There are millions of amazing parts to being a parent. But in the last 24 hours I have experienced one of the most dreadful parts of having a little one, and I'm in no rush to repeat the experience. I feel as if I've aged 10 years in 24 hours!!
Yesterday morning poor Bert fell off of our bed and bumped his head. I've never experienced such panic...luckily he was unhurt and seemed okay after a couple of minutes of crying, and a nice big cuddle. There was no visible bump on his head and all seemed okay, I just felt such an overwhelming sense of guilt at taking my eye off the ball long enough for him to tumble and have the potential of really hurting himself. Since it happened everyone I've spoken to has just said "oh yeah, that happened to mine too" or "oh yes my little one fell off the bed lots of times" etc. I know it's just one of those things, you can't go through the whole of parenthood without a few errors. It doesn't stop you feeling dreadful though!
Bert and I spent the day yesterday out with friends and their children and Bert seemed okay, a little hot, but it was a warm day!
Bert out with Mummy & friends yesterday!
When we got home and Daddy arrived we started our usual evening routine of daddy feeding Bert his dinner and mummy heading upstairs to cross train. But by the time I'd done an hour on the cross trainer Bert had started to show signs of being really poorly. He'd vomited a large amount, was very distressed and then within a matter of minutes had got very hot and drowsy/floppy. We went straight to A&E and spent the next 6 hours there waiting, being seen and treated by paediatric doctors.
I was sure it was due to his head bump in the morning and was tying myself in knots the whole time. It turns out his illness is totally unrelated to his fall off the bed, and he has coincidentally picked up a nasty virus on the same day he took a tumble.
Poor Bert couldn't keep any fluids down, vomited all over me in the waiting room as well as 3 times before that, and was clearly feeling completely rubbish. He got really fed up with the repeated obs and being poked and prodded by many unfamiliar faces. And before I knew it it was 1am and we were in a ward and I was syringe feeding Bert 10ml of dioralyte every ten minutes for an hour. It took me right back to my first night with him in hospital syringe feeding him milk because he had a severe tongue tie and couldnt breast feed. All those emotions came back to surface and I felt really overwhelmed, and it hurt so much to see my perfect little man in pain.
Even seconds after throwing up in the waiting room at A&E he was still giving me a smile! I sent these pictures of Bert to my mum and sister to reassure them that he was being a trooper.
My poorly little smiley chops
I remember my mum telling me when I was poorly as a child that she wished she could swap places with me and be ill for me, and last night it resonated with me so much...I would have done anything to take his pain away.
Mummy was so desperate to take your pain away Bertster!
Finally, at 3am he started to perk up, he'd taken in 70ml of fluids (dioralyte) and kept them down, the medication had lowered his temperature and he was ready for a nice long sleep.
Armed with a diagnosis of a nasty case of viral gastroenteritis and an upper respiratory tract infection mainly in his throat (which is completely unrelated to his bump on the head, coincidentally) some dioralyte, a syringe and calpol we headed home to nurse Bert back to health and finally all get some rest.
We gave him more fluids, his next dose of calpol and headed to bed where he slept from 4am-7am, and then 8am-10am. He seems brighter today, his temperature seems more under control and he is so far keeping the dioralyte down. As we speak he's having another nap on his Daddy, and I'm hoping he'll soon be back to his chirpy little self.
Reassuringly we have open access to the paediatrics ward for 48 hours incase he worsens, but fingers crossed really tightly we are over the worst of it.
Mummy and Daddy got a bit of sleep from 6am for a couple of hours, and we are all taking it slowly today and trying to regain some energy.
Typically, I am meant to be going away for a good friends Hen Party this weekend, leaving Bert with his very capable Daddy. I'm hoping he'll be much brighter by then and I'll feel okay to leave him...if he's still feeling poorly though I think I'll struggle to go. It's only an hour away, so we will see.
Before the arrival of your first child you try so hard to prepare yourself for being a parent: you listen carefully to all the advice from friends and family, but honestly nothing at all prepares you for the intense responsibility that's suddenly all yours, the overwhelming and all-consuming love you feel for your child, and the instinct to protect that you never knew you were capable of. It's a pretty incredible feeling, the love is amazing but the worry and anxiety is genuinely the worst feeling in the world. Sitting in A&E yesterday reminded me of sitting in the same waiting room with my husband and mother in law during a large bleed while I was pregnant with Bert, I was beside myself with worry having previously lost a baby, and was sure history was repeating itself. Then I looked at my gorgeous boy last night and thought "Bert, you've worried me from the moment you were in my tummy, and you're going to cause me worry every day for the rest of my life" what an intense thing to come to terms with.
Does it get easier? Do you get used to the constant worry, stress and responsibility? Does it just become a part of our parenting armour as time goes on?
Bert and I had a chat last night & I kindly told him I'd rather not have any more trips to A&E if he can help it! I even found myself sitting in the toilet praying to God that he'll be okay, and I'm not even remotely religious!!
What a 24 hours!