The weekend was going along smoothly, and S and I had a date night planned. Not just any old date night, but a date night in which we got to finally use gift cards to Mort.on's Steakhouse that we've had for ages. I couldn't wait for a night of great food, great wine, and great people watching.
Baby Z had other plans.
Have I mentioned that Baby Z puts everything in his mouth? Well, on this fine afternoon, he decided to sample something inedible earning him his second trip to the ER in 2 weeks. Upon hearing what happened, we cancelled all plans and drove straight to the hospital where he had been taken.
In retrospect: When I turned to S and said, "We should probably go home and pack a bag", I should have been more assertive. His, "Eh, if I need to run up to get stuff, then I'll do it, let's just get there" won. I didn't feel like arguing, and thought, "Surely, we won't be spending the night".
Six hours of observation and a couple breathing treatments later, Baby Z was still breathing a bit weird and had a fast rate, as well as a slightly worse chest x-ray. Other than that, he had perked up and was acting pretty normal. The ER doc apologetically said he was going to recommend an overnight stay. Here's where an additional lesson comes in to play: If you are with a baby in a regular hospital, ask to be transferred to a children's hospital. We kind of got that offer, in the context of the ER doc was going to check with the on-call pediatrician to see how comfortable he was having Baby Z stay. If Baby Z tanked overnight, there was a chance he'd end up being transferred anyway. ER doc asked us where we would prefer and we told him the same hospital we had been in last week. Given that Baby Z had stabilized a lot, we ended up staying at the hospital.
Here's what I learned about a regular hospital - they are not set up for babies. The pediatrician is not at the hospital, and I have my suspicions that a pediatric nurse may have been called in at 11:00pm because of this case. They don't get you formula, bottles, diapers or wipes without you asking and then it's a scramble. I swear they ran over to L&D to procure a diaper when we were in the ER without Baby Z's diaper bag. And then, they showed up without wipes, so good thing that wasn't a poop.
Here's what I learned about all hospitals - That motherf-cking pull out couch thing they offer for other people to sleep on is about as good as sleeping on the floor. Would it kill the budget to throw a little memory foam in those things?
Here's what I learned about emergencies happening when they are not in your care - It f-cking sucks. We didn't get the whole story until hours later, picking up bits and pieces along the way. We got the whole story from when he reached the ER, but it took a while to figure out exactly what happened before that. THAT is infuriating. (to me anyway). Everyone feels really bad, including me who had stopped Baby Z from going after the very thing he ended up getting apart and trying to ingest a few days later. I don't know why I didn't say something about moving it out of his reach, or even at least a general "hey, I think you need to baby proof because he keeps getting into all kinds of things". Baby Z is far more curious than X was when it comes to tasting/touching/experiencing everything around him. He's fast, and he's fearless. It's a f-cking nightmare now that he's walking.
Here's what I learned about me and S in crisis: We rock. We are a team, we stay calm, we get the information, we shut down emotions to get through it. Others who were involved panicked, and actually put Baby Z in more danger by driving him to the ER without a car seat. I would much rather pay for an ambulance ride than deal with him in an accident. (actually something that I just thought of, funny how these things take a while to percolate into my subconscious) In addition, I got called first and had to yell "Hang up and call Poison Control" into the phone because all I knew was something bad happened, but I couldn't understand a word that was being said to me through panic and tears.
Raising Baby Z is starting to scare me.