Sunday, December 13, 2009

December Drama

This is a post I would have been more than happy not to have to make. But, in the interest of telling it like it is, here goes:

On Wednesday night I had to teach a makeup lesson and James wasn't home from work yet, so Allegra, Cecily, Colin, and Ian hung out in the office for 30 minutes. When I was done and came into the office Cecily was really upset and inconsolable, which is not like her at all. It took quite a while for me to calm her down and even after she was calm she still would erupt in screaming every few minutes. Then she started coughing and gagging, which resulted in vomitting - it scared me, but at the same time, sometimes kids do that when they get super upset. It was Awana Grand Prix night and Hero had a car to race, so we bundled Cecily into her carseat and headed down to pick Hero up from ballet and then scooted over to Meridian for Awana. Cecily screamed bloody murder in her carseat, so much so that she gagged and vomitted some more. She even refused to take her bottle. Once we got to Awana and I was holding her she calmed down again and even took a nap in my arms. We got home late from Awana, about 9, and we bathed Ceci and she acted like her normal self for most of the time, but then started screaming again. She wouldn't take her nighttime bottle. I thought that maybe she was just sick (she's had a little runny nose and congestion for most of the month) and put her crib mattress on an incline and turned the humidifier on. But she just wasn't acting like herself, and I told James that in all of my baby-raising experience I've never seen one acting like this, which concerned me greatly. So he called the pediatrician's after-hours number and spoke to a nurse who suggested that we take her to the Urgent Care facility that was open til 10 out in Eagle. I was afraid for her to be in the carseat by herself with the choking and all the children were already in bed, so we told Hero that she was in charge and took off with Cecily at 9:45. She fell asleep in the car and slept the whole way there, very peacefully and I was starting to feel foolish for panicking. As the doctor began the assessment everything looked completely normal and Cecily was happy and smiling. And then I lied her on the table and the doctor shone her light in her mouth and used the tongue depressor and there was something silver in the back of Cecily's throat! I about passed out when I saw it. The doctor immediately said that she wouldn't pull it out there and sent us to St. Luke's ER, calling them ahead of time to let them know we were coming. That car ride was SO scary! We got there and were immediately brought back and Cecily's breathing was monitored (which was steady and fine) and the ER doctor ordered x-rays. She had partially swallowed the metallic spring from a wooden clothespin (which, we learned later, Colin had broken while I was teaching). The x-rays were pretty scary-looking. The ER doctor felt that it would be prudent to remove the item in the OR, so the ENT doctor was called in. About an hour and a half after we got to the emergency room Cecily was taken downstairs for surgery. They put her under general anesthesia and did a laryngoscopy (I think that's the right spelling). The surgery took less than five minutes, but it was a nervous wait for James and I in the deserted OR floor. The ENT doctor said that it came out without a hitch, only drawing a tiny bit of blood and leaving no swelling. What a relief! After the surgery Cecily went up to the PICU for monitoring. When they finally let us up to see her she was in a nurse's arms and completely back to her old self, smiling and happy. She showed absolutely zero effects from the traumatic events of the night. I can't say the same for her parents. It was horrible. But the outcome turned out as well as could be expected. We were able to take her home just an hour after surgery and we made it back to our house by 1am, which isn't bad, all things considered (we'd called Lynn over to spend the night with the older kids since we thought we'd be there all night). I feel so fortunate that we followed our gut instincts and try not to spend too much time dwelling on the "what-ifs". Thankfully the Man Upstairs was watching out for our little angel that night. Here's some pictures of her pricey ER visit souvenirs - the item in the bag is what was in her throat.

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Jenn said...

Wow! That is so scary!! Thankgoodness you took her to urgent care! The good lord was definately looking over you guys :)

Bobbi said...

Oh my word! That is crazy. I can't believe she didn't choke on that or inhale it. How scary! I'm so glad you followed your instincts and took her in. Glad she's okay.

Unknown said...

Bless her heart and bless your glad that she is well!