I didn’t know what RSV was until my youngest two siblings were born. Both were premature and both contracted the illness less than 1 month after being released from the hospital. I distinctly remember my sister Livvy’s fight.
B and I had offered to watch my siblings while my parents went on a date. They took Livvy with them because she was too young and fragile to leave at home. It was the middle of the winter and our house was full of colds. Kaden was wheezing and acting very sick. I was worried. He was prone to on-set asthma and his breathing mirrored those symptoms. I confided my anxieties to B. We tried the nebulizer. Nothing. Tylenol. No change.
It got to the point that he became eerily listless . We took him to the E.R. By the time we were admitted, he was smiling and laughing. The doctor looked at us with raised eyebrows, but I stood by my decision to bring him. My parents arrived shortly after they released Him. They decided that since they were there, they were going to get Livvy checked out. B and I took Kaden home. After 30 or so minutes, my mother called to tell me that Livvy was admitted and hooked up to a ventilator.
I helped keep everything running at home while my parents stayed with Livvy. I will never forget her tiny little body connected to so many wires.
When I heard the diagnosis of RSV from the doctor, my mind leaped to that image of my sister. I stayed calm, but I was frightened.
After bringing Manly home from the doctor, I held his little body. I watched as he grew progressively more pale and felt the fever enter his body. I cried because he refused, as he had all day, to eat. I didn’t know what to do.
I turned to my blog and to you, dear readers. In return I received an outpouring of love. It soothed me to know that so many people were thinking of my little guy.
When B arrived home, he suggested we give Manly a blessing. After pouring out our souls and asking God for a tender mercy, we left the Queen with a baby-sitter and took Manly to the suction clinic at the hospital. A sweet lady, in seeing the tension in our faces, offered to let us go before her son. We took Manly up to the office and the Respiratory Therapist worked his magic. Within minutes, Manly began to calm down. His breathing became less labored. He ate without complaint.
Last night was expectedly rough. His breathing was better, but the rash on his bum continued to pain him. I would much rather get up to change his diaper than struggle through another night of labored breathing.
This morning he ate. With less vigor than usual, but he ate. He also smiled, and giggled, and snuggled.
Thank you for your prayers, thoughts, e-mails, and tweets. His healing might be slow, with a lingering cough, but I know he is being watched over.