Surviving the children’s ward 

Surviving the children’s ward 

Well once again I find myself sat on a camp bed in a busy children’s ward with my little dude. This now totals his 4th hospital visit, I’m starting to get a complex that he may actually prefer it here. We were referred by our GP as the little man was having breathing and feeding troubles and generally looked pretty darn poorly. I could almost hear the theme tune to Cheers playing as I walked onto the ward….where everybody knows your name…. And they did. They took one look at us and said ‘Tobias is back let’s have a look at him’ within seconds of looking at him he was admitted, put straight on oxygen and had an NG to get some food down him. He has been diagnosed with bronchiolitus, a very common and usually mild illness in the under ones but unfortunately some do need hospitalisation.  Toby being a tiny 9lb (despite being 5months) preterm and contending with several other medical ailments sadly puts him in the vulnerable category and the common illness just proved too much for him on this occasion. So here I sit facing a third night on the children’s ward – a night I might add I was meant to be going on my pre paid Christmas mums night out, not that I am bitter.

Anywho the children’s ward is a pretty rough ride at the best of times but winter is a whole new kettle of fish. Every baby on the ward has bronchiolitus, every baby is coughing, crying, on oxygen, requiring suction, needing lots of care and attention from mums and medical staff 24 long hours a day. Fortunately they are all in the best place and receiving the care they need. Mums on the other hand, not so much. The 6 of us are sat here looking pretty pissed off, as a general rule we look and feel like shit (sorry mums). I know we’re not allowed to moan about the shit we do when our kids are poorly (it’s part of the job description after all) and it really sucks to be the poorly baby but, well, it sucks to be the parent too and here’s why:

1. We’re bloody knackered. Sleeping (lying awake) in the same room as one poorly baby is rough enough, but six! Six lots of coughing, six lots of crying, six lots of machines beeping and six different feed times is a killer. It’s a cold day in hell when all 6 babies are asleep at the same time so it’s an even colder day that mum sleeps for any meaningful period of time. Top tip if the staff offer to do a night feed for you – bloody let them! If they are doing your babies observations you do not need to be awake – they will tell you if something isn’t right, I know this might seem harsh at first but as a frequent flyer in the children’s ward I’ve made my peace with it. I have also taken to wearing a hooded jacket in the night over my head to darken the room, chances are the lights will be on, all night.
2. Most of us have other children at home and we are juggling childcare, the school run and navigating dad through the nighttime routine and where to find the clothes over the phone. It’s a nightmare. We miss our other children and I find it particularly hard because my other one is too little to explain the situation to. Mum just isn’t there. Top tip FaceTime it’s bloody brilliant, if nothing else you get to see your other children and they get to see you! Every little helps and all that.

IMG_31103. The bordem. A lot of the time you’re children will be sleeping, which really is the best thing for them. Or if like me your child is a baby and communication just isn’t their thing yet the day’s staring at cots and fishes on the wall can be quite dull. Top tip I have brought my iPad with me and connected it to my personal hotspot on my phone and now have the Internet at my disposal! Blogging , Christmas shopping, Facebook stalking, the possibilities are endless, I could even catch up on the latest episode of The Affair. Alternatively you can pay for wifi, or, I also have a stash of good old magazines with me!

4.  The food, hospital food is pretty atrocious not to mention extortionate. I imagine inmates at her majesty’s pleasure dine better than those of us frequenting the hospital cantine. Now I like to eat so I will generally stomach most things if means I’m fed but even I’ve struggled with the cuisine at times and there’s only so many packet sandwiches one can eat. Top tip most children’s wards have a parents room which usually comes equipped with a microwave, get the OH to bring in a microwave ready meal for you or if they are that way inclined to plate up a portion of whatever they’ve had for dinner.  I know it’s  not exactly fine dining but it is a marked improvement – trust me.

image5. Spare a thought for dad. Whilst we’re all sat here worrying about our little ones and climbing the walls with match sticks in our eyes, the OH has been chucked in at the deep end and is juggling work, the home and the other children. It’s not plain sailing there either. Top tip although you might feel a little resentful at living in the hospital try to remember no one has an easy ride, appreciate each other and try and work together to get through the little blip and before you know it you can go back to moaning about what the other does or doesn’t do!

So if you do happen to find yourself at casa de NHS this winter, first and foremost I really do hope your little one is ok, makes a quick recovery and doesn’t need to be there for too long! It is after all truly horrible for them and for us to see them so poorly. But also for you, look after yourself as the children’s ward can be brutal for parents at times and our needs naturally take a back seat. There are lots of people looking after your most precious asset so make sure you give yourself (and the OH) some tlc too.

