Jae was hospitalised for 18 days last month due to lymph node infection (swollen lump at the neck) and a fever that kept returning for more than a month.
It was a difficult period for us. I stayed with him 24 by 7 and barely saw the other two kids.
Jae was the bravest boy during treatment. He didn’t flinch when setting the IV line and going through multiple blood tests to find out the root cause.
His hand would swell after a few days, so a new line would be set. Four lines in all!
When non-feverish, he wanted to keep himself occupied as usual and chose to do these, usually with one hand left:
1. Drawing: From Coursera & YouTube videos
2. Magic tricks: He bought a set at the bookshop downstairs & learnt by himself. When he had a few hours in between IV lines, he’d quickly practise with both hands.
3. Reading: He bought a new book & read a bit each day
4. Cartoons: Laughter is the best medicine!
5. Shopping: His highlight of the day. We’d go downstairs at 11a.m. to buy my lunch and shop at the tiny bookstore for an hour. He took his own sweet time to enjoy some time outside the room.
6. Family play time: Due to COVID restrictions, room visitors are limited. After dinner, as long as he was well enough, he’d go to the lobby to play games such as UNO, BINGO & Connect 4 with his brothers.
7. Chatting: His friends were very worried and they chatted for some time each evening
8. Homework: The few days before discharge, he was well enough to clear some homework that was piling up. His lovely friend wrote post-its on what to do & lent him work to copy.
From this experience, I think we had an intensive biology lesson.
He has done blood tests for nearly everything under the sun, chest X-ray, ultrasounds, CT scan and needle biopsy under sedation. I’m glad to have kept calm while waiting for all those test results!
Thankfully, he’s recovering well and I hope to put this episode behind us. May everyone be safe & healthy!