Um, croup AGAIN

Last week I dropped Nissim off at creche, hung around for a while with Tova and talked to some of the creche workers. I was talking to someone in the room whom had a husky voice, I thought to myself, "here we go, let's see who gets sick from this".

Nissim got a husky voice the next day and then slowly over the next few days developed a fever and was put on antibiotics by the GP.

Yuval and I tried to keep the kids separate so as to keep Tova away from the virus. But of course she ended up getting it and yes again got croup.

Tova and I made it to the hospital at about 8am. She was given pred and monitored. Her O2 levels were fine, but it was obvious she was working harder than normal to breath. The strange thing was I couldn't tell if she had croup or not. Normally she has that barking cough. But I couldn't hear it this time. She seemed to have Asthma. However, after about an hour or so the bark appeared and the doctor told me that the virus had caused Asthma AND croup. wow. Poor chicken.

Yuval took Nissim to Savta Aviva's house for the day while he went to work (and Savta Debbie was in Canberra).

Tova wasn't interested in eating nor drinking much and we didn't push her. It is good having Nissim to learn from, Yuval and I watch Nissim when he is sick, he goes off his food, gets a little grumpy and flat and so does Tova (don't we all?).

A few hours past, perhaps it was about 12pm and the doctor and I agreed that Tova was 'well enough' to go home. I got home, washed the floors, hung out the laundry, did another load and changed the bed linen.

Tova started to breath terribly again, so off we went, back to the hospital. We stayed in Emergency until about 8pm and then on the ward over night. We got home at about 5.30pm this evening.

Tova ate dinner. She isn't her usual self but she is better than she was yesterday.

Nissim is well now, just a little bit of a cough.

Tova had a massive sleep at the hospital today, I was worried she would stay up all night, but she went to bed at the normal time after bath and books (7.30pm).

I am not as exhausted as I should be, but I do feel revolting due to all the chips and chocolate I lived off from the hospital vending machines. Gross.

Other than that, eating is the same. Perhaps next year when Tova is in creche with other kids she will learn how to eat more independently. Other kids are apparently the best teachers. I hope so!

Very Sad News and Everything Else

I was laying on the fold out hospital bed this morning (more about that to follow). Tova was still sleeping in the cot next to me. It took me a while to wake up, I spent the first 20 mins just staring at the ceiling, which isn't as boring as it sounds because I was in the children's ward, where the ceilings are painted with all sorts of cartoon characters. I was staring at stars and a space man.

Tova was still sleeping so I turned on facebook on my phone. My phone with Vodafone has such bad reception in the hospital, in ER there is no reception at all, which is really annoying because in an emergency I usually have so much to organise, like canceling appointments and telling family what is going on. So, I was trying to load facebook, which was taking ages, I could read the grayed out status from one of the mums who was in Austria with us (Lucy's mum from Ireland, whom is continuously in my thoughts). The stupid reception wouldn't let the page load properly for about 5 mins. All I could read was something like "I am so sorry to hear about our friend all the way on the other side of the world, poor Ollie".

I was getting really annoyed and scared. Finally the page loaded. I am so devastated to write that Little Ollie from New Zealand, who was in our weaning group at Graz, has passed away. OMG, I can't believe it. It feels very surreal to write about him in the past tense, but he really was adorable and treasured. His 3rd birthday is coming up very soon, I remember that he had his birthday in Graz. Wow, the family must be torn in all sorts of horrific and traumatic ways. My heart goes out to them. I am so sorry to hear this news. He had a lung infection and just couldn't fight it. Unbelievable.

So, I was laying there reading this, while next to me was my little Tova back in hospital for the 3rd or 4th time since Saturday now diagnosed with Asthma, Croup and a LUNG INFECTION! wow. 3 things that can be fatal to our fragile/strong babies. wow.

When she woke up this morning I hugged her just that little bit tighter. Actually we were rolling around and playing in my fold out 'bed', until a nurse came in and busted us. Time for Obs.

