Saturday, April 4, 2009

The REALLY bad day

Snowboarding season is almost gone and Rob hasn't been once. I've really wanted to make it possible for him to hit the slopes at least once before it all melts and then an email came over last week. One of the mom's in my mom's group has a mountain condo that she was renting out for less than 1/2 of what it normally rents for...A practical give-away. I talked to Rob and we decided to go for it. Rob could spend one day boarding and Cady could go sledding....something she has been dying to do. For me, just being away, even if stuck in the condos with the kids is still a vacation.
We almost didn't head up as all the roads from Denver to Dillon were closed because of winter weather. But by Friday afternoon, they were opened back up and we figured we'd attempt it and just turn back around if it was messy. Not the case. One could hadly tell that there was a storm, the roads were clear and dry.
That evening we hung out at the condo. Cady and I played "fancy ladies" and did some pedicures and a peeling face mask. Cady slept in her own bed all night long which is always a bonus. That night, Coben woke up only a couple of times but really didn't seem that interested in nursing. He did the same thing the previous night back at home. I figured that maybe he was just finally starting to slow down and that it was just something to watch. The only other significant thing that happened through the night was me having to take Coben into a steamed up bathroom because he was stuffy...AGAIN. I didn't think much of that either since Cady and I both have colds...YET AGAIN.
The next morning Rob got up early to go boarding. There was a huge winter storm in effect and the roads were pretty messy. He made it there safely and gave me a report of the roads because Stacy was thinking of coming up to keep me company. Coben woke up in a great mood. He still didn't seem interested in eating which was starting to cause me some concern but he was in a great mood. Very interactive and sweet. No more than 1/2 hour after Rob's phone call, I was carrying Coben into the living room and he vomited all over me, twice. Lots of vomit. Then his body went totally limp and he turned white. I called Rob who was up at the slopes and let him know that I was calling our Dr. I called our Dr's office, explained what had happened and was told to get him in immediately. I told her that I could call Rob now and probably make it down to Denver before their walk-in clinic closed for the day. She told me that she didn't want me to wait to get to Denver but to take him in NOW. The problem is that Rob had the car and I had no idea where to take him since it was our first night in town. I couldn't put Coben down to make phone calls or look things up on the internet so I called 911 and explained what was going on and asked for an ambulance. For a moment I thought it might have been an overreaction. Coben was starting to come to and was tracking me with his eyes (yet he was still limp and not moving). The operator called for an ambulance and kept me on the phone. Before I got off the phone with the 911 operator the medics arrived (which scared the bejesus out of Cady who unbenownst to me was putting on make-up at the time). They could not have come soon enough because Coben was getting worse now instead of better. His body was still limp, I couldn't inspire him to move at ALL and now he was a ghostly shade of white. His eyes were unfocused and just kept rolling around in his head. He was starting to close his eyes in this state and I was just plain scared out of my mind. The medics took him from me, asked a couple of questions, tried to wake him up but couldn't, and said "we need to get him out of here, NOW!" and started running with him toward their truck. I grabbed Cady's coat and we ran out after them.
They wanted Cady to ride in the jump seat in the back because we didn't have her car seat (they were reluctant to transport her at all) and she FREAKED OUT! (who can blame her). I didn't think we'd be able to get her in except (beautiful big sister that she is) when I explained that she needed to be back there to watch over Coben for me since I had to ride in the front. The kind medics gave her a stuffed animal to love on while we rode over. So, we are riding in this big tank of a mountain medic vehicle during a white-out winter storm. The truck is sliding around and having trouble getting started from a stop and we could MAYBE see only about a foot in front of us. It was a scary ride to the hospital which was in the next town over. Meanwhile, I'm trying to see what they are doing to Coben and I can't see a thing except they are crowded around him and doing stuff. I later learned that they couldn't even arouse Coben during a needle stick.
We get to the hospital and get him in a room. The nurses and the Dr. that we worked with were AWESOME. They were really kind to us and took great care of not only the patient but his worried parents (Rob was arriving soon, he had a long drive down from the mountain and no idea where the hospital was). The Dr. explained that they needed to rule out several things. Coben was raspy so they wanted to rule out infant pneumonia. They had to rule out head trauma. I'm embarrassed and totally ashamed to admit that he rolled off the couch the previous day on my watch. Yes, it only takes a second. And the worst case scenario is that they would do a spinal tap to rule out spinal meningitis. They did a CAT scan chest x-rays and both looked good, yay! No head injury or pneumonia. They catheterized him and took a urine sample. They poked just about every place on his little body (including the top of his head) to try and find a vein on his little roly-poly body that they could hit. The poor kid had band-aids and poke-marks everywhere and they STILL couldn't get blood from him. He was attached to monitors and oxygen the entire time. Finally, the Dr. informed us that they did in fact need to do a spinal tap to rule out spinal meningitis. So, five hours later they had ruled out everything and were still unsure of the cause of his strange behavior. They wanted us to get back to Denver ASAP though which we had already decided we were going to do. They took Mr. Butters off of oxygen and realized that he could not be taken off of oxygen without his saturation dipping below an unsafe level so we had to purchase an oxygen tank to get him down the mountain. We finally checked out five hours later and headed down the mountain only to run into a closed I-70 due to an accident. We were SO lucky that we were in the perfect spot to jump onto the frontage road and we avoided it all and got to town in a reasonable time. I cannot imagine being stuck for hours trying to get a baby on oxygen to Children's Hospital.
Anyhow, we got to Chilren's and they took another history. They looked at his CATscan, X-ray, Bloodwork and decided to take him off of oxygen and watch his levels. His levels stayed consistent during the three hours that we were there so we were given the option of leaving him for overnight observation but their recommendation (if we were comfortable) was to send him home and follow-up on Monday. They were unable to provide any answers for what had happend up on the mountain. Even though he was at a higher altitute up on the mountain his symptoms weren't quite consistent with "altitude sickness" He didn't turn blue around the mouth, his heart rate did not elevate and the fact that he was completely limp doesn't fit. I would love for them to say that it was altitude because then I would know that we were safe at home at 5280 feet and have nothing to worry about. How the heck are we ever going to sleep again? Even with him sleeping in our room, even if he's in our bed, turning white and going limp and losing oxygen are not things that cause you to wake up. And even if we wake up every hour, that gives him the potential to have an hour to go without oxygen. I've never been so happy to be home again with my family. I hope Monday finds more answers.

