Thursday, March 24, 2011

Day 16, From Lukewarm Pepsi to Emergency Room

Last night L2's fever got up to 104.1, thankfully ibuprofen got it down and she was able to sleep a bit. Unfortunately her stomach ache continued and she woke up a lot during the night. Needless to say, when 6AM rolled around I was in no condition to dress myself, let alone drive.

Since I did not think God would want me to put L1's and my life in danger I decided to have some caffeine. However, I knew a cup of coffee would be much too enjoyable, so I looked for other sources of caffeine that would still be considered a sacrifice. Luckily I found a room temperature bottle of Pepsi in the cupboard (the reason we had it is that someone had left it, I personally prefer the taste of Coke, but we don't usually buy sodas, except for the occasional Sprite or Sierra mist just in case one of the kids has a fever with a tummy ache, which reminds me, we are out of decaffeinated bubbly drinks and I should get some for L2 on the way home), so I drank the soda solely as a means to the end of being a responsible driver and parent, and I most certainly did NOT enjoy it.

Reggie and me at the State Drama Competition in
Missoula, MT, January 1989
At a certain point in the drive I realized the caffeine had hit when I started dancing like a Muppet. I belted out Fiona Apple's Criminal along with L1, and scanned the radio and looked around excitedly for anything that could be used as a reason to laugh out maniacally. I kept changing topics in rapid succession and singing in different styles, I felt like I was channeling Reggie Watts minus the beat boxing.

After having my smoothie and doing my make-up I got to work EARLY, I was *greeeeting* everybody, *smiiiiling*, even telling people "Did I mention I had CAFFEINE today?" It was a GREAT morning.

I told Loren I would call L2's doctor to get her an appointment and I would let him know (so he could get a little more sleep). The receptionist would not give me an appointment to see the doctor (even though I tried, in my best caffeine induced cheery manner, to convince her that the doctor was quite invested in her case and that she would WANT to see her) so I made the appointment for her to see the nurse practitioner, but asked that they please tell the doctor that she would be coming in.

I got a call back from a different receptionist 3 minutes later. Lo and behold! Dr. G does have an opening at 9:45am, can you bring her then? It was 9:07. So I called Loren and woke him up, he and L2 got dressed, skipped breakfast (I know) and went on to the doctor. In the mean time, her doctor has been back and forth on the phone with the infectious diseases specialist, who is in Texas so he can't see her but is asking the general practitioner to do certain tests and look for certain things. Test #1 is strep throat.

The Beauty of Strep Throat: 

If the test for strep comes back positive L2 will get a round of kick ass antibiotics, lots of ibuprofen, a sticker, two small suckers in the flavors of her choice, and a note for school.
We get another bill from the doctor, a pat in the back for taking her in, a couple of movie rentals to entertain us all until the antibiotics do their job, and the satisfaction of knowing Western Medicine has saved the day once again.

You can see where this is going. Loren called at 10:30 to tell me the strep test was negative and he was now taking her, according to the specialist's orders, to the emergency room to do blood tests and a CT scan to, hopefully, rule out Leukemia and Lymphoma ***insert sound of record player needle scratching a record as it is abruptly stopped***




The Beauty of Leukemia and Lymphoma:

There is none.

After I was done with my work appointments (I had a salad in between two of them) I picked up L2, got some snacks and a salad that Loren could eat (he's eating raw too, for those of you that might not know it. They gave L2 a sandwich at the ER but Loren had not eaten anything all day until I got there at 3:20) and joined them.

The Kosair Children's Medical Center
L2 loved the fancy TV with cable,
movies and internet in her room.
To make a long story short, we left the ER past 9pm after they had given her numerous blood tests, a CT scan, a urine test, a chest x-ray, and lots of palpation. Since the blood tests were either negative or didn't show anything too elevated or low (nothing that could point the drs in a particular direction), and since the CT scan of her abdominal area was "clean" we ruled out a lot of ugly stuff. Thank God. However, the doctors continue to say that Lymphoma continues to be a possibility, although "at the bottom of the list". The ER doctor suggested going to a hematologist oncologist to take a biopsy, probably involving cutting her open to do so.

Yeeeeeeah, we're NOT doing that.

I am still convinced that this is a recurrence of the EBV that we know she has had. The doctors continue to say that, although it is "in the literature", it would be rare for a child with a healthy immune system to be getting it again. I feel like we did the right thing getting these tests done, and we feel more peaceful now knowing what we know... despite what we don't know or have no confirmation for.
All is well with the world, God is good.

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