November 3, 2008

Happy Halloween

(**Disclaimer: This entry is going to be all over the place, so read with patience.**)

Our cat, Jack, has not gotten used to Harley yet. This past Friday, Halloween, Jack sat on the kitchen table all day, hissing and growling at Harley every time she came into the kitchen. I yelled at him a few times to get down, but he kept getting back up there.

That evening, we had plans to go to my aunt's house to eat dinner and trick-or-treat. Joe and I got the girls into their costumes around 5pm. My dad came by to see them, and after he left, we thought we would get a few pictures of them sitting on the porch with the pumpkin. We took them outside, and right as the door was closing behind us, Harley ran out. She took off down the street and Joe went to get her. I took the girls back inside and we went into the kitchen. Joe returned with Harley a few minutes later and she ran into the kitchen with us. Jack, sitting on the table, started to growl. Right at that moment, as Harley was walking toward Jack, Summer walked in between them and turned to face Jack. He freaked out, lashed his claw out in front of him, and took off. Summer started screaming. She turned back around to face me and I ran to her. There was blood streaming out of her eye. I picked her up and put her onto the counter. I watched as her pupil literally leaked out into her iris. I yelled for Joe and he came running in. We both were panicked. Neither of us has ever dealt with an injury. At all. We knew she needed to go to the ER but we didn't know which one. We didn't know if she was going to go blind, or what to do. Joe called 911 and the operator said she would send someone right away because an eye injury like that was certainly an emergency.

I was in tears as I held Summer. She was crying so hard she was practically hyperventilating. We sat in the living room as we waited for the medics. Joe called my mom and told her to come to our house instead of my aunts. A couple kids came to the door to trick-or-treat. The ambulance got there a few minutes later. Lights were flashing, but no siren, thank goodness. Two guys got out and came into the house. They took her blood pressure, looked her over, and asked us which hospital we wanted to go to. We chose the children's hospital downtown. My mom had arrived by that time, and she offered to take Camryn to my aunts' house so we didn't have to take her to the hospital. We agreed, and we decided that I would ride in the ambulance with Summer, and Joe would follow us in the car. They strapped me down to the gurney, (Yes. Strapped me down. I felt like Britney Spears.) and I held onto Summer. The ride there was quick. I signed a few things, gave her insurance info, and conversated with the medic guy. He had a 22-month-old son who loves Thomas the Tank Engine. Summer slept most of the way there.

We were ushered into the ER quickly. I gave the check-in nurse our info and we waited for Joe in the waiting area. Once he got there we were taken into the triage area right away. The nurse checked her over and sent us over to be seen by a doctor, "because her eye is not responding to my light."

We got into a room and the doctor came by. He examined her eye and decided she needed to be seen by an eye doctor. He also said she would need a CAT scan to make sure her eyeball was not ruptured or something. We went to get the CAT scan while we were waiting for the on-call opthomologist. We had to talk Summer into laying on the table thing and put her head in the brace. We promised her that she would have a lot of fun looking at the Dora stickers that the nurse had in the tunnel. She did really good considering that she was wrapped up in a lead blanket and couldn't move.

We waited for awhile and finally the doctor got there. He shined a light in her eyes, and then we had to hold her down, kicking and screaming, while he put drops in her eyes. He shined a light in her eye again and the yellow dye highlighted a small area that looked like a cut. A corneal abrasion. He said that the reason her pupil was misshapen was that it had become detached and moved. I still don't quite understand that one. Apparently that does not affect vision. He said that he was only concerned at this point that her eyeball itself had been punctured. He had examined the CAT scan results, but needed to do an actual exam. He went off to prepare for that, and the nurse said we needed to put an IV in her to give her antibiotics to prevent infections. I went in the room with her and had to help hold her down. Summer fought and screamed as the nurse did the IV and taped it all up. It was heartbreaking to watch Summer so defenseless and scared. I took her back into our room and we waited some more for the doctor.

He came in and said we needed to go over to the room where she had the IV so he could look into her eye. We went over and there were two nurses there as well. One nurse said to the other, "Should I go get the Papoose?" I turned to her and said, "Is that a nice way of saying straightjacket?" She laughed and said yes.

Summer clung to me as I lay her onto the table. Joe had to help me pry her off, and the nurse wrapped her arms in a blanket. The doctor struggled to get this torture device-type eyelid opener into her eye. He got it in and Summer's eye was wide open for him to look at it. She looked terrified and screamed, "Get up get up get up!!!!!" All I could do was hold onto her leg and look away. My eyes were welling up and I looked up to the TV that was on to distract myself. A commercial was on. "One eight hundreddddddd, safe auto, pick up the phooone, the call is freee..." I sang in my head to keep from crying. After what seemed like an hour, he finished his exam and took the torture device out of her eye. Joe picked her up and the doctor said that her eyeball was not punctured. BIG relief. That would have caused her to lose vision. He said that her vision should be fine, but he would need to put a couple sutures on the cut that was on the corner of her eye. Great, more torture. We went back to our little room to wait.

