Friday, June 8, 2012

Sickness. And my thoughts on fever reducers

Ugh.  What a week this was.  Where did I leave off?  Oh yeah, 2am or so Saturday night/Sunday morning.

So BBZ woke up Sunday morning feeling like a million dollars.  I can't believe how resilient his is.  N on the other hand, he was in and out of the bathroom most of the day and drank about 52 Nalgenes of water trying to rehydrate.  He sucked a few back Saturday night too, so he began the stomach flu journey a little dehydrated anyway.

LBZ woke up with a low-grade fever.  It teetered around 100-101 all day.  He slept a lot and I didn't do much besides nurse a lot and let fight the fever.  I had been engorged to the point of almost having to pump because he wasn't really eating.  I didn't really realize he wasn't feeling well either until N and BBZ got sick.  Then I realized that it probably started with him, and hopefully this fever was the end of it.

We hung around the house all day.  I ran to the grocery store and felt nauseous the whole time.  Looking back I may have had a very minor taste of what they had, but nothing like any of my boys did, so that was a relief.

We all slept great all night Sunday night and we needed it.  I think LBZ only woke up once, even with his fever.  Monday was more of the same.  LBZ's fever continued and he wanted to be held a lot.  N was at work.  BBZ was really cooperative.  It was a pretty good day.

I am not completely against medication, I do have it in my house after all.  But I generally don't give medicine to the boys or take it myself unless it's absolutely necessary.  I started to research the theories around not giving fever reducers like Tylenol and decided I really wanted to avoid it.  I believe that a fever has a reason and trying to reduce it will only extend it.

I watched the fever slowly go up, as fevers do and LBZ was still playing and interacting somewhat even though he got tired easily.  Most of the things I read online said that not treating the fever helped it last only 24 hours.  Here I was a good 36 hours into the fever and no medicine and no sign of it letting up.

At around 2pm, LBZ woke up from one of his very frequent naps and had a listless affect.  He didn't want me to put him down, but he didn't want me to hold him either.  He was hot and it was scary.  I took his temp and it was 104.5.  I had taken it throughout the day and it was slowly creeping up, but this number shocked me and I freaked out.

I didn't have anyone to call that wouldn't tell me to give him a fever reducer.  So I did.  And it worked.  It lowered it to about 101, which was actually a good thing to me because at least that meant that the fever was still working to fight against whatever was in his body.

Some of the theories I read said that the fever itself is doing what it needs to and if you give the reducer it only prolongs the fevers need to go back up to compensate and fight the virus.  I get that.  Really, I do.  But when the number says 104.5 and I'm the only one home and my husband is getting ready to go out of town, I wanted that number to go down.  Fast.

N came home around 3:30pm so he could leave for his business trip.  The thought of being home by myself with a sick baby scared me and reminded me of when BBZ was so sick almost 3 years ago.  Right as he was leaving I decided to take LBZ to the doctor.  His fever was still around 102 and he was crying inconsolably, which was really scary.  I had to rush the boys into the car to make it to the office before they closed and as we were leaving it was a ridiculous down pour of rain.  We got completely soaked running into the office, but BBZ got to use his spider man umbrella, so life was good.

The doctor said that LBZ was the third child she saw that day with identical symptoms.  That actually made me feel better.  She said it was a virus that needed to run its course.  The co-pay sucked, but it was worth the peace of mind.

Monday night was rough.  Both boys were up a lot and both ended up sleeping in my room.  BBZ woke up feeling warm but I sent him to school anyway.  I knew he needed to do something other than hang out with me while I held his brother all day, so I dropped him off and had in the back of my mind that I would need to pick him up early.

LBZ's fever was 103.9 that morning so I gave him another dose of medicine.  He was in my arms absolutely all day long.  I don't even remember if I ate Monday Tuesday or Wednesday.  I must have eaten something.  I know I made a PBJ one night.  The ring sling was my best friend.

I headed out the door to pick BBZ up around 4pm and I got the call that he had a fever of 101.  We got home and he didn't eat much.  His temp went up to around 102.5 or so and I didn't give him medicine.  I got LBZ to sleep and moved on to BBZ.  He was really tired and went to sleep without trouble.  LBZ woke up screaming a lot.  I was afraid he would wake up BBZ, but surprisingly he didn't.  He woke up about every hour until 3am or so when I brought him to bed with me.  Then BBZ came in around 4am.  We all slept until 8 the next morning, which was glorious.

BBZ woke up feeling fine and fever free.  He gets over sickness so fast!  It was a blessing.  LBZ on the other hand wasn't getting any better.  He still had a fever, but it stayed around 101, so no medicine again.

He woke up from his afternoon nap really sweaty and his fever went down from there.  N came home around 6pm and gave me some much needed relief.  I spoke to LBZ's doctor again because his diarrhea was persistent and she recommended I give him a probiotic.  I meant to when he has his last ear infection, but I never did find one for him and I kept putting it off.  I had some capsule samples I got at one time from the pediatrician, broke it open and mashed it into some banana.  He ate it all.

The whole night was rough on all of us...except BBZ who seems to sleep through everything.  N tried to help but LBZ really just wanted me.  BBZ ended up in our bed at some point.  Thursday morning LBZ and I slept in so N took BBZ to school.  When I finally got LBZ up and about, I saw a red rash all over his body.  I figured it was consistent with his virus and didn't think much of it.  He was still fever-free.

Then he had more diarrhea, which was more than the last few days.  I tried more bananas with the probiotic but he didn't want much to do with that.  It was about an hour later that I realized his belly was making crazy gurgling noises and he was screaming out in pain.  Then I remembered that a friend mentioned once that some probiotics contain milk.

I stopped drinking cow's milk after LBZ's last ear infection.  I didn't want to cut out all dairy and read that sometimes cutting out milk alone can make a difference if someone has a mild sensitivity.  It's hard to tell if it's working or not because he's been so sick.  But, I suddenly wondered if this was a reaction to the probiotic since he seemed to get worse.

So long story short (too late), I'm pretty sure it was not an allergy.  I did try giving him a very small dose of benedryl last night to see if it helped the rash, but it didn't, so that sealed the deal for me that this was not an allergic reaction.

I sent him to school today and went to work for just the second time this week.  I got a HUGE project done today, which feels more than amazing.  This was a project that I first learned about almost a year ago and it has finally come together!  I'll talk more about it when I launch it at work.  So exciting!

So he did ok today, but was still not himself.  Luckily, he took a nice long nap when he got home and woke up seemingly feeling great.  His rash was fading and he ate really well.  He woke up a few times when trying to fall asleep, but has been resting well since.  We might just be over this!

The only saving grace in this whole situation is that I did not get sick.  I do feel like I got an extremely mild case of what they had, but the fact that I didn't throw up once this week is beyond words.  While I was rocking my feverish baby one night this week, I actually thanked the universe out loud for allowing me to stay healthy enough to take care of my family.  It was a gift.  Seriously.

Oh, and just to add to the amount of poop and puke I cleaned this week, my cat pooped all over our bedroom.  Ugh.  He is not my favorite earth creature at the moment.

So anyway, we are all on the mend and will hopefully stay that way for a nice long while.  We have some fun things coming up this weekend that I'll be excited to blog about...including LBZ's 9-month update!

Have a great weekend!