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Medical Update #3

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Monday, 8 September 2014; One Year and Twenty Three Weeks Old.

We spent another night at the hospital last night.

On Saturday night Ayla developed a medium-high temperature which wouldn’t go below 38 degrees even with Panadol and Nurofen.

Then all day yesterday, Sunday, Ayla’s temperature continued to climb and as it got higher Ayla got weaker, floppier and scarily lethargic.

With no other symptoms apart from having eaten literally NOTHING for three days, my Mum and I made the call to take her back to the ER. While the logicial answer was that Ayla had caught a virus during our Friday night hospital visit, with her lack of eating, aneamia and other digestive concerns we knew we didn’t really have an option but to be safe.

By the time we got to the hospital, Ayla’s eyes were rolling back in her head and her temperature hit 40.5 degrees. When we saw the doctors thier first reaction was also a virus, but without any other symptoms they needed to rule out urinary tract and bowel infections.

I was freaking out. I was so worried that poor Ayla had contracted a bowel infection during her Friday night proceedures and/or I was terrified that the temperature was simply a consequence of Ayla having eaten less than 1000 calories over an entire week, causing her body to shut down through lack of energy.

The hospital was, again, amazing. Unlike the hospital care we’ve recieved previously in our home town, the doctors here were proactive, thorough and vigilant. They asked us to catch a urine sample (which is always fun, luckily I’ve become a seasoned pro at catching baby wee over the past 9 months) and while we were waiting for that they conducted a nose swab to confirm categorically it was a virus.

SIDENOTE: Never before did I know that a nose swab could identify a virus! In all the times I’ve visited doctors and hospitals back home with Ayla, or myself for that matter, no one has EVER suggested a nose swab; prefering instead to wave their hand non-commitally and proclaim “ahhh, some sort of virus”.

Anyway, while Ayla was sitting on my lap naked from the waist down, my mum sitting with a urine sample cup ready in her hand in the chair across from us, we heard a stange noise come from Ayla’s tummy. Then out from her little bottom shot a horrid, watery projectile that scattered for about a metre.

The doctors seemed pleased. To them it looked like confirmation of their virus theory but to be safe and sure they proactively took a sample of the smelly mess. I was mortified, secretly panicking that this new development was a sign of damage from Friday night or that all the stress and impaction over the last four months had finally reached a peak.

I was also worrying about how all this would impact Ayla’s proceedure on Friday. But, after 5.5 hours at the ER we were told we could go home. Ayla had narrowly missed having a catheter inserted thanks to her finally passing urine as the nurse was setting up, and within a few minutes of sending off the sample we had a positive result; no UTI.

While the swab and stool samples will take a few days to come back, Ayla’s temperature had come back down to a managable level after some Panadol and there was nothing more the ER staff could do for us.

It was a sleepless night, and today Ayla is still unwell although no where near as bad as she was yesterday. She’s still has some signs of a gastro bug and is still refusing to eat but the colour is coming back into her face and her smile is returning. I know better than to count my chickens, but thank goodness.

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Top lip

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Thursday, 5 June 2014: One Year and Sixty-Six Days Old.

Ayla’s ulcers have spread to her top lip now and she’s so miserable!

It looks so painful and it’s certainly not attractive.

I was really hoping the cream the doctor prescribed would have worked by now, and I’m crossing my fingers it kicks in soon!

Hand Foot and Mouth has been ruled out as the cause, and it’s been put down to Ayla simply being run down.

She certainly hasn’t had a good run, poor baby, but I am so lucky and feel so fortunate that Ayla is a happy, easy going little trooper.

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Doctor Dad

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Monday, 3 June 3014: One Year and Eight Weeks Old.

Hubby got to play Doctor Dad all day today.

It was strange because I felt a little nervous leaving him at home with a sick Baby Ayla, even though I knew they’d both be ok.

I think it was because Hubby is so GOOD at being a Dad.

To me, it looks like parenthood is completely natural for him; he’s calm, confident, well-balanced and fun.

Of course there’s a little element of causality in there, but show me a grown up man anywhere who wouldn’t be considered “casual” or “relaxed”.

I tried my best not to fuss as I left my instructions and hurtled out the door, late because I’d spent too much time preparing the day to make it as easy as possible for my little family.

When I came home, Ayla was still sick and Hubby was still, almost a little disappointedly for me, unfrazzled.

It was a a great reminder to me that Hubby and I are undoubtedly a team, and today he stepped up to plate and delivered a home run.

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Never meant to be easy

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Sunday, 1 June 2014: One Year and Two Months Old.

Study with a sick kid was never meant to be easy.

That’s right…. Sick. Poor Baby Ayla is sick again.

The symptoms are the usual; medium-high temps, irritability, lack of appetite, clinginess, and no doubt tomorrow she’ll be diagnosed with a virus and told to stay home.

I would have loved nothing more than to spend the day on the couch, my sick baby girl asleep on my chest and my Hubby absently playing with my hair, but alas, there was work to do!

