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Kids can often be afraid of hospitals and medical professionals. I know that my boys do not have fond memories of visiting them. Of course, being rushed on an ambulance and having people be unable to get an IV in a child can be traumatic. Thanks to this, we wanted to help ease the boys’ perception of hospitals, doctors, and others that work in the emergency fields.
Albany Medical Center held their tenth annual “Teddy Bear Hospital Day” over the weekend. Children in the community can bring their teddy bears (or aliens) to the event to have check-ups by a medical student. The kids actually rotate around different stations, where they learn about medical procedures while getting hands-on experiences.
When we arrived and parked our car, we went over to see the First Responders that were parked outside. The members from Western Turnpike Rescue Squad had their ambulance to give kids a tour. NHL was in an ambulance years ago when he had a febrile seizure. Poor JSL has been on one many more times after a hand full of febrile seizures. Neither of the boys recall those rides, but I do. They really enjoyed looking around inside the truck to see all of the equipment.
Members of the Engine 9 from the Albany Fire Department were also there with their truck. The kids were able to walk around the truck, ask questions, and explore. Oh and they also were allowed to jump into the truck for a great photo opportunity. I know these first responders are often the ones that show up at home, so allowing the kids to see how kind and patient they were was priceless.
From here we wandered through Albany Medical Center to the cafeteria where the event was being held. The boys had their stuffed friends ready. First, we signed them in and got our bags. Next, we waited on line for Stitch and Duffy to get their medical gowns and ID bracelets.
After this, Stitch and Duffy had check-ups from one of the medical students. The boys were allowed to use stethoscopes and other medical instruments to assist in the exam. From here, we wandered around the different stations that included: Emergency Medicine, Anesthesia, Hospital Adventure, Psych-Neuro, Clinical Nutrition, Orthopedic Surgery, Dermatology, Tar Wars, Lyme Out, and more. In addition to this, the kids were able to get ID badges made with photos of them with their friends. This was by far the cutest part.
Stitch and Duffy did really well, although they both required a cast. Stitch ended up having a broken ear as he went around with NHL. He got that fixed up and did really well in the end.
Poor Duffy ended up breaking his little tail when he went to get some shots. At least that is what JSL told them when they asked what happened to him. Thank goodness they had the supplies to help and stabilize that break.
A huge thank you to Albany Medical Center, the staff, professors, and medical students that ran this. It was so well done it was a pleasure to take the boys to. If you ever have the chance to go, I highly recommend it.
Have you ever been to an event like this one? I would love to know what your family thought and how it helped your children.
Happy New Year and greetings to an illness after going back to school. Poor JSL has been battling something since he went to the ENT and started ear drops. Bit by bit things intensified as the holiday weekend came upon us. Monday afternoon, I was sure that he had turned a corner. Here is the kiddo doing his best Doc McStuffins impression:
What I didn’t know at the time was he was not doing well (just thought he was stuffy). About thirty minutes after this video was taken, JSL seemed a little warm. His temperature was elevated, but nothing too serious. Then, shortly after that, TechyDad thought he was really burning up. Sure enough, in about twenty minutes, his temperature went from under 99 to 101 (his normal temperature is 97). With his febrile seizure history, I knew we had to call the doctor. Drama played out getting a medication that was in stock at the pharmacy, but we got it. Thanks to the fever, Rosh Hashanah was spent home taking care of the little guy.
JSL was fever free and ready to go back to school on Wednesday. As I pulled out of our driveway, post-nasal drip proved me wrong. I will spare you the details, but let’s just say JSL needed a change of clothing. We walked into school, since I had hoped I could just wipe him down. I was wrong and his teacher noticed how swollen his face was. We went back to the ENT again and now think it was an ear infection that is draining.
My little JSL McStuffins was fascinated with the instruments being used by the doctor to remove wax blocking his ear canal. What was even better was he was having this done while Doc McStuffins was playing on the television in the exam room.
So our Talk Like a Pirate Day Adventures were a little different than I had expected, but in the end JSL had a smile on his way and as of today no ear infection. Bonus, he got some fun new Jake and the Never Land Pirate items later in the day,.
Of course, our doctor’s office got me wondering about things. What does your doctor have to help kids to be “distracted” and assist during an exam or procedure?
As I type this post, I need to remind myself to take deep breaths. Things will be ok. The storm will end and there has to be some sort of rainbow coming. Of course, at the same time, my inner Eeyore does not believe it. I want to sit here and scream. Wednesday has not been a good day. I sent the little kid off to kindergarten in tears again. Once home, I did some work and then called to get blood test results from the ENT for him. Those were a-ok, but the radiologist does not agree with the doctor on his assessment of the x-ray.
