, the mastiff, had a checkup on Wednesday and also got a clean bill of health, minus the usual allergies. He is a 140 pound delicate flower.

Puck, the sugar glider, had a veterinarian appointment because he had some weird scab things on the tips of his ears. The vet said that he might have a blood infection that was causing necropsy in his extremities, at the moment just his tail and ears. He is on an antibiotic and has a cream. Apply and administer twice daily.

I left for a high school retreat on Friday. I am one of the leaders for the 10th graders. On Saturday, Ries told me Gideon had a 104 fever and was acting very sick. I threw my stuff in my bag and hitched a ride home. Luckily, the retreat was in Galveston, only about 40 minutes from my house.

By the time I got home, Gideon’s fever was down, but he was coughing. We went to an after hours peds clinic down the road. They were very nice. We decided to monitor him at home and keep him on a regimen of tylenol and motrin to keep his fever in check. After a visit to the regular peds doc today, we found out Gideon has bronchitis. He is on breathing treatments and a steroid, which made him throw up after dinner. Awesome.

The good news is that we had about 4 hours with no fever this afternoon, though it came back just in time for bed.

Having a sick kid is pretty awful. There is not much you can do to help them and they are so sad and miserable. We watched Wild America all day on the couch. After being sick, kids are pretty spoiled which is also fairly awful. Unless, I suppose, your kid is spoiled all the time and then you have no idea what I am talking about.

Needless to say, very little has gotten done around this joint except boy duty. Hopefully, he will start to feel better soon and things will get back to what passes as normal around here.

“Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord and whose trust is the Lord. For he will be like a tree planted by the water, that extends its roots by the stream and will not fear when the heat comes; but its leaves will be green, and it will not be anxious in a year of drought nor cease to yield fruit.” -Jeremiah 17:7-8

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In honor of the recent Passover, I will describe our camping trip by listing the plagues that accompanied it.

  • Gnats: The first and most persistent plague was the flying and biting gnats.  They were EVERYWHERE and all the time.  And I don’t just mean a few, I mean hundreds flying all around your face.  Going in your eyes, your ears, your mouth.  I’m not sure what kind they were but I think there was a mix.  About 1 out of 100 of them would bite you.  Since there were about 200 or more around you at any given time it meant you were likely being bitten by about 2 gnats all the time.  Insect repellent had absolutely no effect on them whatsoever.  It is too bad about the bugs, because the weather was otherwise perfect.
  • Ants:  Gideon and Caleb Norwood were loving the outdoors.  The sites at the campsite were spacious and they loved running around and between (and away) from them.  During one of their initial tromp sessions, just after we get there, we hear Gideon saying “stomp on the hill.”  Michelle looks over to see Gideon then wiping at his legs.  He realizes that on the top of the “hill” that he was stomping on, was a big fire ant hill.  So, of course, Gideon got bitten all around his hands and legs by fire ants.  To his credit he didn’t even make a scream or a complaint about it.  He just went about his business.
  • Worts:  I don’t get worts, but it looks like I started to develop one, right at the tip of my ring finger.  Very annoying as any little scrape on the finger is [slightly] painful.  More annoyance than anything.  Figures that as I get home, it seems the wort is already going away.  Must have simply been part of the curse of the camping trip.
  • Seizures:  This was probably the big one.  At noon on Friday (had only been camping for 18 of the planned 44 hours) we were sitting at the picnic table getting ready to play a board game.  Gideon had awoken from a nap and was munching a little bit on food but mostly playing with game pieces.  From out of nowhere, he begins to fall off the picnic table bench.  I pick him up and he begins to have a seizure.  He did this when he had a cold a few months ago, so we knew what to do.  After the seizure was over we put him in the car and drove to hospital in Livingston, which was ~6 miles away.  When we got to the ER, we did realize that he was pretty hot so Michelle took off his shirt. to let him cool down.  They took his temperature (104° F), took some blood work (Gideon did not like that), and determined that it was a slight ear infection.  After an antibiotic drip and they got his fever down, we packed up camp and left.  We didn’t think it was wise to stick around with a sick kid and an impending storm.  Although it turned out the storm never came.  We made the hour trip to Michelle’s parent’s house instead of going home.  We were planning to go there the next day anyway.  The first seizure he had back in the winter was scarier because we had not experienced that before.  But the implications of this one is more worrisome.  I thought we could keep it under control if we just monitored his fever when he was sick.  But this time, we didn’t even know that Gideon was sick.  He didn’t act sick.  He was having a great time camping and his behavior was well within the norm.  He didn’t even mess with his ear.  This tells us that this is going to happen again and there is nothing we can do about it.
  • Poison Ivy:  This one, I’m not sure about yet.  I am highly allergic to poison ivy.  Michelle was concerned that there was poison ivy near our campsite but it didn’t look like it to me.  However, when we left the campsite we started to itch a lot.  Michelle’s are clearly the effect of those biting gnats.  The gnats played a role in my marks too.  But there are a few that look like they could be poison ivy.  If it is, then it is a minor case, but the jury is still out on this one.

