I haven’t had chance to write about this until today, for 2 reasons. 1, I’ve been enjoying spending time with my baby and 2, I was still really shook up from the scariest time of my life. Definitely scariest parenting moment. You may have seen my post about knowing the signs of Sepsis. That wasn’t posted without reason.
Let’s start from the beginning
The morning of 18th May started pretty much the same as any other day, Gareth asked me how i’d slept and I told him that I hadn’t slept very well. I didn’t know why but I had been tossing and turning with a bad feeling in the pit of my stomach. I couldn’t put my finger on it.
We got all of the kids up and off to school and sat playing with Bethie, In fact I took quite a few photos of her that morning, so just figured the feeling I had was just one of those things and brushed it to one side. When it came to Beths nap-time I put her down then cracked on with the housework and filmed my review for our new Shark vacuum cleaner.
We called the doctors…
When she woke from her nap she seemed OK. Her cheeks were very red but I assumed it was from falling asleep with her cardigan on and she was very happy and smiley. We were about to start looking at some bathtime we had been sent and were taking some pictures.
After spending some time playing with her and stripping her off to cool her down we still weren’t happy with her temperature so we gave the doctors a call. We were informed no-one could see her as they were closed for maintenance so we asked what we were supposed to do as they are also our local walk-in centre. There very unhelpful suggestion was that we take her all the way to Shrewsbury ( Half an hour away and despite having a full licence we don’t currently have a car, although we will be getting one asap after last week!) Or we could wait for the local emergency doctor to open at 6:30 PM. We explained to them that she had been quite poorly previously with tonsillitis but they weren’t interested in anything we had to say.
I gave her some calpol and kept a close eye on her ready to call the emergency doctors at 6:30 however then things got very scary.
From smiling to non-responsive in less than a few minutes.
While playing I noticed the skin on her arms and legs had turned blue. Then she just sat in the middle of the rug and wasn’t responding to anyone or anything around her. Beth usually smiles the second you put a camera in her face but she just wasn’t interested. I went to pick her up whilst Gareth called 111, whilst Gareth was calling Beth went completely non-responsive and her body very extremely blue. She was shivering like she had been put in a freezer, her arms and legs were freezing cold. 111 sent an ambulance round for her.
I have never in all my time as a mother been as scared as I was right there and then, my beautiful baby was just lay limp in my arms staring right at me with empty eyes and her body blue That is an image I will NEVER get out of my head.
The Ambulance crew arrived
As soon as the paramedics saw her they took over and worked extremely fast to find out what was wrong. She was breathing very fast so they checked her heart where her heart rate was 210 BPM , her blood sugars were 2.9 and her temperature was 40.9 despite already having calpol. It was decided there and then that she was to be whisked to hospital as they thought she had sepsis.
Gareth jumped in the ambulance with her whilst I sorted out the rest of the kids , took them to the neighbour then got straight into the next available taxi to the hospital. I have NEVER in my like been so shook up and I can honestly say right in that moment I was completely lost. It was like I was on auto-pilot making sure the older kids were with someone, packing a bag for Beth and getting into the longest taxi journey in the world.
I arrived at the hospital
When I arrived at the hospital I went straight to the desk to tell them I was here for my baby they asked for her details and promptly replied ” Oh yes she’s been here for 22 minutes! ” In that moment I don’t think they could have made me feel more of a bad mother than they did. I had done everything as fast as I could. I had 4 other children to sort and she was with her daddy and an ambulance crew but still I was being judged. Did they not have a clue how scary it all was? Did they not take into consideration how not everyone can just go. If I had left my other children how would they have coped? Freddie is only 2!
My heart dropped
I was shown to a room and as I walked in I noticed the words resuss on the door and my heart just sank. When I entered Gareth was sat on a bed with Beth who was screaming the place down and both of them were covered head to toe in sick. Gareth told me that on the way there the paramedics had spoken to him about the fact there was every chance she may take a bad turn and fit and if she did that he needed to stay as calm as possible and let them do their job. My beautiful baby had then been extremely sick over the ambulance, her daddy, the paramedic it had gone everywhere.
He continued to tell me how he had arrived to the hospital to find 15 people in a room waiting for him, all waiting for my baby. They quickly got to work taking bloods, checking her over and lowering her temperature. I got there to her screaming because they had done so much to her so I took her from her daddy and gave her the biggest mummy cuddle in the world . By this point she was much more alert.
Moved to the children’s ward
Once they had her sorted out , had fitted a canula and made sure she was now safe they moved us to the children’s ward. We again had it explained to us that they thought she had sepsis and they would treat her as such until they got some test results back but they take 48 hours. We stripped her off to nothing but her nappy but still her temperature was very high. Every time her temperature went high her body turned blue.
The signs were there
After settling Beth down and her being fitted with the drip and antibiotics I googled sepsis and the signs and the doctors appeared to be right from the check list she had pretty much every single symptom on there.
We spent the following days constantly by her bedside, I would stay all day and then leave to come home to the older children and Freddie whilst Gareth took over the night times. Someone was with her constantly we were too afraid to leave her in case she became unresponsive again.
The doctors also found a mass on her tonsils that they wanted to investigate as they believed it could be her tonsils that triggered it in the first place. ( she had already completed a weeks worth of antibiotics the week before this happened) They also stated that if she was as non-responsive when her temperature was lower as it was when it was high they would be looking into possible meningitis. They were very concerned about how she kept going blue and would just lie there. She had also developed a new red rash.
In the whole time we were there not one person came to see her, no-one came to see if she was OK, no one was there for myself or Gareth for support. Thankfully my dad was on constant call if we needed anything because if he hadn’t been then we would have really struggled.
The results were in
Finally after possibly the longest wait in the world the blood test results came back and she was in the clear it was not sepsis . THANK GOD! She has however got an extremely severe case of tonsillitis. We are still waiting on some results for the mass on her tonsils which we are due tomorrow but for now our princess is home, armed with 10 days worth of strong antibiotics. Much brighter and responsive and we couldn’t be more relieved!
Myself and Gareth would like to thank Shell our neighbour for being there straight away and taking care of the older children so we could both be at the hospital and we would also like to thank my dad for all of his help with transport.
This last week has taught us that as long as we have our family and each other that’s all we need. I am so proud of Gareth and the kids for how they have all dealt with such an emergency.