When it comes to medical concern, after having 3 kids, I don’t scare easy. I’ve been witness to stitches, seizures, emergency life-saving surgery, eye surgery, allergies from light and grass, and countless infections and viruses that could leave even the most seasoned doctor nauseated.
My youngest had a
cough. The word ‘cough’ doesn’t really, truly explain it. She had a cough.
It takes quite a bit to rattle me – medically – so when I got concerned over this cough, I ran with my motherly intuition all the way to the ER.
I understood going there, that my daughter’s
cough was not at the high-end of the triage spectrum, so we came prepared to wait, armed with her tablet, coloring books, toys, blanket, and snacks. My 3yo weighed in at an impressive 49 pounds and – hacking away – we waited patiently to be called in.
We saw the nurse for the triage interview and all of a sudden, my 3yo heals up, no coughing, she was dancing and laughing, and talking to everyone. I told the nurse, “I swear she’s sick!” I don’t think he believed me. “Really! I took a video!”
“You can save that for the doctor.” He said dryly. F*** you too.
We finally get called in (I anticipated the wait so I wasn’t tripping about it), and sit in our little room. Since it’s an ER, they aren’t like rooms, they are areas that are separated by curtains, right? So whatever is going on in the curtain-room next to you, you’re going to hear. For instance: The woman who was violently vomiting. Or the man who was having a dementia breakdown. For me, these things are not an issue (again, it takes a lot to startle me medically), however, to my little 3yo who is already not well, she was in auditory hell.
The doctor was quick and to the point. She listened to my kid’s lungs and asked her questions, etc. I said the same thing I told you guys, “Look, I have 3 kids. It takes a lot to rattle me medically so when I heard her
coughing like this *cue the video* I thought it absolutely necessary to bring her in.” I thought the cough – coupled with the fever and odd breathing patterns – indicated pneumonia.
Dr Lady watched my little video and smiled. “Thank you for this video, it was a huge help.” I thought she was being condecending at first. She went on to explain that the barking cough (how she described it) is actually a symtom of a viral respitory infection called croup. WTF is that? I have 3 kids and there’s a medical condition that I hadn’t heard of? Seemed unlikely. She said it’s a self-resolving condition, takes about 3 or 4 days to clear up, and since it doesn’t respond to antibiotics (virus), we just needed to focus on keeping the symtoms at bay.
My kid got a dose of steroids to help with the inflamation and then was put on an abuterol breathing treatment to ease the breathing while this
cough is hanging around.
The respitory therapist (RT) came into the room a few minutes later to administer the breathing treatment. He brought a student RT with him, who was so nice and patient. My kid, who was feeling better already from the steroids, liked the student and they were having fun while I was speaking with the RT, who was preparing the dose.
Out the corner of my eye, I see my kid hold out her ET finger – you know: “ooouuuccchhh” – and I tried my best to intervene, I swear! But it was too late. Seeing the look on the student’s face explained everything: My kid put her finger in her butt and made the student smell it.
It was like watching an accident happening or slow-mo sports clip, because she’s been doing this shit a lot lately! NNNNNNNNOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!! By then it was too late. The student horrifyingly looked at me. All I could muster to say was:
“She really spends too much time with her father.”