Posts Tagged ‘asthma’

Piano fortissimo

Gabe

Gabe took the grade 1 piano exam and passed with a merit. As well as a stage for demonstrating his musical talent, the piano has become a bellweather of Gabe’s tempers. He will turn to the piano when frustrated and pound out one or both of the pieces studied for his exam: Tarantella and Gavotta. His nervous energy is channeled into his fingers tapping out the tune of one of these pieces when sitting watching tv, eating a meal, or even holding hands walking to school.

Robin

The arrival of Coco has stimulated in Robin a desire to have a rabbit. For a couple of weeks, he has asked regularly (hourly, at times) when he’ll be old enough to have a rabbit. The answers L and I provide do not satisfy and he turns grumpy. There’s a genuine desire there, which we’ll find hard to resist. One night, Robin etched with biro a rabbit on the headboard of his bed.

Eliza

Soon after her night-time trip to the hospital, Eliza’s coughing started up again. A few causes were considered: Coco, pollen, plain old viral infection. The GP was clear – asthma – meaning that she joins her brothers with that diagnosis.

3am at the hospital

Eliza

After several days and nights of coughing, Eliza appeared in our bed with breathing interrupted by coughing. L had already said she thought Eliza had asthma. Conscious – but tired – that both Gabe and Robin had ended up in hospital with asthma and that we have no medicine prescribed for Eliza, I decided she needed to go to hospital. I helped her into clothes and then to the car. Minutes into our journey and Eliza seemed less ill, but I pressed on. At the hospital, she sat on my knee as we waited to be seen and then with the nurse, coughing as proof of why I had taken us there. We weren’t deemed an emergency needing A&E care and so went to the duty GP’s office. We waited watching middle of the night tv. Eliza was calm and well-behaved. Eventually we were seen by the doctor who examined Eliza and offered no prescription, just the consolation of a vague diagnosis of viral asthma  – a bad cough. We drove home at dawn.

Gabe

Several times most nights, Gabe enters a phase of intense, adenoid scorching snoring. It doesn’t seem to relate to his posture in bed, but some independent tightening of his airways.

Robin

L bought off Robin with a green, sound and light emitting light sabre. With lighter mornings, Robin had been waking and coming to our room, where he fidgeted and sniffed through the last hour of our sleep. He was challenged to five consecutive nights of staying quietly in bed until L or I got up. The incentive worked, but with the threat of back-sliding to the earlier routine, the threat is now that the light sabre will be removed unless he can continue to stay in bed until a reasonable hour.

Asthma attack

Gabe

For the first time in over a year, Gabe has been felled by asthma. Triggered perhaps by a cold and maybe by the dust from the extension, he coughed throughout school on Wednesday and couldn’t manage to cycle home. To GP and then to A&E and paeds ward. Oxygen, nebulisers and steroids controlled the attack, but he was discharged only after 2 nights on the ward. Several times it looked as though he would come home sooner, but his breathing worsened. Having got his hands on the ward X-box, he was in a dilemma: come home or keep playing Fifa 05.

under attack

Robin

Robin began school nursery on Wednesday. A challenging week, made more difficult by Gabe’s illness and Lou being at the hospital. His response has been to develop a new facial expression – a jutting chin. When I picked him up from play-group on Thursday, he fixed the expression and ran to me, butting me in the lower stomach.

Eliza

Eliza was upset by Gabe and Lou’s absence. On Thursday morning she complained of a stomach ache, which wouldn’t go by sitting on the toilet. Eventually, getting shoes on for school, she found it had gone. She asked me whether you could get a stomach ache if you were worried about something. Rare self-knowledge.