I realize I haven't posted in ages, including our big family reunion and trip, but that will come. I've been wanting to post this for the record for a bit, but at first I was too emotional, and then I just wanted to avoid it, but now I'm just doing it. Follow all that?
My sweet, happy little Porter got sick a few weeks ago. He'd been having allergies, and I thought they were finally calming down, but then he got sick again. He woke up on Saturday and was fine at first, but then got tired and lay down on the couch and fell asleep. He woke up mid-morning and started throwing up, poor boy. I cleaned him up and put him in his bed, where he fell asleep again. We watched the BYU football game and he woke up towards the end, cheerful but coughing a cough that he hadn't had before and I hadn't ever heard before. He came and snuggled with me on the couch for a bit, then tried to eat a bit but that came back up too, so I sent him back to bed and he was fine with that. He fell back asleep and slept off and on for the rest of the afternoon into the evening, which is when CJ and I noticed his breathing was funny, he just looked like he was working pretty hard for each breath. We tried rolling him on his side and saw a big sweatmark the shape of his whole body from where he'd been laying in bed, but he had no fever. CJ took his pulse and it was at the very top of where it should be, and we counted his breaths and decided to call the doctor. We called the after hours service and the doctor called us back about an hour later, and once he heard our concerns he didn't like what we said about his breathing, and told us to take Porter to the E.R. Since it was after 10PM we decided that I would go with Porter and CJ would stay home with Mercy and Jameson, who were both sleeping.
We loaded Porter into the car with the stroller and his Thomas blanket and he and I drove over to the hospital. Once I told the nurse what was going on she checked his oxygen saturation (hopefully that's the right term) and it was below 85, I can't remember what it was but it wasn't good. They put him on oxygen and got us back into a room. They tried giving him a shot of epinephrine in case his allergies had gotten really severe and it was an allergic reaction or something, but that didn't have any effect except to make him cry. Then they gave him an albuterol treatment with the nebulizer, and then the doctor came back and ordered a chest x-ray. At this point I'm freaking out because I thought it was just severe allergies or something, but it obviously was something bigger. Once the x-ray came back the nurse came and told me we'd be staying the night, it looked like Porter had pneumonia. They gave him some more medication, again, no idea because it was about 1AM by this time and I was trying to process the information as well as deal with my own allergies, which were stuffing me up and making my head feel huge. We got into our new room about 2AM, the hospital put him in a private room and brought a bed in so I could stay in the same room with him. The nurses were really great and sweet, and Porter finally got to sleep.
SUNDAY: We were woken up about 7AM by the new nurses and the food services, and Porter must have gotten plenty of sleep the day before because he was wide awake. I was struggling, just not enough sleep! We were really lucky, the whole time we were in there we had wonderful, sweet nurses who just bent over backwards trying to make Porter comfortable and happy. And I gotta say, the hospital food was really good! Mercy's best friend, Willow, and her awesome family came to visit us and brought Porter a new Bumblebee toy to play with and a book and sanity saving things for me, Porter really appreciated the company! CJ also stopped by in the morning with our great friend Tim, so that Porter could have a blessing. Dr. Price (not our normal pediatrician, but he's in our practice) came around to check on Porter and update me. He let me know we wouldn't be leaving that day, Porter just wasn't responding to the meds as well as they hoped. That was a shock, and hard to explain to Porter why we couldn't go home just yet, he was really missing home. The nurse found out that he loves Scooby D00 and brought him this entertainment center on wheels thing with a DVD player and Nintendo Gamecube, and she brought him the Scooby Doo movie to watch, as well as some other cartoons and movies to watch. Again, so grateful for our nurses! They also let him take the oxygen tubes off, and he did great, kept his levels up. CJ brought Mercy and Jameson to visit for a little bit after they got out of church, and you could tell Porter really missed Jameson, and likewise for Jamie. Mercy was fascinated with all the things in the hospital, from the oxygen tubes going in Porter's nose to the pulse ox on his finger. It was hard to say goodbye to them when they left. The goal to get Porter released from the hospital was for him to be able to go all night without needing oxygen, but unfortunately that night, within about an hour of him falling asleep, his oxygen levels started dropping again, so they had to put him back on the oxygen. The night nurse kept trying to take him off it, but every time she did his oxygen would drop again. So another night for us.
MONDAY: Another day, another dime... Luckily we had fun visitors to help keep our spirits up. MaryBeth, Rick and Tatiana came to visit us and brought Porter a Play-Doh set (seriously... most genius gift ever. ever.) and candy and a coloring book and crayons. And sweet, sweet chocolate for me. The company was the best part, MaryBeth can make me laugh anytime I talk to her, and I really needed it then. CJ came to visit with Mercy and Jameson again, and they got to stay for a nice long time. The food services lady brought Porter lunch while they were there, and she went and got Mercy and Porter french fries, cookies and ice cream so that they wouldn't feel left out. So nice! Sister Steventon, our Primary President, came to visit too, how she heard about Porter in the hospital I don't know, but I'm going to suspect.... MaryBeth? I really don't know! Then in the afternoon Porter's best friend Isaac came to visit with Kim and his brother Spencer, along with a balloon. You can bribe Porter with a balloon, I swear. The boys got hooked on Scooby Doo and just hung out while I got to have chat time with Kim. Truly, we are such lucky people. The nurse also let us go out for a walk, which Porter loved. He was so happy to get out of the room for awhile. The hardest part of the day was figuring out what to do for the night. We got lucky in that CJ had Saturday-Sunday off, but he had to work Monday night. We were so lucky, again, to have great friends, and we had offers for Jameson and Mercy to stay with a few different friends. We ended up having Mercy stay at Willow's house since she's really comfortable with both Martha and Johnnie and I knew she'd be happiest with them, and then lovely, lovely MaryBeth came and stayed at our house from 7:30PM til when CJ got home in the early morning, so that Jameson could sleep in his own bed. His bedtime is between 7 and 7:30mPM so he was asleep the whole time and had no idea what was going on, since by the time he woke up, CJ was home. Truly a massive weight lifted off my chest when MaryBeth offered to stay at our house, Jamie's never stayed away from either CJ or me, so I was really worried what we should do. MaryBeth, you are an angel, really. Thank you so much. Porter also managed to stay off oxygen the whole night, which meant we could go home the next day!
TUESDAY: Home. The doctor gave us our marching orders in the morning, and we got out just before lunchtime, armed with a brand new nebulizer and list of instructions as well as medicines. Porter was so glad to get home, him and Jameson went right into their room and started playing with the toys that Porter missed, and then with the Play-Doh. I think that's about the time that I was hit with the emotional wall and sniffled my way through the rest of the day.
I know it's not nearly as scary as what many others have been through, but for our first E.R. visit, it was quite the ordeal in our minds. I'm glad that Porter's completely recovered, and so quickly, and I'm glad for the prayers that were offered for us, as well as the visits and the calls and the dinners (THANK YOU LAUREL AND LYNSY!!). They truly made us feel so loved.
The first night.
Sunday, when they let him take the oxygen off. Seeing him so pale still makes me sad.
Sunday night, started off good with no oxygen...
but then it started dropping.
So the oxygen got put back on.
Playing with Mercy and Jameson
Monday night, no oxygen all night!
Waiting for the doctor to release us!