The Samantha Years

The discharge diaries

Ah, the day of the discharge…busy, hectic, chaotic….

We needed to go home with an I.V. pump, I.V fluids, a new formula bag (I forgot my spare) and new meds. I needed to be trained on said I.V. equipment AND we needed to be out by 2:00 in order to make our mitochondrial appointment. This appointment has been on the books for five months…..oh we’re making this appointment.

This is a lot to coordinate on a Monday morning.

1:00- Seizure sign, balloons, flowers, cookies, cards, clothes and tooth brush are packed in the Malibu.

1:30- Our I.V. pump arrives but the tubing was missing. You can’t run an I.V. without it so our in-home care rep left to retrieve our missing parts. We went to our mito appt….which lasted three hours. Our home care rep came into the meeting with the pump, tubing, a manual, the 24-hour number and a ‘good luck’.

Hmmmm….so much for a little training before leaving the hospital….

5:00- We’re back up in our room collecting the last of our things to go home. I switch all of Samantha’s feeding over to our home pump and turn it on. We are ready, we are finally, finally, outta here. I wheel Samantha out while waving goodbye to our wonderful 8th floor team.

5:10- I realize that I turned the pump on but I never reset the rate of the pump. The rate is much, much slower for her new ‘j’ tube (25 mls an hour vs 250 mls an hour) I have just dumped 50 mls. of liquid into Samantha’s small intestine.

5:11- I curse

5:12- Still cursing

While I am cursing, I do turn her pump off and decide to keep it off for the next couple of hours to give her small intestine a rest. Samantha, bless her little heart, seems no worse for the wear. She gives me a big grin.

I love this child.

5:13- Still cursing

5:13 and 30 seconds: cursing a little more

5:14- Rattled by my mistake and a bit run down from a three hour appointment, I decide I can’t drive home without a coffee. While standing in line for said coffee, the 12 year-old behind me gets in my face with his sock-puppet…..

“Sock puppet stare down!” He says to me while holding this dirty sock with button eyes inches from my face. He then decides to sock-puppet stare down Samantha.

Bear in mind, I am still reeling from my 50 ml dump into Samantha’s gut. I look at sock-puppet boy and try to steer Samantha’s stroller out of sock-puppet range.

5:15- I can’t decide who I would like to sock puppet smack down more…. our cute little 12 year old or his mother who is conveniently on the phone and ignoring the whole situation; the sock puppet attack on my newly discharged, somewhat bloated daughter.

This better be a really, really good latte’.

5:21- I decide perhaps I am a bit high strung and probably shouldn’t relate to the public for a day or two.

5:51- Rush hour traffic stress ain’t got nothin’ on hospital stress. I sit happily in the traffic queue and watch my daughter in the mirror. She likes riding next to her huge get-well balloons.

6:25- Home, home, home, thank the bad-mommy-mistake-sock-puppet gods….we are home.

5 thoughts on “The discharge diaries”

  1. I have done the same thing with the g tube, J tube rate when we were doing both J and G feeds at the same time. I was switching the rate 3-4 times a day. You caught it much faster then I. We had a 911call and puke EVERYwhere! Don't beat yourself up! LOL! It just goes along with feeding the bed! Love ya and so glad that you guys are home and Samantha is feeling better!


  2. Welcome home dear friend and sweet Samantha!!! Sock puppet stare down…that made me LAUGH out loud! Can't wait to catch up! I'll wait a few days before calling! Rest up my friend!!


  3. Oh Heather, I love your humor! I once switched the TPN and Lipid pumps……..and then left Landon with my dad! Dad calls and says the pump is beeping and says it is done and the white bag is empty! WHAT! The bag was supposed to only be half gone at the end of the 12 hour cycle. YIKES! I frantically called to see how much damage I had done to the liver! Luckily all was ok, but yikes! Glad you guys are home!


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