A month ago when Moose had his first seizure, it was a "normal" one. One we all think of - tremors, eyes rolled back - when we think of seizures. Over the past few weeks as we've learned more about seizures, we have wondered (at least I have) if we've been missing smaller seizures for a long while now.
Moose is a spacey kid. Moose is a sloth-y kid. What if those spacing out moments, those lolligagging moments aren't being spacey or sloth-like? What if they are seizures so small you don't notice? Or after affects of seizures (the fatigue)? Now, we don't (and aren't) want to beat ourselves up over this because we're only human and only so observant ourselves. But an observation nonetheless.
Yesterday Moose had a seizure around 2pm. I still see God's handling of this because I was not home from 10-1 and Big A was tending to the yard and garden at those times. We were all in the living room at 2pm when our son became unresponsive. Totally unresponsive. The moment was so unexpected, so benign, that I thought he was just ignoring me (I was asking him to match his socks). I threw a paper towel roll at him! And then I started to take it seriously. No response, no response, no response. Time is an interesting thing that can make mere minutes seem endless and terrifying.
We started for the ER. He could kind of walk but was just not....there. By the time we got in the ER, he was responsive and I think the nurses thought we were nuts at first because he seemed fine, if just a little sleepy. The doctor came and checked him out and confirmed our suspicions. He called it an absence seizure which makes perfect sense; our son was absent for those few minutes.
He slept for awhile and we took him home where he slept more. He was acting like himself so we decided to go for a drive and ended up at a really neat park at a neighboring town. Big A was pushing him on a merry-go-round while I was helping Squirt find little items in a nature hunt. And it happened again. Unresponsive, unresponsive. He wasn't as responsive even when he came out of this second episode. Had a harder time answering questions; seemed more lethargic. I called the hospital, which directed me to the doctor who I called who called another hospital and spoke with the pediatric neurologist we saw a few weeks ago.
It was decided to start Moose on anti-seizure medicine. Back to the hospital (what are the statistics of children getting sick on the weekends when pharmacies aren't open?). We started on the most benign, the one no one is allergic to, the one with seemingly small side effects (lethargy, possible mood alterations). We learned that pudding with a smashed pill in it feels/tastes like coconut pudding to Moose (he got it down but was not happy about it). We learned seizures make him so tired he's not even interested in eating (although his brother decided to have a growth spurt yesterday - I'm so hungry, I'm hungry, I'm hungry - while we visited the hospital).
We declined on him being observed in the hospital and played musical beds so I could observe Moose myself overnight (nothing to report except he talks in his sleep sometimes like I do). At 6:00 this morning, he woke up, his talkative self. Thank God! I may take his talkativeness and repeating for granted and get annoyed with it again, but for now I'm so thankful. He's here. He's responding. He took a big ol' pill this morning without complaint (better than coconut pudding, I think).
This episode made me think about all of the books about autism I've read and how a lot of those kids (some? most?) are "locked" in their own world. For some parents, this is their life with their child. I'm so sorry if this fits your life; it's scary and sad and I pray you find the hope of the Lord in this situation.
I know I'm very thankful for Moose's "big" seizure at school last month. Without it, would we have noticed (as readily) these "small" seizures? How long have they been going on? How long will they continue? Questions we face without easy answers, or any answers. But not questions we face alone. God allowed Moose's big seizure which made us aware. God has not allowed him to be harmed by these seizures (no head injuries or such). God has allowed us to see His hand at work in Moose's life and even in Squirt's (as he prayed for his brother on the first ER trip, he suggested something about maybe Satan has him and later I thanked him for praying, he said that he told Satan to "get behind me so he [Moose] could flee." Whether this is a medical or spiritual or both situation, it encouraged me to know that our son at 5 knows about spiritual warfare without us really teaching it to him and that he's aware that Satan has no power of followers of Christ.).
James 1:2-4 "Dear brothers and sisters, whenever trouble comes your way, let it be an opportunity for joy. For when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be strong in character and ready for anything."
I asked God to help grow my character more like His and this wasn't what I had in mind, but I will take the opportunity. I know He loves my child more than I. I know He is sovereign over all. I know He has a plan. I will trust and wait to see it unfold.