Sunday, October 07, 2007

i got the fever

Groggy, I wake up to her plaintive cries. I'm sick mommy, I so sick. I reach her and she's burning up, a piping hot version of my child, heat radiating a foot off her skin. I lay her down in bed next to me and she says My stomach, mommy. Moments later her little body is convulsing and I just barely made it stumbling in the dark to the bathroom. Her body shakes and gags, she cries but is so entirely brave. I don't stop holding her and her feet don't touch the ground.

Finished, I bring her back to bed and hold her, she is so hot and I can't get the goddamn newfangled digital thermometer to work right so I have no idea how hot exactly, is hot.

I hold her all night, she cries and sweats, medicine is promptly rejected by her stomach but I try anyways fearing the heat. I lay awake and my mind takes over. Every horrible illness I can think of comes to mind, dengue, malaria, things impossible to have where we live but the names float around my brain anyways. I map out the route to the ER, I set my mind to watch. I overreact in times like this, at least on the inside, the helplessness of fever.

The long night turns into day and we try more medicine again and this time it stays put. She's not well but I am not panicked, more resigned for a longer Sunday than I'd imagined twelve hours before. The helplessness of fever, the finiteness of mothering and how little we can actually fix runs circles in my addled brain.

42 comments:

dawn224 said...

Wishing a broken fever and some good rest for all.

Marymurtz said...

Those are such primal times, it makes the world retreat and everything is just the little bubble of medicine, the bathroom, the bed and wash cloths.

Hope the little sprout is better soon.

kristen said...

fevers have always freaked me out. that plantive, 'mommy i so sick' broke my heart.

when my girl has had strep she vomits horribly. because she couldn't keep the meds down to break the fever, my ped suggested suppositories. i know gross, but dude, they really work when she's too sick and the meds don't stay in. the brand is FeverAll.

hoping for a broken fever and your sweet curly girl to be herself once more.

mommy medicine (aka anything alcohol) works well for the frazzled nerves. xoxo

thailandchani said...

I hope she is feeling better quickly. That's scary...


Peace,

~Chani
http://thailandgal.blogspot.com

flutter said...

ohhh ms M poor baby girl. I hope she is cool as a cucumber by the end of today and that you guys can get some rest

Kyla said...

Oh, poor M. I know that heat well. KayTar can never keep oral meds down, they have to go in the OTHER way. *sigh* But it works.

Hang in there, friend. I'm sending you our healthiest thoughts.

Janet said...

I am never so frantic as when they are fevered. We have had many a tepid bath or shower with a feverish baby whose stomach rejected medicine in the night. That usually brings the temp down a degree or two.

Cool and calm wishes for little Miss M.

Amy York said...

Poor baby and poor Mama. Hope she feels better today ~ that it's just a 24 hour bug ~ and you both get some rest tonight!

Family Adventure said...

I hope she feels better by the time you read this. Any mother could recognize what you were feeling. Your description was just beautiful.
I always find the kids to be so brave in the face of fever and upset tummies. Much braver than you might expect from someone who'll whine at bedtime, mealtime, etc.
Just found you - will check in again!
- Heidi

Joker The Lurcher said...

hoping she feels much better soon. hope you get some rest too

crazymumma said...

Oh poor sweet bunny. They get so hot you feel you could fry an egg on them.

Gatorade for the electrolyte count if she is throwing up.

Popsicles just because.

xoxo

slouching mom said...

There's so little that is entirely out of our control. This is one of those things. And generally we're made aware of our children's illnesses when we're sleeping, when we're at our most vulnerable.

I've never been as scared as when Ben and Jack had fevers above 104 degrees. This spring, when Jack had pneumonia, he topped out at 105.2 degrees.

Terrifying. I so hope she's better by now.

liv said...

Oh, that sounds like the 2nd and 3rd weeks of September for me. Awful, and then they take you down with them. ((hugs))

ewe are here said...

Poor M! And poor you, too. It can be heartbreaking watching our wee ones hurt so.

I hope she's feeling better soon.

Susanne said...

Hugs to both of you. I hope she will be better soon. Also to bring a fever down when a child is that hot you can try wrapping wet towels (not too cold) around her calves for a few minutes. Put dry towels over the wet ones. That's pretty powerful in bringing the fever down. The only problem is getting the child to lie still long enough.

