Wednesday, March 05, 2014

Part 2: The night we could've lost Brody

Read Part 1 first.

A few days after this nightmare.
Klay lays Brody on the floor in our living room. I swipe my phone, mistyping my password twice, forgetting about the emergency feature on the iphone. My heart is beating fast; thoughts racing in my head. Everything was fine. His temperature was high. Is it a seizure? He's not shaking. No, he's not shaking. 

Tears pour down my face as I begin to take in the reality of what's happening. I dial 911. It rings for what seems like an eternity. I start screaming before they answer.

10:13 p.m.

Dispatcher: "911, what is your emergency?"

Me: "My son, my son... he is unresponsive... he was running a fever today. He's almost 2, he's 22 months and he's not responding to us... He's 22 months. He's not 2. He's not responding to us. Get someone here!" I said as I ramble off my address.

I remember getting caught up on how old he was, saying the wrong age the whole time.

Dispatcher: "Ma'am I need you to calm down so I can understand you."

HOLY SHIT WOMAN. Seriously!? I said it plain as day, I thought as I tried to collect myself to repeat the address. Ok, pull it together, don't be one of those frantic people on the 911 tapes who can't calm down. I breathe in and out.

I'm on my knees a few feet from my nearly two-year-old son staring at his tiny body. He's much smaller than an average kid at this age; only in the 25th percentile. He was wearing a size 2T green Mavericks t-shirt that was too big for him. His pajama pants don't match his shirt. I rock back and forth staring talking to Brody and the dispatcher.

He wasn't moving, he wasn't shaking, he wasn't blinking, he was still--he just stared. There was no light behind his pretty blue eyes. He was fading.

Back to me being the crazy 911-caller...

I'm screaming, "You have to get someone here!"

Dispatcher: "Someone is on their way. What happened today? He was running fever? Is he shaking?"

"Yes he ran fever... It was 103.1... I gave him Motrin and he's not responding... he's just looking up. He's not moving. He's not moving. Oh, God...," I say turning my attention back to Brody.

"Brody, Brody it's mama. Brody! Get someone here now." I cry out.

Dispatcher: "We have someone on their way, OK? Just try to stay calm. Is he breathing?"

Klay is talking to him and trying to see if he's breathing. And then, things take a turn for the worst.

His color began to change; he turns blue.

I've never seen someone turn blue in my life. His lips were the first sign he stopped breathing. Then his whole face and body started to change a bluish-purple I'd only seen in movies.

Klay: "Oh my God, Brody, Brody, buddy. NO, NO, NO. Brody! He's blue!"

Me: "Oh my God, he's turning blue," I sob. "He's not breathing, you have to hurry. He's blue. Why can't I hear you? They aren't coming, they aren't coming... Why I can't hear youuuuuu..." I cry out.

I should hear sirens, it's been at least 10 minutes...

I hysterically rock back and forth, not believing what I'm seeing. How is this happening? 

While I'm the crazy, inconsolable, panicking mother, Klay is being a savior.

THERE IS A REASON WHY I MARRIED THIS MAN. But that night he showed me just how strong and how reactive he is. Klay is a problem solver and a quick thinker. I'm on my knees distraught, but this man turns Brody on his side and starts patting his back, patting and patting. He's doing something. I'm just a sobbing mom kneeling a few feet away... paralyzed.

"C'mon Brody. C'mon," Klay says.

Pat, pat, pat, pat.

Brody throws up.

"He threw up, he's coughing," I said into the phone. "Brody. Brody. Brody? It's mama."

I hear the dispatcher talking on the radio to someone, clearly not me.

Klay and I continue to talking to him as the dispatcher tries to talk to us to see what's happening. I put her on speaker, so Klay can listen to her instructions (now, she wants to give me directions or maybe I was too hysterical to give directions to).

I pick up the dogs and toss them into our bedroom slamming the door. I knew the paramedics would arrive soon and we wouldn't have time to tend to the dogs. I open the front door and the cool, icy air whisked threw the house. I finally hear the faint sound of sirens.

I'm still holding my phone trying to direct Klay on what to do, but when I move I accidentally hit the 'END' button. OMG, seriously? Stupid touch phone. WTF.

I wait for them to call me back and nothing. Finally I call again, they transfer me and then I'm talking some more.

"Ok, he's coughing," I say to the dispatcher. "But he's not looking at us. Brody, look at mama, Brody it's mama. Brody, baby, it's mama."

I see the bright red and blue lights flashing through our open front door. A police officer bursts into the house. Loud and clearly in a hurry. His urgency made me think he knew this was a child. Keys and tools jingling at his waist as he kneels on the floor to assess Brody.

"He stopped breathing and threw up," Klay points to the rug showing the officer where it was.

Klay starts to tell the officer what happened. Dispatch asked if the officer needed them to remain on the line for medical instructions; the officer said no so we hung up--this time on purpose. Since Brody was breathing there wasn't anything we could do but wait for the paramedics.

Meanwhile, Klay looks at the throw up to see if there were any items in it that may of choked him. Nothing was there, besides some dark forest green strands of goo. I now think this is what blocked his airway--drainage from the previous weeks.

Brody's body starts to shiver. It's actually more like a jerk rather than a shake, but it looks like he's cold, not seizure-like.

The cop asks if he's ever done this before, meaning the jerking motion.

"No, never." I say.

The cold air is flowing through the house giving us all a bit of a chill. About six or seven Forney firemen suddenly jog into the house.

All of them asking questions:

"What happened?"
"He was running fever?"
"Has he ever done this before?"
"Has he ever shaken like this before?"
"Does he ever not respond to your voice like that?"

Klay and I answer as best as we can. They explain that it's common in febrile seizures (caused by a sudden spike in fever) to be disoriented after an episode. "It usually takes some time until they snap out of it," one of them says.

10:37 p.m.

Twenty-four minutes later, the paramedics arrive. They walk in, kneel down and I give them some space. They encourage me to keep talking to Brody to see if he will react.

"He's breathing so there isn't much we can do. If it was a seizure, it will take him a bit to return back to his normal state," one of them says.

Just an hour ago, I was enjoying cooking a homemade dinner with my son. It was just the three of us. Now, we're surrounded by ten or more men with my little boy on the floor still not responding--voices, men moving about the room, the blue and red lights that still shined through the open front door--but he remained unaware of it all.

I just wanted my vivacious little Brody back.

The officer asks Klay to stand and talk to him re-explain what happened. Klay is now in Brody's eyeline. Brody is still staring up toward the ceiling, but if he were to move his eyes down just a bit he would be able to see his dad. His eyes were moving but never landing on anything, just swaying side to side gazing at the ceiling. He doesn't look like he's actually looking at anything. He doesn't turn his head toward my voice even though I'm near his ears talking to him.

Then I heard the sweetest sound... a sound, a voice, and a moment that will forever be etched in my memory...

"Da da?"

Little did I know this roller coaster ride was far from over...

Click here for Part 3.