We were sent home on Sunday from hospital. Tova wasn't breathing quite right and I kept thinking to myself that if she was like this and we hadn't been to hospital yet, I would be rushing down there for sure. But they had said that there was nothing else they could do for her and that home was the best place for her. Not sure why I fall for that every time, but I do. Even though I knew something wasn't right, I was happy to go home because they weren't doing anything different to what I would be doing at home.

Monday morning we went to the GP, she sent us home, then in the afternoon we (Yuval and I) called the ambulance. They came, looked at Tova, took her temp (over 38), were concerned and wooshed Tova and I off to the hospital around the corner. The Ambo guys were so amazing, what lovely compassionate people! I am really touched by their kindness.

We spent the next many hours in the Emergency Department. Tova was observed. Eventually we decided that it was safe to go home. But still I wasn't sure, but I didn't know why, other than Tova breathing short fast breaths, I couldn't explain it. The Doctors couldn't hear anything on her lungs and she wasn't croup breathing nor was there any wheeze. They did say we could stay there for a few more hours or even the night if we didn't feel comfortable going home. They told me that the ward had no beds even if we wanted to go up there we couldn't. The ER was so busy with families coming and going and the waiting room had plenty more waiting to get in. I haven't noticed it being that busy before.

Home we went.

Tuesday Tova was still vacant and exhausted. But I wasn't sure what to do because the doctors had told me Tova was fine. hmmm. So Tuesday night Tova wanted to go to bed early even though she had spent much of the day sleeping. She woke at about midnight coughing, choking, croup breathing and wheezing a little. Yuvie and I gave her panadol and ventolin. Eventually she settled enough to sleep, she was still breathing with difficultly, but again, I was confused.

At 3.30am ish, she woke again, this time Yuvie was very worried and called the Ambulance. They came very quickly. They were quite/very worried and gave Tova a ventolin neb, took her temp and other obs and again Tova and I were whooshed away to the hospital around the corner. We were put in the bed in ER that is closest to the doctors/nurses station (this is the spot where we often end up, when we are in this bed, I know it is bad). Tova was given the good old Adrenalin that works quick. I think they gave her more pred too. Tova's breathing responded really well to the Adrenalin. It was the first time since Saturday that I had seen her breath almost easy. She was also put on humidified 02, which helped her lots!

Sometime, many hours after we go to ER, Tova had a chest xray, she has a lung infection. She was quickly put on Antibiotics. I mentioned to them that an IV would distress her much more than the Oral medicine, because finding a vain in Tova is almost impossible, it would distress her so much. I was pleased that they didn't feel that they HAD to do IV. I also convinced them not to put the tapes on her face for the 02prongs, that stuff is so hard to get off without causing Tova pain. So, that was good.

We spent the night and this morning in Hospital. Tova was breathing so much better this morning, pretty much like normal, with the occasional cough. But not a croup cough, just a normal sick person cough. Yuval and I decided as Tova was so much improved, it was best to take her home because of all the sick people in the hospital (we didn't want Tova to catch anything more).

I am hoping so much that this is the end of it. I almost know it is. Her breathing is almost perfect now, not like the past few days. I can't believe I came home with her breathing like she was over the past few days. I should have never left the hospital on Sunday. The doctors told me that they didn't pick up on it because when the listened to her chest there was no noise, usually with a chest infection they can hear noise. There was no indication that she needed an xray. I don't know, she was clearly struggling to breath, something was clearly wrong. I just don't know why I didn't question it more. I guess I didn't know the questions to ask. NOW I DO! If it happens again I will know what to ask for.

Nissim came in on Wednesday morning with Yuval (before Yuval went to work and before my mum went to pick Nissim up). Nissim was a little concerned about Tova and the hospital. But was a good boy. He just kept telling Yuval that he and Nissim should now go to Nissim's house. He also recommended that it would be best for Tova and Ima to come home too, but was ok when I told him that Tova and Ima had to stay for a little longer.

