Remind me never to go on and on about normalcy without first knocking on wood.
Instead of having an episode yesterday, which we awaited with fearfully bated breath, KayTar came down with major respiratory congestion. Classic misdirection. We were prepared for an episode, we knew there would either be a trip to the emergency department or the administration of her new medication, and we watched and waited all day yesterday. Never happened, of course. Honestly, that is certainly fine by me, but while we were focused on that possibility, the illness snuck in just under the radar. She coughed a lot yesterday, so I started giving her Albuterol at regular intervals and left it at that, since we were still under a antihistamine ban to prepare for her allergist appointment tomorrow. I left for class and she seemed fine, outside of the mildly irritated airways. By the time I return from class, she was a snot-covered ball of mucus. She was snarfling and hacking, a sticky snot trail across her cheek from the incessant wiping. She had that glassy look to her eyes and she was TALKING SUPER LOUD, which seems to happen whenever she is very congested.
Josh volunteered to sleep on the couch, for the second night in a row (she had been vomiting the previous night), so KayTar could have his spot in our bed. We haven't slept in the same room since last Thursday and that doesn't look like it will be changing for a few more days, at least. We really did NOT want to give her antihistamines, though it was clearly indicated, so instead I propped her up in my bed with pillows and rubbed her down with Vicks, and gave her Albuterol. I put on a show for her to watch and when it was over, I laid with her while she fell asleep. It seemed like success! She was asleep, without vomiting no less, and I didn't have to give her any Benadryl! Josh went to sleep on the sofa and I stayed up, finishing my novel in the bedroom by closet light. Thirty minutes later, KayTar was crying, and struggling a bit to breathe, and coughing, and gagging. I called for Josh to bring The Pot, you know the one, the kids-can't-make-it-to-the-bathroom-before-getting-sick Pot. We discussed what to do, antihistamines or not? After a lot of back and forth, I decided to hold off again. I elevated her head a bit more, I talked with her, I cuddled with her, I gave her some more Vicks rub. I hoped that maybe we would make it through. Then she started vomiting up mucus and still she couldn't calm down or catch her breath. I caved. There was no way she was going to get through the night without the medicine.
After giving her the medicine, I told her that I REALLY needed her not to throw up for a while (like that is going to make any difference, right?) and I told her we could watch anything on TV that she wanted. She picked iCarly, so I cued it up from Video On Demand (so many sick nights I am thankful for VOD) and I physically held her limp, exhausted body in a upright position in bed for a couple of shows. After the medicine had had some time to work, I laid her back down and waited a bit before allowing myself to get geared up for sleep. It was 2am by now and I didn't want to relax prematurely, that always makes everything seem so much worse. It seemed like she had really settled down, so I turned off the lights and TV and settled in. I should have just made some coffee and resolved to stay up all night. Ten minutes later she was moaning and crying from her sleep. I would quiet her, start to doze, and she would start again. ALL NIGHT LONG. I finally paid attention to what was happening and it seemed like she her breathing would stall a little, then she would jerk to an almost-awake state where she cried and moaned, because she didn't know what was happening. It was a loooooooooong night. I can't remember the last time we had a night like this. Congestion, sure. Vomiting, sure. A couple hours of being wide awake in the night, sure. But this all night wakefulness? I can't remember the last time. It was exhausting. Every time I would start to doze off, the crying or moaning would start. I'd try to wake her a bit so her breathing would normalize and she could relax again, but it never failed, as soon as we dozed off, she was fussing again. Long night.
This morning I called to reschedule her allergist appointment and the first available is in January 2010. Next YEAR. There is a chance our pediatrician can get it bumped up a bit, but I could not believe the next available was so far away. We've really tried to hold off on the antihistamines, but it just wasn't possible last night. I guess the only comfort is knowing that with the fever she spiked early this morning, chances are we'd be canceling the appointment regardless, due to her fever. Anyway, I guess this is the part where I should heartily knock on wood, because that episode is still looming and with as tired as I am today, I'd definitely prefer for that to stay off the calendar. Here's hoping!