Friday, August 5, 2011

Pneumonia Baby

Sick with Pneumonia August 5, 2011
Anaya is having to struggle for each breath.   I am here in bed with her.  I'm about to give her the morning dose of antibiotics.  Her fever is still there.  She woke up and moaned, coughing up a huge phlegm ball that I sucked out of her mouth with the suction.  She's very weak.  She was only able to cough it up to the back of her tongue.  Lucky for me I know how to deep suction by putting the tube gently down her throat.  I've been sucking out gobs of white and yellow thick phlegm.  It's nasty.  Poor little love.  Her nose is congested too.  I've been rinsing it with saline and gently suctioning out her nostrils.

Yesterday I had a class early in the morning on mobile apps and then a session with Dr. Brownstein.  A well known and well liked Psychiatrist in town.  I told him my life story, he assessed me.  He diagnosed me with post traumatic stress disorder, and also another disorder related to abandonment, abuse and loss.  I went home directly after my session. 

 Nurse Mo Mo, who I last referred to as Maimo (Anaya likes Mo Mo better) was with Anaya at the house.  She was very concerned about her breathing and told me she had to give her a breath several times.  That she was really having a hard time.  I picked her up and she settled.  She needs her mama.  She settled against my heart, she heaved a little sigh and fell asleep.  I decided then and there that I needed to find a baby carrier big enough and supportive enough for her to be near my heart so that I can move around and tend to things while holding her.  We jumped in the van and went downtown to Mountain Baby. The store for good baby stuff in Nelson.  The owner, Judy, has long been a great supporter of Anaya's.

I found an Ergo Carrier with a special head and neck support that works great for Anaya.  We purchased it, with her in it...It is grey with stars on it.  We plan on finding rainbow colored patches to sew/iron onto it to make it more "Anaya-Like".  After that we walked quickly down Baker Street.  The main street in downtown Nelson.  It didn't last very long because Anaya's breathing continued to get worse.  I immediately got on the phone to Canuck Place children's hospice as they always have doctors available to ask questions to immediately.

I asked what I should do.  They said they would consult our team about it and call back.  In the meantime we got Anaya home to the house and lay her down in the bed.  It was extremely hot in the house. I called Brent and asked him to go get a small air conditioner from WalMart.  They were on sale...he came back and installed it ASAP.  The room began to cool.  Canuck place called me back and told me that Anaya needed to be assessed by a doctor to see if she needed end of life care and transfer to the hospice.  They suggested that I take her up to Emergency at the hospital.  

Anaya had just fallen asleep and was actually breathing a bit better in her sleep.  I loathed the thought of moving her and dragging her through the stress of going to emergency where they would undoubtedly poke and prod her and ask millions of questions...then I had a thought!  I should call Dr. Kalia and ask him to come here and assess her.  So that's what I did.  I called his office, got through to him and asked him to come to our house to assess Anaya to see if she needed end of life care.  

"Of course" he said.  He arrived within twenty minutes. Leaning on the edge of the bed he listened to Anaya's lungs and heart. I told him about how I thought she had pneumonia last week and I had taken her to the hospital in Penticton - where I was told that she didn't have pneumonia and that she was likely dying from her disease progression.  He told me they were wrong.  Anaya has aspiration pneumonia.  He immediately ordered antibiotics and suggested we keep her home in bed.  He said she's better off here than in the hospital where she could catch another bug in her weak state.  He looked around at all of our equipment in the house and told us we have everything the hospital has. Suction, oxygen, a bed, a nurse, medicines.  He said we know her best, that we are the best ones to take care of her.

I thanked him for coming.  He said "Anytime."  He saw himself out.  He called Canuck Place and gave them a less thing for me to do!  I stayed in the bedroom with Anaya all night.  Wiping her brow with a cold damp cloth, suctioning the phlegm from her mouth, massaging her arms, holding her hands, kissing her head, eyes and cheeks.

And I'm still here!  In the bedroom with Anaya.

Solara is here beside me too.  She asked why I am writing.  I explained to her that I write about what's going on...she said "why" I said...because it's like my journal, it's like the book of what life is like with Anaya.because people read it...She said "Oh" and jumped off and ran down the stairs to watch cartoons.

Anaya still sleeps.  She is so exhausted.  I took a short video of her breathing.  I love every breath she takes. Here it is.

Today the plan is to stay here in bed with Anaya.  I can try to organize a few things from my computer.  I'm hoping and praying that Anaya is going to stay strong and fight this bug.  So far things are looking good.  I had hoped to get out to try to sell bumper stickers and talk to people in town about the birthday party...but it looks like today is an at-home-love-the-baby day.  I'm going to try to rustle up so volunteers to help out.

The bumper stickers are pretty neat.  They have a QR code on them, when it is scanned with a smartphone QR reader it takes you directly to the website.  So anyone who sees the sticker can learn ALL about Anaya.  It looks like this.

I pay $2 each to have them printed locally here in Nelson.  Big Cranium Design gave us a deal on them.  I'm selling them for $5.  So three dollars from every sticker purchase goes towards Anaya's care and me staying home with Anaya.  Did you get one yet? Cheaper than a Starbucks Latte!

I will update you as the day progresses.
Thank you so much for sending your love and prayers to Anaya.  I can tell she's going to get better and we will enjoy the rest of the summer together and she'll get to have cake at her birthday party.

