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Wednesday, May 20, 2009

His Friend Has a Head of Steel

Today was one of those days that you don't forget quickly.

I was stepping out of the shower when the phone rang.
It was the school district calling.
I didn't jump for the phone because I am a sub
and the district calls ALL THE TIME.

When the machine didn't pick up with the automated message
from the sub line,
I hesitated. 
When the phone rang again moments later,
I answered immediately.

"Mrs. N, this is the health room. 
Trey was playing on the playground
and bumped heads with a friend.
He seemed fine and went to lunch and PE but now
he is really lethargic and sleepy
and his stomach hurts.
I think you need to take him in to his pediatrician."

I combed my wet hair back into a ponytail
and headed out to the school. 
Frankly, I figured he was fine and probably just milking it.
I am bad like that. 
Since I was quite the little "drama faker" growing up, 
I always tend to think my kids are ramping up the drama
unless they are running a high fever or some other 
obvious symptom.

As soon as I walked into the nurses office,
I could see he wasn't well.
My normally active child was slumped in a chair
with his head lolling onto his shoulder.
His face was a white as a sheet.
His eyes were drooping at 3/4 mast.

I don't scare easily,
but I was alarmed.
Quite frankly, seeing Trey slumping ANYwhere, quietly, 
 is an alarming sight in and of itself.
I guarantee his teacher would vouch for that!

I immediately gathered him up,
got quick basic info and carried him out towards the van.
I haven't carried him in quite a long time
and his seven and a half year old self is quite heavy,
especially when he is just slouched on me, unmoving.

"Trey, are you acting a bit? I mean, I know you don't feel well
but are you playing it up?"
I admit I asked him this. I thought maybe the mostly closed eyes
was for added effect.
I'm not sure I even got an answer.

As we got to the car, I struggled to move his booster seat
to the front.
I know this is a huge no-no but with him looking the way he looked, my main concerns were being able to see him
and keeping him at least a bit alert.
I got him buckled in (the air bag shut off),
turned on the car and dialed the pediatrician on the cell phone.

As I was describing him to the nurse,
he began to vomit. 
And vomit again. And again.

Oh my Lord. The amount of vomit that came out of this child
was like a waterfall. In my 14 years of parenting children,
I have never seen vomit like this. 

I told her he was vomiting and she said "Get him to the ER."

We hadn't even left the school yet.
He was covered in vomit, 80% asleep and I decided there was no way I could watch him and drive. We'd have a wreck.

I U-turned back into the school drive
rolled down the windows of the van and dashed in.
They met me at the office door.
"He's just vomited everywhere. I think you need to call an ambulance."

I ran back out to be with Trey. 
He was just a mess. No color, no movement, eyes hardly opening at all. Just... quiet. 
This is not my son.

Within a few minutes, the ambulance pulls up.

Things went pretty quickly from there. 
They were assessing him.
Just as I was telling the principal to tell Chris that Trey had gone home sick
(I knew Chris would worry that Trey wasn't on the bus)
I spotted Chris out on the blacktop, looking utterly freaked out.

I called him over and assured him that Trey was fine,
just a bumped head that we were going to get looked at.
At that moment, they began loading Trey onto the stretcher
and Chris saw his pale, motionless brother.
He started to cry.

I knew that leaving Chris at school would not be an option.
He would be worried sick
and then he would go home and tell Kate that Trey was in an ambulance and went to the hospital and then they would have a big freak-out-fest together. 
So I put Chris in the vomit-van,
climbed in the driver's seat,
and we headed out behind the ambulance.

More later. This is really long as it is.
But know that Trey is home and asleep.
He has a concussion but had a CT and no brain injury.
However, he could tell me his name and his brother's name
but not his sister's name when I woke him an hour ago.
His brain is clearly still shaken up.
I'll wake him several more times tonight.


Suzette said...

Really frightening, That's so weird that you can be "fine" and then not fine. I hope it is maybe just a little reassuring to have great medical care. you were so smart to call an ambulance.

Lots of prayers <3

Ginaagain said...

Oh Leeann! How terrible! It sounds like you did everything right and were calm and clear thinking. I probably would have freaked out.

Lori - The Simple Life at Home said...


How horrifying! It sounds like what happened withy my niece in Dec. So glad that hes' on the road to recovery. I think you made the right calls every step of the way. Hugs and kisses to Trey!

jen@odbt said...

Leeann - how scary for all of you. Head injuries make me so nervous. I'm glad you were calm and recognized that he needed an ambulance. I hope Trey is on the way to recovery. My heart does skip everytime I see the school's # on our caller id. Hugs and prayers to you all.