Just yesterday I commented that life could be more complex. Last night, Matthew decided to prove it.
He awoke about 9:30pm with a serious case of croup. He was struggling to breathe in and out (never good). We tried calming him (which often helps), we sat next to the shower (which usually helps), and then we called the on-call nurse to see if there were any other tricks we hadn't tried. After a few minutes on the phone with the nurse, who could hear Matthew struggling to breathe in the background, she told us what we expected-- time to go to the ER.
Matthew and I were about 5 minutes away from the hospital and his strider had all but gone away. I turned the car around and headed home. He was back in bed at 11:00pm. We could hear him breathing but he wasn't laboring. At 1:30am, we awoke to Matthew struggling to breathe once again. After making sure this wasn't just a quick event, he and Darren headed for the ER. There, Matthew got a steroid shot and a vapo breathing treatment and he promptly went to sleep for his 2 hour observation.
Matthew sounded fine at the end of the 2 hour observation window, so he and Darren headed home. By the time he got home, he sounded almost as bad as when they had left. His MO is he rebounds about 2.5 hours after treatment, not the usual 2 that the hospitals/doctors are used to. Thankfully throughout today, his breathing has improved (sounding a bit like Darth Vader) and his energy level is at his usual level (high), even given his 4 hours of missing sleep.
This ER visit is the first one since April 2011. I have been lulled into complacency. On our recent trip to Florida, I didn't even map out the children's hospitals on our route, as I had done on most of our road trips since Matthew's birth. He has been doing so very well, overall, healthy! This event scared me, reminded me that some of Matthew's uniquenesses can lead to more serious medical events. Listening to him struggle to breathe is heart wrenching. I remember doing it that long week in April of 2011. But that week I was also reminded that Matthew is the strongest person I've ever met. He is a fighter. And this episode won't keep him down.