Saturday, January 2, 2010

In Which Connor Rings In The New Year With A Bang

Well, so much for boring.

You may have noticed that I didn't blog yesterday. I wasn't too busy having fun somewhere, and I didn't decide to take a lazy day. No, I had full intentions to blog about what a great date Jer and I had, how I was looking forward to Connor starting school up again, and our plans for the next few weeks, but unfortunately I wasn't able to get to my computer. There were two reasons for this:

1.) I left it at home.

2.) They didn't have wireless in Good Samaritan Hospital's Emergency Room, so even if I had remembered to bring it I wouldn't have been able to post anyway.

Yes, during the time I should have been blogging, I was instead sitting on a chair in Good Sam's ER, waiting on the ambulance for Connor's transfer to Children's Hospital in Seattle and passing the time by trying to calculate how much chocolate I would need to consume in one sitting to erase all memory of the evening without sending myself into a sugar coma.

The day started out well enough. Joanna came over at ten in the morning to watch Connor while Jeremy and I headed out to the gym for our workout. While some people may not think working out together makes for a good date, Jer and I enjoy that sort of thing. After getting cleaned up we headed over to Best Buy, where we looked at vacuum cleaners for carpetless floors. Yes, I know-- working out AND vacuum cleaners in one date? I guess we're hopeless romantics. We ended our free time together back at the local conveyor-belt sushi joint, where I ate sushi and Jer used his sushi as a medium to convey massive amounts of wasabi to his mouth. Finally we went home, where Jer spent a happy hour getting the scar tissue broken up on his leg by Joanna, who also happens to be an excellent medical massage therapist (Please note: this was not actually a happy hour. This was an hour that involved primal screaming and liberal use of the "F" word. Apparently having scar tissue broken up hurts. A lot. But it will help with flexibility and rebuilding muscle, so it's worth it, though Lord knows what our neighbors think went on here yesterday, what with the screaming and cussing and then, an hour or two later, the ambulance and firetruck. Oh well).

Anyway, so Joanna left and Jer and I settled down to a quiet evening. We got about half an hour into our quiet evening when Jeremy looked over and realized that Connor was drooling a ton and his breathing was kind of funny.

Yep. Seizure.

I ran for the oxygen, we lay him down on the floor, hooked him up, and started a timer. This was one of the new seizures: starting with drooling and throat paralysis and then progressing later to jaw trembling, and finally to rhythmic jerking of his jaw and blinking of his eyes. After five minutes of him seizing we gave him the Diastat.

It didn't work.

When the EMTs got there after about ten minutes of seizing, Connor had just stopped jerking and seemed to be coming out of it a little. He was still pretty unresponsive, though, and his breathing was really erratic. They loaded him in the ambulance, whereupon he apparently began seizing again. They drove away, lights flashing and sirens blaring, while Jer and I piled into the wheelchair van.

By the time we got to the hospital the second seizure was over and Connor was responsive again. Apparently they'd put an IO (Intraosseous access-- basically an IV needle that is screwed directly into the bone with a miniature drill-- no kidding) into his leg in the ambulance and he hadn't even twitched, which tells you how out of it he'd been. When we walked in the door there were six or seven people around the bed working on him, but he was crying, responsive, and breathing again on his own, which was a big improvement. He stayed that way for five minutes or so and then went unresponsive again. At that point they gave him a dose of Ativan to stop the seizure and decided they wanted to transfer him to a pediatric hospital better set up for him if he decided to conk out for a fourth time.

I drove home, slapped an overnight bag together and grabbed some dinner for Jeremy and me, and then returned to the hospital just as they were deciding to transfer him to Children's in Seattle rather than another hospital in Tacoma.

Once the ambulance team arrived I explained to Connor what was going on, as by this time he was pretty much back to his normal self, albeit an extremely exhausted and irritated normal self. Then I loaded Jer into the van and we drove down to Children's. We hung out in the ER for a while and were admitted to a room sometime around two in the morning. Connor finally, finally fell asleep around three. Jer and I then crashed and burned on the pull-out couch.

Not only do they have a pull-out couch that sleeps two, by the way, but they also have a wireless network in the rooms and they let you use your cell phones in there. Cushy. I'll have to remember to bring my laptop the next time Connor is admitted there, which will hopefully be never, ever again, even if they did give him a super cute blanket with various vehicles on it and an adorable little hospital pajama set that makes him look either like a Shaolin monk or a prison inmate, depending on whether or not you ask Jeremy or me.