He has been at mums and creche, he will go to mums again tonight and home tomorrow evening. Mum's are great. I miss Nissim loads, but I need to get some rest tonight before my eyes fall out of my head.

Tova has gone off her food and hasn't really eaten much since Saturday. I would be scared to weigh her. However, when we arrived in the hospital on Saturday they weighed her. She was 10.8something.  Wow, almost 11kg!

OH, also, one of the doctors (Dr Debbie from King David, I know this because she pronounced Tova's name correctly, my first reaction was "oh, you are Jewish", she thought that was funny, I said I knew because she didn't say toe-va). Anyways, this doctor said that one of the reasons Tova may get Croup so often is because when she was intubated as a baby for so many months, it possibly left scaring (oh my poor baby suffered so much back then). When there are scars on the upper airways, it can contribute to the frequency and symptoms of croup. Interesting.

We will miss you Ollie, you will always live on in our memories you precious little man!

November Already

This time two years ago Yuval and I had just found out that our funding was approved for Graz. We were busy getting married and making arrangements to get to Austria.

This year, we are relaxed at home and all eating way too much. I have an extra 7kg, Yuval more than that and the kids, well they eat too much but burn it off very quickly.

Tova woke with asthma yesterday and the day before. I gave her ventolin both mornings which seemed to fix it. I don't remember Tova ever having asthma without being sick. The first morning I packed my bad ready for a stay at the hospital, but nope, she improved and was perfectly fine until the next morning. Again no hospital visit.

This morning she has woken up fine, no asthma.

This is quite a milestone. Perhaps those hospital visits are going to now be memories.

Eating is pretty much the same for Tova.

It isn't a burden but I would like her to self feed and eat dry foods sometime soon. Life would be dramatically different if she was able to do that.

Her speech is improving slightly, which is lovely. I think it is still only Yuval and I (and Nissim) that understand her 'talking', but that works for me at the moment.

It is nice that Nissim understands Tova. He got very upset this morning because Tova slept in (due to waking at 4.30am, yawn). He was worried because she wasn't at the breakfast table. He then was very happy when she woke up and joined us.


Tova had an appointment with the ENT a week or so ago. Both her Grommets have grown out, he said she will need them again.

He also mentioned that even though this seems like an ongoing condition, eventually it will sort its self out and she won't have ear/grommet issues for her entire life. Good to know.

I am pretty sure that if she would chew some food, talk or have better muscle tone in her mouth, she wouldn't have all this fluid building up in her ears.

At least she is using her mouth now. It has been close to 2 years since we left for Graz. Yuval and I got married in November 2009, then trotted off to Austria in January 2010 and returned in Feb 2010 with an eating Tova.

Our new speech therapist has been great with all aspects of Tova's oral issues. She has been working on speech and progressing further than any speechy before. Tova really loves her. The Speechy has also started helping me with feeding Tova and the issues that has attached to it. We are going to try and work out how to progress Tova onto the next stage of eating. Good luck to us.

My goal is to get Tova to a stage where I can pack her a sandwich plus a drink in her lunch box and send her on her way. Self feeding, chewing and no puree!

Tova has really started to try and self feed, she takes the spoon from my hand and knows what to do with it. She has also started enjoying grabbing big handfuls of puree and throwing them onto the floor, especially if I have just cleaned the floor.

Yuval and I took about 6 big bags of toys that the kids don't use anymore to the op shop yesterday, it feels so cleansing!

Nissim is learning toilet training at the moment, that is interesting and emotional. Emotional for him. He is finding it a bit overwhelming, but we aren't rushing or pushing him.

We love BORING

There really isn't much to report.

Tova is still eating only puree/lumpy wet foods.

I am still feeding/drinking her every 2 hours.

She is happy, growing, gaining.

Nissim is lovely. He eats well sometimes and not others.. I guess that is a part of being 3!