Monday, May 14, 2012

Reagan's Time in the Hospital

Let me start by saying I had the best Mother's Day ever!! Both girls... healthy and happy. What more could I ask for? After spending four days in the hospital with Reagan...I appreciate that so much more.

Sydney wanted to get me a picture of the beach because she knows I love the beach!

Now on to the not-so-pleasant stuff. Okay, I'll be honest. It was down right awful. So why am I writing about it? I find it therapeutic in a way. It's also a great kind of "online baby book" to remember the big moments in my girls lives...good and bad.

It all started the day of Sydney's dance recital. As we were headed out to dinner to celebrate Sydney's job well done on her dance routine, Reagan threw up in the car. It seemed like an isolated incident at the time. Then on Sunday, it became clear throughout the day that she had an upset stomach. But she was still very smiley, like she normally is. She really didn't want milk but she kept eating solid foods. By Monday, she was very lethargic and not her happy self. I called the doctor and the nurse said I should come in if the symptoms got worse. She got a little better that afternoon but the next day was worse. So we took her to see the doctor. I knew what was coming next when they said she was dehydrated although I kept hoping there was another way. I knew that when baby wouldn't hydrate the only way to get better was with an IV which meant a trip to the hospital. And yet I still couldn't believe what I was hearing. Within the hour we were packing up our stuff and getting admitted to the hospital. I somehow managed to keep it together. I knew this was what we needed to do to get our sweet little girl back to health. Little did I know that I'd be looking at the same four walls for the next four days.

After we got settled in, I took Reagan to the little room where they would put an IV into her. I knew it wouldn't be pretty but I knew it was what we had to do.

The sweet nurses struggled to find a vein that could take the IV (and Reagan made it known that she was not happy about it) but after three tries, they found one in her foot that worked.

However, less than two hours later her foot was filling up with fluid and puffy so they had to remove the IV. So we tried again a little later. This time with an ultrasound machine. After several more pokes, and a very upset luck. So we tried to feed Reagan with some Pedialyte. The next day, we tried to get an IV in her again. This time with an infrared light. It was getting more and more difficult to hold Reagan down so they could look at her arms, hands, legs, and feet. But I did everything I could to hold her still so that the nurses could do their thing. But once again, her little veins were just too "flat." Even if they got a needle in one of her veins... she was so dehydrated that the IV had no place to go. It had now been 24 hours and my sweet little girl was so weak and we were both exhausted.

She was now taking some Pedialyte and I was so doubtful about ever getting an IV into her that I started to get hopeful that she would get better on her own. So the doctors and nurses decided that if, IF, she peed (which she had not done in more than 12 hours) that we would go without the IV. 11pm was the deadline. But she did not meet the deadline. So we went into the little room again. By this point Reagan started to scream the second we went into that room. A transport nurse came to help and after four more pokes (including one in her head) they finally got a working IV into her hand. Yay!! Tears of joy, frustration, and pure exhaustion came rolling down my cheeks.

I could already see improvement by the next morning! She really did need some fluids. And her blood work showed she was way more dehydrated than anyone would have guessed (which is why the veins were so difficult to find).

It took a couple more days to get her healthy enough to take home but we eventually got to go home on Friday night. Since then she has been doing so much better!! We're still taking slow on how much she eats but other than that she is back to happy self!

I really am so blessed to have two happy, healthy girls. My heart absolutely breaks for all the mommas out there that are taking care of sick children 24/7. I was physically, mentally, and emotionally drained after this four-day stint. I can't imagine what it would be like to watch your babies suffer and feel so helpless. I am also reminded how loved we are by friends and co-workers! Everyone was so supportive and helpful! And especially to my husband for taking such great care of Sydney while Reagan and I were not around. Sydney did great...and no one could make Reagan smile bigger than her big sis!!


  1. Priceless moments hlad to know she is doing much better...

  2. We had the same experience with my 2 yr old. It started Wednesday and went through Saturday. After fluids he was perfectly fine. It only took one stick for the IV to work. Warren Ar ER had the best DR and best nurse ever!


  4. Christina, I am happy that she is better. Although I had to retire due to my health, ACH will always be in my heart and I feel like they are family. We spent countless weeks there with Jennifer and I enjoyed every minute of the 20 plus years that I worked there.

  5. Oh wow... So glad she's fine now. I can't imagine going through that, but if I had to, I really hope I would be strong too. There is nothing worse than sitting there feeling hopeless for your child's pain. I could not be a nurse at Children's, or a nurse in general. I would probably want to cry often, even if I can be strong and keep calm in most bigger incidents we have gone through with our three children. So scarry when your life changes in a day and you face a life threatening situation, that's when you realize how bless you were to be illness free, and when it heals, you think about life very differently. Glad you are all fine!!