After what seems like more hours passed, the doctor came back in and said that they wouldn't let him sedate her. I guess because of how small she was. We were worried that she wasn't going to be still enough for the stitches. The nurse suggested an anti-anxiety/painkiller to help her relax and we carried her back into the torture chamber. She clung to us again and out came the Papoose. The nurse wrapped her up on the table and we tried to calm her down. She got the meds in her IV and we waited a few minutes. She didn't stop screaming for a second. The doctor decided to go ahead and try to give her the numbing medicine, in the form of a shot right beside her eye. He put the needle up to it and Summer kept thrashing around. After about 10 minutes of this, he gave up. It was too dangerous since she wouldn't hold still.

We went back to our room. The nurse came in and gave us the good news that we were going to be released. The doctor came back in and said that her cut should still heal fine. He said she has a corneal abrasion that should heal in a few days, a bruise on her eyeball, and a misshapen pupil. He said that everything would be ok, but that she needs to be seen sometime early this week. We were brought our release papers and finally we left. It was 12:30am by this time and none of us had eaten dinner. We stopped by Taco Bell and got some food and went home and ate. Summer was exhausted and Joe and I were totally drained. We finally got to bed around 1:30.

Summer is doing ok now. We have to squirt this antibiotic gunk into her eye every 6 hours, and that isn't fun at all, but it's well worth it to prevent an infection. She doesn't complain too much about pain. I just now got a call from the resident that saw her at the hospital and said I need to call and make an appointment for tomorrow. (Perfect since we'll be out and about anyway, VOTING!) I'm anxious to talk to the doctor to find out more about her pupil. The doctor we saw made it sound like it was a cosmetic issue and no big deal. The shape of your pupil makes a difference in how you look so I'm really hoping they can fix it.

So, that was our Halloween. Saturday evening we got them back into their costumes and went over to my aunts to make up for them missing out. They got to go up to her door and trick-or-treat, and then we sat around eating tons of candy. We got pictures of them in their costumes, too. They're all on my mom's camera but I'll post them soon.

As traumatic as that all was, and as shook up as we are over it, we feel very thankful. It could have been so much worse. We know we are very lucky to have healthy kids. While this was a really horrible thing to watch your child go through, I'm sure there is a life lesson hidden in there somewhere, along with getting your grumpy cat declawed when you have small kids.


Brittany said...

OMFG!!!! That broke my heart just to read!
picture me mouth dropped wide open!LOL

God I'm so happy she is okay!!!
Holy CRAP! I cannot imagine the pain she must have been in!


Bernadette said...

yeah, copy the OMFG!! I was in tears...I don't know how you did it. Poor Summer! She's such a sweetie, that video was so cute... she's grown up so much. i'm glad she's okay and hope that everything turns out well with the checkups.

Bridgett said...

How awful for all of you, Steph.

My eyes were watering the entire time I was reading this. I've had a corneal abrasion before (compliments of Parker's finger nail) and it's incredibly painful. I had to wear a patch over my eye.

I feel so bad for poor little Summer. She was so brave!

Please keep us updated about her pupil. I'm an RN, but eye issues still make me a bit squeamish.

So sorry your Halloween didn't go as planned.


Kadi said...

HOLY SHITBALLS!!! I am so sorry you had to go through that. Glad that she's okay, but what a horrible way to spend a usually happy night!

Allison said...

That sure sounds like a traumatic Halloween. It was more of a trick on you all than a treat that is for sure. Glad everything will be ok. Have a happy election day. : )

Leene said...

Poor Summer, my heart was breaking reading this and just imagining the pain she was in and the pain you and Joe were in. Its so difficult when something is happening to your baby and there is nothing you can do to take the pain away or make them feel better. I will keep Summer in my prayers. Leene

Holly said...

:( I was welling up with tears just reading. Poor Summer. I'm glad that things are okay though. And I'm glad that she was able to still go trick or treating.

Terri said...

Poor baby!!!! =(

I've had a corneal abrasion before when I worked for a furniture factory and had a wood chip scrape my hurt so bad...

So glad everything should be fine with her scary!

Hope she heals quickly....


Tiffany said...

OMG how horrible! You have me in tears over here, terrified and worried for her. I can only imagine how you felt having to hold her down and listen to her scream at the doctors. When I went to see my nephew after he broke his leg and before they fixed him up, I started crying just seeing how much pain he was in and how he called out for my SIL, his mommy. It was heartwrenching!!!!

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