When it comes to raising a child, they sadly, do not come with a manual. Sure, there are plenty of books and websites out there that you can pore over to soak up all of the information that you can, but even then, you can’t be prepared for everything.
I learned that lesson the hard way. When I had my son, Syrus, he was an incredibly docile baby. He would wake up to eat, cry when he needed his diaper changed, and rarely ever threw tantrums. His first year was an absolute breeze, dare I say, even a joy. When children hit age two, we mom’s all know about the “terrible twos.” Even then though, he rarely threw a tantrum. Here and there, sure. But it wasn’t everyday.
When he was sick, my husband and I could always tell. Sy has always been a very happy-go-lucky baby with a very bubbly personality. He’s got the makings of a comedian in him, I’m sure of it. If you’re sad, he’ll come up to you and try and make you laugh. So when he gets sick, it’s easy to spot; he’ll get very lethargic and morose. Usually this is a sign of a fever in him. Earlier this year, I could tell he had a bit of a temperature, and once I got the thermometer out, my suspicions were quickly confirmed. A 99.9 temperature meant it was time for some acetaminophen to bring the fever down. The next step I thought, would be to lay him down for a nap to make certain that he got as much rest as he needed.
10 minutes into him drifting off into dreamland, something scary began to happen. His body began to convulse, and soon he had gone into a full blown seizure. His arms flailed and his eyes rolled into the back of his head. Luckily, I was at my mom’s house, and my entire family was there. I began screaming, I didn’t know what to do. My mother scooped him up while my stepfather dialed 911. As the ambulance crew arrived, he began to come around, although still gasping for air. To make a rather long story short, we went to the hospital and found out it was a febrile seizure, or a seizure that happens when a temperature spikes very quickly that the body does not have time to adjust.
That was without a doubt, the scariest day of my life. For a fleeting moment, I had thought that I had lost my little boy. Even speaking with the doctors and nurses, everyone agrees they are an incredibly terrifying thing to experience, especially when it happens with your child. Once everything was said and done, I had remembered skimming a section in the baby book I read when I was pregnant that talked about febrile seizures. But past that, I never glanced at it again, thinking that it couldn’t happen. Never again will I ever think like that.
One of the biggest things to keep in mind, should it ever happen, is to keep calm. I’d be lying if I said that if it happened again, I wouldn’t freak out, but I realize now that what I had done that day hadn’t helped at all. The next thing to do is to speak with your child’s doctor. Ask them that in the event something like this should happen, what are the best steps to take, aside from calling the ambulance, to help your child? Do research on them, find out if anyone in your family has had them.
Trust me when I say this; it’s better to be educated on this and know what to do should it happen, then not know what to do if it does. As the old adage says “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”