After we all got a little bit of sleep, we finally were moved to our room. Because the hospital was at 180% capacity, we were placed on a floor with an available bed, not primarily used for children with short-term illnesses.
Shortly after we moved into our room, A ran home to let our dog out, and to pick up a few things for both E & I. I asked him to go to Carter’s and pick up some button up, foot less sleepers. Throughout E’s entirely infancy I had thought foot less sleepers were pointless. Now with 3 different wires/cords attached to my baby, the idea of a foot less and button up sleeper sounded heavenly. Thank goodness my baby is a peanut, because they only went up to size 6-9 months. (They wouldn’t have fit with feet, due to length, but without feet we had no issues). A left and came back before I even realized he was gone (remember, I had about 2 hours of collective sleep in the last 28ish hours).
We honestly were SO blessed. We had some of the BEST nurses and hospital staff our state has to offer, and I’m not even being biased. We were also incredibly privileged to be at our local Children’s Hospital. Because E tested positive for RSV, she wasn’t allowed to leave her room and risk spreading the disease. While our room was spacious, I certainly wasn’t about to let her crawl around the floor, which gave her limited area’s to play. Never fear- about 2 hours after we got into her room (a shorter wait than we had in the ER) Child Life came up to ask if they could set up a play area and toys for E, which we happily said yes to! E LOVED her play area, and we utilized it quite a bit during her stay:
The next few days melted into one really long and continuous day. It was a continual mix of beeping IV machines, oxygen alarms, Tangled (it was on one of the movie channels at the hospital and loaded on my iPad) and food strikes from E. She got worse before she got better, as the doctor’s had said she would, and watching her go through such a horrible virus unable to do anything but hold her made me feel absolutely helpless. I left her side twice in the 5 days we were in the hospital. Once on Wednesday morning because I HAD to take a shower and pack a decent hospital bag for both E & I (I love my husband, I really do, but detail orientation and packing are not his strong suit) and once on Friday morning because I had a presentation I had to give. That was 5 days worth of hospital cafeteria food (yuck) mixed in with a few meals from my favorite restaurants (Thanks Carolyn, Mom, & Dad). E had lots of visitors, but one particular visitor perked her up. Her Pop-Pop visited her on Wednesday evening, and between seeing her Grammy, having a (sponge) bath, and cuddles from Pop-Pop, was likely her brightest evening in the hospital.
While she was in the hospital, I decided to give E the Teddy Ruxpin I had purchased for her before she was even in womb (I bought it at Costco in December of 2008). It was really meaningful to me (if you can imagine a moment in the hospital being meaningful) because I received my Teddy Ruxpin (25ish years ago- am I really THAT old?) in the hospital as well. I was so glad she wasn’t freaked out by Teddy, and instead loved him instantly.
After 5 days of deep suctioning, oxygen alarms, IV’s beeping, veins bursting, antibiotics, oxygen masks and oxygen canula’s, E finally came home late Friday evening. The hospital gave us the option of having her stay until Saturday (her oxygen saturation levels dipped down to the low 80’s while she was napping Friday morning requiring oxygen) but after another afternoon nap with great O2 stats, we opted to take her home. We knew between the two of us we’d keep a good enough eye on her while she slept to know if she was truly in respiratory distress.
Finally after 108ish hours of watching my little girl wallow in misery, uncomfortable chair sleeping, and icky hospital cafeteria food, we finally brought E home, and I can honestly say after this experience, there truly is no place like home.