Sunday, September 24, 2006

A weekend in the ER

Nick threw us one heck of a curve ball this weekend. Friday night I took Michael to the movies with Kristine and Nathaniel, and we were looking forward to a fun,but busy weekend. Friday night I put the boys to bed at 9pm, and everything was fine. Around 3am I was woken up by Nicholas screaming. I went into his room and tried to calm him down, but he just kept on screaming at the top of his lungs. I picked him up and he literally clung to me with his fists clenched tight. He would not let me out of his sight, so we ended up laying on the couch--where I just held him. Every few minutes he would erupt in screaming again and would stiffen his whole body, he would also bite his blanket. After hours of him screaming off and on in what appeared to be obvious pain, I took him to the ER. All I could say was that "Something is wrong with him...he is screaming!" They took his vitals, and we were sent to a room. His outbursts continued, and every nurse that was there at the time stopped by to see how he was doing,what the dr's had said, etc. He was the inconsolable child. They performed many tests on Nick...from cleaning his ears, to feeling his tummy, his testicles, taking a urine sample, two ultrasounds, two sets of X-rays, blood tests, everything. They all kept coming back negative. They were about to release us, and then the dr wanted me to sit Nick up in the bed to give him some juice. It started all over again. Nick had been content after some IV fluids, and laying down, but when I sat him up, he started crying again. Thats when they started checking his testicles to see if that was the problem. Nope. Poor Nicholas kept mumbling "Rain Rain GO AWAY!" every time they messed with him, he also kept crying "Bye Bye Bubby; Bye Bye" and shaking his head back and forth. At one point, they had another dr come in and try to get Nick to point to which body part hurt...yeah, like that was going to help. This was after they were informed he had autism. They released us, and told me to come back for a follow up this morning. Nick was all smiles when we went out to the car, and I was convinced there was nothing truly wrong with him at that point as he was acting just fine(well,for Nicholas anyway). He was his normal self when we got home, and was excited to see his brother again! Last night, was uneventful and peaceful! I passed out before 9pm.

This morning, I took Nick to his "follow-up". Well, we just walk in the door of that place and he is crying again. We got to a room, and I placed him on the bed again-and he began shaking his head back and forth. I told him "We see the Dr then go Bye-Bye""NO owies today". What I thought would be just a quick appt. was anything but. They ordered a CT scan, and MORE x-rays. Nick was not too pleased, and neither was I. They were very concerned about this whole head thing(after we told them he does this all the time), and that he did not like sitting on the bed--he preferred to lay down. Again, they came up with nothing wrong--so why cant we just GO HOME??!! After his CT scan, the dr came back and told me that it looked "pretty normal,but I would like to do a spinal tap". Well, that was the last straw. I said "No, I think he has been through enough, he is acting fine now (as he was moving all about in the chair, and happily playing with a sticker). He asked if I had any concerns with him at the time and I said "No". He then gave us our discharge paperwork, and we left with Nick saying "Bye Bye Bubby!"

I have learned that no matter what we go to the Dr for, to tell them Nick has autism right off the bat. I feel so bad for making him endure all those tests only to find out this could have been just an "autism thing". Something (noise,light,movement) could have triggered his outburst at 3am-maybe a limb had fallen asleep and the sensation scared him, and once that started it was a domino effect. His screaming brought about a sudden change to his routine and then he was in a strange place-which made everything worse. We may never find out what triggered this outburst, but I am sure it won't be his last. I have learned a lot this weekend. I learned that autism can sure throw you a curve ball.

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