I rode in an ambulance with the sirens on, our destination was the emergency department at Rady Children’s Hospital.
We just can’t quit you, Rady’s!
Roux had an episode where he was struggling for breath, and it was severe enough that his dad and I both thought it necessary to call 911. I’ve never made a call like that in my life, and I never hope to do so again.
First of all, I am certain that Huckleberry of mine is the bravest five year old on the planet. He was so calm, and he didn’t panic at all when he rode in the back of the ambulance, strapped to a gurney, without either of his parents, surrounded by strangers who were caring for him. I rode in the front seat with the driver. I just sat there, listening to the sounds of my tiny guy laboring for each and every breath he took.
By the time we arrived at the hospital, it had been just under an hour since the whole thing began. Roux had been asleep, and I was sort of half asleep next to him, having dozed off as I was putting him to bed, when he suddenly began to choke. I sat up immediately and sat him up on my lap. His dad heard the commotion and came into the room and scooped Roux into his arms. Roux still wasn’t quite awake yet, and he had yet to catch a full breath. His mouth was full of saliva and mucus, his body was limp, and his eyes were not open. This is when I made the phone call.
While we waited for a room at the hospital, I realized it had been several hours since I’d heard Roux speak. By now, he was fully awake, and he’d received two different doses of steroids in the ambulance – one given as a shot and one as a breathing treatment. He also had an IV ready to go on his right arm, which was secured to a board and wrapped with gauze from his wrist to his bicep. His eyes were open, but he was kind of in a daze. I had yet to hear his voice, though I’d been holding his hand since the moment we left the ambulance.
Finally, I bent down to his ear and told him that I had never ever ridden in an ambulance before, and without even pausing he said, “Me too!” What a guy.
We were discharged a few hours later, after a final dose of steroids and an uneventful period of observation. We’d nearly made it two full years without any sort of medical catastrophe involving one Roux Huckleberry Baker, which is a lifetime record. I’m grateful his prognosis is excellent and we have nothing serious over which to be worried. He’s on a few homeopathic remedies and we’ll follow up with his doctor next week for further evaluation.
While we were in the hospital, I promised Roux that I would take him to the zoo as soon as he was feeling better. He’d never been to the zoo, and kept asking whether the animals would be real or statues. He was very matter-of-fact about it. His favorite game to play at school is “Cheetahs” which is where they run around and be a family of cheetahs, a very elaborate and adorable charade, and Roux was adamant that we see the cheetahs.
Today, that is precisely what we did. We became members of the zoo and made our way to the cheetah habitat to find one proudly lounging with his best friend, a yellow lab. It was super special. As was the teeny tiny baby baboon being cradled by his mother and guarded by his father. It reminded me a lot of when Roux was brand new, and I wore him all day, every day.
We’ve lived in San Diego nearly seven years (minus our stint in Asheville, but really, did we ever leave?) and we had yet to visit the zoo. Nevermind that we literally walk by it multiple times a week due our frequent visits to Balboa Park for dance classes. Now that Jade is committing to even more lessons per week, it seemed like a great opportunity to take advantage of one of this city’s biggest attractions. I’ve been anti-zoo for a long, long time, and for the most part this is valid, but the San Diego Zoo is one of the very, very best and today confirmed for me that it has earned it’s formidable reputation.
The sun is out today, and for the first time, it’s really starting to feel like the weather is shifting. The school year is beginning to end; we teachers are already making our summer renewal plans, preparations for both May Faire and the Gala are underway, and the Eurythmy concert is just a little over two weeks away. All of these things point to first Spring, and then Summer, and it makes me very, very happy.
I’ve been very dedicated to the gym and to the Whole 30, and I have so many more thoughts to share, but for now I will say that making my own health and fitness a priority is never a bad idea.
I’m still working on making writing a priority, clearly. Progress, not perfection. Repeat it with me.