Tuesday, September 2, 2008

It's 3 AM I Must Be Lonely

Last night (at 2:54 am) I woke up abruptly to the sound of a seal barking in the other room. I jumped up just in time to find Bo wandering out of his room into the hall. He was wheezing and barking and sounding pretty funny. Even at 3 am.

We are well acquainted with croup.

Avee got it when she was 9 months old. I was at my parent's house and she was alseep in a port-a-crib at the foot of my bed. The wheezing and seal barking commenced at about 6 am and I just about died from heart failure. Tiny little 14-15 pound Avee. I called my nursing student sister and frantically begged for her to come and "get the toy out of my baby's throat."

After about 15 minutes of unsucessful fishing, S suggested perhaps she was sick, and didn't actually have something in her throat.

It was December, in Missouri. I threw a coat on her and rushed her to the ER. Because I had no idea what was happening to her.

Funny thing is, by the time we got to the hospital, the wheezing had stopped and her fever had dropped like 2-3 degrees.

That's what cold air does to croup and a fever.

The next time Avee got croup, she was 18 months. I knew what it was, so I didn't worry. One disadvantage though, we lived in Texas, and it was early October. No cold air to be found anywhere. But I wasn't worried.

Then she slept until noon and when she finally woke up her poor little tiny chest was heaving and working so hard to get air in and out. I called the pediatrician's office and they said to bring her in right away, based on the respirations/minute I reported. In the pedi's office, he immediately gave her a steroid shot and when 20-30 minutes later when she still didn't have her oxygen level up high enough, he sent me to the ER. It was then that I got a little worried. It all worked out, obviously. But let's just say, I'm no stranger to croup, and I have Avee to thank for that. It also needs to be noted---Bo was not ever involved in any of this.

So last night he's wheezing and coughing funny and immediately gets hysterical. I'm not sure if I have ever revealed this in its entirity on this blog---but he can work himself up to utter and complete hysteria in less than o.3 seconds. It's insane. And super annoying for me. Most of what is annoying to me is, I don't know how to deal with it. Nothing I say or do seems to help. Although, I am smart enough to know that saying, "I'm seriously about to throw you out that window Bo" isn't entirely effective in the "calming down" department. But he gets so crazy, I kind of lose my mind too. Just so you're clear, we're talking SUPER crazy.

Like the time he had to get a throat swab on his 5th birthday and after screaming hysterically for 15 minutes, I had to ask the doctor, PA, nurse, and medical assistant to all please leave us alone for a few minutes so I could reclaim my son's soul. HOLY SWAB!

And a couple of months ago he got the tiniest microscopic glass shard in this foot (I love the word shard) and couldn't walk. So I told him we needed to get it out. I fought/wrestled/reasoned/bribed/threatened, did everything I knew to do for at least half an hour. I walked out on him 6 times. He was resigned to going to bed for the day at 3 pm. It wouldn't have hurt getting the glass out, but J made the mistake of telling him it might. All of my efforts never even got me CLOSE to his foot.

I was sweating and furious when I went downstairs and threw the tweezers at J and said I was done, or one of us was going to end up in serious trouble.

J went upstairs, I hear brief objections and then nothing more.

J was up there at least 15 minutes but I never heard a peep. Finally J came down and said, "It's just too small, I can't see it." So I had to go back up and help. J worked his subduing magic and I worked my microscopic-shard-finding magic and we managed to get it out of his foot.

Later I asked J how he got Bo to be so quiet. "Oh, I just told him I would sit on him if he didn't hold still." I shook my head in disbelief, "But I threatened nonstop and got no results!"

"Well, he didn't sit still. So I sat on him."

This is a lot of background just for a measly middle of the night story---but I feel it's important that you have all the history and the facts. The facts according to Nobody.

So of course, last night, Bo got hysterical right away. Part of what caused this was being mildly incoherent and part was knowing that whatever was wrong with him was a big enough deal that both mom and dad were awake.