Uni work mostly – my final assignment of the semester – but plenty of house work, renovation work and normal work as well.

Hubby tried his best to help but Ayla really only wanted her mummy… her mummy who kept staring at the stark glowing computer screen and punching hundreds of dull sounding buttons.

When I did release myself from my desk to pick Ayla up, I was swept up with the renovation work Hubby was doing and spent the time running errands with one hand.

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All clear

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Thursday, 1 May 2014; Thirteen Months Old.

Ayla was given the all clear for measles today.

I wasn’t surprised because Ayla’s hardly seemed sick at all, apart from the rash and it’s itchiness.

Ayla was diagnosed with, wait for it, a “virus” and my theory is that it is actually Hand Foot and Mouth, which is going around at her day care centre, but for some reason it’s presenting strangely on Ayla.

Gosh, all this sickness has been stressful; not just because I hate seeing Ayla sick, and not just because my grand plan of returning to work with gusto has been shattered, but all the not knowing and speculation about what could be wrong is really taking it out of me.

As an anxious person it takes every fibre in my body to stay calm and keep on top of the what if’s.

I try my best to stay away from google… but it’s hard. And it seems as though everyone I speak to has a new suggestion I hadn’t yet considered and I find myself returning to the drawing board again and again.

Ultimately, I have to just focus on Ayla’s level of sickness and fortunately in this case it’s low.

Sure the rash is itchy and unsightly but Ayla is still happy and playful, chatty and curious, so I guess on the scale of things we’re good.

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Ten hours!

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Tuesday, 15 April 2014: One Year and Two Weeks Old.

I don’t want to jinx myself buuutttt Ayla slept ten hours straight last night!

The only thing I can attribute it to is the bottle of diluted cows milk she had at bed time and the zzzz’s were like music to my aching tonsilitis ears.

Mind you, that doesn’t meant I slept for 10 hours even though I did go to bed at 8pm when Ayla did.

No, instead I was up half the night nursing fever, chills, pain and killer night sweats.

But still, is it a new leaf?! Have we found an answer for a full night’s sleep? Gosh I hope so.

Even better than Ayla’s overnight sleep was her three hour nap today, which I took FULL advantage of by spending it sound asleep on the couch.

I had the day off work and wasn’t sure what to do with Ayla, whether to get up early and take her to day care like usual, or let her (and me!) sleep until we were ready the take the day as it comes.

I chose the latter.

It meant we didn’t get up til after 8am, and at 10.30am, Ayla was back snoozing in her cot!

When she woke at 1.30pm I opted to take her to day care so I could continue my wallowing in peace, but alas I felt so guilty for dropping her off while I was at home the sleep I drifted into was fitful.

Never mind. Another early night, 10 hours of uninterrupted sleep and a good coffee in the morning and I should be right! (Touch wood).

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Did I tell her

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Tuesday, 8 April 2014: One Year and One Week Old.

Oh. My. Goodness… This morning was awful!

Ayla is still crook and after her late night last night she seemed a little worse for wear when she woke up.

But with no temperature Ayla was in generally good spirits and happy to eat some breakfast so it was off to “school” for both us of.

When we got to day care though, Ayla clung to me like a terrified koala.

After two attempts of trying to get her to let go, the day care mum had to prise Ayla’s little arms from around my body.

As soon I was out of Ayla’s grasp she started reaching out for me, and when I didn’t pick her up Ayla’s eyes started to well with tears.

The day care mum gave Ayla a cuddle as I tried to nonchalantly make my exit, but every step I took seemed to cause Ayla physical pain and I could see her little heart breaking as she screamed for my return.

When I reached the foyer I peered back down the corridor, through three glass-panelled doorways, and saw my Baby Ayla’s face staring back at me over the day care mums shoulder, tears streaming down her cheeks.

It was then that the panic set in! I couldn’t remember if I’d told Ayla that I loved her when I left; what if something happens and ‘I love you’ aren’t the last words I said to her! What if she thinks I’ve left her there because I don’t love her! Should I go back?! Or just pretend it doesn’t matter… When it does!

Thankfully I was able to quell the anxiety and pull myself together, only releasing one solitary tear in the process.

After a deep breath and a few quick words of positive self talk I set my course for the office and tried to stay calm.

My second day at work was as good as the first and although I’m already starting to see work pile up on my desk, I can feel my brain fill with ideas and opportunities for the future.

I’m also getting used to expressing breast milk in the tiny store room out the back, and I think I found a way to discreetly store little bags of milk in the communal fridge.

Being a Tuesday I had uni after work so it was nearly ten hours before I got to see Ayla again.

The day care mums said Ayla had been unsettled and irritable all day but fortunately her temperature hadn’t returned and she’d eaten her first meal in days.

Although, by the time we got home Ayla had a fever of 38.9 which meant yet another dose of Panadol and plenty of cuddles.