Catchy title eh? Well just to start off Casey John is nearly back to his old self. Yesterday we woke him up at about a quarter to seven, got him dressed and ready to go. He grabbed his little puppy and kitty and we were off. I had loaded two dvd’s a book and a couple star wars guys into a backpack Thursday night, so we were out the door a bit after seven. We arrived at the Specially Pediatric center right around eight and I filled out the ten more pages of paperwork including two pages assuring them neither Casey or I had any metal plates located anywhere in our bodies.
Chris called Casey John’s name right around 8:15 and we were escorted back to the sedation room. They are little hospital like rooms with a rocking chair, bed, a basket of books and some toys, heart monitor, and a TV with DVD player. Chris (he was the paramedic that was with Casey John the whole time) explained all the procedures and medicines. We were surprised to find out the sedation would be oral medicine he had to swallow and they wouldn’t do the IV until after he was asleep. Then Chris also said it would be easy to redo his blood work then so we wouldn’t have to re-schedule that!
The medicine was in a syringe and looked a bit like Orange Crush soda and the smaller syringe was clear but smelled like grape. Apparently the orange stuff didn’t taste as good as it looked, half way through Casey J decided he’d had enough and sealed his little lips tight as a drum. Poor Chris couldn’t get him to open back up, he said most kiddos cry and when they do he’ll put the syringe between their teeth but Casey J fussed with his mouth glued shut! Finally we got him to finish them both and normally it takes 20-30 minutes to set in, but not for Casey John. About 30 minutes later he was beginning to look sleepy and soon after he did fall asleep, thinking he was out Chris came to go ahead and start the IV but when he did Casey J completely woke up again.
Then it began, he first tried to take off his little gown then he rolled around the bed (a lot) and was up and down and all around. We were assured it was all totally normal, the medicine makes them feel basically like they have a terrible hang over, but we could not get him to calm down and go back to sleep. Next technique was to use a warm blanket to swaddle him and maybe that would help him go to sleep. Nope, I laid with him holding him and the crying began “I want to go home, I already took a nap, I’m not tired” , Casey tried too but still the same. He needed to go to sleep because every 30 minutes that passed the time slot for the MRI went to someone else, Chris said last thing to try was for him to stay in the room and for us to go next door, sometimes a stranger in the room helps them go to sleep. Boy was he wrong, we could hear him cry to go home, cry for mommy, Chris was trying to convince him if he took that nap he’d get some juice and a snack (remember he couldn’t eat or drink anything that morning) and so on. Finally Chris called Casey into the room and I heard him go talk to the radiologist about another dose of meds. Finally the room became quiet right as Chris was coming back with more medicine and I look in the room and I see a very passed out boy in his daddy’s arms. Thank goodness!
Casey then carried him to the MRI room while I put our bag in a locker. After putting him on the table, they put more lidocane on his arms (to numb for the IV) they put earplugs in his ears and taped cotton over the outside, place the little tube on his nose for oxygen and taped his feet together to position his hips right, placed big headphones on him, covered him up then in the tube he went. They then handed us ear plugs and we sat right against the wall about 15 feet away from the MRI. I was amazed at how loud it was when the magnetron (yes that’s what it is) started it’s job. Casey J was so asleep he didn’t move at all and he looked a bit like a helicopter pilot with the headset on. I wish I had a camera but you can’t wear watches or have credit cards or anything like that in the room because of the intense magnets, the door even has a type of shield along it at the entrance to the room.
The first part of the scan took about 25 minutes or so (seemed like forever) and Chris monitored his heart rate etc the whole time. Then they pulled him out and went to do the IV for the dye and he didn’t completely wake up but he fought it in his sleep, arms bending and legs flailing, but Chris did get the blood drawn. However the dye didn’t go in because he fought so hard the plastic needle part of the dye syringe was bent all to heck. So we waited for him to go back to sleep, when he did they easily got the butterfly needle in and the dye too. Connect him all back up (he kicked and ripped all the leads etc off when he fought the first IV) and then back into the tube for about 15 more minutes and he was all done.
Back into the sedation room for him to wake up, which usually took about 20 minutes. We figured since it was hard to get him to sleep, waking up might take a bit longer. He was really asleep, the sawing a log kind of asleep. He looked so sweet in the little rocket ship gown they had given him.
Chris brought us a cold wash cloth to help wake him up and finally we got him to open his eyes and to sit with his daddy in the rocking chair. From there ensued the slight laughter at the apparent drunkenness of our son. His eyes were glazed, his coordination so off he could barely hold his head up and his speech was so slurred it took me a few times to understand “I want a drink”. That’s when I took the next photos somewhere between the request for a drink and him sitting on Casey’s lap.
Right after he woke up
Having trouble with his head
Focusing on the movie on the TV and getting better
After he woke up a little more Chris brought him some Goldfish crackers and juice, he had to hold them down before we could go. The hand to mouth coordination was a bit (ok a lot off) and we chuckled a bit watching him tough it out. He did great and we got his discharge papers and were on our way out. Chris said he’d be clumsy probably for the rest of the day and tired too. We didn’t bother with his shoes and just carried him out. He said he was hungry so we stopped to feed him and he ate great but it was like he was on auto pilot and I had to hold his upper body still for him so he didn’t hit his head and also help him with his juice. He fell asleep shortly before we got out of Austin around 1 pm and slept in our bed at home until 4:30pm.
He was a bit groggy when he woke up and spilled his cheerios a few times but quickly recovered and was playing by the end of the night. He did however fall asleep pretty fast when he went to bed. He’s a bit quiet today but that’s not too out of the normal for the resilient little guy. He’s the bravest 3 (almost 4 year old) I know. Both Casey and I reflected that it must be emotionally draining for parents who have really sick little kiddos and are doing that on a weekly basis, what strong people they must be. Test results as soon as we know…