So remember awhile ago, when I mentioned in passing that the baby and Jim had colds? Well, just as he entered the "surely he will be better soon" phase of the cold, Jameson got the FLU. Poor kid. What are the odds? And it took a full five hours at the doctor's office, the hospital, and the urgent care clinic to finally diagnose him! Grr. That was a fun day for everyone. I think we've now encountered every germ in the tri-county area, as well as spreading our own around.
The reason I finally brought Jameson to the doctor (which I almost never do for cold/cough stuff, even if it does drag on a bit as this one was) was his come and go fevers, which had previously been very low grade when they did pop up, and hadn't needed medicated. All of the sudden over the weekend, they'd been getting quite high, and I was having to medicate around the clock to keep it down. This seemed odd for a cold that should have been resolving itself, so Monday morning first thing I called for an appointment. I was sure he had a sinus, ear or upper respiratory infection from the cold that was causing a fever, and imagined myself quickly getting a prescription and heading home.
Instead, the doctor found no evidence of any infection, but instead just a very sick, lethargic baby who wouldn't even lift his head from my shoulder, and was running a temp of one hundred and two. He also hadn't wanted to eat much at all for the last few days, and had been sleeping very poorly due to the fever and his chest congestion. Alarmed, the doctor sent us off to the hospital to rule out pneumonia, RSV, and to do a blood work panel. Did I mention I had Eli with me for all of this?
It took forever to get shuffled around through all the different departments of our giant, labryinth hospital, all while toting a sick baby, keeping an eagle eye on my prone-to-wander Eli and hefting all three of our coats and my purse. And, you know, mah belly. The x-ray went pretty smoothly, except that they took one look at my bump and wouldn't even let me stand beside him with a lead apron- I had to wait behind the wall with Eli (who was freaking out that they were hurting his brother) while some random nurse tried to comfort/hold down my baby. Yuck.
What took much longer, and was more difficult, was the blood work and RSV test (they basically just suction out nasal secretions for that, but my kids all hate bulb syringes with a passion even eclipsing their fear of ACTUAL syringes.) We had to wait in this teensy room forEVER, and Jamie, who by this time had gotten some Tylenol and was temporarily feeling better and more active, was climbing the walls. Then, they wanted us to STAY until they had called all the results to the doctor, in case he wanted further testing done. So we got to wait another hour, during which time I took several walks to the vending machine, and called my sister to come to our house to get Addy off the bus since we clearly wouldn't be home in time.
His x ray was clear, RSV test was negative, and his white blood cell counts were elevated but not alarmingly so, just enough to indicate some kind of illness being fought off- but like, normal illness, not anything scary. Thank goodness. Basically as soon as I heard the words white blood cell count I had to use all my mental powers to avoid hitting the panic button and seeing our family in a tear-jerking Lifetime movie about a kid with leukemia.
So we were sent home with instructions to keep his fever under control, come in to the ER if we couldn't, and call the doctor in the morning to report on his condition. They didn't really have anything else to tell us. By the time we got home his fever was one hundred and three, and he was totally miserable again. I gave him meds, put him to bed, and sat around googling white blood cells and feeling tense. Within an hour or so though, our doctor called us from home and said he had been going over all the results, all the presenting symptoms, and had had this sudden thought- flu! Could we maybe take the baby to urgent care, since office hours were over, and get a flu swab done tonight?
Of course we could, what's another trip to a medical facility and another episode of holding down a sad, crying baby? Within another hour and a half, I was back home, just taking off my coat, when the doctor called to say rather sheepishly that yes indeed, Jameson had the flu, and were we possibly still out so I could go to the one pharmacy in town still open that had the children's form of Tamiflu?
Yeah... Jim made that trip. The doctor also called in some for me to take if and when I start getting flu symptoms, since high fevers can be dangerous for a fetus. Still not sure how I feel about taking that while I'm pregnant, so let's keep our fingers crossed that I just stay well (despite my clothing, hair and shoulder being used as this child's handkerchief the last two weeks!)
I'm relieved that at least we know what's wrong with the poor sicko, and that's it's nothing too awful, but man... I really wish someone had thought to do a simple flu swab BEFORE making me drag my miserable little boy to the hospital.