Let’s Spend the Night with Parker

We’re down another night nurse.  It’s kind of a sad story that isn’t mine to tell, but Reed and I find ourselves without a weekly night nurse.


Why, you may ask, do we even need a night nurse?

Lemme walk you through a typical night at the Hotel Hodson.

9:00 pm: Parker’s vest treatment.  Albuterol included. Lots of suctioning as both the vest and the Albuterol tend to bring up all kinds of fun stuff from Parker’s lungs.  Then 1-2 puffs of Flovent depending on how Parker’s lungs sound.

10:00 pm: Parker’s last oral meds chased down by a 60ml water bolus.

10:05 pm: Parker hooked up via his g-tube to an Infinity pump for his nightly continuous feeds.  Parker has on more than one occasion dumped the contents of this pump out and all over the carpet.

Reed and I have it worked out that he sleeps in the Safe Room with Parker while I stay awake in our bedroom waiting for Parker to fall into a deep enough sleep that I can hook him up to his LTV vent.

Our sleep cycles run opposite.  Reed gets his deep sleep early in the evening.  I’m more of a night owl and and can sleep in for about an hour later in the mornings than Reed.

10:30: Reed is snoring like a freight train, Parker is bouncing off the walls in his crib.

This isn’t looking good.  I can’t even hook Parker up to his pulse ox monitor if he’s awake.  Why?  Because he will simply take it off his toe, and then use the wire to pull the entire unit off the shelf.   That’s why.

11:00: Reed still snoring like a freight train.  Parker still bouncing off the walls.

11:30: I roll Reed over to his left side, snoring subsides some.  Parker still bouncing off the walls. He’s sounding junky, so I suction him out.

11:45: I hear the sound that I know means Parker has pulled off his oxygen tubing and has put that tubing into his mouth and is getting his oxygen that way.  I go in and hook him back up the right way.

12:00: I put the blanket that has fallen off of Reed back on,  and roll him onto his left side again.  Parker is still bouncing off the walls.


Oh, yeah. He looks all sweet an innocent….now…..while he gets to sleep in.

12:30: Parker still bouncing.  Reed still snoring.

12:35: Go back in and re-connect  oxygen tubing.

12:38: Go back in and re-connect oxygen tubing.

12:39: Go back in and re-connect oxygen tubing. Suction Parker.

12:41: Go back in and re-connect oxygen tubing.

12:45: Go back in and re-connect oxygen tubing.

12:46: Go back in and re-connect oxygen tubing.

12:52: Go back in and re-connect oxygen tubing.

12:55: Go back in and re-connect oxygen tubing.

12:58: Go back in and re-connect oxygen tubing. Add extra coban to the feeding pump Parker is trying so hard to upend.

1:30: I don’t even have to walk in to check.  I can hear Reed snoring and Parker bouncing off the walls.

2:00: Except for Reed’s snoring, it sounds quiet.  I tip toe in and see what I think is a sleeping kid.  I figure I’ll give it a half an hour more then I’ll come back and hook Parker up to his vent.

2:30ish: I’ve drifted off but am brought back to reality by the sounds of a screaming  Parker and one rather frantic Reed.  It seems Parker has pulled the ultimate fake out and instead of sleeping had pulled out his trach.

The little turkey butt.

I do most of the trach changes around here and Reed is trying to hold down an angry Brave Hero while lubricating  the trach in order to get it back in…….all in the dark mind you.

Me?  I’m hoping like heck Reed can pull this off on his own and I can just roll over and crash.

Yeah.  I know.  Mom of the Year I ain’t.  Especially around 2:30 in the morning.

Reed gets the trach replaced in Parker’s throat.  By this time…..close to 3:00 a.m…..Parker has finally exhausted himself and passes out.

Me too.

Reed waits a few minutes, then hooks Parker up to his vent and pulse ox monitor.

You’d think that after all the fighting and screaming to try and prevent Reed from replacing his trach, Parker’s sats would be horrible.

But, no.  His oxygen levels are great and his heart rate is in the low 60’s.

Reed lays back down, tries to calm what is left of his nerves and zonks back out.

I don’t even hear him when he starts snoring again.


  1. Suzie Nov 23, 10
  2. Stephanie Nance Nov 23, 10
    • Tammy & Parker Nov 23, 10
  3. mamikaze
    Nov 23, 10
    • Tammy & Parker Nov 23, 10
  4. suzannereber Nov 23, 10
  5. Childlife Nov 23, 10
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