Yesterday I woke up and scooped a sweaty listless boy out of bed and put him in his chair. No brace today, I thought, just relax. He stayed that way for the rest of the day. Still, listless, pale.
Now mind you we were coming off the eighteenth day of winter break and my other boys were going stir crazy in the sub zero weather. My husband, sick himself volunteered to stay with Dermot while I took my other boys out to the roller skating rink to meet up with some friends.
We found one of the last parking spots at the rink and walked up to the old familiar steps of the fifty plus year old building. Looked exactly like it did when I went there as a child. We paid our admission and I got the boys some skates. I was nervous for my five year old. He'd only skated on ice and knew that he didn't pick it up quick, our time at the rink would be short.
Owen was off in a flash, too cool to stay with mom and Ryan. He quickly found his friends and didn't look back until he wanted a slushy.
Ryan took to the rink nervously and held my hand for a brief lap or two around the rink and then he was off. I was overjoyed! So brave and determined, of course I followed him closely and scooped him up when he plomped to the floor. But most of the time, he was free, gliding and chasing after the first grader whom he idolized.
Of course that meant I could skate, skate like I did when I was younger. Fast, free and weaving in and out of little kids and their parents if necessary. An amazing time.
We returned home three hours later, Dermot in the same spot we left him. Sleeping, pale and feverish. Surely it can't get worse I thought.
I was off on my next adventure. The P!NK concert with some girlfriends. Joe was feeling okay so I left with only the usual guilt I feel when I leave Dermot.
Concert, astonishing. I marveled at this woman's performance and delighted in her gracefully familiar demeanor she displayed with the crowd. She flew around the stadium, ALL around the stadium, lifted up high with wires, courage and talent oozed from her with every word she sang. I wondered if in another world I'd be as brave as her.
I sat in the back of my friend's car directing her back to my house.
"Are you going to be at the meeting tomorrow night?" She asked.
"Yep" I answered, "unless something horrible happens" to which both my friend's chuckled a bit.
"What could happen?" The other one asked.
"Nothing", I replied. "Unless Dermot has to go to the hospital or something, but I'm sure he'll be better tomorrow."
I was home at quarter to midnight, I didn't hit the pillow until well after one a.m., due to a few coughing bouts with my boy. Then I proceeded to get up about every forty five minutes the rest of the night. By 4:16 a.m. Dermot was sleeping comfortably and twelve minutes after that I was awoken by Ryan's tears and barking cough.
Finally at 6:30 it was Joe's turn to take watch. I slept another two hours and awoke to the same Dermot as before, except now he was coughing up a blood stained mucus and was in desperate need of a shower due to the antibiotics reeking havoc on his system.
I couldn't do another night like last night. I was in over my head. Checking O2 levels, suctioning, and counting ounces fed, I was done. Before we left for the emergency room his O2 was 85. Let's go.
I packed an unfamiliar bag and drove to the children's ER.
Influenza, that's it. But for a little guy like Dermot it's a big deal. We were admitted. He's on several new mediations and resting somewhat comfortably. Someone ELSE is helping him tonight.
I lay on the pull out futon, crying under my covers because the respiratory therapist has woken me up and I need to sleep desperately.
My fever is 100.2 and my cough has just begun.
Yet I still think of how much fun I had yesterday, flying through the skating rink and watching a brave performer fly through the sky.
Prayers for a restful night