Keep Calm and Carry On Linking Sunday


 

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47 Comments

  1. December 5, 2015 / 11:25 pm

    I hope your little one gets well soon x

    • December 6, 2015 / 6:24 am

      Thank you! X

  2. Sara Handy Herbs
    December 6, 2015 / 12:10 pm

    Oh gosh! How difficult and upsetting for you all! There are so many horrible bugs about at the moment. We spent a night in a and e last week but nothing as serious as yours. I really hope that Toby is on his way to a full recovery soon and that you all manage to have a lovely and stress free Christmas.#KCACOLS

    • December 6, 2015 / 12:46 pm

      Ah thank you so much. Everyone has taken really good care of him and he is doing much better, which is so nice to see! Hope all was ok following your trip to A&E xxx

  3. December 6, 2015 / 2:18 pm

    Hope Tobias is feeling better soon. it must be heartbreaking seeing him in a hospital cot. I’m sure they’re taking good care of him and he’ll improve soon. I watch The Affair too – its awesome isn’t it?! #KCACOLS

    • December 6, 2015 / 2:46 pm

      Thank you so much. He is doing much better which is a relief and so nice to see! It is horrible when they’re so poorly. Oow I absolutely love The Affair, still have lasts weeks to catch up on. In dying to know more about Noah’s court case!

      • December 6, 2015 / 4:03 pm

        Ooooh there is a huge cliffhanger at the end of the next ep! Xx

      • December 6, 2015 / 5:47 pm

        Oow I’ll look forward to it! Xx

  4. December 7, 2015 / 11:37 am

    Oh goodness, I do hope your little one makes a speedy recovery. It’s awful to see your child poorly let alone in the hospital #KCACOLS

    • December 7, 2015 / 7:00 pm

      Thank you he’s doing loads better now x

  5. December 8, 2015 / 9:29 am

    Oh gosh, it’s just awful isn’t it, I hope your little man is feeling lots better xxxxx

    • December 8, 2015 / 9:47 am

      Ah yes thanks he is doing loads better, so nice to see x

  6. December 8, 2015 / 10:53 am

    I hope your little one gets well soon and that you get to catch up on some sleep. I feel for both of you. I can imagine it’s very hard for the mums too, just as you described and you have shared some fantastic tips. All the best to you and your family and I hope Tobias is right as rain and full of energy by Christmas :-)

    #twinklytuesdays

    • December 8, 2015 / 11:10 am

      Aw thank you so much. He is doing lots better which is so nice, hopefully we can say goodbye to the children’s ward for a while!

  7. December 8, 2015 / 11:58 am

    Aww I really do feel for you. We did a stint in the hospital when Lexie was three months old. Seeing her hooked up to loads of machines and IV drips plus constant blood tests and a Lumbar Puncture near enough broke my heart. Its hard work, and very boring at times but for me I just found the whole thing emotionally draining! I was lucky in a way though that I only have one baby so I wasn’t worrying about other children at home. I hope you little one is on the mend soon and can stay nice and happy at home! #twinklytuesday

    • December 8, 2015 / 12:37 pm

      Oh it’s just horrible isn’t it. I feel for anyone going through or gone through it, you’re right it is emotionally draining. I find you keep going until you get home and when you’re home and it’s better you have a bit of a melt down, well I do anyway! hope your little one made a full recovery? One good thing is they do bounce back well. Thank you for your comment xx

  8. December 8, 2015 / 8:02 pm

    Oh you poor things. It sounds bloody miserable. I wish your wee man better and the sooner you can both get back home to the rest of your family and your home comforts, the better!
    Take care,
    x Alice
    #twinklytuesday

    • December 8, 2015 / 8:13 pm

      Thank you so much, he’s doing lots better which is great. Thanks again 😊 x

    • December 8, 2015 / 8:34 pm

      Thank you he’s doing much better now 😊

  9. December 9, 2015 / 12:54 pm

    Sending you all big hugs and lots of get well vibes for tea little dude! I really do hope he makes a speedy recovery and that you get to go home very soon.xx #KCACOLS

    • December 9, 2015 / 1:24 pm

      ah thank you so much. He is doing much better! x

  10. December 9, 2015 / 12:57 pm

    Sending you all big hugs and wishing the little dude a speedy recovery! Here’s hoping you both get back home soon. Oh yes hospital food is not very appetising at all.xx #KCACOLS

  11. December 10, 2015 / 7:07 am

    Hope your little one is feeling better soon xx #coolmumclub

    • December 10, 2015 / 7:08 am

      Thank you. He’s doing much better xx

  12. December 10, 2015 / 9:03 am

    I spent some not so nice time in SCBU. Sending you all the love in the world and hope he get’s home soon xx

    • December 10, 2015 / 9:11 am

      Thank you very much he is doing much better. We did a stint in the nicu it’s hard going isn’t it. Hope all is well your end

      • December 17, 2015 / 8:57 am

        Hey. Yes luckily we only had a 2 week stay from birth because she was prem. Ive actually just posted our birth story this week. Something I finally had to talk about. Its tough but hang in there xx

