This post is long. The last couple days have been long.
Evie and Liv got their first real cold two Fridays ago. Runny noses, low fevers, lethargic, fussy babies. They just started daycare so I was pretty prepared for them to have colds. It was a rough week. We decided to head to the pediatrician last Friday because they didn’t seem to be getting any better. It sounded like the cold was starting to settle in their chests. I thought I was just being an overly cautious new mom, but the pediatrician surprised me by telling me she suspected whooping cough. Great. The girls were swabbed to find out if it was actually whooping cough or just a bad cold.
Saturday and Sunday the girls stayed pretty much the same but on Sunday night they started to sound a bit wheezy. I called the on-call pediatrician and guess what? She had just gotten the results. Positive for whooping cough. wtf. Since the girls were wheezing she wanted us to take them to the ER.
The ER on a Sunday night of a three day weekend is exactly what you would expect. It was insanely full of coughing kids and vomiting adults. And, for some reason, a lot of people weren’t wearing shoes. On top of this, the measles is going around southern California. Needless to say, the ER was really the last place I wanted to be. Luckily the intake nurse was understanding and let us wait in a little side room. I think this was mainly so we didn’t give people whooping cough, but I was still grateful. We were taken back pretty quickly but things went downhill from there. Though the girls seemed to have relatively minor symptoms, because of the positive test, they were going to be admitted. But there were no beds available in the pediatric wing. We sat in the ER for 14 hours.
I can safely say it was the worst experience of my life . Evie and Liv were sick and uncomfortable and had no real place to sleep. They decided to start IVs on both girls. It took four tries and a NICU nurse to find a vein on Olivia. I thought she was going to burst a blood vessel from screaming so much. The emergency room staff as helpful as they could be, but babies just don’t do well in that kind of environment.
At 10:30, Monday morning, we finally were admitted to the pediatric wing. We were able to feed the girls and they passed out in their little hospital cribs. Eventually we met with the pediatrician on duty and he told us, based on the girls’ symptoms, he doubted they had whooping cough. To say I was frustrated would be an understatement. The main reason we were there was that positive whooping cough test. Rob and I finally decided we needed to get home and get some sleep and take showers. We had been up for 36 hours. We slept for 3, showered, went back.
No change in Evie and Liv, but they were going to keep them overnight for observation. So Rob and I decided to.. just do it. We went home and slept for nine hours. A huge part of me felt guilty for leaving the girls, but a huge part of me felt like.. OMG I JUST SLEPT FOR NINE HOURS. Each of the girls had their own nurse over night so really, they wanted for nothing. It was only mom guilt that had me worried.
This morning we went back and the girls looked great. They had received breathing treatments throughout the night and were breathing well. All of the nurses kept commenting on how healthy and chunky they were. I was like, I know. 13 lbs each, thankyouverymuch. After a few hours of hanging out the new pediatrician arrived and declared them free to go.
So. What now? We are still waiting on the secondary test to determine whether or not they actually had whooping cough. However, since there was a documented positive, everyone in the house has to do a round of antibiotics even though we have all been vaccinated. In itself, that isn’t bad, but getting 6 adults into the doctor during flu season is going to be fun. The girls have now completed a full round of antibiotics and are no longer contagious. We have to follow up with our pediatrician to ensure they continue to get better.
I declare whooping cough weekend over.