- The previous night, we gave Luke a full bottle and a full bottle of water to drink because he had thrown up so much and we were worried he was getting dehydrated. MISTAKE because he chugged it. Apparently we were only supposed to give very small amounts at a time, like tablespoons full at a time, not a few ounces. That was probably the reason for some much throw up.
- It's ok to alternate between baby tylenol and ibuprofen and stagger to keep his fever down. We were always afraid of him having too much medicine in his system and didn't like giving him too much, but it really helps when they have a fever.
- As long as they are getting water or pedialyte, it's ok if they don't eat. We were so worried that the poor little guy was hungry but in order to get rid of the bug, he just needed liquids to survive.
- The Dr. we saw had never heard of the 1/2 formula, 1/2 milk approach and advised we just make the switch a little at a time to straight milk instead of mixing it with formula. We are waiting a bit to try the switch again.
- We use the thermometer to take his temperature under his armpit. We have the kind that you roll over the forehead but can never seem to get an accurate reading from that. With the armpit method, it is actually 1-2 degrees higher than the reading.
So, Gino and I took our sweet, sick, little guy home and he slept. We alternated the day so we both could take care of him and work and he seriously slept for about 90% of the day, only waking to drink some water/pedialyte and poop. Later that evening he threw up 2 more times and was extremely lethargic. He could barely sit up and was so sleepy with a high fever. Our neighbor Jane, a nurse, came over to check him out and didn't dispute our thought to take him back into the ER for a second time. We felt a bit like over worried parents, but at the same time, it's so hard to know what their little bodies can't handle on their own.
Thursday night we checked into the ER at 9:15 pm and were out of there by 1:30 am. That made for some really tired parents, a sleepy and sick baby, and some serious questions about the type of visits some people make to the ER.... that's an entirely different subject. Anyway, we opted not to do the IV because the Dr. said she wasn't extremely worried about his status, though he was definitely sick with a fever and moderately dehydrated. As long as he would still take liquids and we could keep the fever down, she thought he would soon get over this nasty virus.
The next day I was working at home and it was a relatively easy day to get a lot of work done because he was still sleeping almost 90% of the time but his diaper numbers were on the serious rise. No throw up though, that was great!
It's memorial day weekend and we had a lot of plans but ended up canceling them all to take care of Luke. I feel like we are nurturing a little baby bird back to health. He tries to get up and walk around and is so weak and wobbly that he just collapses. He needed all the time to recover and is still recovering. Yesterday we kept track of at least 20 diapers. Poor guy has a sore behind =(. He is eating a little now and slowly getting more lively with fewer diapers.
We are relieved by the few smiles we got today but this experience really gives us a true perspective for parents who have chronically sick children or children with serious illnesses. It's so hard to see a young helpless little thing go through something that is hurting them and we feel for those children and parents out there dealing with things like this on a daily basis. They are definitely in our prayers.
So, despite all this we are able to see some positives and have learned a good deal about how to deal with a sick little one.
- It's pretty easy to get frustrated with each other when you are both asking each other what the other thinks you should do. In our case, we both didn't know what to do so we had no answers. As first time parents, it's ok that neither of you have the answers. Be open to each other's ideas and go with your gut feelings.
- It's ok to call your Moms at any time. We ended up calling both our Moms in the early morning for the first ER visit and they wouldn't have it any other way. The re-assurance is nice and someday if Luke needs some advice from me with his child, I would want him to call at any time. Our Moms have both obviously been in our shoes before and they had way better advice than the advice nurse we called who wasn't allowed to technically give us medical "advice".
- Trust your gut. Our guts told us to make 2 ER visits. Chalk this up to being first time parents, or stress cases, but either way, we felt better with an expert opinion then and there and felt better to play it safe than wait too long to be sorry. If your gut says to go get pedialyte at 3:00 am, do it. If your gut says to bring them into bed with you even if they throw up all over the sheets, do it.. =)
- WASH YOUR HANDS ALOT! We are both ok so far and have all our fingers and toes crossed that we haven't caught what captured our little one.
- Keep track of everything while they are sick (throw up, wet diapers, poop diapers, food, water, etc.) it comes in handy when the nurse or Dr. asks you questions.
- Baths are a good distraction. We had to give Luke a few because he threw up all over the place, but while he was in the bath, he seemed relaxed and at ease.
- These are some foods we have had success with over the past 2 days:
- Saltine crackers
- bananas mashed with applesauce
- mashed potatoes
- mozzarella cheese pieces
- yogurt with rice krispy cereal
- Walks are good! We went on a really long walk today and it seemed to help get him out of the house in fresh air. He was content just looking around and watching Ponzo.
- Let them sleep. You might worry they are sleeping too much or that they won't sleep at night but despite how long Luke slept during the day, he still needed just as much sleep during the night.
- Change their diaper as soon as they go. We were to the point of a diaper every 15 to 30 minutes but in order to keep his little behind feeling at least just ok, we needed to change him time and time again. Diaper cream is our best friend at this point.
The benefits of this weekend despite the fun times we missed out on:
- clean house
- laundry done
- cars washed
- QT time with each other (Mom & Dad) once we got over the initial "what do you think? I don't know, what do you think? I don't know, I have never done this before. Well, neither have I!" discussion
- A very snugly baby
- Did I mention a clean house
- Time to write a blog post!
This is all part of the parenting game and we willingly signed up for it. I am glad we are almost out of our first really rough battle so we can better deal with the next. Overall, it's been a pretty decent weekend =)