3:13 PM: So much for waking up this morning and taking advantage of prime social media hours to promote my book before moving on to my next one. My daughter had a seizure at school, so the entire day was tossed into disarray. I hurried over, driving my manual transmission car for the first time since my surgery. There is a chance that I was an incandescent comet on four wheels on my way to the school, although I am not admitting to anything. I will admit, however, to using my horn like a mystic hand to push traffic out of my way. Once I arrived, I dealt with her needs, fielded questions from the EMTs, and experienced my stress levels pushing through the roof.
The seizure was over, technically, by the time I arrived, but as I watched her thrash and moan on the floor, I questioned the EMTs assessment. My daughter did not recognize me! The sound of my voice did not soothe her as it usually does. She was agitated and distressed. No matter how much the EMT insisted that this was the postictal phase, and having seen my daughter’s tonic clonic and complex partial ictal phases for the last fifteen years, I could see his point, but that didn’t change the fact that she was clearly not better yet. Then after maybe ten minutes of debating with myself and the EMTs, she went to sleep. NOW the seizure was over.
Bringing her to the hospital usually doesn’t accomplish much. They check her oxygen levels and vitals. They poke at her to get her to respond when she’d rather be asleep. Then we sit there for two hours until they feel confident in releasing her. The seizures are usually over by the time we arrive to the emergency room. The problem was will this be the one time the seizure wasn’t over? These moments are difficult for any parent, but with ADHD, my mind feels like I’m being pelted from every side. Teachers, administrators, aides, EMTs, police, and my daughter… Everyone is concerned. Everybody wants to help. But I can’t filter out the commotion. I’d like to be the cool, collected parent in command of the moment. Instead, I feel like:
At this point, she’s been asleep for over four hours, which is very unusual. My stress levels feel as if they have departed their celestial orbit and returned to earth. I’ve made important phone calls, and now I’m ready for my own work. I believe I injured myself in the rush, though. There is pain deep inside where there wasn’t yesterday, but at least my daughter is asleep soundly in the other room, safe and free from seizures for the time being. I can feel depression creeping in. I’ve overexerted myself, so this doesn’t surprise me. I think I will create a text file filled with all my planned tweets and promotional Facebook commentary to cut & paste from in the morning. Then I will focus on dinner, my daughter, and, if I’m lucky, get some writing in.