I just talked very quietly and calmly, hoping my example would rub off on him.

"You're totally okay Bo, it's just a cough that's called croup, crying will make it feel worse, screaming definitely won't help, here, take some small sips of water, there you go, oh, wait, no screaming, we don't need the baby waking up, easy there, okay, heeeeeeeeeeey, why are you screaming?!"

J, still laying down says, "Bo, look buddy, you're fine. If you really couldn't breath, you would have died like, an hour ago." And then starts laughing

Now, you need to know. My husband is awesome. Sometimes he says or does things with the kids that are exactly what is necessary or called for and I kind of stand back in awe that he knew how to handle it so perfectly.

And sometimes, he doesn't.

Bo started howling after hearing he would have died an hour ago and hearing his dad laughing "at him". As much as I wanted to laugh about how terribly wrong it all went in a matter of seconds, I bucked up and dealt with it and made J take Bo outside to get cold air.

They came back, Bo snuggled in with us and all was quiet until 7:30.

This morning I asked J, "What did you do with Bo when you took him outside?"

"Oh, I just told him how he'd had croup before and it was no big deal and (blah blah blah)."

"You do know he's never had it, right? It was Avee both times."

"Yeah I know. But it totally calmed him and he doesn't know that it was Avee and not him."

Just a little bit ago I heard Bo telling his friend, "Yeah, I had the funky cough last night. It just sounds funky and it's hawd to get a good bweath but I had it befo' and you just have to go outside in the cold a-yoh to help it go away and crying and screaming makes it wohse."

"What's it called?" his friend asks.

"Funky Cough."


Coordination Queen said...

I think my favorite is "I'll sit on you". Seriously. Awesome. I'll have to see if that works at my house.

Kristi Clinger said...

That is too funny. I love it. It cracks me up the things parents have to do to get kids to listen or to calm down.
You Nobodies are doing a great job.

Sketchy said...

I was going to say that sometimes Tom and my boys think so much alike that Tom can tell me what they are thinking before they do. He can just tell by their facial expressions.

But then I read further and learned that the "You would have died an hour ago" thing didn't work. So maybe our cases aren't quite similar.

I also don't have microscopic shard removal skills, that's Tom's job too.

Now I feel woefully inadequate as a mother.

Cindy said...

OK, "Holy Swab." you come up with the funniest things. Brilliant. I love the last part, when Bo is telling his friends about the "funky cough." and "I'll sit o you." you guys should do your own reality tv show, and you should write a book.

Heffalump said...

#5 had to have some shots (5) for Kindergarten this year. He FREAKED out. It took me an extra nurse just to hold him while he got the shots. He screamed the whole time and then when it was done and his Dad asked him if it hurt he said "Not really, it was just poke, poke, poke..."

Tori :) said...

Y'all sound too much like Sei and me. Except I'm a lot meaner. I say stuff like "Seriously, stop screaming or I'm gonna throw you out the window!" all the time while Sei is like "Aw, poor baby. Let me make you a total wimp for life." :P
My favorite method of comfort was when Tristan had a huge splinter in his foot. He was crying and screaming and as my sister and I tried to get it out and told him, "Just yell FREEEEEEEEEEDOMMMMMMMM!!!" He totally did!! He was yelling "FREEEEEEEEEEEDOMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM!!!" while we got it out. I don't know how we got it out since we were laughing so hard, but we managed.

Sorry I hijacked your comments. I loved this post.

Leslie said...

since we live in heat, too, and our kids are prone to croup, we stick their heads in the freezer for a minute. works like a charm.

glittersmama said...

I don't know if I'm ready for this.

Lauren said...

Ah...croup. My little brother used to get it all of the time. My parents once went out of town for their anniversary and I was only like 11 or so...and Zach got the croup in the middle of the night. My grandparents didn't know what to do, so I had to take care of him. Scariest night of my life.

