All quiet on the Western Front…

And other such lies. Life has been far from one of bonbons and more like a need for bourbons for that matter. Things started going amuck about three weeks ago. A burst pipe, then no water supply, three day bonding with a misbehaving water trough, a cow needing extra pre-calving support (ie, feed; not some antenatal class to tell her to practice her hypnobirthing), an overheating polytunnel, a pig on the run for an entire day, and a jungle of seedlings growing like weeds was my equivalent to ‘what level of Scrabble are you?’ while chatting on zoom meetings.

Not only that, my youngest decided I should have an adaptation to a Keeping in Touch (KIT) day with work. A late night call to NHS 24 with a child having serious breathing problems meant they called for an ambulance. Spiking fever, not eating, hardly drinking, minimal sleeping, crackly breathing had all been off and on rehearsals for several nights before. Nights were worse, days passable; always borderline about ringing the GP, but generally thinking we could manage at home.

Knowledge can be pants. Knowing your child has a high respiration rate is not an easy thing to assess what your response should be at 3am. A spiking fever hitting 40 degrees didn’t help. Things had seemed to be improving though. A day with a bit of food and no fever seemed promising. Until 9.30 at night. And several things were not right. Eventually I made the call to ask for advice. The ambulance was called. As I kept the lights on, waiting, unable to put him down, the soft lights of the neighbours slowly diminished. It felt like a long wait. And then vehicle lights could be seen. Just as I caught a glimpse, my son stopped crying and breathed normally. Nooo! Don’t tell me the paramedics are driving all the way out and you stop the exact thing they have been called for. But yes, he looked them in the eye (not the dazed, unresponsive look like earlier). He even smiled at the one by the end. Aghhh. No short, sharp intakes. No crying, no ridged body. Not even the sound of the stuck but contented cat came from his lungs. I know I should be thankful that he suddenly improved. I am thankful for the paramedics who came. I am thankful for the lady on NHS 24 who heard him and knew I wasn’t making it up. Thinking positively, I got to see some of the paramedics equipment. I have swotted up on paediatric observation norms. I didn’t have to commute for the KIT experience. Let’s not miss the opportunity.

The following day was proof that coffee does save lives. I had about five more than the usual amount. We got through. Thankfully with lockdown we don’t have to go anywhere and we rarely see others. Theoughout the day, the Micro seemed to have made a change not just for the paramedics.

So with that, we do now appear to be all quiet (well, if you ignore the sound of the bad radio connection coming from my son’s lungs). Apart from Hilda, who looks like she will pop a calf out soon and hasn’t been reading up on her hypnobirthing…

3 thoughts on “All quiet on the Western Front…”

  1. I am so sorry to hear your tale of woes Beth but so relieved your wee one is now fully recovered. What a worry. The night time hours are always worse with a poorly child and a sleep deprived Mum. Another reason n to be grateful to all our wonderful NHS. Sending love and hugs to you all 🙏💕

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