Wednesday, October 27, 2004

Poor babies, all

Hah! Fooled you, didn't I? You thought I was long gone...

The daycare called yesterday afternoon — Helena was running a fever of 103.5 and vomiting, would we come collect her?

Trip cancelled. Penalty incurred. Alternate plans not yet settled. But the laundry's dry.

I've never seen Helena looking so sickly. She vomited once more when she got home, but still demanded milk and juice. And a cookie. One bite was enough, though, to convince her it wasn't such a great idea.

Fever came and went all day. We caught her singing and colouring between naps.

Late evening was another matter. Fever came, but it wasn't going anywhere but up. When it crossed 105 we headed to the hospital.

After a 4-hour wait, the doctor confirmed that it's not an ear infection. He reassured J-F that it's not meningitis (a huge fear of his, I've learned). We went home.

Apparently, a fever of over 105 is nothing to worry about, even though more than one book advises us 103 is the threshold to watch for, and the provincial hotline during an earlier episode of illness told us to go to the hospital at 104. Lower fevers that persist 48 hours are cause for concern according to the same books and medication labels; the doctor tells us to wait 72 hours.

(Hospitals are unpleasant places. This was my first time at children's hospital: decidely more unpleasant.)

Helena is fevered, but "fine." She's spent the better part of the last 24 hours, including hospital waiting-room time, sitting on my lap or sleeping across my chest. My very own personal quasi-portable furnace.

I'm still worried for her, but not panicked.

We watched The Aristocats this morning. In a playful moment Helena thought it'd be funny and clever to change the words of her favourite song — "Everybody Wants to Be a Cat" to "dog." It was funny and clever.

There's still the slight stench of vomit in her hair. We should be ready to tackle it properly shortly.

J-F meanwhile is writing an accounting exam this afternoon. Not fun on the best of days, less fun on only 4 hours sleep.

I'm faring pretty well through all this. I'd cleared my agenda of work, and we're packed and ready to go at a moment's notice. Not only is the forced cuddling of baby sleeping on chest in itself therapeutic, it prevents me from cleaning the kitchen and bathroom or picking up groceries. Looks like take-out tonight.
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