Anyway...my favorite line has to be "HOLY SWAB!" I get like that too, when they try to swab me. I now refuse to let them haha!

Code Yellow Mom said...

This is awesome. I think I would have laughed hard at the "you would have died" part. And maybe even stopped caring if the baby woke up because I would be laughing so hard.

I thought he might have thought up a funky cough to get a shortened school day. Does he scheme like that yet? It's only a matter of time...:)

For the hysteria - have you tried, "You are right! This is the worst thing in the world! I think you should scream as loud as you possibly can..." etc., and suggest a couple really outrageous venting strategies that might match his outrageous hysteria (pull your hair really hard! stomp your feet and see if they will go through the floor!)..get silly but validate what he feels and see if he doesn't start laughing or realize that he can get in control because he doesn't really feel like being THAT crazy...Of course, this would not be something to do in the middle of the night, but it might keep him from spinning completely out during daytime situations. Sitting on him is definitely the best option when things need to be quiet.:)

NOBODY said...

CQ: I was totally nervous about putting this information on the world wide webernets because it really could be taken badly. Being the first to comment, and commenting specifically on the part I was nervous about, made my day!

Kristi: Hi! Things you NEVER thought you'd say or do, huh!?

Sketchy: You were on the right track, I was mentioning how he just has the perfect ability to handle them because he gets them in some ways I don't. Obviously not in this particular situation. :) Try not to be jealous of my skills. :)

Cindy: I made that up all by myself. :) You're comment totally cracked me up. I'll get myself some uppers ASAP and get right on that reality show and book.

Heff: Exactly. That's what makes me so insane. It's NEVER as bad as he thinks it will be. But I find comfort in knowing he's not the only kid like that out there.

Tori: My friend and I have been laughing about Freedom. I think it's a worthy new battle cry I will be teaching my children. Thanks for hijacking. GOSH!

Lesli: That's exactly what J was headed to do until he realized he didn't want to start any bad habits with Bo. We'll have to discuss that freezing your face is ONLY for when you are sick.

Glittersmama: You aren't. Neither am I. No one ever is.

Lauren: What a brave little kid! That would have been scary for me.
Just say no to the swab!

CYM: Hi. :) How's it going? Great advice, btw. As per usual.

No Cool Story said...

"...he didn't sit still. So I sat on him." So that's how you do it.

This post made me laugh so much (actually, it started out sad because poor Avee was sick and you were worried) mostly because I could totally hear your -serene-voice telling Bo to calm down and then everything pretty much going to heck :)
I hope you get to take a nap today.


Rebecca said...

thats funny, J sitting on Bo.. and you would of died an hour ago.. phahhhaaaa, your kids..and I include J in that.. are funny!!! Glad the funk worked its self out..

Sarah Tilley said...

hee. henry used to get hysterical over haircuts. seriously. ben would have to get him in a headlock and some sort of full body joint lock thing so i could run the clippers over his head all the while henry's screaming and sweating so bad i can hardly cut his hair. thankfully he's grown out of that one. i have found that threats are most effective when you follow through, so i have to be careful what i say, because obviously you can't kill your kid, or chuck him out the window. :) i can't wait for those 5 year shots... i wonder what kind of threats i can pull out for that one...

Mamarazzi said...

funky cough...oh how i heart your stories!

Yvonne said...

I sat here and laughed at the "you would have died an hour ago".

I'm with cindy--you should write a book.

Klin said...

I am laughing so hard that it's hard to type. "You would've died like an hour ago" bwahahahahahahahaha!

That sounds like something I'd say. My 17 y/o used to freak out at the sight of blood. I got annoyed and in a very dramatic way told my husband, "Call 9-1-1 and get the ambulance here. He's gonna bleed to death!" He had a nasty paper cut. He calmed down and is much calmer about blood. MUCH calmer.

I have seriously sat on my daughter and pinned her down (laughing the whole time) while the nurse gave her a flu shot.

Kids are great.