Posts Tagged ‘ febrile seizure ’

Lost In Translation: “Mommy, Are My Beaver Gone?”

Saturday, March 23rd, 2013

2 years, 4 months.

Dear Jack,

Mommy stayed home with you on Tuesday, the day after you had your 2nd febrile seizure. Fortunately, you had a quick recovery and were back to school by Wednesday.

Even still, Mommy kept a close watch on your temperature that day; knowing that if it spiked again, you could have yet another febrile seizure.

As she cared for you in our bed, you made this face (featured right) and asked her:

“Mommy, are my beaver gone?”

This hasn’t stopped being funny to me yet.

Evidently, you think that the word beaver and fever are the same thing. At this point, I don’t think you quite comprehend the fact that “having a fever” means your body’s temperature is too hot.

I imagine a mischievous little beaver hanging on your back, running across your legs and arms; just pestering you and keeping you from being able to go to school.

It makes me think of how last Friday I spent my lunch break with you at the park and you saw a squirrel doing his typical, paranoid, jumpy circus act on a tree. You asked, “Daddy, he gonna get me?”

So I wonder if in general you have a fear about small critters “getting” you.

As your Daddy, I will protect you against it all: Monsters underneath the bed, squirrels in the trees, beavers… not to mention- gophers, duckbill platypuses… if it’s an irrational fear, I’m on it for ya!

If it’s a rational fear, like having a 105 degree temperature and having to rush you to the ER, well, I’m good for that too.




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My 2 Year-Old’s 2nd Febrile Seizure, Sort Of

Monday, March 18th, 2013

2 years, 4 months.

Dear Jack,

It seems like only a year ago that you had your febrile seizure.

And it seems like only two days ago on your 2.333rd birthday that I said this:

You haven’t had another [febrile seizure] since; in fact, the last time you were even sick at all was last July.

As your dad, I am so grateful and thankful for your health, safety, and general well-being.

I don’t worry about you, but I am constantly aware of what precious cargo you are and how I responsible I need to be for you.”

With that being said, I had to take you to the ER today at Vanderbilt Children’s Hospital because you were slipping into another febrile seizure.

I’m more of a romanticized, big picture, spare-me-the-technical-details kind of storyteller, so I’ll just regurgitate the highlights as best as I remember them happening over the past 24 hours:

Mommy had already left late for work due to a tornado warning, you had a fever of 105, I gave you fever-reducing medicine, we were watching Hard Hat Harry’s All About Monster Trucks, you starting shivering, I took off your clothes, your lips looked like they were going numb…

As I held you while talking to the nurse on the phone, you started convulsing like you did in last year’s febrile seizure…

When you did that it scared me, which then scared you, which caused you to wake up from the first three seconds of this year’s febrile seizure…

The nurse on the phone said to bring you to the ER instead of the pediatrician’s office, I threw your clothes in a Kroger bag, I by default imagined myself as Bruce Willis in the Die Hard movies as we drove through the post-tornado warning weather to the hospital…

I remember snapping my fingers a lot to keep you awake as I drove you there, saying, “Stay with me, son! Wake up! Don’t fall asleep! Listen, I’m snapping my fingers like Hard Hat Harry does…”.

When we got there, I found out you had caught a case of Roseola, which had caused your temperature to spike, setting your body up to go into seizure mode.

Thank God, you’re okay… again.

It was scarier for me this 2nd time because I didn’t have Mommy or an ambulance. I kept telling you, “You’re going to be okay, son. Daddy’s taking care of you. Hang with me…”.

I knew what I was saying was true, but at the same time my trust was in God, not myself.

Navigating my way to the ER in post-tornadic weather, trying to find out where to park once I got there (!), and keeping you from falling into another seizure because I hated the thought of your seizing while I drove 65 mph on the interstate in the wind and rain…

Well, I really do feel like Bruce Willis in a Die Hard movie right now.

As for you having another febrile seizure, A) I’m becoming a pro at what to do now and B) I’ll going ahead and mark my calendar for next March, so hopefully I can jinx it.




