A Tricky Day

This was written last night, at stupid o’clock, when I couldn’t sleep.

Yesterday I stuffed up. I am trying to be polite but when you read “stuffed” be assured another word played in my head. It was a tricky day from the start. An upset girl was awake too early for school holidays. I went in to her room to assure her we’d get up soon. But she would have none of this mum going back to bed business. So she cried.

It took so long to get her out of bed. I vented her tummy and gave her a drink of water. Then she was changed and dressed {it may sound quick but it’s not}. And then transferred via the hoist in which she seemed to delight in being uncooperative despite her earlier malaise. Finally she was in her wheelchair going to the kitchen for meds and feed. First another vent. “Please move your hand. Put your head in the middle or it won’t work. Hand away. Head in the middle.  Don’t grab the tube. Hand away. Head up. No, that’s not safe. Please move your hand away.” On and on and on. I cannot describe the frustration and guilt at feeling so frustrated with my gorgeous girl. It is an evil, unsavoury mix. Finally I gave up and moved on to the first two medications and starting her feed. Breakfast was underway, for her at least, so I tried to plan our day.

A call to our local cinema brought no joyous changes in their wheelchair access so I called the one further away to make sure the movie was in an accessible cinema. No answer. There was no time to fluff around; no time to have a shower. So I grabbed the other seven morning meds to give. Looking at one syringe I realised I has measured one medication at another meds dose so I corrected it, delivered them and flew out the door. The drive had me stressing all of the way at how hard it all seems and what a grumpy mum I have become.

Only by the grace of a handy disabled car park and a lovely and understanding ticket seller did we even make the movie sans companion card and in a mad rush. Missy coped surprisingly well with the sudden changes in volume this time. Mostly. But she did decide to talk. For a non verbal kid she can really interrupt a quiet movie moment. So I fed her tastes of melted Malteser…constantly…to keep her quiet. The movie is a pretty good one…or so I hear. We dropped in to our fave café for lunch on the way home. But I was still so rattled that I didn’t even enjoy it.

We arrived home in time for the girls carer to start her shift. I explained the day to that point as I measured the lunch time meds to be given before Missy headed to bed for a snooze. I handed them to the carer and went about writing my “to do” list. After helping put the kiddo to bed I was finishing my list when I saw it. One syringe still on the bench. But I had handed over 3 syringes and a medicine glass…the right amount. To say the horror dawned would be misguiding as it fair smacked me in the head. What had I given her?

The carer confirmed giving four meds, trusting I had measured them all correctly. But I hadn’t. I messed up. I grabbed her tube and the remaining syringe to give to her in bed. By the syringes remaining I knew what was usually in that one but didn’t recall measuring it. How can that happen? I often think that in hospitals medications are always double checked. There are high expectations on parents to suddenly be confident experts as soon as their child gets a diagnosis. It’s terrifying. So I read the meds information I had to hand. That scared me more. I called our pharmacist. He was a gentle, calm voice of reason. It turns out that missing s dose would be worse than giving an extra one with many hours either side of her regular times. I reassured the carer all would be well. But I didn’t believe it so easily.

The mistake had no consequence for my girl {thankfully}. Just for me. It has rocked my confidence…made me triple check and question everything I do. You see, unlike in a hospital setting where staff have years of training, here, at home the buck stops with me. Always.  And that scares the %^&$ out of me.


2 thoughts on “A Tricky Day

  1. Wow – you life and mine sound scarily similar, including all the grumpiness, rushing about, rarely time for a shower and frustration. stand tall sister – take a deep breath – and remember you are only human!
    xx Kate, mum to a severely gorgeous daughter!

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