If you’ve ever had the flu, you know that it is no joke. Catching this illness can put a serious damper on your plans, and it will definitely ruin your day. Many of us are able to get over the flu within days, but some are not so fortunate.
One young boy came down with a terrible case of the flu – so much so that he had to be hospitalized. His poor parents watched in agony for weeks as their little one fought for his life. This may be one of the hardest things a parent could go through. This account of his conditions throughout the illness is proof that the flu is NOT something to be trifled with.
Abby Burns-Amesbury lives with her family in Boyne City, Michigan. She is the mother of a 3 year old boy, who she refers to as Jase. When her child caught the flu, Abby and her husband went through some of the worst weeks of their lives.
It all started at the end of January. It happened pretty suddenly – one day Jase seemed fine, and the next he suffered from a runny nose and low fever. “I noticed he had a molar coming through,” Abby told Love What Matters. “So I just assumed it was from the tooth.”
It wasn’t the case, however, and this mom was in for an unpleasant surprise. The next day her little boy had low energy and a high fever. He had also begun to cough.
By the next day Jase was much worse. He had very little energy, a fever that just wouldn’t budge, and his coughing sounded serious. Abby took her son to the hospital, where he was put on IV fluids and breathing treatments. “Without hesitation, we elected to transport Jase to Munson Medical Center in Traverse City where he would have a better chance of recovering,” Abby explained.
Jase’s next doctor ordered chest radiographs and extensive blood work. This was clearly not the kind of cold you just wait out. Jase’s parents were worried, and for good reason. “He was really struggling to move air on his own. He started to become very mad when we touched him. He would cry out in sheer pain.”
The next day came, and then the next. The little boy still didn’t seem to be improving. It must have been heart-wrenching for his parents to wait outside that hospital room, always wondering what would happen to their beloved son. They couldn’t even wait inside the room most of the time because there simply wasn’t enough space. Between the machinery and medical personnel, there was no space left for the concerned parents to occupy.
As the days went on, the family focused on little signs of improvement. Jase’s parents convinced themselves to be excited at each hint of recovery, no matter how small. They just couldn’t bear the thought that his condition could get any worse.
As Jase’s parents soon learned, this was no ordinary flu. The boy was attached to a ventilator to make up for the oxygen that wasn’t coming into his lungs. His mother shared that “he was put into a chemically induced coma to assure he [did] not feel anything that is going on. It also [assured] he [would] not move while these machines [were] running.”
Just one week after the first flu symptoms showed up, Jase’s condition was critical. “I am still in shock that a week ago our little boy was sleeping on my lap, throwing the football, running around with the dog and just starting to show as being sick,” Abby admitted. “And today he is on life support.”
Over the next week this little boy faced even more testing and machinery. The results came in, and they did not look good. “So the MRI didn’t show us what we wanted to see,” the worried mother stated. “The virus has attacked Jase’s brain and brain stem. This is a VERY rare complication from the flu. Many of the doctors have never seen this. So as of right now, Jase is going to go back on the EEG so they can monitor brain functions. He will receive high doses of steroids to help with the inflammation, and high doses of a heavy-duty antibiotic.”
This was a trying time for everyone, especially Jase’s parents. Many of us have never had to watch our child be put on life support, and we can’t imagine how truly horrible it is. The helplessness his parents felt as they watched the doctors perform test after test must have been almost unbearable.
“It is so hard to sit and watch him struggle,” Abby shared. “Today I broke down again. No one should have to see their child like this. No one should have to ride this horrible roller coaster. This little boy is fighting so hard for his life. Can’t we catch a break??? Hasn’t he already been through enough???”
Thankfully, over time, Jase’s condition started to improve. “Children’s brains truly are sponges, and unlike ours they can compensate much easier,” the doctors explained to Abby. His parents were so thrilled to watch little improvements, like his eyes glancing around or his fingers moving.
No one expects for an illness to become life-threatening, but Jase’s story is proof that we can never know what fate the cards hold. When something as common as the flu has the capability of becoming life-threatening, you can never be too cautious. It is always a good idea to keep up your immune system, to give your body its best chance in fighting sickness.
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Source: Love What Matters