15 comments:

Mommy to Ander and Loki said...

OMG!

Paula, I don't know what to say. I think I'd sleep in shifts until Monday if I were you. I swear that if I were in Colorado, I'd take a shift for you!

We are thinking about y'all.

KMK said...

Wow, what a scary and unexpected episode! I hope you guys are doing ok. It must be so hard to not know the cause. Hopefully you will get answers and reassurance on Monday but the waiting must really suck.

Krumpledwhiskers said...

That's what we are doing Kristy, sleeping in shift. Today I felt what it felt like to hold a kid that I thought was dying and I NEVER want to feel that again.

I'm a little (lot) emotional right now so your offer to do a shift if you were close-by just opened up the floodgates, thanks. :)

KMK said...

How does he seem now?

Krumpledwhiskers said...

He seems fine now just liked he seemed to be right before this happened. I'm just so darned scared that it's a random thing that can just happen again at any time. I wish we knew.

KMK said...

I wish you did too. I can't imagine what that must be like. Hugs to you all.

Sonya said...

Oh Paula! That is so scary, I can't imagine what you're going through. Please keep us all updated, and know we're thinking of you all.

Starin said...

I am so sorry about this, please let me know what I can do to help. I can take Cady for a while if you need me to.

Mystic2mom said...

That is scary, I will pray for you guys.

Elizabeth said...

Wish there was something I could do. We are all praying for you and Coben and that you get some answers on Monday. How scary, I was in tears just reading all this!!!

Krumpledwhiskers said...

Thanks Starin. We're hoping things get back to normal. If we have another day like yesterday we will certainly take you up on that offer!

Janelle smells said...

OH Paula~~ What a horrible scary experience~~ I hope they find out what happened so you won't have to continue to wonder. Sounds like he may have a virus of some sort. I'm so so sorry you had to go through this. I am praying for you and Rob!!

Janelle

Great Aunt Sophie said...

Terrifying just to read about...thinking of all of you, you are all really brave. Hopefully the answer will be that it was some fluke that will never, ever resurface.

Jennifer said...

Paula I don't know what to say I'm so sorry that any of you have to go through this.Please let us know what the drs say on monday. I know w e are far away but if there is anyhting we can do please let us know. We will be thinking about you and sending you all our love. Jennifer

Mom's Place said...

Oh my gosh Paula!!!!! That is so scary. I hope they have answers for you guys today!