"I went to the woods because I wanted to live deliberately. I wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life;
to put to rout all that was not life and not when I had come to die, discover that I had not lived." ~Henry David Thoreau

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Garrett's Love Affair....With Garbage

It's taken me almost three weeks to get this journaled, but I really don't want to forget that terrible illness Garrett had in February.  On Valentine's morning he wasn't feeling well, and he was gagging and dry heaving all morning.  By noon he was really throwing up and it lasted all afternoon.  But it wasn't just the normal vomit- it was very very painful for him and horribly vicious.  Every ten minutes he would do it and scream.  By 3:00 that afternoon he was like a corpse just laying around.  His eyes would be open, but he wouldn't move or even blink.  At about 4:00 he threw up again, but it was bright green bile.  The bile continued to come up for the next few hours....all while I was trying to get our traditional Valentines dinner made and the house set up for our evening festivities.  But Garrett was way more important than a fun dinner, so I just held him with a towel close by to catch all the pukage.

Cody came home and we ate dinner.  I was bummed that everything was very rushed, but I couldn't be away from Garrett for more than five minutes because he would puke everywhere if I wasn't there to contain it.  During dinner he laid on a blanket on the floor and barely moved, unless it was because he was about to throw up and it hurt a lot.

His breathing became very shallow, his pulse raced, and he was running fever.  I could pick up one of his limbs and then drop it and it was like he was a rag doll.  Totally lifeless.  Knowing he was very dehydrated, I debated taking him to the hospital for an IV.  With five kids and a lot of common sense, I hated to be one of those moms to rush to the ER for anything- but this kid was so sick.  Cody and I decided it was the best thing to do, so I packed him up with extra pairs of clothes and blankets, took a good pillow (because those hospital pillows are just bad) and we were headed up to Primary Childrens.

It was pretty slow at the ER and they got him right back to triage.  While we were in there, Garrett started making gas and if it had a color, it would have been dark green.  It smelled soooooo bad and every time he'd do it, the nurse and I would gag.  The tooting continued all through the night and every time someone new would enter his room, they would almost throw up from the smell!!  "What on earth is in the body of yours??" One doctor said to him.  Whatever it was, it was really mean.  If it smelled like that, I can only imagine what it FELT like in his little guts.  No wonder he cried so much!  And he threw up at least three more times before we even got into our room.

They got an IV in him right away, and that was a really sad thing to watch.  No kid is happy when a catheter goes into their hand, and Garrett tried to fight it.  Since he had no life in him, he just laid there and cried tearless cries and weakly said "Geh out.....go way..."  So, so sad.  No life in him to fight!
We spent the next several hours laying in bed while they pumped fluids and medications into him.  They kept coming in to get blood for labs and check his vitals and talk to me, and he slept most of time.  As long as he was on the IV, he was doing better.  They couldn't figure out exactly what was causing the illness, but they suspected it was some sort or parasite from food poisoning.  Yup, no surprise because this boy is fascinated by the kitchen trashcan.  No matter how we try to keep him out of it, it's like his treasure chest.  Why are toddlers obsessed with gross things?  We even have a super heavy stainless steel trashcan that has a heavy pedal that must be pushed to open the lid.  And yet, he continues to get into it.  Yuck!!
In the wee hours of the morning the doctor came in to talk logistics of admitting him.  Because his vitals were good, she was on the fence.  They woke him up to see if he'd drink some juice, and he did and kept it down.  She said they were more than happy to keep him for a day to keep the fluid running through his body and ot make sure the cycle of vomitting stayed at bay.  Dehydration is a bad thing to happen when you're sick because the body needs water to heal itself.  And if you don't have water, the vomiting pattern only worsens.  But because I was so exhausted and everyone sleeps better in their own beds, I opted to take him home.  Looking back on it, something in my gut told me to NOT take him home.  But I guess I was too selfish and tired to listen.

We got back home and Cody came out to the living room and not even five minutes after setting all of our stuff down, Garrett threw up again.  And again, and again, and again.  And finally by afternoon, he was doing a lot better and was starving.  So he ate some apples and crackers and juice and kept it down for the most part.  And we thought we were out of the woods.  Ha!

That night Cody and I got to go on our MUCH needed date (dinner and bowling).  We told our babysitter that he had been sick but hadn't thrown up in several hours.  And we called and checked on things a few times while we were gone, but everything seemed fine.  By the next morning, the vomit had gone the opposite direction and now he had the most vicious diarrhea I'd ever seen!  Oh, our poor house was in baaaad shape (I have since done a complete cleaning and sterilization of our floors).  All of his GI problems lasted for three more days and I swear he dropped at least five pounds in weight...which isn't good when you only weigh twenty-five pounds!

No one else in our house had as much as a tummy ache during this time, and in a family like ours, GI bugs usually spread like wildfire.  So I think the doctors were right in thinking it wasn't a virus or bacteria because other people would have gotten it.  I think we need to start chaining up our kitchen trashcan! 

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