Monday, November 23, 2009

PLJ Gets Pneumonia

I did a post, once, about the abbreviation PLG (Poor Little Guy/Girl) and how it came to be. I can't find it right now, but it's a funny story. And even though I didn't come up with the acronym, I can take credit for the way our family has morphed PLG into PLJ (Poor Little Jemma). It just works. (Sometimes we even call Annie PLA, or, additionally, refer to both girls as just PL's. This does not amuse them. But I digress . . .)

Today, for anyone who missed the origin and evolution of the nickname, epitomized PLJ. She woke up extra-early this morning, demanding food as Jason slipped out the door just after 7:00 a.m., then ignoring her breakfast after sitting at the table for a few minutes. She climbed back in bed, and I had to literally pry her out to get her dressed. This took fully half an hour, with crying and sobbing "I look like a boy!" interspersed with the pulling-on of leggings and the choosing of mittens. On Monday mornings, though, it's like a SNL skit, trying to get both girls out the door by 8:00, so I paid little attention to PLJ.

She coughed in her stroller most of the way to school and back in the chilly morning air, then began telling me she was "so, so cold" on our way to the grocery store. When we got home, she climbed back in bed "to rest" and got out only when Sesame Street began. I felt her head, and she didn't feel hot, so I hoped she was still catching up on sleep and fighting the last of her illness. I hoped she'd seem better after her nap.

By lunchtime, Jemma wanted to be held, carried, and snuggled instead of eating. At naptime, she told me to just put her to bed. "I don't want a book today, Mommy." She laid her head down on the pillow. I went to the kitchen to try to make fig jam, but I kept wandering to the laptop to Google H1N1 symptoms.

Up from her nap, she was sadder and more irritated than before, and now she felt warm, too. When the thermometer beeped 101.3, I marched straight to the phone and dialed the pediatrician's number from memory. Even as I was explaining her symptoms to the nurse, I felt a little silly. "She has a fever again, even though she didn't on Saturday or Sunday. And she seems . . . a little sad? And wants to be held? And doesn't eat much?" I'm sure the nurse was thinking, It's the flu, lady. Give her some Tylenol and Sprite and put on a movie. So I was pleasantly surprised that they put her on the schedule, though PLJ because even more PL when I told her where we were going.

Driving to the office, part of me thought I was being paranoid. But part of me knew that something was just not RIGHT with my little girl. Annie's still coughing up a storm, sure, but she's been fully back in action - eating, running, bouncing around, clamoring to wear this and color that - for two days, at least. Jemma just looked at me in the rearview mirror with glassy eyes, and I was glad to be taking her in.

While Jemma clung to my chest and laid her head on my shoulder, the doctor moved the stethoscope around, then listened four or five times in the same area. "Yep!" she said brightly, this former teacher, mother of three, and always-happy pediatrician. "Little bit of pneumonia in the lower left lobe. You know your children so well. It's a good thing you came in." Followed by pharmacy, antibiotics, etc.

PLJ. I'm crossing my fingers for a less-PL day tomorrow, or the next day, at least.

1 comment:

  1. So sorry to hear it! It no fun for mom or our babies when they are sick. Hoping she gets well soon.