I don't have a nurse at the house today so if anyone wants to come over and help out or take Solara on a playdate it would be much appreciated.



  1. Send our prays!! Please stay strong.

  2. Thanks for the update, Camara. I'm so glad she's still our earthly angel! I think she has a lot of life left to live. She's such a little fighter!

    The air conditioner is a great idea and will make things more comfortable. And what a great carrier you got for Anaya!

    I so wish I lived closer to help out. I would love to be able to take Solara with me to play with my girls! They would have a blast! Or just do running around for you - even to bring you tea, water, food to you while you cuddled with your little love. As far away as we are from each other, I hope one day we can meet so I can give you one gigantic hug and to thank you for what you and Anaya have brought to my life!

    Tell that beauty of yours to breathe strongly and that I'm sending all my love, strength, and prayers to her in Nelson from me in Nova Scotia.

    Love you all! XOXO

  3. Sending prayers up for you Camara and your sweet baby, love to you!

  4. Oh how I wish I lived close. You are an amazing mom to both the girls. Stay strong and know many are thinking of your family.

  5. Never, for a second, doubt your motherly instincts! They have been tested time and time again and every time you are right! You are such a strong woman and mother! Anaya is a gift to you and you to her. You truly were meant for each other. Every time you touch her skin, every moment she breathes in your smell, you stroke her hair and she feels your strength and protection is a blessing. My spirit is with you, Anaya, Solara and Brent now. I'm sending love and strength your way!


  6. Beautiful post... so happy to hear she is holding on and fighting through, and you are so right to just nest in with her, love her and rest. Will be thinking of you both all day with love and concern. Such a beautiful girl. xoxoxox

  7. Sending you prayers sand hugs that Anaya will recover quicky and be breathing better on her own.She is a stong girl and has come this far.I'm sure the time spent with her is a comfort to hee mon and she enjoys every minute with Anaya.I'm sure with bed rest and the antibiotics Anaya will be fine.

  8. Precious girl. I hope she gets to feeling better. I don't know how you do it all. You are the strongest person I know, Camara. And God bless Dr. Kalia. He seems like an angel. Will continue to keep you all in my thoughts and prayers today, as everyday. Am putting my 'I Love Anaya' bumper sticker on in a minute. I do love her. We all do. Linda in Tennesee

  9. Ergos are the best. Ours saved my baby's life when we were first admitted to hospital. Keeping her close to me kept her heart rate down and prevented any further stress on her little (big) heart. Hoe you find someone to help out today! Sounds like you could definitely need it.

    From one stressed out, scared momma to another, all my love and prayers. You're a star.

  10. Breaks my heart to see Anaya like this. She's such a strong little love. I pray the antibiotics kick in fast and her symptoms subside. I'll keep sending my healing love & prayers.

    Good news -- two wonderful mamas (one in North Vancouver & another in Alberta) have emailed indicating they have colostrum milk for Anaya. Urgently trying to get this milk to you. Hoping the milk will arrive on Tuesday, as Purolator doesn't have Saturday service.

    If anyone else has colostrum milk or know of someone who might have some, please, please email Anaya could benefit greatly from this special milk.

    Thanks so much for keeping us abreast of her condition. I also wish I could be of more help. Blake has an ergo too and we both love it. You're right, it wouldn't be right without a beautiful rainbow on it! :) You'll both love the closeness this carrier provides.

    Sending you both all the hugs and kisses your hearts can hold. I love you both dearly. Get well little love.


  11. Alexandra IrizarryAugust 5, 2011 at 12:33 PM

    Please place a kiss on her chubby little cheek for me and tell her I think of her EVERY DAY and that I rub my healing hands necklace JUST for her...I know she will pull through. Love and prayers for all of you!xoxox

  12. I wish I lived closer. I would certainly take Solara off your hands so you could focus on Anaya, or at the very least bring you guys a warm meal & a little company while you nurse your beautiful little girl back to health. Still sending prayers and my thoughts.
    I appreciate so much everything Anaya has taught me, and I can honestly say I stop to appreciate the little things and give my children extra hugs & kisses because Anaya has touched me so.
    Feel better quickly, little angel.

  13. I love the Ergo. We used that when our little one was a baby and I loved the feeling of having them so close! I read your posts and see the beautiful pictures of Anaya. I think about her every day and hope and pray for her and your family. She's so precious and I only wish we lived closer to help out and give a hug and kiss to the sweet angel.

  14. What a challenging day! I am so glad you have found a compassionate and knowledgeable doctor to care for Anaya so well. And, I agree with the comment above, Ergo carriers are incredible. They made the first few months with premature twins bearable. Baby stays close to your chest and can hear every heartbeat. As precious as Anaya's breath is to you, your heartbeat is precious to her (as you know very well).

  15. All the love in the world!!!!

  16. thinking of you. your blog always makes me tear up.

    I feel for you I have ptsd and due to being a sensitive soul the trauma triggered borderline personality disorder.

    anaya is so pretty. she is so lucky to have a mom as dedicated as you are in her life.

    much love


  17. stay right with her. your instincts are right on. the carrier is fab! i wish we lived closer too. i'd so like to help more. do you still need milk for her camara? i have some in freezer like 6 medela bags. not much but a little. do let me know. i will pay for delivery/send it to you.

  18. I signed up to do a little each month.. I will be posting on my blog asking as well. Please update us on how the weekend went!

  19. What a precious video... Earth Angel <3 <3 <3


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