Friday, August 28, 2009

Pneumonia Boy

My son is currently suffering through his third round of pneumonia in his two short years of life. We spent Wednesday night in Urgent Care after his breathing had become labored and the sounds his lungs were making were not from this planet. Two hours, three chest x-rays, an exam and breathing treatment later we were told he had pneumonia.......again.

Both kids have been sick for almost three weeks now with colds. My daughter is finally on the mend, yet like always a simple cold turns into a serious respiratory complication with my son. I called the doctor Friday who told me to just keep giving him nebulizer treatments at home and that should help clear it up. Against my better judgment I did not take him to Urgent Care over the weekend. By Sunday he seemed to be getting better until Wednesday morning when he totally relapsed. I do this every time. Play the waiting game in my head. Should I take him? What if it's nothing? Then I've wasted time and money, plus exposed him to whatever germs are floating around in the hospital. But what if it's something? And he's just getting worse? The times I don't take him right away and wait are the times he ends up with pneumonia, RSV, Bronchitis, etc. The times I take him right away are the times it is "nothing." I can't win.

So, it looks like we will be spending another week or so cooped up in the house. Then this past week I caught what the kids have had. I feel horrible. The worst part is the exhaustion and constant headache. This afternoon I had my grandmother come over to keep my daughter entertained. I then took a shot of whiskey and took a nap. I woke up an hour later in a puddle of sweat just dripping. Fever broke. So, I'm hoping I will start feeling better soon. As I type this, still not feeling better.

Here's my question/concern/dilemma......Everyone says this is going to be a nasty flu season (and by everyone I mean the reputable people I have spoken to...pediatricians, hospital doctors, friends in the health care field, etc....not the mass hysteria splashed all over the news....although they may be right). Even just taking away the risk of H1N1, the regular flu poses a great risk for my son because of these respiratory issues. I was told last night that the more I could keep him away from group setting, etc. the better. Because I stay home with the kids, this isn't impossible. I don't have him in pre-school or day care of anything like that. However, I do like to leave my house yet sadly every time I do the poor kid ends up hospitalized or close to it. I put my gym membership on hold yesterday for 3 months to wait out the "flu season" since both kids go to a child care facility there. May be extreme, but it's a sacrifice I am willing to make right now. I can work out at home if it will mean my son isn't getting constantly sick. However, I do have to go to church, to the grocery store, see other human beings, take my daughter to dance, go to doctor's appointments, essentially function as a social being in a world that is inhabited by other people....people with germs.

Needless to say these past few weeks have been crazy. The house is a wreck, dishes need to be done, clothes need to be washed, folded, and put away, kids rooms need to be cleaned. Honestly, I don't care though....which is saying a lot, because usually I am rather militant about having things picked up in my house the SECOND someone is done using or playing with it. I have neither the energy nor the inclination to play housekeeper right now. I guess I am more concerned that my son can breathe and in the process of taking care of him I don't keel over dead. :) Oh yeah, I could use a shower too. It's been about three days.

So, how are you all feeling? Worried about the flu season?


Nancy said...

I always thought people with respiratory problems moved TO Arizona!
I'm so sorry about your son's bouts with pneumonia. I have no solutions but I am sort of worried abou the swine flu this winter with my son in college. I told him yesterday to be diligent about washing his hands!

Robyn said...

I AM worried because I'll have a newborn. Bear just got his vaccination, but I'm so lucky -- he is almost never sick. Part of the reason I decided to keep him at his tiny daycare until I return to work (next January) is that he will be exposed to less kids this way. I'm going to be super-sensitive about taking the new baby to enclosed areas. I am dreading this flu season.