Ever had people say to you about any given situation (college, dating, marriage, careers, babies, old age): "Just wait, you have no idea what you're in for!!" almost like they are taunting you? And you wonder, what in the world is that supposed to mean? I think I've most often heard those kinds of statements in regards to marriage or children. Talking with an old friend today she perfectly captured these thoughts...sometimes you just don't know until you experience it for yourself. Like for instance, what it will feel like when your baby happily, accidentally, well-meaningly ingests about half a bottle of cherry chewable baby aspirin pills.
Like what Mia did last Friday afternoon.
Yes, yes, that is what she did. We estimate she consumed around 18 women's low-dose aspirin pills. She got ahold of the bottle after lunch when I was cleaning her hands at the kitchen sink. The bottle, which is "childproof" was somehow undone by Mia. Either it wasn't screwed back on properly the last time it was opened, or Mia's rather dexterous hands figured out how to push down on the cap while also twisting it (she did just recently master twisting things open & close). Regardless, after a few minutes of all too quiet playing, I wondered what she was up to and I walked around the counter to see chalky baby aspirin smeared on her chin, the bottle opened, and at least one pill on the floor. Freaking out (of course, what's a mother to do otherwise??), I called for Greg immediately, who was thankfully working from home that day, and camped in another room on one of those ubiquitous conference calls, and dumped out the bottle to count backwards to see how many she had probably consumed...while also dialing 911. At the time, Mia seemed totally fine. Just confused, probably wondering, Why is Mommy freaking out? I didn't do anything wrong. Those little chewy puffs tasted yummy. Mhmmm...cherries!
For my first time calling 911, I had a good experience. They immediately connected me with medical services which connected me with Poison Control, who deemed based on her weight and the amount she probably consumed that it was most advisable to take her to the hospital, either by ambulance or self-transport. We opted for the latter and grabbed a few things and hopped out the door.
We headed to UCH and were quickly triaged.
To make a long story just a tad shorter, we were in the ER from about 1pm to 12am. The doctors & nurses were really good and even though they had to draw blood from Mia, which meant putting in a heplock/IV thing on her arm, she was a trooper. They took labs every couple of hours to monitor her salicytate levels and after there were 2 decreased levels, we were allowed to go home. The doctors said even if she had consumed the entire bottle (ah!), she would not have ingested a toxic amount. She did throw up twice, which was a good thing, because it got rid of some of the aspirin in her stomach. The doctor said whatever was left in her system would be metabolized by her liver and she'd "excrete"/pee it out.
|Notice the outfit changes? Lil' Mia's vomiting went all over Greg!! :-\|
But there are some lessons/realizations we learned from this ordeal. Many people extended their prayers and laments for us, which we so appreciate, and I feel like even though there were problems with the labs and the test results took extra long because they had to courier the labs to another hospital, we were totally taken care of.
First we learned, wow, we still really need to babyproof. Mia is becoming so much more crafty and intelligent and figures out how to do things. She's very persistent and curious. A good thing, but a scary thing at times too.
Secondly, we learned even though going to the hospital is the pits, there's also something actually relaxing at times about a hospital. There's only one thing you can focus on, and that is improving the condition or health of the person that is admitted. I cannot clean house, make food, flip laundry loads or any of those things while at a hospital. All I need to focus on is making sure a little one is taken care of, and sometimes, while her condition is troubling, this kind of refocusing is actually relieving.
Thirdly, never assume you'll leave earlier than you actually will. Initially, Greg & I thought we'd be there for the afternoon. Maybe. We had no idea we'd be there the REST of the day! Thankfully I had brought enough diapers for her that she was even cloth-diapered the whole time and some cherished friends & family dropped off some stuff for me & Greg, but we weren't anticipating that long of a stay. However, if Mia's first week of life is any indication, we've learned to never expect less instead of more. With hospital stays, it always seems like it's MORE!
And finally, as a wise older friend told Greg, we realized that God takes care of our foolishness. Mia didn't do anything "wrong." She had no idea what she was doing to her body. And as well-meaning parents, we had no idea she grabbed that bottle and the reason she was playing so quietly on the family room floor was because she was having a party with baby aspirin. But thanks to God, even in times of innocent foolishness, He covers us. We are so thankful. It could always be worse, but as we sometimes sing to Mia, "My God is SO big, so strong and so mighty, there's NOTHING my God cannot do!"
While I did not intend to make an altar call at the end of this post ;) it really does all come down to that: God is there. Thus, to tie it all in with the beginning of this post. We had no idea what we were in for. But we've learned & are learning (because this will continue). We had a scare. Mia was fine. God came through. Lessons learned. Repeat.