  13. December 10, 2015 / 9:03 am

    I really feel for you reading this post, I had to spend a night in hospital with my 2 year old a couple months ago and it was awful. I wrote a post about it too! It’s so hard when all the babies are awake and crying, I think I only slept for 2hours. I hope your little man feels better soon and you don’t have to spend too many more nights in the hospital.xx #coolmumclub

    • December 10, 2015 / 9:13 am

      Thank you so much he’s doing much better. I’ll pop over and read your post in a bit, it is a rough time isn’t it! Xx

  14. December 10, 2015 / 2:20 pm

    Oh sweetheart this must be so difficult for you all. I have only been resident in heart and intensive card wards, but not the children’s so can only empathise. I really hope your little one gets better soon sending love, hugs and wellness vibes from all of us at #coolmumclub xx

    • December 10, 2015 / 2:25 pm

      Thank you so much, he’s doing much better now which is great. Whatever the ward I’m sure it’s just as trying, hospitals can be a crappy place to be but thank god for them and everyone in them! X

  15. December 11, 2015 / 9:09 pm

    I hope the little one is back home now and feeling much better, if you’re not home yet I hope you are soon. What I do love though is how you have lightened the whole situation! My favourite point about sparing a thought for dad, this could be such and easy time to ‘point score’ (just me?) but it’s not easy for anyone involved! #KCACOLS xx

    • December 12, 2015 / 8:56 am

      Ah thank you yes he’s much better and home again now. Oh I was not happy at doing the hospital shift, again but when I thought about it and the OH came in looking particularly frazzled one day I thought perhaps he wasn’t having the easiest time of it either! X

  16. December 12, 2015 / 2:15 pm

    Ohh I’m so sorry to read that you had to go through all of this. I’m really glad to read from your last comment that your baby is feeling better and that he is back home now. What a relief!! I just hope all goes well from now on. I hope you can all have some rest too and also can spend time with your other daughter. I was reading your About Me page and it says that you are from Tamworth!! My husband’s family are from Polesworth which is not far from Tamworth. We have been there several times!! Thanks so much for sharing your story at #KCACOLS. I’m so happy to have you here!! :-) xx

    • December 12, 2015 / 2:27 pm

      Ah thank you yes we are home and he’s doing loads better! My OH Is actually from Polesworth too, what a small world! It’s just down the road from us! My OH seems to know everyone in Tamworth/Polesworth so I wouldn’t be surprised if their paths have crossed at some point! Thanks again and I look forward to linking up again tomorrow! Xx

  17. December 12, 2015 / 10:46 pm

    What an awful experience for any parent, so sorry your little one is poorly. I really do hope they make a recovery. Its good to hear that you have some survival tips to get through it, I hope you have good family and friends around to help out. Fingers crossed your both out soon and home in good time for christmas. Thanks for linking up to #MarvMondays. Emily x

    • December 13, 2015 / 8:35 am

      He’s back home now and doing much better thank you. Hopefully it’ll be our last visit for a while xx

  18. December 14, 2015 / 8:03 am

    I hope your little one is feeling a bit better. I went through this when Zach was 8 weeks old. He was put on oxygen and we spent two nights in hospital – me on the camp bed and him all snug in his hospital bed. I was fortunate that this children’s ward was a building full of private rooms so I didn’t have to contend with other babies and mums. We were all on our own. I do remember the boredom but also the absolute worry of my tiny boy with tubes on him. Bless their little hearts! We went a year later too but he wasn’t kept in thank goodness! Thanks for linking up with #TwinklyTuesday

    • December 14, 2015 / 12:01 pm

      It’s horrible isn’t it when they’re so poorly you feel so helpless and worry so much. And as grim as it is it’s the best place for them when they’re so poorly, so I may moan about the noise and the food but thank god for the children’s ward! Thank you for your comment x

  19. March 24, 2016 / 8:20 pm

    Aww I hope your little one gets better soon, it must be so difficult. Great tips though, which will help others. Thanks for linking up to #TheList x

    • tammymum
      March 24, 2016 / 8:34 pm

      Oh I do hope they other help others, it’s a tough time for anyone going through it. Thank you for your comment :) X

  20. March 24, 2016 / 9:48 pm

    Aww poor thing, I can’t imagine how hard that must be seeing your little one in hospital. But that picture of your OH is hilarious, that’s how my hubby would be! Hope he’s on the mend soon x #thelist

    • tammymum
      March 24, 2016 / 10:05 pm

      Haha yes no matter how hard the hospital stint is on mum…it’s harder at home for daddy, apparently lol. Thank you for your comment 😉 xx

  21. April 11, 2016 / 8:37 am

    Bronchiolitis is the pits. Our son Oliver was also preterm and suffered bronchiolitis both winters during to his lungs being weak and a very poor immune system. I hope it’s something Tobias grows out of as he gets older and stronger xx

    • tammymum
      April 11, 2016 / 6:47 pm

      Aw I’m sorry to hear that, I do hope he is doing better now? Thank you, for your nice words, roll on the summer and (hopefully) healthier babies xx