In just 48 hours it’s amazing how easily your life can be turned upside down. Especially when it involves your children.
It started with M not feeling well and in all honesty it looked like she just had a common cold. On this particular morning she went to nursery with her twin sister R and came home at lunchtime as normal, then it changed she didn’t want her lunch and became tired and started to sleep very rapidly.
My wife took her to the doctors as she wasn’t very well. The GP diagnosed a throat infection and prescribed antibiotics so good I thought, that will sort it out. How wrong you can be!
While my wife was waiting to get the antibiotics needed, M vomited in Sainsburys This was the first time of many bouts of vomitting over the next 24 hours.
That night was terrible. She started being sick early evening and was vomitting at least every hour, if not more often. I gave up trying to catch it in a towel and by the time morning came, I was covered in sick.
In the morning M was no better, but we decided to give the antibiotics a chance to work and she was being less sick. It’s only now we know we were led into a false sense of security. Infact she went all morning without being sick at all and then around lunchtime she started vomitting again.
When I got home from work she had just been sick and my wife had kept it to show me and I instantly thought that’s blood not good. Very worrying moment!
We rang the GP. You may ask, why didn’t we go straight to the hospital. I have learnt that we would have to go through A&E and that can takes ages if we had gone straight to the hospital. Whereas the GP can refer you straight tothe paediatric assessment unit which is what happened. It short circuits the system because it’s where she would have ended up. This is a quicker way to get there, and it turns out it was just as well.
By the time we got to the hospital M was very poorly. We were taken straight to a bed on the ward, and nurses and doctors were instantly around her. Her hand was prepped for an IV with cream.
The doctor made an intial examination, and decided that she was severely dehydrated and needed fluids so an IV was done straight away, bloods were taken and the results would be back in a couple of hours.
M was lethargic and sleepy and still vomitting so it was not looking good. Her mummy, sister and myself looked on in a very helpless state. It’s possibly the worst feeling in the world. As a parent your instinct is to look after and care for your child at all costs, and we believe we can make everything better and here we were with this being taken away from us. Of course I know she is in safe hands but the feeling of being no use for your child won’t go away. Not a good feeling.
As M was sorted, I couldn’t help certain thoughts from entering my mind. I know you should remain positive, but My God! It’s impossible and thinking worst case scenarios meningitis etc. Impossible. These are thoughts that are difficult to remove from what is already a very anxious time.
At this point it was decided my wife would stay with M overnight and R who was very tired at this point needed to go home as it was getting near her bedtime.
Once home R went to sleep very quickly and basically I was left on my own. How do I describe that absolutely awful feeling? So after quite a few tears on my own. My wife rang to tell me the blood test were back and M had a severe infection, actually described as heavy.
Bloods were also sent to the lab for other infections and this would take a day or two to come back. Now it just seems worse than ever. All I want is to be by her bedside, but also I have to be careful not to forget she has a twin sister, who needs our time.
M was moved to the ward and given antibiotics via IV to treat any bacterial infection although at this time they didn’t know if it was bacterial or viral, or infact even where the infection was.
This is without a doubt every parents nightmare. A four year old who’s very unwell and waiting for test results etc. I have had five children, but this is the worst experience I have ever had with any of my children. The twins spent 27 days in special care,when they were born, but in truth this feels worse. She had a very restless night according to my wife.
R and myself arrived at about 8am the following morning and I was shocked at the state of M. She looked tiny and very helpless and very sleepy. All I wanted to do was cuddle her, which I did and she felt fragile and didn’t have very much energy.
During the day she started to improve, and actually started to eat a little bit around lunchtime which were good signs. The doctors seemed quite happy with her progress. I left around 3pm with R as she needed to get home and settled.
My wife rang me to say there was no brain infection, what a relief! That of course eliminated meningitis, but we were still no nearer to finding out the source of infection.
The rest of the day M spent in and out of sleep, hopefully this is just her way of building her strength back up.
It’s a very worrying time and if I am honest M is not out of the woods yet, but there are signs she is on the mend. That’s where we are now as we move into day three of her hospital stay.