After all that, I still wouldn’t say it was a bad camping trip.  Okay, it was probably the worst camping trip I have ever been on.  But it still wasn’t a bad time.  I don’t think.  It’s hard to tell these days.

–Ries, let my people go!

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Just an Update

Gideon seems to be doing better during the day, normal temperature, but at night he keeps a steady 100-101 temperature. I woke up every three hours to check his temp and give him Tylenol or Motrin. Everyone here is exhausted. I am hoping that tonight is better.

Gideon is so tired. He went to sleep already and, despite eating two pancakes for breakfast, he only picked at lunch. Perhaps a good nap will revive him.

Thanks to my friend, we have some Veggie Tales movies to watch and that has saved me from literally watching the same six 30 minute animal shows all day. I have already watched the Wild About Animals episode with the dolphins 3 times today. I am considering buying the Wild America (classic!) for him to watch because I think they are better than what is currently on tv.

It is hard when little ones are sick. Gideon either wants to be carried, held, or snuggled, leaving me to do nothing but take care of him. It is tiring, though sweet. I think I will use this unexpected quiet time to eat lunch and watch some child inappropriate tv aka Vampire Diaries or Dollhouse.

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A Small Scare

Gideon started developing a runny nose at the end of last week.  It turned into a slight fever on Sunday evening and then a good fever Monday night.  Last night he exploded into serious fever territory.  I gave him a bath but he was clearly cold as all he did was hunch over or lay down into the warm water.  When I took him out he was shivering.  Our immediate reaction was to cover him up and keep him warm.  In hindsight, that was a mistake.  We had him snuggled up in a blanket, gave him some tylenol, and sat on the couch to watch Lost.  Michelle checked his temperature (under the armpit) and it registered 104!  That was decided, he had to go to the doctor the next day.

But that’s when the scare came.  Michelle got up off the couch quickly and bent over, saying we were going to have to go somewhere.  She was blocking my view from Gideon and I thought, based on her movement that he was throwing up.  That wasn’t the case at all.  He was seizing.  I had heard of seizures in small children who have fevers that are too high.  But this was way too scary when you are watching your own kid do it and you don’t know what to do.  We unbundled him and just laid him on the floor.  Michelle told me to put on my shoes, but that wasn’t enough for me, I wanted to know what we needed to do.  I watched him then while Michelle looked for a number.  That is when I noticed his lips turning purple and we freaked out a little bit.  That is when Michelle called 911.  I’m glad she did.  We turned him over on his side so that he wouldn’t choke on his tongue.  Soon after that he stopped and just began breathing heavy and his eyelids were half open until he fell asleep.  A few minutes passed where we just knelt over our son and waited for the ambulance (Pullo had joined us by this time).  The ambulance came and told us he was okay.  All his signs were good but his fever was still up at 103 and we should probably take him into the hospital.

To wrap up a short-story-long (that’s the only way I know how to tell them), we went to the Pediatric Emergency Room and they looked at him to make sure he is fine.  There is nothing they can do for him.  They advised us to begin using Motrin along with Tylenol and keep him unclothed to make sure we keep the fever down.  The doctor informed us that these seizures are common and they do not hurt the brain.  That was a relief to me.  They waited for his fever to go down a little bit (it was still 104) and then they let us go.

The Lord speaks to me through my son more than any other way.  He knows me too well.  I was having a bad day due to recent events and other life pressures (plus the weather just called for a gloomy mood).  The message was received loud and clear.  Buck up!  It could be worse.  Thank you Lord for protecting me from the worst.

–Ries, powerless.

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