So Maddie is in the hospital again.

I feel like I say, “Maddie is sick,” or “Maddie is in the hospital,” the way others say, “I went to the grocery store.” Do you get sick of me saying it? Because I know I do.

On Monday night Maddie was really uncomfortable and restless. I looked in her mouth, and her top right front tooth and fang are so close to the surface that her gums are white. She wouldn’t let me touch her mouth, she wailed, she shrieked all night and never fell asleep, but her temperature wasn’t higher than 98.6 – 99 (her baseline temp is 97.6. She’s cool like her mama). She was breathing a little harder than normal, but that is common with her and a slight temperature.

On Tuesday morning I threw myself on the mercy of St. Grandma. She was supposed to come to my house in the afternoon to entertain my pup during Maddie’s assessment with Regional Center (which went fine, we’ll have more information on that next week). Instead, she came down in the morning to allow me to sleep so the Regional Center evaluator wouldn’t find a total crazy lady in my clothes. Luckily, the evaluation was mostly me giving Maddie’s medical history, so it wasn’t imperative for Maddie to be in the best of moods. She slept through most of it. She was a bit fussy and clingy but not overly so. Still only a low-grade fever, and it was off and on.

I’m getting to  the point, I swear. Later that evening I went out to a cool event (which I will be writing about on HMR soon), and when I came back aroun 9 pm or so, Maddie welcomed me back by getting sick on my mom. I took Maddie to get changed and that’s when I noticed she was BURNING UP. No exaggeration. I stripped her and took a rectal temperature, and I watched the rising mercury with horror. It finally stopped on 103.7.

And thus began our long night in the ER. I knew it was going to turn into a hospitalization. She just seemed so out of it, so unhappy and so HOT. The ER was rough. Maddie needed an IV for fluids and blood draws, and the nurses had the hardest time getting a working line set up. She was probably stuck four or five times in both arms before the line finally took. The poor thing literally screamed her voice away. THEN she had to be temporarily catheterized for a sterile urine draw. AND she had to have multiple chest x-rays. As if that wasn’t enough, she had to have nasal washing to test for RSV (think Neti Pot on a baby, but with a suctioning device also involved – yeah, that bad). The diagnosis that got us admitted? Pneumonia. Serious, but I knew once she was pumped with plenty of fluids and her temp was normal for 24 hours, we’d be released to home oxygen. On Wednesday morning Dr. Looove came by and agreed. Woo!

Then a resident came by Wednesday evening and said, “oh, the initial test we did for RSV? The one that came back negative? It was actually positive. She has RSV.”


I don’t know how this is going to effect her treatment. I haven’t spoken with Dr. Looove since the official diagnosis. She’ll round on Maddie in the morning, so I’ll be able to get the full plan of attack around 7:30 am or so. Until then I am at the mercy of the 187,000 residents who come to give us slightly different versions of what’s going on.

My mom has been with me during the day, and Mike is splitting his time between work and the hospital. Luckily, my slowly-dying computer is cooperating…for now. It’s like deja vu being back here. We are in the same room Maddie stayed in for her first post-NICU hospitalization, except this time she has a regular bed instead of a crib so she can constantly be snuggled. She’s modeling the same super-stylish hospital couture. We built a fort out of pillows, blankets, and sheets, and we are trying to make her comfortable – as comfortable as one can be with an IV, a nasal cannula, and a pulse ox meter on. She sleeps a lot. She is afraid of any doctors or nurses that come in (even Dr. Looove) thanks to her trauma from the ER. It’s…hard.

DSC02509 Mommy, I'm sick. Stop taking my picture.
Maddie in March 2008, and Maddie now.

I was really hoping for a hospital-free 2009. Now I’m just hoping that she’s out of the hospital before February is over.

**And, as I’m sure you’ve guessed, this has only strengthened my resolve for the March For Babies. There is still time to donate & enter my contest to win a new Kodak camera or printer! Thanks to EVERYONE who has donated so far!**