Friday, December 08, 2006

Her Two Cents Worth

Well.
Hm.
It's a very long and tangled story of a narrow miss, lots of frightening diagnosis, waiting, pain and a very wide network of concern and love. Not sure I am up to telling the whole story that I told around twenty seven times yesterday, to an even greater number of medical professionals.

But.

Here is the short story; we dodged the bullet. There was, in the end, no Vascular Ring, no swollen artery and no cancerous growth. There was only my sweet Pearl getting her two cents in. Literally. There was a period of four days between Tuesday Nov 28th when she got her chest x-rayed, and Sunday morning when we first became aware that she could no longer swallow solid food, that she ate two pennies, and they became lodged in her esophagus. Swelling ensued and started pressing in on her trachea, cutting down her airway to less than a pencil's thickness and closing. After a second CT scan and some very quality medical interpretation finally ruled out some scary potentialities, they operated on her last night and removed the pennies. Also they checked out her lungs closer and found...stuff, among which was a small bit of popcorn kernel that she had at some point inhaled. She has a respiratory condition that has a long name but falls under the catchall diagnosis of "asthma" and we will be pursuing that. From home. Which is where we are now.

I have alot to do, I have alot to process. A night spent on the PICU (intensive care) floor in Primary Children's Hospital is a humbling experience for the mama of the healthiest child there. We shared a room with a five month old baby girl named, of all things Purl (same real life name as my baby only spelled different). The road ahead of her and her mama... well, it will be longer and harder than "asthma." Just to walk from making a phone call in the waiting room back to the room where Pearl was, was to walk a gauntlet of the pain and suffering of the sickest and most catastrophically injured of children, and their families.

I am grateful. I am tired. I am home.

Thank you.

16 comments:

beth said...

I'm glad you're home. I'm glad she's ok. I'm glad you're all well. I've been thinking of you guys.

I can't imagine what those parents are going through. It's one of those things I can't envision surviving.

elizasmom said...

I'm so glad to hear you're all more or less OK — I've been clicking obsessively for updates.

Poor Pearl paid a high price for what I'm sure was the universal imperative of all toddlers that shiny things must be licked. A good reminder, actually to watch my own kid like a hawk...

Lynanne said...

I think toddlers must have a built in radar for small objects. How on earth they find pennies, etc. ranks up there among the great mysteries of the universe with socks getting lost in the laundry.

I am *so* relieved to hear she is ok. I'm so sorry that you all had to go through such a horrible experience. May Pearl have a quick recovery. And you too! A mommy's heart takes a while longer to recover from such a scare. All the best!

elizasmom said...

Gah. I just realized the last sentence of my comment sounds judgemental and I didn't mean it like that AT ALL. More like a "there but for the grace of god..." thing.

sari said...

I'm so glad you're both home. I feel for you, your baby and for all the families with children who are ill or in the hospital.

Fantastagirl said...

I am soooo glad you are home, that Pearl is doing well. The PICU is a very very scary place!

HUGS...

Tug said...

I've been lucky enough that my grandkids were the "healthiest" & "biggest" of those in the NICU...I'm so very glad that your Pearl is doing well and going to be fine. What a scare - what a nightmare. Rest, give hugs, and I'll continue with good thoughts & prayers.

SushiBoy said...

Glad she was ok, she was in our prayers.

Nobody said...

I'm so glad to here she's doing okay.

Mama D said...

Sending do much love and good thoughts and prayers your way. Hope little Pearly is back to her old self really soon! Enormous hug to you!

Blogarita said...

I'm happy to hear Pearl is doing better now, and that although it was plenty serious, it wasn't as serious as it might have been. My thoughts are still with her and you.

Anonymous said...

Hey bon...you were all in our prayers. it is wierd, when you think how many pennies and such we all swallowed as children and never had a problem. i had no idea that it could be dangerous! Can't imagine how scared you were, sitting in a waiting room, but i know that you are a strong woman, and even stronger mother. i love you and your family. shell

Suburban Gorgon said...

Oh, Bon - thank god, and how scary! I have a kid who puts things up her nose instead of swallowing them, but they can end up in the same place, so I live with that fear all the time - can't watch em every single second. SO SO SO glad Pearl is okay. Asthma they can treat.

Nancy said...

Thank goodness you are all home and recuperating. You have been in my thoughts and prayers. Best to all of you and to little Pearl.

anne nahm said...

Iam so glad they were able to accurately diagnose and treat. Good to be on the road to recovery.

The Daring One said...

Oh Bonnie Bon Bon. I am just slack-jawed reading all of this. We have been praying for you guys and I'll keep it up. Maybe after this you'll get a break of some kind.