Blog Antagonist said...

Ugh. Those middle of the night raging fevers are so scary. I remember all too well the litany of diseases that danced through my brain as my child lay startling limp. It's amazing how quickly they can recover though. Hope she's on the mend soon!

Christine said...

oh poor girl! i hate those hot, hot scary fevers. get well soon little one. . .

ms chica said...

Sorry, Jen. Being a parent can make you feel so powerless. I hope the illness tuns it's course quickly.

painted maypole said...

you cannot always fix the fever, but you can be the comfort of mommy and love, and that is more than any medicine can do. You are a good mommy.

carrie said...

Oh, so sorry M's not up to par. It's hard, not being able to wave that magic wand over her and "poof" make her well just with all your love.

Her Grace said...

We just went through this last week. It was a doozy. Hang in there. It's scary, but she'll be back up and running in no time!

QT said...

Man - I am so sorry, poor M! I hope she is better by the time you read this, and you have had a chance to rest, too.

Ally said...

I hate the helplessness that sometimes comes with mothering. Though "helplessness" isn't quite right, since you were actually able to help, if only to provide comfort and love. Isn't that the best kind of medicine anyway?

Hope little M is doing better today and that you kiss a much cooler forehead tonight when you tuck her in.

meno said...

I wouls be sick in her stead, were it possible. There is just something so heartbreaking about a sick child.

Anjali said...

It happens a million times a day, yet you describe it in a way no one else could.

Hope M is better soon, and that her mommy gets some rest, too.

Beck said...

I hope she's so much better by tonight. Those super-high fevers of young childhood are just shocking in their scariness...

Pgoodness said...

Oh, the I sick cries. Break my heart, why don't you? Poor M, poor you. Fevers always scare me too. Hope she's cool and all better by now.

Momish said...

Poor M, I hope she feels better soon. The feeling of being helpless is one of the worst things a mother has to go through, especially in the middle of the night!

I hope you all sleep much better tonight.

Mrs. Chicken said...

This is the worst, watching the big courage in these small feverish bodies. Hoping the Divine Miss M is on her small feet again soon.

Mad Hatter said...

Ah, poor lamb.Cuddle in with some DVDs and flat gingerale.

urban-urchin said...

haven't read the other comments but want to suggest fever all suppositories for the next time. work wonders at getting the fever down and don't have to go into upset little tummies. I know my girl could throw up and spike a scary fever at the drop of a hat... it sucks so bad when they are sick- poor little thing- feel better soon M.

mitzh said...

Hope M feels better soon.

Lawyer Mama said...

Poor little thing. I hope she's feeling a bit better now.

My little H is sick too. There's nothing worse than watching them hurt and not being able to fix it, is there? (((HUGS)))

Wayfarer Scientista said...

Glad to hear the fever is down and it's no longer at the scary moment.

Casdok said...

Am sending you both some Reiki

Bon said...

poor small, and poor mama, on alert. glad the panic is gone and hope you both got some sleep last night (as it's now Monday).

it is funny how quickly we are reduced from our elevated circumstances to the simplicity of bodies...how powerful fever is, how primal. i noticed this last week when i was up with O. and then i realized we had medicine and i did not even think it would kill him and that in itself separated me from 99.9% of the mothers in human history and across the world in my situation, up at night with a very sick baby.

blew my mind. love to you.b

Sober Briquette said...

Oh, hope you are all better today. Hugs.

Gill said...

I hate it when my kids are sick at night, it always seems so much worse than in the clear light of day. Hope she is much better now.

radical mama said...

It's so hard to watch little ones suffer. I hope things are better now.

deb said...

Suppositories. They can't be vomited up and tepid baths. They work too.

Hope you guys are better soon.

Dengue fever, it's amazing where our brains go, borrowing trouble, when our children are sick.

Take care.

Karen Forest said...

Oh, I hope she feels much better now.

Sickness sucks and sickness in the dark of night sucks more.

Fevers, vomiting, coughing, aches and pains are all much more scary in the middle of the night.

Sometimes the best medicine for the parents is the light of a new day.

KC said...

This would have rocked me so - I'm not good with my baby's vulnerability either. So glad she's over the worst of it. Much love to both of you.