Thursday, February 24, 2011

Stress and Anxiety and Calm

11:30 Wednesday, Christy is in my office at work and we are mapping out our run for the day with a goal of 3.25 miles. My cell phone rings- it's school.

My heart always sinks when that number comes up. Lori, the owner, is fantastic and will start the call with "everyone's fine."

This call didn't start that way.

Teagan said that her chest hurt. Inside, in the middle. She told her teacher and was sent up to see Lori. Lori immediately called me while starting to take Teagan's temperature- it was normal but Lori noticed a red rash on Teagan's chest and torso.

My mind went into action mode. I called Jeff to go pick her up. I called our doctor's office- do we bring her there or go to the ER? They suggested Immediate Care. I met them there.

Jeff said it was pretty scary. As soon as they got there and he told them that Teagan said her chest hurt, they rushed them back immediately, no check in, no information taking. Started immediately taking vitals and asking questions.

We are blessed to have a medical group that we trust and that has always treated us well.

I got to the Immediate Care place and went straight back to them. Teagan was fine and I was thankful for it. They did a throat swab to check for strep and the immediate test came back negative. Had to do a second swab- which Teagan was not happy about. But she did get her brave face on and made it through the second swab. Went and had a chest x-ray done.

The doctor came in and basically told us that she thought it was most likely that Teagan had just strained something or pulled something and that she really didn't think it was her heart. Her vitals were fine, no swelling in her nodes, her heart sounded good. If any concerning symptoms presented, call immediately and go to the pediatric ER. She left the room.

Jeff and I were relieved for the entire 3 minutes she was out of the room.

Then she came back with the report from radiology.

Very slight minimal enlargement of the heart. Coupled with the history of Teagan's minor heart murmur... the concern level grew. The doctor's tone changed. She suggested we contact our family doctor or a cardiologist to read the results. She gave us a prescription for an antibiotic- said that since they did the throat swabs, if there is bacteria, and if the heart enlargement is a concern, it could be a bad combination so we needed to do the antibiotics as a precaution.

Now, we were more scared than before.

We drove home. I called our family doctor's office to find out what pediatric cardiologist they had referred us to back when Teagan was 3. I called that cardiologist to see if we needed to take any immediate action. I wanted someone there to review the chest x-ray and the radiologist's report. Not possible but I could make an appointment for a few weeks from now. No thanks.

Called my family doctor's office- where I feel most comfortable. I offered to drive the copy of the report to them. They thought that was a good idea. Off we went. Dropped off the radiologist's report as well as the notes that Lori had made when it all popped up hours before.

Then the waiting began.

Off to Target to fill our prescription for the pink medicine that tastes like bubble gum. While waiting for the scrip, we indulged in some retail therapy. In our concern and worry, we might have spoiled Teagan just a smidge. She got new shoes, a dress, and 3 pairs of leggings. We got treats at Starbucks- a strawberry frappucino (coffee free) for Teagan, cafe mocha with a shot of hazelnut for me, hot chocolate for Jeff. Got our prescription and headed back to school to pick up Zach.

Her chest pain presented at 11:30. After doctor visits and phone calls and phone calls and phone calls and a trip to the pharmacy... it was 4:30.

Came home for a little rest. We let the kids curl up in our bed and watch Looney Tunes.

Then I refreshed my soul with my church family. Dinner at church followed by a chance to talk with several friends. A chance for things to be normal again and to receive prayers and offers of support.

On our way to church, we got a call from the family doctor's office. The doctor is not concerned about the size of Teagan's heart but they do want Teagan to be seen by a cardiologist. In other words- it isn't urgent but she needs to be seen by a specialist. Tomorrow, the doctor's nurse will contact the cardiologist and make an appointment for us.

I had hugs from my church family. Teagan spoke up during "joys and concerns" and shared that her heart had been hurting and she had to go to the doctor.

I had text messages offering help with anything we might need. I had tons of responses from friends and family on my Facebook page. In fact, when it all first started, I had checked Facebook quickly on my phone after posting my prayer request and I had to turn it off because the response was so overwhelmingly supportive that it almost brought down my composure and opened up the floodgates.

For now, we're fine. And my gut is finally calm enough to tell me that this whole thing will be fine. My faith is also providing me, personally, a lot of comfort. I'm prepared to face the road ahead- it might be a short trip with easy answers or it might be a long, hard road.

We're blessed with friends and family who will lift us up through this- no matter how big or how small.



Amy said...

I can only imagine how scary that was for all of you. I am so glad everything is ok for now.

Garret said...

I'm sorry any of this is happening to you. I'm very glad that Teagan isn't in any pain at this point.

Rebecca said...

Do infections sometimes make the heart swell and then once the infection is gone the heart goes back to normal? I'm probably wrong but seem to remember something of that nature.

Lots of love and support for all your needs and for Teagan.

Call Me Cate said...

Oh my goodness, how frightening! I'm glad that things don't look too serious - there's something really scary when the medical personnel are acting with urgency as opposed to scheduling an appointment soon but not right now.

I'll keep Teagan and your family in my thoughts.

Alison said...

Wow, so soon after Zach's medical scare! Teagan seems so vital in all your pics and videos; I'm sure she'll heal or adapt to whatever this brings. Glad to know you're well-surrounded with support.

Anonymous said...

How very frightening, Liz. You are all in my prayers as the specialists and doctors do everything needed to make sure Teagan is A-OK.

Mrs4444 said...

I'm so glad you can trust your doctors. I'm sure it will all work out.

I have never before felt stress like I have felt in the past week of political chaos. I have gained huge respect for people who feel this way all the time. The physical symptoms are kind of scary (but don't worry--I'm fine. I just need to remember that I'm not in control. That, and remembering to breathe!)