...my child sold your honor student the answers to the test...

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Ashe and his Asthma

This was a pretty sucky weekend to say the least. We are all still reeling from the effects.

Ashe was diagnosed with juvenile asthmatic when he was two, after a few emergency landings in the ER. However, the past couple of years, he has not had any severe attacks, and not any attacks for the past year. We were all hoping that Ashe had finally outgrown it.

Unfortunately that didn't turn out to be the case.

Two weeks ago we had a cold run through our family. Nothing major but it kept the boys home from school for a day. When Ashe caught the cold he developed a wicked cough, which we realized was his asthma acting up. His teacher asked if we could get him an inhaler for school just in case. I agreed, and planned on calling the doctor, but then life happened, the kids tracked out of school, and I forgot.

Last week another cold ran through our family. It was a 48 hour cold that wasn't anything to write home about. But Ashe started coughing again, which reminded me to call the doctor about getting an extra inhaler. Since it had been so long since he had needed any asthma medication, they asked us to come in so they could check him out and update the medicine.

We walked in expecting to be there for fifteen minutes. Instead, they checked his level of oxygen and he was below 90%. Under law, they cant release him unless his oxygen is at 96 or above. It took him two treatments before he got there and they sent us home.

His medicine is albuterol, and we can only use it every four hours. However, after the doctor visit, he couldn't get through three, than two hours, before his cough returned. By midnight his asthma medicine wasn't working at all and Ashe couldn't breathe. Realizing we were facing more than a regular asthma attack, we made the decision to rush Ashe to the ER. Since we have one working car, J took him while I stayed home with the other two sleeping boys. I helped pack Ashe into the car, handing him his blankie and Link hat, gave him a hug, and watched them drive away.

Of course we were NOT expecting an ER visit in the middle of the night, so Js cell phone was not charged. He told me he'd call with updates but otherwise he would keep his phone off. So not only was I stuck at home, but I had to rely on my husbands ability to call me at regular intervals. Which of course, did not happen. I got one phone call at two in the morning to let me know they were transferring Ashe from ER to the Big hospital in downtown Raleigh. I got another call at 7am to let me know that he was doing much better and they hoped to be home by lunch time. When lunch time came and went with no call or no family members returning home I started to panic. What if there was a relapse? What if a team of doctors were frantically hovering over him unable to make him better? Why won't anyone call me? Even the boys at home were getting worried, asking if I had talked to Dad, and when would their brother return home?

Finally at 3pm J realized that there was a phone in the room (after 12 hours of hanging out in said room) and called to let me know that they were on their way home. Neither of us were happy, me from being worried sick thinking of all worst case scenarios and he from only catching two hours of sleep.

But finally the boy and his father returned home to much rejoicing. The boys made Ashe a card, we walked down to the local gas station to grab him a treat, and huhs were passed all around.

So what does this mean for us? It means that Ashe is now on preventive asthma medicine twice a day until the summer. It means that we have been ordered to medicate the poor kid like crazy with asthma medicine the MOMENT he has a sniffle. It means that we have been told to wash his face and arms every day after school to try and keep viruses from infecting his nostrils when he inadvertently picks his nose.

We're used to daily meds for Xavier so it wont be much of a difference. But holy hell, our insurance deductible had better be paid for because I have no clue how we're going to pay for an ER trip, a $400 trip in an ambulance, plus a days stay at Big Wake.

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