An Unexpected Stay At The Hospital...And A Very Hard "Bed" - OhBoyMom

An Unexpected Stay At The Hospital…And A Very Hard “Bed”

February 11, 2014 in Hospital Tales

Emergency Room

Emergency Room (Photo credit: elefanterosado)

Last week, I was about to leave the house to take Middle Dude to basketball practice, when Little Dude stopped me.

“Mom, I think you better take my temperature before you leave.”

I instinctively felt his head and knew he had a fever before I even put the thermometer in his mouth.

101.6

For most kids with a fever of 101.6, you’d feed them some Motrin, wait for the fever to go down and hope it’s not a sign of strep or something else.

But for a kid in treatment with low white counts, you don’t screw around.

I contacted the doctor on call, but I started to get my coat on because I knew he’d tell us to go straight to the ER.

I wasn’t panicking, mainly because Little Dude was acting fine and didn’t seem like he was in any distress. I think it helps to be a little clueless too, which I was.

When we were seen at the ER and I told them about the low white counts, they told me that in the future, I should not wait in the waiting room at all and Little Dude would be ushered to a private room immediately. A kid with low white counts should not be exposed to all the hacking coughs and God knows what else in a Bronx emergency room. I felt guilty about being so uninformed, but luckily it didn’t cause any other problems.

The doctor told us to expect to stay in the hospital for a few days, to make sure he did not have an infection brewing and to also wait until his white counts went up. I’ll stay in the hospital with my Little Dude for as long as he needs, but that chair next to the patient bed, which unfolds into a “bed”? All I can say is, who the hell thinks that thing is even remotely comfortable? I may as well have slept on the floor, because I think it is softer than that chair-bed thing. I was convinced I was going to need to be checked in as a patient needing treatment for bed sores and a lifetime commitment to visiting a chiropractor after one night on that torture-sleeper. Oh and as if the bed-chair wasn’t bad enough, they couldn’t seem to locate any pillows for us.

Good times.

Even though we had a private room, we could not escape the noise because we were right outside the nurse’s station. Every time a patient called for the nurse, we’d hear this high-pitched whine over the speaker, that seemed to be located right next to my head.

I slept a grand total of maybe ten minutes that first night.

Despite the hard chair-bed, the lack of pillow, and the incessant nurse call button siren-sound, I couldn’t have been more pleased with the care. Once again, the doctors, nurses, aides — all excellent.

The best part of all was the fact that Little Dude’s white counts shot up into the 2,000 range (after being at 0) after our second night there and his fever was gone. So, I only had to endure two nights on that evil chair and they gladly sent us home.

Apparently, these unexpected hospital stays are not uncommon for kids in treatment, and everyone seemed pretty surprised we had not been there as an in-patient before this time. We are in the home stretch of treatments so we’re keeping fingers crossed it doesn’t happen again. But if it does, I’ve got one very aware smart dude who will tell me I better take his temperature. And as for that dreaded sleeper-chair? I’ve got the inflatable aero bed packed just in case…

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{ 32 comments… read them below or add one }

Janine Huldie February 11, 2014 at 8:46 am

Glad Little Dude is Ok and that it was a short lived hospital visit if it had to be at all, but you are so right those chairs are the worst and not sure with my bad back how I would manage at all. The mattress sounds like a great idea, but truly hope you will never have to use it or return to the hospital at all. Also hoping that it will be smooth sailing here on out until the end of his treatments.
Janine Huldie recently posted…Amanda’s Books and More’s 2nd BlogiversaryMy Profile

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ohboymom February 11, 2014 at 8:57 am

Yes, I agree and hope Little Dude doesn’t have to return as an inpatient again…thanks for your thoughts too. :)

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Cathy Chester February 11, 2014 at 9:08 am

I know exactly what you are talking about, Emily.

The bottom line is that Little Dude is okay, and now onto that home stretch. G-d willing that will be that, and this will all be a tiny blip in the rest of his remarkable and healthy life.
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ohboymom February 11, 2014 at 10:48 am

Thanks Cathy – I appreciate your thoughts as always.

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Michelle Liew February 11, 2014 at 9:33 am

Emily, Little Dude is a tough kid! And so sensible too. Glad he’s ok!!
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ohboymom February 11, 2014 at 10:47 am

Thanks Michelle – yes, he’s definitely wise beyond his years!

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Janelle February 11, 2014 at 10:16 am

Hugs to you and your brave “little dude!” Those chairs are a joke. I’d rather sleep on a picket fence! Xx

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ohboymom February 11, 2014 at 10:47 am

I agree! Or a bed of nails, or a bunch of rocks, etc, etc!

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Marina February 11, 2014 at 10:16 am

Home stretch…I like the sound of that!!! Glad it was a short stay and hope that the Aero bed in your car will only be needed for sleepovers at a friends houses.

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ohboymom February 11, 2014 at 10:45 am

I hope the same Marina – not sure my back can survive another night in that hospital. :)

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Julie DeNeen February 11, 2014 at 10:32 am

Your little dude is amazing!
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ohboymom February 11, 2014 at 10:45 am
Kate February 11, 2014 at 4:07 pm

Glad he is okay! If I ever strike it rich, I will be sure to donate some comfy chairs to that hospital!
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ohboymom February 11, 2014 at 5:17 pm

I had the exact same thought Kate…

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Considerer February 11, 2014 at 4:16 pm

Smart kid. Glad he was on the ball and that he mended quickly. Sounds like the hospital need some new beds!

