I’m so glad today is a new day.
Chaos might just begin to be a good descriptor of what we experienced yesterday in our Life with Theä.
It starts like this…
Just another average get-up-and-hustle kind of morning. Except after Theä ate she was secured into that cozy/comfy car seat of hers and off we went on her first Day Trip.
The day’s agenda was to drive 2+ hours and arrive at the mud put they call Proctor Lake and hang at the family reunion for 4 or 5 hours. Sounds easy, right?
Until… and hour and a half into the visit.
Theä was getting sleepy so it was time to go nap in my Meme and Papa’s (ultra-swanky, granite counter topped) camping trailer. I brought all the essentials: baby monitor, sleep slack, quilt (that my Meme made) for the floor, etc. We were set up for a wonderful napping experience in this new, strange place. Except… Theä started losing her marbles before we could even lay down and zip up her sleep sack.
I should have known that something weird was afoot. Bird, as we call her, is a fantastic baby and rarely cries.
After zipping her up and letting her roll around and get somewhat comfortable among the cries, she became inconsolable. I finally broke all of my own rules and picked her up. I tried rocking with her, singing the ABC’s (she loves that), and just saying “SHHHH SHHHH” over and over in her ear. My tears were starting to well up and join hers on those little red cheeks.
30 minutes goes by.
She’s a wreck, bright red, can’t catcher her breath, and I’d already had to take of her sleep sack because she was burning up. Suddenly she starts twitching her head to the side. I noticed it once, twice, a few times, then it seemed to stop.
By this point Hubby has come in to see what’s going on because he knows something must be wrong – Theä is a great sleeper/napper and never throws a fit. Then, she starts twitching her head again. It seemed like she was trying to go into convulsions or a mild seizure. Whatever it was, it was terrifying.
We knew we had to go.
Hubby and I kicked into high gear, grabbed all the items that I had to carefully and methodically packed for our day at the lake with family, and rushed her to the car. I was trying to keep it together in front of everyone, but as soon and we were in the car and the door shut… I lost it, for the 2nd or 3rd time. I’m not an “emotional” woman, but there’s nothing that compares to the heartbreak of seeing your helpless baby in distress. Nothing.
What happens next is a miracle.
5-10 minutes into the car ride to the nearest town she stops twitching. Thank God.
15-20 minutes into the car ride she’s pretty well passed out and is almost breathing normally again.
30 minutes after leaving the lake and arriving in town she’s sound asleep and is cooling down. She’s no longer hot to the touch and has stopped intermittently gasping for air.
We decide to press on and keep heading for home, about another hour and a half away. Hubby feels like if she still shows signs of needing to see a doctor, we’d rather make it to Cook Children’s Hospital in Fort Worth than a hospital so far from home in a town with no real children’s facility.
Our instincts were on point, she continued to look better by the minute and by the time we arrived back home we felt we were in the clear and would continue to watch her. Last night she was abnormally grumpy, but ate well, peed well, and took several naps. All signs of her being “normal” with little reason to worry.
On the way home I rode in the back seat with her and after she fell asleep I looked about on the internet for what could have happened. My best guess is heat exhaustion (though she didn’t show any signs while outside, under a canopy, with a decent breeze…) combined with a strange new place and sleepiness. It was, after all, her first experience spending any amount of time outdoors that didn’t consist of being in a jogging stroller.
Although I missed out on really getting to visit with family that I so rarely see, I’m glad Hubby and I made the decision to head for the hospital just-in-case. Theä and her health and wellbeing will always come first.
I learned through this experience to always trust the “better to be safe than sorry” theory, to never take her health and happiness for granted because that can change in a heartbeat, and to continue to trust my Mama Bear Instincts!!
For the “Mama Bears” reading this, I hope you know how fortunate we are to have these amazing little people in our lives. There’s nothing like a “scare” to bring that into perspective.