so our dear, sweet baby finally got her first illness. i knew she would get sick eventually, but it’s been a pretty stressful week. she woke up at 2:30am on monday with a rectal temperature of 102.1. (i never thought i would have the guts to take a rectal temperature, but it really wasn’t too bad.) so i called the after-hours number for the doctor. unfortunately, due to an unusual glitch, the doctor didn’t get the message until much later. so daniel and i put cool washcloths on her forehead, the fever went down a bit, and we had a restless time kind of sleeping for the next few hours. i called the doctor’s office as soon as they opened and first the nurse said to give alex some motrin and keep an eye on her. but then our doctor, who was out of town and got the message, called and said to go into the office. her practice partner found no symptoms aside from the fever, so we were sent to a children’s hospital lab to do some bloodwork to determine if she had a viral or bacterial infection. a little while after we got home from there, the doctor called and said we needed to come back to the office immediately because alex had an infection in her blood and needed a shot of penicillin. so, that was scary. but when we got there, he actually gave her a shot of something called rocephin, and assured me that there was no need to worry – that alex had a bacterial infection that hadn’t settled in one place yet, and that since we caught and treated it, things will be fine. he described it like this: “it’s like the dog got out of the backyard, but we found it and now we’re bringing it home, so everything will be fine.” so then we went back today to follow up with our actual doctor (now back in town) and alex got another shot of rocephin, and we were told that she needs to see the doctor every day this week to be on the safe side. apparently, if it were fifteen years ago, alex would have been hospitalized for her infection. she was also tested for RSV, which she does not have. so now we have a little girl who has been around an excess of needles the past two days, and is worn out! she’s kind of getting back to herself, but a more subdued version. also, the doctor recommended that she not share caretakers with any other infants for the rest of the week, so that means that daniel and i are adjusting our work schedules to manage without our regular wonderful childcare. this is further complicated by the fact that i have very litle time to take off, since i used it all up on maternity leave. sigh. it would be so much less stressful this week if i weren’t working. on the other hand, it would be much more stressful if we didn’t have the great health insurance that my job provides. it would also be much more stressful if i didn’t have a wonderful husband who has been very hands-on with our daughter, and pretty amazing at stepping up and taking care of her on top of all of his responsibilities running a business.
i know that in the grand scheme of sick children, this is just a little blip on the screen. but i think it gives me a slight bit more empathy for parents whose children are seriously ill. it is so hard to see your child uncomfortable and sick and sad.