Monday, June 3, 2013

The Storm is not chopped liver

I hadn't thought about it until today but with all this bitching and moaning about how Seattle doesn't have a basketball team since the Sonics left - duh! We have the Seattle Storm!  If all the die-hard basketball fans would just quit their whining they could follow the Storm and support them.  I don't know why men's basketball is the end all be all.   I caught the Storm game against the Phoenix Mercury and it was a great game!  I am going to bring that up every time someone complains about how "Seattle doesn't have a basketball team"

It's been a fun but long weekend with one un-fun part at the end.  Yesterday I spent eight hours at Pony Camp and helped with four group lessons and sat in on the volunteer orientation for the teens and it was a lot better than the first full Saturday I spent there.  For one thing I wasn't quite so lost or disoriented and I had a little more confidence that I would be able to learn how to teach and that I know the material that is being taught.  And I felt like I understood the purpose and mission of the classes with the little kids much better.  So, it was easier to get in the groove and work with the kids at the developmental level that they're at.

For instance, if you put a four-year old on a pony and teach her how to ride in a group of other kids about 4-6 years old you're going to have this experience:  you tell the four year old how to steer her pony and she thinks is super cool and says "Yay! I can do that!" She then shows you how she can do it.  A minute later she sees something shiny or her little brother up in the stands or thinks of something super funny and she starts giggling and babbling about something non-pony related.  Meanwhile her pony (who has the emotional maturity of a four year old) happily realizes that his rider has checked out up there and turns and starts trotting straight for another pony that he wants to bite.  Four year old freaks out because she has no idea anymore how to steer her pony and you are scooting at breakneck speed to grab her pony's halter before he bites the other four year old's pony's butt.  You then realize that for the rest of the lesson you are holding the pony's halter no matter how many times 4 year old says "You let go! I know how to steer!"  Yep.  It's pretty darn cute.  I keep meaning to get photos of the ponies but just haven't had time yet and need to find a time when no four-year olds are on them so that I'm not posting pictures of other people's kids.

After work on Saturday I went and met someone who is going to lease Maiden so that is exciting and takes a little financial strain off of me which is very nice.  Sunday morning Maiden and I had a great ride together, then I went and helped a little bit with the weeding in the common area owned by our HOA.  Trying to get people who live in our cul-de-sac to help with maintenance of that area is like pulling teeth.  One other family works super hard on it like my husband does then another family did come out for a couple hours, then surprisingly one of the dads from India came out and helped and one of the dads from Nigeria came out to help.  The dad from India wasn't totally lost but the dad from Nigeria seriously looked at the gardening tools he picked up like (as another neighbor said) "they were Egyptian heiroglyphics he was supposed to read".  Kudos for him for stepping up! He grew up in what I think is the biggest most urban city in Nigeria so I'm sure gardening wasn't a big part of his childhood.  The photos I've seen it looks huge and urban like Chicago or New York.  I spent a lot of time trying to imagine a childhood that did not involve lots of animals and playing in the woods every day and climbing trees and playing in creeks and swimming in lakes and the Puget Sound.  I honestly can't imagine it.  I feel like a childhood like that would be bereft of joy but so many people grow up in apartments and condos in the heart of huge cities and are quite happy.  It's very outside my realm of experience and kind of fascinating to me.

After gardening the other family helping with the weeding project invited me to a local gym to go swimming.  Their boys were going so I brought my daughter with us and we all had a great time - at first.  The kids were doing cannon balls and going back and forth from the hot tub to the pool.  The mom and I swam laps at first then hung out in the hot tub for awhile.  Around the time we decided to head out (after about 90 minutes) I noticed in the water that my daughter's back looked a little red.  When she got out of the water it looked like her whole torso was starting to break out in hives.  Walking to the locker room she said her hands and feet inched terribly and when we got in the locker room she admitted that for the last fifteen minutes or so it was starting to feel hard to breathe.  Aaaaaack!  Definitely up there with the worst thing a parent can hear "Mom, I'm having a hard time breathing."

I did a quick mental assessment and saw that she was definitely turning into a walking bunch of hives and that she was not wheezing and has no history of asthma so the difficulty breathing was the beginning stages of anaphalaxis.  Inside my mind was racing "Ok, get her in the hot shower - wash everything off quickly and hopefully the hot steam will help open up her air passages! If it doesn't help give her benadryl and if that doesn't help call 911 and give her prednisone - wait! Benadryl and prednisone are at home and getting into the car and driving home will take 15 minutes.  If it doesn't get better call 911 and keep her in the shower and they can come into the dressing room to get her and I can wrap myself in a towel and ride in the ambulance and have my husband meet us at the hospital with my clothes! Ok - that's the plan! Go!"

What I actually said out loud in a casual "la de da - nothing big happening here" tone was, "Yeah, that can happen sometimes with allergies. But I bet the hot steam will help.  Let's get you washed off and breathe in that nice hot steam and you'll start feeling better."  My daughter was (rightfully so) concerned and asked, "What if it doesn't help?" and I said casually,  "It will.  And if it doesn't I'll take you to the doctor and she can give you medicine to help," and my daughter asked, "What if I can't breath at all," and I casually said, "I doubt that will happen but then I'll call 911 and the nice medics will come right to the gym and into the locker room and give you some medicine that will help immediately.  It'll all be fine."

So she got in the shower and I started washing her hair and tried to casually ask her to take her swimsuit off (and then felt like burning it).  We spent a lot of time in the shower washing her hair and her body off and me trying to keep her from touching her swimsuit again.  By the time we left the shower and she dried herself off the hives were fading and her breathing was going back to normal (phwew!).  By the time we got home it was all gone so I didn't have to give her any Benadryl even.   I asked the lifeguard at the gym what they used to treat the water and he swears it's just the same chlorine all other pools use but there was definitely something in the pool she had a reaction to.  My neighbor said possibly someone jumped in without showering and had a penicillin medicated rub on and she swam through it as it washed off of them.  That's a possibility but very slim possibility.  So, I'm thinking another allergy test.  Right now we know she's allergic to pennicillin/amoxillin and morphine (both anaphalactic) and grass (hives).  Good lord.  I came home feeling pretty traumatized but thankfully my daughter was fine and skipped off the boys' house that had been swimming with us to play video games and eat corndogs with them.

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