Unfortunately, things did not get better for Hattie. Mere hours ago we were at this. And our day took a drastic turn for the worse.
By 1:30pm, Hattie had thrown up seven times and it didn't seem like things were improving what-so-ever. I placed a call into the nurse to get some advice, and after a 15 minute phone conversation knew that I needed to get her to the ER. She was becoming incredibly listless, very lethargic, and when you would move her even a tiny bit, it would cause her to throw up again. There was nothing left in her tummy and I couldn't even get 1/4 of a teaspoon of water to stay down. I knew I needed to move and I needed to move fast.
With my pajamas still on, I slipped my feet into my shoes and took her out to the van. I enlisted my mom to ride with us knowing that if Hattie threw up on the way, she would be back in her seat all by herself and I couldn't stand the thought of that happening. Not to mention the safety, or lack-there-of, of a baby throwing up while be strapped into her carseat.
We arrived at Children's Hospital ER in Minneapolis and thankfully there wasn't a long wait to get called back and seen. They did a quick check of her and knew that they needed to get her rehydrated with fluids. Zofran, an anti-nausea med,was also on the list of things she needed.
Hattie was so listless and lethargic that I was having a hard time even keeping her awake at this point. The number of times she had thrown up was now up to 12. Literally, I would move her just to sit her up a bit and it would cause her to throw up again. She didn't even flinch when they put the IV in nor did she even bother to look at the doctor while he fiddled with things. She would just stare into space. I have to say, it was scary and one of the most heart-breaking things to watch. Hattie was just so incredibly sick. The docs got her IV up and running and put the Zofran into the line. And within about 15 minutes, color started to return to her face. I've never seen her lips so incredibly pale before.
While they had the IV in, they also drew blood in order to run some labs to try to figure out what was going on. Her glucose level came back at 58, which is quite low, not surprisingly since I couldn't get any drop of liquid to even stay in her stomach. They immediately pushed dextrose through her IV as well and that started to perk her up.
Her electrolyte panel also came back as abnormal. Again, not surprising. Her bi-carbonate level was low. We were told that anything under 15 usually calls for being admitted to the hospital and Hattie's was at 13. The ER doc said that he was on the fence for admitting her...she seemed to be going in the right direction now and her glucose had risen. He felt like he just wasn't quite sure if we needed to stay over or not...and he left the decision with me. While this whole conversation had been taking place, Hattie got super tired again, lethargic, and fell asleep in my arms. Or rather zonked out in my arms. My gut told me that it just didn't seem like a good idea to leave just yet and I asked if we could stay a few more hours, repeat the tests, and see what numbers we got back. He agreed that the idea seemed very reasonable. I just couldn't get Hattie to wake up and I just felt like something still wasn't right.
After about 2.5 hours, blood was drawn and the labs were repeated. They came in to tell me that the electrolyte panel still showed the same numbers, and that if we were comfortable, we could go home.
And two minutes later, they came back in and said that her glucose had again dropped to the too low level of 62 and he was making the decision to admit us to the hospital overnight.
They pushed more dextrose through her IV and she started to wake up again.
We were admitted and brought up to our room around 11:30pm. We had just spent the last 8+ hours in the ER and this day was quickly becoming very, very long.
Hattie and I shared a twin bed and my mom, who so graciously stayed with us the entire time, slept on the fold-out couch.
Once we were in the room, the nurse did her once over of Hattie and realized that she was starting to get a fever. A check 45 minutes later showed that she was now at 101..and a check another 30 minutes after that showed a 102.5 fever. Tylenol was given and another check 45 minutes after that showed it had only gone down to 101.9. I then asked for motrin as well. Hattie was clearly uncomfortable and not feeling well and I really needed her to get some relief. Another check 45 minutes later (by the way, are you seeing a pattern of nurses coming into the room...that means there literally was no sleep by me until sometime around 5:30am) showed that her fever was finally coming down due to the meds and she was able to rest.
By morning, Hattie was showing signs of improvement and was even asking for some toast to eat. Along with water and pedialite, she was also taking in fluids on her own. By 2pm, the pediatrician was discharging us and her IV was taken out. We were on the right trajectory and things were really looking up.
We arrived home to a decorated house as her brother and sisters were so happy to see her. They had all been worried about her and missed her.
**For my own memory keeping...Ella's hand written message:
You're my snuggle bug,
You're my double dipper,
You're my glow worm,
I love you Hattie Cakes!
By evening, Hattie was walking around with a banana in one hand and a graham cracker in the other. I scooper her up and we went to bed snuggled up against each other.
During the middle of the night, her fever broke and her temp returned to normal. All signs pointed to one day of recovery and then everything would be back to normal.
...or so I thought.