Another trip to the hospital

In Cerebral Palsy, Family, Health on March 31, 2011 at 10:06 am


His second hospital trip


As explained previously, Ariq had been hospitalized twice due to his fever and vomiting. Unlike his first hospital sleep-over, the second hospital trip was accompanied by seizure. It was a couple of weeks after Eid ul Fitr 2010 when this happened. That afternoon, I went out with my wife and my younger brother on a double date to Gandaria City. We went home around 7pm and parted near Lebak Bulus soccer stadium where my wife took a taxi home while I continued the drive to my mom’s house, my brother dropped me off there. I remember asking my wife to join me but she refused because she preferred to go home, she said that she felt bad for leaving them too long.

I stayed at mom’s for about an hour while accompanying my uncle (mom’s youngest brother) and his wife who came over to see mom that night. Next trip, my uncle drove me home and stopped by few blocks away from home to have a late dinner. I was just about to sit when Ratna called informing that Ariq vomited all over the bed and turned pale. Ratna found out later after Baraka ran to her exclaiming “Mama, kakak muntah”. Ariq slept early after dusk while Raka played in the living room with her. I dashed out home instantly without saying any words to my uncle. I ran home, as fast as I could, with all my might just to get home as fast as possible. We were dining about a kilometer from where I live so it was quite tough to run that distance but I had no other choice than to rely upon this smoker’s lung and heart, pumping em hard! If I’m not mistaken it was a week after I had been hospitalized because of gastric problems. I got cold sweat whenever I was too tired but that night, I didn’t give in to any of that.

When I got home, it was paralyzing to see him once again, helpless, cold-sweating, looking pale, stiffed and covered in his own vomit. He shit in his diaper too because of the heavy turbulence inside his stomach during vomiting. I lifted and carried him to the car, ready for our second hospital trip. When I was carrying him, I felt his body trembled, he was shaking (we found out later on that it was seizure). That moment I felt it myself that it was such a long drive to the nearby hospital. When we got there, carrying the 30 kilogram-weighed Ariq, I kicked the emergency door, rushed in and placed him on the bed, gasping for breath. It took me two minutes in order to catch my breath and be able to tell the on duty nurses what happened; luckily they were fast giving Ariq oxygen for first aid while I was busy gasping. I called my uncle, I called my mom, I called my sister, and I called all people I could think of, just to tell them that Ariq was in hospital. I also called one of my aunts who is a doctor, so that she could drop by keeping us company, assisting should there be any questions/medical inquiries.

Once again I stood like a statue, muted, overwhelmed by sadness and exhaustion. There he was, our cheerful Ariq, still looking pale, cold sweating and lips turned blue. I cried (again), caressing his forehead, hugging him, telling him to wake up and it’s no use. He barely moved and he didn’t even realize we were all around him. All I thought was to hell with dignity, I cried because it’s too painful to see him that way with all the wires, oxygen and other displaying instruments all over him. I cursed and cursed, wondering why the same thing happened again to our lovely one. I burst out in tears when my uncle, the one who drove me home, arrived. We are so close to one another, frankly speaking, I know him inside-out. He helped me informing others as well as taking care of the administration or admission as such.

One thing that made me confused, even though he vomited heavily, his temperature was normal so why did he have seizure, what triggered his vomit? Was it something he ate? Did he have something not fresh? But all of these didn’t make any sense since we all had the same meals. Anyway, once again the doctor decided that he must be hospitalized; luckily we are all insured by the office so when things turn bad, we just go to any partnering hospital, show the admission staff our insurance card and the hotline will take care of it. It’s very simple but I didn’t think of doing it myself that night. My uncle was the one who did all of these. Thanks a lot uncle : )

It is such a blessing to have come from two big families who always communicate with one another so when this happened, several relatives showed up, giving support as well as the necessary assistance. We stayed at the emergency room for about an hour or so while they were preparing the room for him. I negotiated with the admission staff so that we could put him in a suite or any room alone. I remember how restless he had been during his first hospital overnight so we thought it’s wise to get him a single room like the last one. I was so exhausted and hungry but I didn’t care about it for all I cared about was Ariq had to be taken care of first.

The rest of the following plot had been more or less the same, he was restless, we woke up, he tried to pull the infusion and we struggled to prevent him doing that. Here’s what differed the second visit: We are advised to send Ariq for an EEG (Electroencephalography) test to record the brainwave activities to detect problems in the electrical activity of the brain. Brain cells communicate with each other by producing tiny electrical impulses. In an EEG, this faint electrical activity is measured by putting electrodes on the scalp. A kind of test we believe quite hard, if not impossible, to conduct. In order to undergo an EEG test, the patient must be calm, conscious and must not be sedated; he/she must refrain from doing unnecessary movements since those movements affect the brainwaves. We know Ariq best, he would pull all of those wires and cables away from him. Any stuff strange or unfamiliar to him will surely make him uncomfortable and that is exactly why he tried to break free from the infusion.

So, in the morning, with Ariq on a wheelchair, already up, refreshed and kicking again, we headed down to EEG section, especially prepared for his test, dedicated for him in an unlimited time so that the test could be conducted whenever he’s ready for it. There, Ariq was given an oral sedative, a mild one, just to calm him down. An hour or two passed, Ariq was restless, he continued singing, mumbling and praying instead of sleeping or even calming down (first attempt failed successfully). In the afternoon, through his infusion, again he was given another shot of sedative. Thank God, he fell asleep so we rushed downstairs, with him sleeping on his hospital bed, we didn’t want to wake him up by mounting him on a wheelchair like in the morning. As soon as we were at the EEG room doorway, we were about to stroll him inside when suddenly we heard him singing (LOL, second attempt failed). Around dusk, we took him downstairs, put him on the bed and sedated him so we could instantly conduct the test when he fell asleep. Hours and hours elapsed, he kept on singing, laughing and reciting all short Surah from the Holy Koran, straight until 9pm, the last shift at the hospital (FAILED!).

In the morning, when Dr. Irawan, his neurologist, dropped by, he gave us a prescription of stesolid rectal tubes, enemas containing the active ingredient diazepam. Diazepam is a type of medicine called a benzodiazepine. Benzodiazepines are used for their sedative, anxiety-relieving and muscle-relaxing effects. He also told us that whenever he’s having a seizure, we don’t have to go to the hospital, just give him proper medication fast through his rectum. He emphasized that a prolong seizure (more than 5 minutes) may result in brain injury and that we had to bear this in mind. We didn’t have to guts to imagine how such injury would affect him any worse than his present condition since his cerebral palsy has already given him a brain trauma resulting in delayed development.

That day was dilemmatic, on one hand we were so grateful that Ariq was allowed to go home in the afternoon and sad on the other hand because now it would be useless to perform an EEG (after a seizure, a person mustn’t exceed 2x24hrs if he wants to undergo the test because his brainwaves will be normal again). Finally we went home but now with a burden inside our hearts and thoughts that we had to be ready anytime the seizure attacks, so much ready so that we don’t feel tensed when this happened; therefore, we can give him first aid treatment quickly and effectively. Well, hang in there buddy, hang in there tough. We’ll be with you along the way….

Just like we all know that ‘a picture speaks a thousand words’, I will give a lot more for you to see. These pictures are not for you with weak hearts:


Heart-rate monitor display





Ratna was praying endlessly for his recovery

Sleeping restlessly





Baraka at home. He’s been asking for his brother





It is sad to conclude this post with a fact that his being hospitalized for the second time had been the starting point for other epileptic seizures. Stay strong boy!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: