Okay, which hopes up wrapping up this chapter… since Halloween has already come and gone!
Noa had three x-rays during the course of her stay in the hospital (the last one being the worst). The first, in the emergency room, was somewhat rough; they thought it would be easier to do it while Noa was in her wheelchair (probably true, since I think at that point she wouldn’t have laid down), but getting her lean back on that big black film thing while Mommy and Daddy held her still with her arms out of the way and her head up, while wearing lead aprons, and holding a lead apron on Noa’s lap and staying out of the picture… um… well that was challenging, but we got it on the first try for both images.
The 2nd one, on day two, was more traditional and the best. Noa had to do all kinds of weird things she didn’t understand, I mostly I just coach – and she did great. Hands over her head, chin up, feet through this slot, etc…she even let me put the lead apron around her waist. I think there was something about being someplace where she knew something different was expected of her. Also in this case, the x-ray tech was very patient as I told her what I told her what I thought would work for Noa, and was also be make adjustments supported those things. Makes ALLLLL the difference!
The third – and worst – was on the Monday before we left. We had hoped to leave that day – but in the 1 and half hours it took me to go home and take a shower, Noa’s temp shot up and her oxygen levels dropped and suddenly we were back to IV antibiotics and other night’s stay and the question of whether the meds were really getting to the infection. They brought the x-ray machine up and did this one in the bed… which at the time seemed convenient enough. Disaster! In both the wheelchair and the bed we ended up asking too much of Noa in places that she felt were her safe places. You know how they say don’t watch TV in bed… well here’s another rule to live by: don’t take x-rays in bed either. Noa screamed and fought, I got bonked in the head and my poor battered glasses flew across the room. Lesson learned.
Another lesson learned: That shampoo in a spray can… it really does works! Noa and I used it for four days. Of course it’s only helps your hair… so you’ll still want to take a shower. Oh, another lesson: don’t take a shower; if you leave, things happen. On the flip side of that, it was good that it happened during the day when she took a nap, rather than later that night when the night staff was on duty.
I talked to the overnight doctor in the middle of the night once when Noa’s oxygen levels were on a bit of an overnight roller coaster… nice kid. I’m guessing he’ll make a fine doctor one day.
Luckily Noa did VERY well after that last fever spike. I think it’s because they also hydrated her. It takes so long to talk Noa into one sip of water, that there was just no way I could keep her hydrated – even if I spent all day talking her into sip after sip after sip, which – come to think of it – is kinda actually what I did.
Tuesday morning, when they told me they would let her go if we felt okay taking her (but also could stay if we wanted – because she hadn’t really been 24 hours without a fever), I said we’d be very glad to leave if they’d do one more IV of liquids. One of the doctors – there was a team of about 10 of them – hemmed and hawed (the dude), the other (who was a mom herself) said yes, hydrate that girl – which is good because I’m not sure I would have been comfortable without that.
We left the hospital and drove straight to NYC. It was a smooth trip and Noa even slept in the car, which is very unusual for her. Even though the place in NYC is small, it’s got all the hot running water you drink, bathe in or stand under so we knew we could keep her full of water… and that’s just what we did for the rest of the week. Thus ends Noa’s Pneumonia Vacation.