Both babies were sleeping, but Uwais hardly wakes up for his feeds. Each time after Fawwaz completed his 'turn', I woke Uwais up for feed. He sucked once or twice, then doze back off to sleep. I thought it was just motion sickness from the long car ride two days back, and it might be a reaction from the one month immunisation jabs.
But after subuh prayers, the mother's instinct knew that something was not right. I picked up Uwais, he was cold but breathing. Fawwaz was active like he normally is. I called a good friend of mine, Pipah, a pediatrician, and she advised me to visit the government clinic as soon as possible.
We left the house, with all the five children and rushed to the local clinic, which was about 7 minutes from home. At the traffic light near the clinics, Uwais, who was wrapped warmly in my arms turned bluish on his lips.
As we arrived in the emergency room at the Klinik Kesihatan Wakaf Tengah, I shouted for help. A familiar nurse came and urgently put Uwais on a bed, putting a big helmet-looking dome on top of Uwais head, and quickly poked the oxygen hose into the dome. Within seconds, Uwais cried and responded to the treatment. His hands were waving and kicked his tiny feet wearily. Alhamdulillah. Only Allah knows how helpless I was.
Dr S came to the ER, and she was terribly shock since I just visited her the day before for consultation regarding the boys' coughing symptoms. She immediately advised me to admit Uwais to the hospital for observation. So in a super rapid ambulance, we traveled from Wakaf Tengah to Kuala Terengganu in 15 minutes (the journey usually takes 30minutes)!!
2 hours in the ER and everything was well. We were sent to a pediatrics ward, and within 5 minutes, a group of doctors came to Uwais' bed for their ward rounds. Two of the docs were suddenly signalling each other, and I knew something was VERY wrong. One of them asked me to stand away while they were performing CPR to Uwais. He stopped breathing, again. Within the 15 minutes, Uwais stopped breathing 4 times.
He was rushed to Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU), again, he turned blue. The two paeds specialists worked hand in hand quickly and in half an hour, Dr N called me in. As I saw Uwais, I kept my emotions in control though it hurt me to the core, looking at his body being poked on both his arms, hands, and feet. He was intubated, fully using the breathing support because his irregular breathing pattern. Dr N and her team was still in the process of diagnosing his illness. I asked about Fawwaz, since I knew Fawwaz's cough was worse. She advised me to bring him in as well.
|Ammar Uwais, 3rd day in NICU, HSNZ. Extubated from the breathing support, Alhamdulillah.|
~~ Fast forward - 6 days later ~~
I 'checked-out' from 5A ward, and both Ammar Uwais and Affif Fawwaz were discharged from their respective wards (6CD and NICU). Yes, all of us were under the same roof but being located in three different wards. They were diagnosed with pneumonia, and it got worse since they were premature babies and their organs were still under-developed.
HSNZ charged nothing for the comfortable and superb service given to all three of us. Alhamdulillah. A HUGE BIG Thank you to the Neonatal wards (NICU, 6CD, 5A) staff for their great support and service.
- Parents, especially mothers, please don't get panic if something gets (really) wrong to our children. We can't think straight in panic mode. Keep calm. Zikr, salawat syifa'.
- When your child(ren) is ill, act quickly, especially parents with premature babies.
- Trust government hospitals. They have very capable hands. They charge minimally, and it's usually FOC for government servants.
- You need support, physically and especially, emotionally. Alhamdulillah, my husband is a very responsible husband and father. He took care of the three older kids on his own for the week, and still came to visit us in the hospital everyday during lunchtime. And alhamdulillah for my wonderful and supportive parents who drove up to Terengganu to help out. The emotional support was needed and longed-for.
- Never give up hope, and never stop asking help from Allah. It was devastating to see your child being poked all over and looking so lifeless. Talk to Him, pray to Him. He listens to you.
- Ask questions to the Specialist. You need to know what's wrong, what's better, and what can be done to help your child(ren) gets well quicker. It's their job to answer our query.
- Be there for your sick child. Talk to them, give them gentle strokes even they are babies. They will somehow know we are there. It's devastating to see a lot of babies in NICU unit being left to struggle alone to survive.