Saturday, May 10, 2008

ER: Round Seven

Have we really been that many times? This has got to stop....

Last night we went to a banquet hosted by the Chapel at a downtown hotel. The adults and teenagers were in one room while the hotel's staff "babysat" the elementary kids. As I dropped off my kids I did my normal speech about how these children are allergic to chocolate and nuts, please don't give them any as they will swell up and quit breathing on you.

And that's basically what happened.

As I sit down at our table I turned to Drew and said, "I don't have any epi-pens on me - but I do have benadryl." But we weren't too worried, after all - I had explained it to the adults in charge and was assured by one young man, Luis, that he would personally walk around with the kids at the buffet.

About half way through our meal, Ben comes up to me crying with his eyes very red and swollen and his lips a little swollen saying his stomach hurts. I asked him what he ate and he said just shrimp. Drew took him on to the bathroom since we really didn't want him to throw-up in front of everyone. That was a good call as he throw up several times in the bathroom.

Drew got Ben settled on a couch in the hallway, came to get me to sit with him while Drew went to check on William as Ben had told him he had eaten the shrimp as well. A few minutes later Drew came back to me saying I needed to go and get Melissa as he was going to the front desk to call for an ambulance (which we now think they never did!!).

I saw one of the chaplains and asked him to get some people to pray and asked another friend to go and be with William in the bathroom (I didn't know someone was already with him). I ran (really - I RAN!) to the other end of the hall where the kids were. I got Melissa while practically yelling at the adults to show me what they feed my children.

Luis showed me the shrimp and added that he asked a chef who said there were no nuts in it. The shrimp was on skewers and floating in some kind of sauce. We were later told it was coconut-peanut shrimp.

I ran back - (it really is too bad I can run that fast on the treadmill ) while dragging Melissa behind me. By the time I got back to where the boys were, several friends were there - including one with an epi-pen which they had already given it to William. One is dentist and he gave it to William while Drew held him down.

Another OSI wive took Melissa and we all went upstairs to wait for the ambulance - which never came. After about five minutes, we sort of took over a hotel van and told the driver to drive really fast to the Navy Hospital.

He drove sooo slow! Or at least it seemed that way to me. At one point I said "Don't worry about the speed limit just go faster!" I think when Ben started to throw-up in the back of the van and Drew's yelling "Are you okay, Ben?" and me yelling "Is he still breathing?" the driver got a clue as to how serious it was.

The ER didn't seem to move as fast as I thought they should either, but we were able to get in the back within 10 minutes.

Since William did have the epi-pen he was put on heart-monitors and watched for four hours. Ben was given lots of medicine, but since he throw-up all the food he was in good shape - he just looked bad for awhile.

When Drew went to check on William, William was already heading our way towards the bathroom. He had a lot of saliva in his mouth and wanted to spit it out. He now understand that he had a lot of saliva because he couldn't swallow! He also told Drew he back hurt really bad - and that was b/c his lungs were trying to get some air.

It's been a really long time - about six or seven years - since our last really bad reaction. They won't forget this one for a while - neither will we. And I won't be leaving this house without the epi-pen, either! No matter how small my purse is and cute it matches my outfit. This is why I hate buffets and pot-lucks - not even the chef knew what was in the food!

As we were leaving the hospital (at 1 am) the marquee sign said, "May is Asthma and Allergy Awareness Month."

Oh, yeah. We're aware.

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Leaping For Joy

Leaping For Joy