But I digress. Anyway, we had a quiet night, saw the neurologist this morning, started Connor on a new medication called Trileptal which he will now take in addition to his Keppra, and were discharged around four thirty in the afternoon. Connor is now snoring gently in our bedroom, which is where I am headed shortly to lay down and sleep for a few hundred years, or at least until seven tomorrow when it's time for Connor's next round of meds.




Elizabeth said...

I'm so sorry to hear of this night. Godawful. I have a daughter who has uncontrolled seizures, so I don't have to imagine. I so admire your sense of humor and have to say that that (a sense of humor) and faith in God are really what sustain me most of the time. I will be thinking about and praying for you and Jer and Connor. Peace to you in the new year.

BlessingsfromGod said...

Honey, you are such a good Mom. I had no idea what had gone on when I first posted, but after reading the very beginning of your blog, my heart went out to you and your Son, Connor, and your Husband.
I wish I could take it all away...but want you to know that you do have my prayers as well!

You are an excellent writer. Your posts could make a very readable book, that just might help others one day.

I hope the weekend brings you all some peace and rest.
Bless you,
Celia in Tacoma

Bronx Cataldo's said...

What a way to start the New Year. I have taken Finnian to the ER with the same type of seizure twice. The first time I didn't relize it was a seizure what a dumb ass I was. THe second time we gave him the diastat and it did nothing and in the ER they gave him ativan andit didn't work they ended up giving him versed. He has had a few of them we went a whole year with out one of them, The last one of thoes was in Nov and as soon as I saw him in it I gave him the diastat and suctioned all of his saliva so he wouldn't aspirate it.
What a Mammy you are I hope the trileptal works for him.

Kelsey said...

Wow Jessie. I'm so sorry. I hope things slow down and Connor can recover/you guys can recover. I'm thinking about you.

leah said...

What a rough start to the new year- I certainly pray the trileptal stops these seizures cold in their tracks.

Niksmom said...

Oh no! I'm so sorry for poor Connor; his little body must be so tired from the ordeal.

Sending prayers the trileptal works and that you all have some respite from the storms of seizures.

xraevision said...

I'm sorry to hear about this distressing and exhausting event. I hope the new drug is the solution. I'm sending you special wishes for peace and good health in the upcoming year.

Julia O'C said...

Oh, God, Jess. I have to admit that I was worried when I saw that you hadn't written, but I hoped maybe it was because of something fun. Obviously, it wasn't.

I hope this new drug cocktail gives Connor some relief from these terrible seizures. We're thinking about you guys, praying and sending thoughts of peace and love.

MFA Mama said...

Oh good grief, Connor! Poor baby.

One word for you (since everyone has covered how you rock and I have no experience with seizures): Dyson.

The vacuum cleaner. For the bare floors? I <3 mine.

Also is it wrong if I giggled quite a bit over "screaming and cussing then fire truck and ambulance?" Poor neighbors.

Renate said...

Not a good way to start the new year. I'm so sorry to hear about Connor's latest episode(s). I remember only too well sitting in Children's Hospital waiting on the helicopter to deliver our nine day old granddaughter from Bellingham. Thank goodness for the great people at Children's!

Greymare said...

Sorry to hear he's had more seizures, sounds like a pretty awful start to the year for you. I hope he does well on the new meds and this will finally get his new seizures under control.

J. said...

oh my, hope that the rest of 2010 is not like the first day!

Katy said...

So sorry. Hope this new med does the trick.

Ashley's Mom said...

Trileptal has worked well for my daughter. She still has seizures, but no where near as many as before, and they are not as severe.

Hang in there!

Julia said...

I'm so sorry to hear it!!!! These seizure thingies have got to STOP. As in now. No more.

There -- I have brushed my hands definitively, as if to put an end to such nonsense. I only wish things were that simple. I truly hope the new meds work and you folks get a break. I was sick for a few days and got behind on your blog posts -- I'm glad to see by reading ahead that Connor is stable and back at school.

karen gerstenberger said...

I am a Hopeful Parent, like Elizabeth (whose comment is above); I was directed to your blog awhile ago, and again today by someone who left a comment for me, telling me about the blanket that Connor was given at Seattle Children's. It's darling, and I'm so glad that he received it, because a blanket IS a great comfort!
I'm Katie's mom (of Katie's Comforters Guild). Blessings to you - may you and Jer and Connor have that "boring" year that you are hoping for, and may they both enjoy improved health!

Wherever HE Leads We'll Go said...

I have been really really far behind on my reading. So I am trying to catch up on your blog today.

What a horrible, horrible night! These seizures sound absolutely awful! I really hope the new med does a great job to keep them under control.

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