‘It’s just a cold’ I told myself as I put Ben to bed a few weeks ago, nothing a spot of Calpol and an early night can’t heal. By the morning he was coughing away and refusing to eat. Come lunchtime he was dehydrated and gasping, abdominal breathing in a desperate attempt to get air; all the while making a high pitched squeak with every breath.
This is when my gut instinct came into play, he was not alright, it was not just a cold. I rang 111 to get advice and thank goodness for the NHS and the fantastic team at Milton Keynes Hospital. The operator heard Ben’s rasping and sent out an ambulance straight away. By the time we reached the hospital he had had two lots of oxygen and by that night he had undergone x rays, numerous nebulisers, amoxicillin, steroids, and was diagnosed with an infection in his lungs. He was not desperately ill but he needed treatment, and all that night, as I lay next to my baby in his hospital bed, waking every couple of hours to his panicked screams, I couldn’t help but wonder what would have happened if I hadn’t trusted my gut.
If that stressful 48 hours has taught me anything it is – Never be afraid of ‘bothering’ your GP or 111 – if you feel something isn’t right follow your gut regardless of what you think others may feel.