Sunday, May 19, 2013

Just like a rainbow...

 Just like the appearance of the rainbow in the clouds on a rainy day so was the appearance of brilliance that surrounded him. Such was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the LORD.
 Ezekiel 1:28

Celia painting in duPont hospital w/ paints from Child Life

Last Saturday morning, Matthew called me to say he threw up and needed a ride home from play practice.  When we got in the door, Celia bolted for the bathroom. I thought we were going to spend the weekend passing a virus around, but by mid-afternoon, everyone's stomachs seemed to have calmed down.  Neal and I went out to dinner (it was the 18th anniversary of our first date) and to run errands (isn't the traditional gift "a bathroom sink"?), but our date was cut short by a text from Luke:  "When are you coming home?  Celia just puked on the couch."  That seemed to start a rapid spiral downward.  She was sick all night - she'd fall asleep, wake up vomiting, and then fall back over.  I stayed up with her until close to 1 am; Neal woke up and took the graveyard shift so I could get some sleep.  By morning, she was a sad little pumpkin.  By lunchtime, I was starting to get nervous, because nothing was staying down.  She desperately wanted to drink, but it came back up.  We kept turning her tube feeds of rehydration solution down and ran them slower and slower, in the hopes that something would stay.  As a last ditch effort, we turned her down to 30 ml - one ounce - per hour, and even that didn't stay put.  We raised the white flag and took her to duPont.  You know it's bad when the 8-year-old patient says to the triage nurse, "Can you just put an IV in already? My tubey isn't working."

Bottom line, she was dehydrated.  Severely.  She had just been to the GI clinic on Tuesday, and hen they weighed her in the triage room, her weight was lower than it was then.  Which makes sense.  Then I pulled out my phone to enter her weight in, and realized she had lost almost 3 kg in 4 days.   The ER docs were shocked.  I was concerned at this point, because that was a lot of weight for her, but focused on getting her better.   ER docs ordered labs, a huge bolus of fluid  (I didn't know infusion pumps could click that fast) and an x-ray to rule out any kind of bowel obstructions, and then we were heading up to a room.   We were admitted on the GI service - I think general peds was afraid of her, so we got to see some old friends.  We didn't have too exciting of a reunion, because now it was past 4 am and I just wanted a nap before rounds.  GI team finally came, and I mentioned it was pretty obvious from her weight that she was down a lot of fluid, and gave the doc the two weights.  We've known the GI who was on inpatient service since Celia was toddler, and know that very little fazes him.  His eyes rolled upwards as he did some mental calculations, and then his face fell and went pale.  He remarked that she had lost 10% of her body weight in four days.  At this point, I start to think, "If he's getting worried, is this where I start panicking?"  Our day nurse was subbing in the unit for the day; normally he is assigned to the PICU.  He looked at our labs, and then showed them to me.  She had some numbers that were seriously off-kilter.  We knew she was sick, but didn't realize just HOW sick she was.

Finally by late Monday afternoon, she seemed to have turned a corner.  After a liter of plain saline and  most of a liter of potassium IV, she seemed to perk up.  The docs finally let her have fluids by mouth, and she immediately demanded club soda.  (And yes, I hustled down to the cafeteria to get some seltzer.)  She was still tired, but starting to look for things to do.  First, she commandeered my laptop so she could do some of her home math program.  She was slower than took her ten minutes instead of eight.  Thankfully, Child Life came by with some paint, so that kept her occupied for a while.  Among the things she painted was this rainbow.  It was amazing to me, to see her so sick on Sunday, and then less than a day later almost recovered. 

We wound up staying until mid-afternoon on Tuesday.  The doctors didn't trust her because, bad as she appeared, she didn't look as bad as the labs showed.   After making sure she truly was better, they let her go home.  By Wednesday, she was back to school and back to normal!  I chose this verse from Ezekiel for this picture and story, because to see her sitting up, painting a rainbow, shows just how good and glorious God is.  This was one very sick little girl who had so many people praying for her, and God showed just how speedy and magnificent a healer He is. 

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1 comment:

  1. So sorry to hear about your daughters illness. Glad things are going better now.

    Stopped by to let you know that I am now hosting Goal Planning Monday if you are able to start participating again... this week or next. Here is this week's post...


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