The CEO at the hospital where I work was saying in her blog today that one of the feedbacks they’d had from patients was to sell or give away eye masks and ear plugs to help people sleep there. Maybe you could suggest that to the hospital you used.
Considerer recently posted…Je ne regrette rien. Je regrette tout.My Profile

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ohboymom February 11, 2014 at 5:16 pm

That is a GREAT idea — will definitely suggest that!!

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Julia February 11, 2014 at 8:08 pm

In the home stretch with the treatments – that is wonderful news! I hope you have recovered from your two sleepless nights and that Little Dude continues to feel better – how brilliant of him to recognize his symptom and then actually tell you about it!!

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ohboymom February 11, 2014 at 9:22 pm

Yes, I agree – I was so proud of him for being so self-aware!

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Kerri February 11, 2014 at 9:31 pm

There is NOTHING like that chair-bed in a children’s hospital. I remember an aide telling me once, thank Goodness you are small and can fit in it. It is amazing how refreshing 10 minutes of sleep can feel. I will also never understand why they have to do vitals at 3am waking not only the child but the parent. I recall once coming out of that 10 minute sleep in full warrior mom mode. I don’t know what scared the nurse more, my stance, my drool or my bedhead.
Healing thoughts being sent to Little Dudes way and sleepy thoughts being sent to you!
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ohboymom February 11, 2014 at 9:44 pm

Totally agree about those 3am wake-ups! In fact, with this stay the nurse actually told me ahead of time that they were going to take blood from him at 3am…when I asked why, she explained that they wanted the results back by the time the doctors did rounds at 8am. Ridiculous! The funny thing is that I was SOOO tired from the first night that when they came around that 2nd night, I slept through it all, as did Little Dude.

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Kelly February 11, 2014 at 10:59 pm

Oh I do remember having a night in the old chair/bed/cement block. Oh goodness! And then there was this sudden tornado like storm and ALL the patients (pediatric) had to be moved into the hallway while the lights flickered and people were puking in the halls…I’m totally serious here Em…it was like a Stephen King novel!! But ha, I worked at that hospital…I knew the short cuts and had an escape route planned in my mind;) lol.

Tell little dude no matter where he goes, pretend like he’s real tight with the administrator. Drop their name here and there when staff is listening in…like, “so did Mr. X say he’d come over for dinner this weekend or next mom?” Lol.

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ohboymom February 12, 2014 at 9:46 am

Jeez that DOES sound like a Stephen King novel…it’s funny because at the first hospital where he received treatment(before switching to this one), my dad had worked there as a physician for 50 years, but did it get us a private room and a comfortable chair bed? Um, no. I also have a horror story from when I gave birth there…so much for having connections!! :)

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Kristi Campbell February 11, 2014 at 11:09 pm

Little DUDE ROCKS for knowing that he wasn’t okay and saying something about it. How tempting it must have been for him to blow it off knowing you were busy.
UGH to the cement bed though Emily. Huge. And again – he’s uber awesome for even saying something. I’m sure that too many kids don’t and then regret it. He probably deserves a pony.

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ohboymom February 12, 2014 at 9:43 am

I agree he deserves a pony even if we do live on a 1/4 acre! However, he has requested an iPhone as his end-of-treatment gift. We did not give the other boys a cell phone until they were in 5th grade, but I think in this case we are going to make an exception.:)

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Kathy at kissing the frog February 12, 2014 at 7:15 am

So happy to hear Little Dude turned around so quickly. We were in the hospital for stays like that a lot. I always had a bag packed and my laptop ready to take with me. Sigh. It’s just what we have to do. Sending hugs.
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ohboymom February 12, 2014 at 9:42 am

Thanks Kathy and yes, I learned the hard way to keep a bag packed. My husband had to make a 10pm drop-off at the hospital with our stuff for the few days.

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Cyndi February 12, 2014 at 9:28 am

Stopping in for a little bit…haven’t been online doing blogging stuff much these days – but I have a snow day today. :)
So glad to hear little dude is ok. Hopefully the treatments he’s doing will be ending soon and he’ll get a clean bill of health. In the meantime, a fever with low white counts – scary. I think of you often and send continued thoughts and prayers your way for a speedy recovery. Hopefully Middle Dude understood why you couldn’t take him to b-ball. HUGS
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ohboymom February 12, 2014 at 9:41 am

Good to “see” you Cyndi and thanks so much for your thoughts. I’m not doing a ton of blogging either these days, but trying to keep one foot/toe in. I miss your photos – going to check out your blog now!

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Stephanie @ Mommy, for Real. February 19, 2014 at 4:32 pm

I’m so glad that your stay wasn’t longer and that the infection went away. But, man, that chairbed sounds like a joke. Those aerobeds should be handed out at check-in. Also, complimentary massage therapists for parents. :)
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ohboymom February 19, 2014 at 8:07 pm

Yes – massage therapists, a brilliant idea!!

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Chris Carter February 26, 2014 at 12:20 am

What an amazing kiddo you have to be so SO on top of his health!!! Oh, how I love that!! And I am so glad you had excellent care at the hospital…

What is with those chair-beds? Who the hell designed them and why on earth are they even there? Ugh. Glad you are prepared in case you are there again. SO grateful that you hadn’t been until now…

I will keep praying for health during this last stretch of treatments.
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ohboymom February 26, 2014 at 5:33 pm

Thanks Chris – I truly appreciate your support!

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