I held it together as I waited to hear back about scheduling a follow-up appointment with the ENT. Knowing that surgery for my son may be needed. Then, JSL’s teacher wanted to talk to me. Apparently, they wanted to do further speech testing. JSL had just “graduated” from speech therapy in June after two intensive and amazing years. My sweet little guy is so nervous with all of the changes that he isn’t confident in his speech. All of the hard work has him talking slow and fragmented, which messes up the articulation. Of course, being stuffed up and having a hard time breathing will also make you do those things.
Then, it was a mad dash to get NHL and shuttle him to Hebrew School. Traffic was horrible, but we just got there before class started. Then things happened that blew my mind. I do not have words for what I witnessed. Thank goodness I went with NHL to the classroom and he did not go alone. We left and now wait to see what will happen. Memories of my Hebrew School experiences came flashing back. I will NOT allow this to happen to my child.
There is more that I want to write about, but that will come later. So much to share that may help others, but first I need to make sure we are set with the news and developments that happened over the last few months. For now, I will remind myself that I am blessed with my family, support system, and must just keep swimming.
How do you remind yourself to keep going and look for the rainbow?
Thursday morning, you and I went to a new ENT. Our mission was to see if he can help us to figure out why some things are going on with your nose and voice. The waiting room was really kid friendly, I know you and I were both impressed.
When you were called back, we went into the Mickey Mouse room. It was bright, cheerful, and had lots of your favorites all over the walls. In addition to this, they had a television with Disney Junior on. You were content. The doctor came in and talked with us and decided he wanted you to go for an x-ray. There was an imaging place downstairs. He said if we did it quickly, we could bring the CD back upstairs and have him read it immediately.
Thanks to a chest x-ray at the cardiologist, you are a pro at getting x-rays done. The technician handed us the CD and we went back up to wait to see the doctor again. This time we were put into another room with Winnie the Pooh and friend. You were getting a little bored at this point and wanted to go to kindergarten, but you did well.
Your x-rays did not show anything, so we believe that an allergy is still to blame. The doctor told me he wanted to do some blood tests to check more items. When I picked you up from school, we went to one of the local hospitals. After over an hour, they realized they did not do the test there. At this point, you had been crying and had no idea why we were waiting so long in a strange room. Good thing it never was done. While you were at school on Friday, I found out the script was not right and more items should have been on it.
After school Friday, we took NHL to Nana and Papa and we went to LabCorp. I made an appointment online and noted it was for a child. When we got called and went back to the room, you started to cry. The technician was fantastic. She talked to you and we made a deal to close your eyes until she had the needle in and was getting the blood. Sure enough, she got one of your veins on the first try. On Monday, I am going to call to find out her name to say thank you again. When we left, she handed you a row of stickers almost as tall as you are and we went to the store to pick out a present. After the fiasco with the lab on Thursday, Daddy and I wanted to get you a little something special.
Now here’s to hoping we get some answers and have a much more quiet week of getting used to kindergarten. Thank you for being such a brave little boy and doing so well.
Raise your hand if you are not a fan of teeth that are wiggly and about to come out. Imagine me hiding under a blanket. I’m not proud to admit it, but I have never been a fan of teeth once they are loose. It bothered me when I had them in my own mouth, when students would show them to me, and now as a parent.
NHL has had his fair share of bad luck with teeth loosening up and coming out. One day, while looking in his mouth, I noticed stubborn tooth #8 that had move into an outward facing position. To add to the “fun”, the new adult tooth was already coming up behind it. This tooth was stubborn and did not want to give up. The orthodontist finally made the decision that NHL’s 8th tooth had to be pulled by our pediatric dentist.
Yesterday, NHL went to see Dr. N to have that pesky tooth taken out. He was nervous, but he loves Dr. N and I do believe that, with her in charge and the amazing staff in their office, he was ready to go. Even with a few surprises tossed in, they told me he did fantastic. He was very lucky and did not require a shot of Novocain. With enough of the topical numbing medicine and just the right pulling, that tooth could not be a resident of NHL’s gums any longer. I am so proud of my big kid and how well he did. Of course, I have to admit I am thrilled we get a break in tooth adventure with him for a while. On the flip side – JSL is five and will probably have some of his coming out soon.
So my question to you this week:
How do you handle wiggly teeth? Cope with them, hate them, or are you fascinated with them? FYI – I know it isn’t Friday today. I am posting a day early because it is NHL’s birthday tomorrow. I always do a special birthday letter to the boys on their big day. If you have a minute and want to stop by on Friday to wish him a Happy Birthday, I know he would love it. I will link up later when that post goes live (here it is).
Thanks to Kailani at An Island Life for starting this fun for Friday. Please be sure to head over to her blog to say hello and sign the linky there if you are participating.
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