On Monday night, the Munchkin was sick.
He was being given acetominophen, but at about 9:30pm, his temperature clocked in at 103.6.
Now, I’m normally not one to panic but he was looking pretty peaked and I thought to myself, hmmm, 103.6 is pretty freaking high. And that’s even taking into account that his system already had fever reducer in it.
We have a health plan that has a 24 hour nurse hotline, and I figured since we pay for it, I might as well use it. I was considering taking him in to urgent care, but usually I like to stay home as much as possible and just sort of ride the illness out. I’ve found that just as much harm can be done hauling kids out of bed in the cold of night and sitting in a waiting room just to discover there’s not a whole lot that can be done.
Been there, done that.
So I’m on hold waiting for the nurse and she finally comes on the line. She has to ask me some prescribed questions about the Munchkin’s condition, and I answer them in a very calm and serene manner. I tell her his temperature, I inform her that he is not fainting, nor is he having problems moving his extremities.
But then she asks me, “What color is his tongue?”
I make him stick it out, and I answer, “Well, to be honest, it looks sort of gray.”
She replies, “Gray? Did you say his tongue was gray?”
Still looking at it, I answer in the affirmative, as there is sort of a grayish coating on it. Sorry if that’s gross-sounding, but if you’re a parent you’ve heard and seen much, much worse, I’m sure.
I hear the nurse say, “A gray tongue is a possible sign that he isn’t getting enough oxygen. I want you to hang up right now and call 911.”
Her, “Yes, I want you call 911 right now.”
Me, “Uh, yeah, OK, whatever.”
Because dude, I know that he is getting plenty of oxygen and it is the NURSE who is now panicking, not me.
I’m sure she hung up the phone thinking my son was surely headed to his doom because his mother was so nonchalant about his oxygen-starved brain.
But I’m pretty sure I made the right decision.
Although the Munchkin sure was disappointed he didn’t get to ride in an ambulance.
Tough luck, kid.
*Ten points for the title of the book this is from.