Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Sickness Strikes!!

We've had a relatively healthy first 7.5 months of Sophia's life. There was a brief sickness back in December that Sophia caught from me, but we both persevered. She slept all the time then anyway, so chasing away a bug was easy.
Fast forward to last Thursday. It has been extremely hot and humid here in Boston over the past week. Despite Dave and my penchant for true New England suffering, we felt it was in Sophia's best interest to install an A/c unit in her window. The trick was getting the setting cool enough to be refreshing and good sleeping weather, but warm enough not to turn her into a penguin.

Around midnight, Sophia woke me up by crying. It was an extremely unusual cry that I hadn't heard from her before. I went in to check on her and when I picked her up - she was a hot water bottle! I quickly got her out of her sleep slack and found the thermometer to take her temp (we're still going the armpit route). 102 degrees!!
I gave her some Tylenol, which she promptly puked back up. This caused me to wake up Dave and he held and rocked her while I called the on-call doctor at our peditrician's office. She called back within 10 minutes - great response time in my book!

After I explained the situation (and made sure to tell her I wasn't roasting her in her room with the humidity) She said our best bet was for me to nurse her and see if she'd take more Tylenol (she did) and go back to sleep. I could take her in to the office when it opened in the morning. So, after a night of nursing almost every hour, I took her in at 9 to our fabulous doctor. Sophia's fever had broken by this point and was only about 99, which was a relief.
Dr. Tomkins said that she probably had just caught a little virus and it (happily!) didn't look like an ear infection. Just keep an eye on her and give Tylenol when she seemed to need it.

It was a relief to know there was no ear infection, but as the weekend progressed, she descended into the land of mucus and phlegm. Yum. My heart was just breaking, though, every time she coughed or sneezed one of those big snot bubbles. (If only she could blow her own nose!!) Sophia was very clear that she did not want us to invade her personal space (i.e. nose/mouth) to clean her up. It took Dave basically pinning her down and receiving multiple kicks to the Adam's Apple for me to be able to suction out her nose with the bulb. As much as she hated it, we saw how relieved she was afterwards to be able to breathe through her nose, at least for a little while.

Another side effect of this (besides the not sleeping much at night - she would cough herself awake and start crying almost every hour) was lack of interest in eating. Solid foods were just a big no freaking way and breastfeeding (and even the bottle) was difficult. She hadn't figured out how to breathe out of the high side of her mouth while eating so she would take a big breath like she was diving under water each time she went to eat.

Happily, it looks like we've turned the corner. She's back to sleeping through the night and while she is still quite phlegmy, she is clearly happy and excited to be outside in the not so humid air.
It's never easy to see your child sick - it breaks my heart to not really be able to do anything - but I know that she is just building up a big, strong immune system. Just in time to eat some more sand at the beach!

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