It's All Okay

Just a mom blogging about life with an autistic child.

Location: Canada

I'm a stay at home mom with two boys. Patrick is my youngest and has ASD.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Kim over at got me thinking about seizures. I don't think I've ever posted this whole story.

Patrick has epilepsy. We learned this about a year before the autism diagnosis. As a matter of fact, at the time we thought it might explain some of his issues. We really thought it explained his irregular sleeping patterns. We were partially right but that's neither here nor there. This story is about how we found out he was epileptic.

It was a beautiful spring day. We were all outside as we are more often than not. Mom, Dad, older brother and Patrick. Dad and I were walking down our long country laneway to put older brother on the school bus. Patrick was playing nicely in his sand box near the house. I kept looking in his direction to make sure he was still there, he was only 3 after all.

During one of these frequent checks I saw him fall to the ground. I said "hun, something's wrong with Patrick". He looks over and says (something he'll never forgive himself for) "no, he's fine, he's just playing on the ground". It made sense what he said. Patrick often drops to the ground for absolutely no reason. But mama's instinct was blaring in my brain. "No" I said, "something's wrong".

Dad sprinted over to find Patrick laying on the ground unconcious. I watched him pick up his stiff body, put him in the car, and drive away. We only spoke long enough to agree he should take him quickly to the emergency room. We're pretty far away from ambulance service (although the hospital made sure to tell us we should have called 911).

My son was dead. I was standing there in the middle of our laneway thinking my son was dead. I put older brother on the bus. Then I stood there wondering what to do. I had to get to my son's side even if he was gone. I had to be there. He needed his mama of that I was certain.

I hoped into my husband's car. It's a standard. I had never driven one before. Oh well, I figred I'd get myself to the neighbour's house a bit down the road and have her drive me. She wasn't home. Next neighbour. Not home. I'm starting to panick. Tears are streaming down my face.

So I drove. I drove a standard transmission car about 15 minutes (it took me 7) in to the small down closest to us. I prayed the whole way that Patrick would be alive when I got there. I also prayed for the one stoplight to be way I could stop and start this car again. It was.

As I pull in to the ER parking lot I see the car dad drove in the middle, door left open, nobody around. I park, walk past it and in to the ER. I can hear Patrick's screams from the door. Oh, thank you God. Screaming is good.

The story really gets boring from here. He's fine. It was the first of many seizures before we could get him on the right medication. But all the other seizures I handled well since now I knew what they were and what to expect. No need to bring him to the hospital unless they didn't stop on their own.

We've had EEG, MRI and CT scans. He's well medicated now. He's actually coming up to two years seizure free which means if his EEG is normal (it wasn't before) then he might try coming off the meds.

A lot has happened since then. Autism being the biggest. But I will never in my whole life forget the moments when I thought he was dead. Perhaps that's why autism wasn't the "worse than cancer" disaster I hear people talk about. My son is alive. My son is healthy. Autism we can handle.


Blogger kristina said...

What an experience-----but so good to hear he is doing well on the meds. One thing after another...... I can't drive standard either!

Wed Feb 14, 05:13:00 PM 2007  
Blogger Adrienne said...

OMG! You never told me that story. I hope that you are Dad can forgive yourselves. On any other day and at any other moment you would have been right, he was fine. You allowed Patrick to have some autonomy and play alone. It was the right thing to do. Then, you listened to your instinct and checked on him; again the right thing. All down the chain of events you did the right things. Patrick is fine and you are both fantastic parents.

Mon Feb 26, 12:21:00 PM 2007  

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