Monday, October 31, 2011

Carbon Monoxide...not so silent at the Corwin's (thank goodness!)

I have to say, my rantings about Halloween are itching to come out, though everything was trumped by the cries of our carbon monoxide detectors tonight. Or should I say, last night? Here we are at 3:34 in the morning and all three children are laughing hysterically at Little Bear hanging upside down in a tree. yeah--that's right. 3:30 IN THE MORNING. I know it's that late (or is it EARLY?!) because there were no fights about the viewing selection. I also know it's that late because we all have the shakes. If you didn't know better, you'd think you stumbled upon a dark alley in Philly, but alas it is our bedroom. Our bedroom that is registering 58 degrees. Fahrenheit, It all began when our furnace stopped working. I guess that made the story sound like it was going to be more in depth than it is. Our furnace stopped working. That's all. My children were limping around on their frozen toes, so my husband decided to use the fireplace (that we've NEVER used in the year we've lived here) and to get a space heater. It turns out the space heater has no significance in this story at all. So why do I mention it, you ask? BECAUSE IT IS 3: (40 now) IN THE MORNING AND I'M NOT IN COLLEGE ANYMORE. Where was I? The fireplace. I had a raging migraine all day (side bar) which isn't really unusual, but this one felt a little different. I thought it was because of "Snowtoberfest" and just tried to deal with it. After Dave did whatever it is you need to do to shut down a fire before bed, we headed upstairs. I felt a little lightheaded, but again--when DON'T I?! We checked the kids and crawled into bed. A few minutes later we hear an alarm that could wake the dead (NOT a complaint!) accompanied by that lovely voice that greets you on several voicemail services and the self-checkout at Wegman's or Target. You know--the one who gets annoyed if you place too many items in the bag before she's ready for you? Her. Well, she informed us in her haughty voice, "Carbon monoxide...carbon monoxide, CARBON MONOXIDE!" I swear she gets more insistent with time. The back up carbon monoxide alarm started going off as well. GOOD TIMES. Now, here we are with a stranger telling us that there is poisonous gas engulfing our babies as they sleep and contrary to popular belief (mostly because I SAID I...didn't like them very much sometimes. When I'm TIRED (which could be argued is ALL THE TIME...)) I love them with every fiber of my being. That said, I did not want to panic. I also did not want THEM to panic. Mostly I did not want THEM to panic. Dave called 911, we carried each child with minimal belongings and plopped them in their car seats. About a second later, the fire trucks arrived. 11:30--I'm certain the neighbors LOVED that show! The paramedics told me all that I needed to know about going to the hospital and I was concerned with how my children would react. They were so understanding and as I opened the door we heard loud laughing coupled with "Yeaaaaaaahhhhh--wooo-hooooo--Fireside girls PAAAAAAARRRRRRRTTTTTYYYYY!" Not sure what it meant, but pretty sure I didn't have to worry about panic ensuing. That was close. You may think that they would be a bit freaked out about forty firemen and eleven paramedics in their driveway, but you would be wrong. You might think that they would be concerned when one of the firemen yelled, "It's at 96 upstairs...that's high--they should probably go to the ER," but again--you would be wrong. You may even think that two of them would be a bit freaked out when they were told they had to go in an ambulance on their own because only two patients were allowed in an ambulance at a time and you would again be wrong. In fact, when Brayden and Ryan heard (after clebrating the fact that they " to ride in an AMBULANCE..." that they were going to move to their own ambulance (I of course wanted to "break it to them" in a way that wouldn't scare them, but there was no time for that since they JUMPED OUT OF THEIR SEATS and said, "Let's go!" Sadly for them, the second ambulance had to actually DRIVE to our house, so they were stuck with me for ten more minutes. The paramedic gave them each a stuffed animal, which was so sweet. Of course, Brayden's bear said, "Daddy's Little Girl," so when I went back for my purse (and a lesson on woeter versus watter--Jersey-talk versus Buffalo talk) a purple boa intertwined its way around his body. QUITE the score for a seven-year-old. The poor lady who got stuck in THEIR ambulance is now up for saint...dom? ...hood? She's a saint. She told me my life story as we entered the hospital because it can evidently be told by a first and second grader in the fifteen minutes it takes to get to the hospital! I had one person asking about Montana and another telling me the Sabres lost (like my night wasn't crummy enough)! After vitals, we all entered our triage room. The entire Corwin clan in separate corners--FINALLY. I wish I had my camera. THAT would have been a GREAT Christmas photo--each of us in our separate corners hooked up to oxygen--unbelievable! Addison kept taking hers off to see what the numbers would do. Ryan kept asking Dave (who seemed to think that he was exempt from all of this...) questions like, "What is this I'm breathing?" "Oxygen, Ryan." "So air? I'm breathing AIR?" and, "Now what is the deal with carbon monoxide again? I wanna get this straight...can we go to a store or something after this?" Poor Brayden acted like an old pro--from taking the oxygen to giving his blood, nary a peep came out of that sweet boy. The fact that this was old hat to him was a little disconcerting, but at least it wasn't traumatizing, right? He even asked if we could just please sleep there. "I hope not..." was all I could grunt between puffs. At around 3:00 (YES...IN THE MORNING) we were deemed healthy and were discharged. The slumber party in triage came to an end. Corwin, party of five (plus a snake, a bunny and a crazy looking stuffed baby-doll--ALL wearing oxygen masks with bags) meandered out of the hospital, their goodbyes echoing through the hallway. Here we are at 4:21 and Dave is the only one out. They gave me meds that are so good, I'm afraid to sleep. As much fun as it was, I feel like I'm done with slumber parties. Especially those that happen at the hospital.


  1. Wow - scary! Glad you're all okay.

  2. sounds like quite the adventure! But i at least can imagine that i would have fun with the whole thing. You could probably have switched me out for Addison and not have noticed the difference...

  3. Thanks, Sivan! I can only imagine what funny comments Noa would have come up with had she been here! Patricia, you would have loved it--it was QUITE the party, I have to say! I seemed to be the only one who was actually concerned about our SAFETY. Oh--I guess the paramedics and firemen were pretty concerned, too...


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