At Long Last

Saturday night, Me Too started coughing. I gave her the usual medicine, and The Tape. If you have kids in Japan, you’ve probably used The Tape before. It’s a medication that is used for opening up the bronchial tubes, in patch from. Genius, no? I wish they could give all kids medications in tape form.

Or maybe not.

No matter where I put it, Me Too manages to scratch it off or sweat it off. It is rarely in the right place at night when I give her a bath. Half of the time I find it laying around the house somewhere. The other half the time? No idea. I can only presume it has run off with a sock or two.

The Tape works pretty well, I think, when your child actually needs it. Doctors here tend to prescribe it a lot, and I have friends who say it doesn’t do much. Lucky them, not to really need it.

But Saturday, The Tape was not enough. The humidifier was not enough. Sitting up half the night, holding Me Too upright while she coughed her lungs up to prevent her from choking on her own phlegm and vomit, that wasn’t enough, either.

How many nights have we spent that way, she and I? Sleepless, sweaty, awful nights.

I took her to the doctor today, and explained, once again, the misery of those nights. Maybe it was the crazy look in my eye, I don’t know. But finally, at long last, we have an inhaler.

Hallelujah, thank the good Lord above.

It has a long, tube-like attachment for little ones so she doesn’t have to inhale it directly (which I doubt she could do.)

I’m hoping, with my fingers and toes and heartstrings all crossed, that this will be the silver bullet that makes her life easier. That she will be able to sleep at night now. That she will be able to go to school every day now. That she can run and play even when it’s cold now.

I look at that list, and I think, “Wow, those are just normal things.” And it makes me sad, and it makes me feel guilty. She wouldn’t have had to go through any of this if I hadn’t dropped the ball, if I had known what RSV was, if I had known what it could do to newborns, if I had recognized the symptoms when Brother had it and taken them both to the hospital sooner…. If if if if if if if if if if if.

This has been a miserable journey, full of potholes and pitfalls and lots and lots of phlegm. I really hope we have turned a corner now, that just around the bend sunny skies are waiting.

But right now it is too soon to say.

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