Down With the Sickness

I guess visiting my parents really gave Baby Evan a sense of where he comes from, because he decided to take part in the long-standing Glidden family tradition of being TERRIBLY HORRIBLY ILL on Thanksgiving. Growing up, someone in our house (usually my sister) was ALWAYS sick on holidays. Thanksgiving? Pneumonia! Christmas? Flu! Easter? Strep throat! Arbor Day? The Plague! National Waffle Appreciation Day? Ebola!

On Wednesday when we got to Ohio we thought the baby was just fussy because of the long car trip. But by 2 am when he refused to be put down even for a second we decided it was more than just fussing. I thought it might be his two top teeth coming through, but when his fever kept getting higher and his wailing kept getting louder, we suspected he might really be sick. E went out on Thanksgiving (thanks People Who Work At The Grocery Store On Holidays!) and bought a thermometer and some infant Tylenol so we could do something – ANYTHING – to help poor Baby Evan feel better. It didn’t work. He spent all day on Thursday alternating between crying himself to exhaustion and passing out from exhaustion only to wake up crying. My entire extended in-law family thinks Baby Evan is a loud, angry, snot-producing machine and feels really really bad for me as the mother of such a difficult baby. For a while I tried to insist he normally wasn’t like this (Read my blog! He’s really good!) but after a while I was too tired to protest and by bedtime I had completely forgotten he had ever been a happy, easy-going child.

If we had been at home during Baby Evan’s First Illness (a milestone I will definitely NOT be putting in the baby book) we would have handled it. I would have been tired, the baby still would have been sick, and it wouldn’t have been over any faster, but it would have been SO. MUCH. EASIER. When you’re a houseguest in a very crowded house, taking care of a sick baby is misery. Thank God E was just as concerned about the baby as I was, because if he hadn’t done his share of nighttime rocking and changing and letting Baby Evan sleep on his chest I may have ended up stabbing a meat thermometer through my hand just for a couple of quiet hours in the hospital.

In the middles of Thursday night his temperature reached 104.5 and I spent two hours waiting for my pediatrician to call me back and insist I take my deathly ill baby to the ER. Instead, a very calm grandmother-type nurse told me a high temp was normal in an 8 month old, he was just fighting off a virus and “he must be your first”. I let her calm me down and her suggestions helped Baby Evan’s temp come down and by Friday morning he started to act more like his normal self.

Now we’re home and he’s so happy to be back in his own bed he may just sleep forever. Well, not FOREVER (And he’s definitely still breathing – I checked. About two dozen times.) but certainly long enough for me to catch up on some of my missing sleep and get started on the pre-holiday decorating clean-a-thon. I’m sure once he realizes there are ornaments to break, ribbon to eat and glitter to roll in he’ll be too excited to ever sleep again.

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8 Responses to “Down With the Sickness”

  1. halfg1rl says:

    Glad to hear baby E is doing well and the whole family made it back safe to CT. Quick quesiton on the fever incident. What did the nurse tell you to do to bring it down? My daughter had a high fever a few weeks back and I thought it was just teething as well but it turned out she had double ear infections. We did the shiftwork like you and Evan did as far as the sleeping goes. Just curious so I can keep it for future use. Thanks…

  2. bebehblog says:

    Halfg1rl – She said to give the baby a warm bath, dress him in one light layer of clothing with no blanket (or a thin receiving blanket if you’re worried about the cold), lay him down alone so your body heat doesn’t increase his temp, and give an extra half dose of baby Tylenol. She advised me not to treat a temp until it got over 101 because a low-grade fever is the baby’s body’s only way to fight off a virus and bringing it down can extend the illness. Of course, you want to check with your pediatrician, but within an hour he was down from 104.5 to 102.3, so it definitely helped!

  3. Skye says:

    I think we’re related? My mother can’t remember a holiday from my childhood where she didn’t have at least one sick kid. Except the Waffle day, I don’t think we celebrate that in Texas

  4. Erin says:

    Awww, poor Baby Evan! (and poor you guys!!!) Sorry the holiday was a bust. I hope everybody is up and feeling better soon. Want me to call all of E’s relatives and tell them how happy and easy going baby Evan was when he was here (I definitely remember because my mother has STILL not stopped talking about it and showing his smiling picture to everyone she knows).

  5. AGreenEyeDevil says:

    Glad all is well now! You’re a saint for agreeing to a holiday trip w/a little one!!!

  6. lalaland13 says:

    Oh no I’m cringing for you. That’s awful. I was sick a lot as a wee one, and it tended to turn into pneumonia, which cannot have been fun for my mom at all. She’s told stories of having to be restrained because the stupid nurse can’t find a vein to insert an IV in her precious baby girl.

    25 years later, she came to visit me for Thanksgiving. I was still kinda out of it from the sinus infection, and she cleaned my house and was generally awesome. I must have done something good in a past life to get her. I’m sure Evan will feel the same in a few years.

  7. bebehblog says:

    Lala – You are so sweet! Hold on, I seem to have something in my eye.

  8. Suzanne says:

    Man, you’ve been through the ringer! Glad baby Evan is better. Here’s hoping for a healthy Christmas!

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