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Happy 2.333rd Birthday! (A Year After Your Febrile Seizure)

Saturday, March 16th, 2013

2 years, 4 months. (Or, 2.333 years.)

Dear Jack,

While many people somewhat recognize half-birthdays and ages, they certainly don’t acknowledge thirds of birthdays and ages. But if they did, I would bring to your attention that today is your 2.333rd birthday; if I’m even saying that right.

Also, it was a year ago today that you had your febrile seizure. You haven’t had another one since; in fact, the last time you were even sick at all was last July.

As your dad, I am so grateful and thankful for your health, safety, and general well-being.

I don’t worry about you, but I am constantly aware of what precious cargo you are and how I responsible I need to be for you.

This morning I woke up from a nightmare that you got lost at a public swimming pool, though I was there with you. I think that was my subconscious reinforcing my constant awareness of keeping you safe and healthy.

Today while Mommy went “vegan shopping” at Whole Foods Market, I hung out with you at your favorite indoor playground nearby. While we were there, I eventually had to use the restroom.

I realize it probably would have been fine to have a fellow parent (yet complete stranger) watch you for those two minutes, but it’s just not something I think I could ever bring myself to do.

So I brought you into the bathroom with me, basically forcing you to watch. You were happy because I let you flush.

Speaking of your 2.333rd birthday, it was about 3 years ago that Mommy and I found out we were having you. We thought we were going to have a little girl…

Now 3 years later, we are so proud to have a noise with dirt on it… that is, a little boy named Jack who is currently obsessed with monster trucks and The Beatles.







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My 16 Month-Old Son’s Febrile Seizure

Sunday, March 18th, 2012

16 months.

Exactly one hour into being 16 months-old, my son had a seizure due to his quick rise in temperature to 105.5 degrees. Last Thursday night, both my wife and I separately tried to prepare ourselves for the fact we may be spending the last final moments with our son.

When I put Jack to bed Thursday night at 6:41 PM, his temperature seemed fine. He was a bit more tired than normal but I blamed that on Daylight Savings.

At 10:00 PM, my wife and I were finishing up the dishes after having just watched two episodes of Lost when we heard Jack screaming (!) upstairs. We rushed into his room to learn his temperature was 105.5. We took off his clothes, placed a wet wash rag on him, and gave him a dose of Children’s Advil.

I called the pediatrician who told me we did everything right; as long as his temperature started going back down and he went back to sleep, that we shouldn’t worry too much.

That was the case, so my wife and I were in bed by 11:30 PM.

Exactly 90 minutes passed. Before I trained Jack to sleep through the night at 7 months-old and he would wake up every couple of hours, I hardly ever was the first to hear him cry. But this time was different.

My feet were on the floor and running after about one second of the eery sound I heard coming from Jack’s bedroom. The urgency of my reaction woke up my wife and she was right behind me.

What we saw next did nothing short of traumatize us a bit. We will never forget the version of our son that night.

As I tried to pick him up out of his bed, it was like he was trying to suffocate himself into his blanket, face first. He was rocking back and forth like he was possessed by something evil.

We carried him onto our bed. I called 911 (for the first time in my 30 years) and my wife kept watch over him.

By the end of the 8 minute phone call, two paramedics charged in. They gave us some relief after telling us that they see this happen all the time and that while we didn’t need to fear for his life, he needed to be rushed by ambulance to Vanderbilt.

From 1:30 AM to 4:30 AM, we watched the doctors care for our son. We learned that he had an ear infection, which caused the quick rise in temperature, which caused the febrile seizure.

Jack is of the 2% of the population who may go into this type of seizure when his temperature rises quickly. According to the doctors, there is a 30% chance this will happen again, but these seizures do not cause any long-term effects or brain damage.

Sure enough, since then, he has been his hilarious, weird, smart little self.

We thank the Lord this event was something so harmless, in the end. But when you’re experiencing it for the first time, and you’ve never heard of a febrile seizure and don’t know how to react, you can’t help but feel a big part of you dying.

There’s no way to know any different, in that moment. It’s one of the scariest things I’ve ever lived through.

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