It was a day of ups and downs for me and my parents. When my parents arrived at the hospital this morning, I was sleeping. Daddy went ahead and went on to work and Mommy stayed with me. After awhile I woke up and seemed to be in a pretty good mood. My day nurse told Mommy that she thought I would probably be discharged today. My fever had gone down but my heart rate and respiration rate was still higher then usual. For the next several hours, I played in my crib and watched some tv while we waited for the doctor's to round. They came by and said that although I was doing a little better and most of the tests had come back negative there were still some additional tests they were waiting on (RSV, flu) and they wanted to keep me overnight. Before the doctor's had moved on to another patient, I started coughing and vomited up most of my feeding. Mommy cleaned me up but I was still very upset. A few minutes later I vomited twice more - but this time on her! After that, I calmed down and dozed for a little while in my crib. After I woke up, the respiratory therapist came by to give me a breathing treatment. Because I was so junky, he suctioned really deeply. It helped clear my trachea but it was already very irritated and I started coughing up some blood through my trach. Eventually, I fell back to sleep. At this point Mommy was starting to smell pretty bad so she had Daddy come pick her up so they could get something to eat and she could go change.
While they were gone, the RT came back and did chest percussions to help me cough up what was left in my lungs. This got me all wound up again so after he left I fell back asleep again. When my parents got back in the late afternoon I was still asleep. The nurse told my parents that my flu and RSV tests had come back negative so at this point it is probably something viral. I tolerated my 2:00 and 5:00 feedings without any problems but around 7 pm I had another coughing fit that would lead to gagging. Luckily, I was able to keep my feeding down. Despite the coughing, I was in a good mood and spent time playing in my crib and sitting on my parents lap watching Elmo's World. I even played with the doctor's kit Mommy got me in the gift shop - I really liked pretending to give shots! When the night nurse came in she told Mommy that I had a really tough night last night (not what the day nurse had relayed to Mommy!) because I kept coughing but she hopes I do better tonight. My parents left about 8 pm so they could get something to eat. I was wide awake and when they walked away they could see me peeking through the bars trying to see where they were going. I wasn't upset - just curious. They came back from dinner to find me sleeping again, and gave me kisses before leaving for the night to hopefully get some sleep. Poor Mommy seems to have caught a cold and she's hoping Daddy doesn't catch it too - it would be really bad if all of us were sick at the same time!
Mommy had a very special experience today. In the afternoon Eugene came by. He had come by earlier in the day too. He was responsible for taking out the trash and sweeping up the floor. One of the nurses was talking with Mommy about trying to find a more comfortable chair for her later when she had some time. A few minutes later, Eugene came back pushing a reclining chair. Apparently, he had overheard the discussion and took it upon himself to find a chair and bring it to Mommy so she could be more comfortable. Eugene is probably in his 60's and shouldn't be pushing anything around that heavy but he wanted to do what he could to make Mommy's experience in the PICU more bearable. Mommy gets a little teary just thinking about it. It reminded her that it can be something very small that can make someone's day. In our day to day lives we have the ability to do things for others that may seem very insignificant but are very meaningful. When life calms down, Mommy is going to contact UC Davis to let them know what a great employee Eugene is. Thanks Eugene!
Peyton Nicole Smith