A sick day (or not)

Today was supposed to be a sick day for Lance. That was the plan. Or was that the idea? I am not entirely sure now looking back.

He has had this cough for about a week and a half. Not a big deal except that it is pretty bad. I am not one for calling any cough good or bad, but this is neither that. It is just not good. It is not bad. It is just pretty bad in that nothing appears to be helping. Ben has it as well, but at least for him it is productive and he can make it productive. We finally started telling Lance to let the coughs out instead of giving these little wimpy throat clearing coughs. Let the coughs go. Let them work for you. That did not even appear to do much good. Lance’s coughs were not productive even with the constant expectorant medicine. Ben was being helped, Lance was not. Saturday the cough appeared to get worse. Then Sunday night, the cough peaked in my opinion. Why do I hold that opinion? When someone starts coughing so badly that they truly throw up the contents of their stomach, the cough is bad and it is no longer fun. It is not fun for the person with the cough and it is not fun for anyone else around them. Since he threw up his dinner and lots of liquid, I was hopeful that it was just the coughing that caused the problem. That was until he made two to three more trips back to the bathroom to empty the remaining contents of his stomach. Was there anything left in his stomach? Evidently there was because he proceeded to throw that up too. He earned himself a day home from school with the first vomiting episode in spite of the repeat offenses, but now I was not so sure if it was just the coughing or if he was more sick than he was letting on to. He was not showing any more symptoms than he had in the previous week and a half.

This morning, I got up and at about 8:40AM I started calling the doctor’s office. Sometimes they answer the phone lines then, sometimes they do not. It all depends on how busy the office is at that point in the day. They officially start answering the phones for appointments at 9:00AM. I got through on the phone. Unfortunately, Doctor Corkran was booked solid for the day and only the nurse practitioner, Dorothy, was available to be seen that day. I wanted an appointment that day regardless because I wanted him to go back to school. I might have been able to get an appointment with Doctor Spafford, but my suspicions are that he as booked solid too. They had an appointment for 9:20AM for the NP and frankly, I wanted him seen. I was going. If it was anything major, she would consult with the doctor and we would really have a doctor consult anyway. I was not too worried about it.

I have Lance get ready to go and off we go to the office.

We go back into a room in the doctor’s office and we are waiting. We were actually seen pretty quickly. They are usually pretty good in the office. Sometimes when lots of people are sick, there can be a wait, but for the most part I have been happy with the in and out response time. 

The nurse comes in and was taking his vitals and symptoms. She asks me the important questions about him that I should answer. Then she addresses him directly. I prefer it that way. I want the children to learn to address their own medical issues with the nurses and doctors when they are young so they will know how and be able to handle it when they are older. I have insisted that they talk to the children from the time that they are little and they could speak for themselves. I might have to fill in details, but children have voices and they can use them. They can say that their throat hurts, they have a cough, or their wrist hurts. 

As she is asking him questions, the comment was made that nothing has really helped on his coughed. I hear “yeah I just keep coughing and coughing. Maybe I need a DNA test.” The nurse just stops and looks at him dumbfounded. “What do you need one of those for?” He just shrugs his shoulders. I am not sure he knew how to respond back to that either. I am not entirely sure he even knows what a DNA test is. Obviously he knows they exists and a doctor can do one. He obviously knows that a doctor can use it to diagnose something. It was really funny. Once the nurse pulled her jaw up off the floor, there were laughs that ensued.

Does this look like the face of sick? I didn’t think so. Looked pitiful for the doctor when she walked in though. The first words out of his mouth? “I’m hungry!” Evidently I am starving him. That’s what happens when you throw up your dinner, you end up very hungry.

The nurse practitioner was not 100% convinced that he was not sick with the looks of his throat and his symptoms of a very sore and sour stomach, in spite of his hunger. Having already had a child that has had symptoms like this I was not surprised when she wanted to run a strep test on him. That meant more time waiting while they ran the test. There is stuff for an energetic boy like Lance to do while he is waiting. I just have to say that this is definitely not the face of sick! Spinning on the spinning stool! Suddenly he stops. “I’m dizzy now!” You think?!. He just kept doing it so I did not feel an ounce of sorry for the dizziness.

The faces while we were waiting were priceless. He would have had the entire office laughing if they had seen them. He had just declared that his stomach really hurt. I believe him that it hurts, I am just not sure, however, that I should fully believe him with this expression. What do you think?

Still not believing that he is very sick. He might be hungry. He might even be “starving.” Very sick? Not sure I believe it.

His strep test came back negative. He was fully checked out. He was declared to be no more contagious than the kid sitting next to him at school. He was cleared to go back to school today!

There was still the issue of his wrist, however. He injured his wrist on Friday at school. He fell down during PE. He says that he did not fall on his wrist and hurt it. I am not convinced. It is too coincidental. I am not 100% convinced that it is injured badly as it is not flopping around or anything like that. Here we are on Monday, four days later, and it is still a little swollen and he complaining about it hurting him. It is not a constant pain, but it is a pain that is enough to be a concern. The manual examination checks out mostly clear. She is concerned with the swelling for as many days out we are. She also knows which child this is. This is the crazy child that does crazy things and is just rough and tough and it is hard to gauge just how much pain he is masking because he’s just a tough kid. She could not guarantee that he did not have an hairline fractures in his wrist with the swelling still being there. She wrote out some orders for x-rays for me to take him and have it imaged so we can rule out serious injury. If it is nothing serious then we can treat the sprain.

The staff at the imaging center took pity on Lance and gave him a snack. He announced that he was hungry to me, yet again, when we got in the door. He probably was very hungry at this point because it was past lunch time at school. 

Here we are before February with Lance getting X-rays. They could not guarantee there were no hairline fractures in his wrist with the swelling he still has four days later. This time last year he was getting his chin stitched shut…I love this child.

Once was all said and done, I took him to McDonalads (his choice) to get lunch, the pharmacy to get his medicine for his cough and an ACE bandage to wrap his wrist with (as told after we got it x-rayed), went to the house to get his backpack, and then took him back to school. We will find out later what is wrong with his wrist.

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