How do you take this and bring it to a sleep study? How do you alleviate her anxiety about going… no matter how much I tell her the wires are all things she has experienced for other doctors? No needles or special pills are needed. Expect the staff to be patient and kind. Mommy will be with her. But nothing brings relief as it gets closer.
The unexpected for anyone is stressful. I reflected today at I got my 10th mammogram how nervous I was for my first one so long ago. I imagine she feels like that only ten times more intense. We all provided support and reassurance. Besides… her daddy did a sleep study few years ago and nothing hurt right?
Well it was more intense than she expected. Yes there were wires for her chest and head but also 2 on each leg. And a strap across her tummy and one across her chest. And those wires on her head had some for her face. There had to be one on her neck for her breathing and one on her shoulder for co2. Nothing about the amount of plugs was in the “what you can expect” brochure. And especially not the nasal sensors needed to watch your nose breathing patterns. That was the toughest of all!
What would take 10 minutes took her 60. The nasal cannula needed another bribe. And I was proud of her for verbalizing the reason it was so hard… her nose is VERY sensitive to things in it. It is the reason she hates to blow boogers out when she’s sick. She would rather suck them in and throw up after a few days. (We encourage the blowing but once she starts you better have a full box because she has to do it until all boogers are cleared)
So there she was all hooked up and Netflix in hand after a quick room change due to technical difficulties. She zonked out at 2 hours past her normal bedtime. As for me, I was asked a million times if I wanted to lay on the bed with her or hold her hand, sit with her in a double chair. I listened to the tech ask sammy if she wanted me to do those things. Both of us knew the answer… no. In moments of stress her sensory issues heighten and she does not want to be touched. Don’t get me wrong, she wants me there in a separate chair near her but just not to touch her. I learned this years ago when she was just a toddler and yet I still offer.
It breaks my heart to not be able to comfort her physically with my embrace, hand holding or kisses but I have learned to respect her answer and she has learned to tolerate my questioning it and attempts. With every appointment and public meltdown I find myself having to explain to the people around her that it isn’t comforting to her. My mom brain hugs her in thought alone. But she did ask me to bring a chair next to her bed even when we had to change rooms and she was falling asleep. And I did while I watched her eyes close and slumber take over with half the bed empty except her wires.
And I journeyed to my sofa bed which did get some blankets on it. And I lay there watching her bed while I fell asleep snoring only to waken her slumber with my exhausted sleep every hour. And I would waken to the room door opening as the tech made adjustments to computers and sensors. It was a long short night from 10pm-5am. One we both would like to forget but now she knows for future reference what a sleep study is like. We hope to hear positive results in the near future so we can finally move forward with her ENT for adenoids removal and now possibly tonsils.
You see, it wasn’t a “just to see” kind of test and she knows it is to be sure before surgery that we know exactly what the doctor needs to do. And it’s for that reason I would do it all again if it meant one less or one more medical need to be done with certainty, not an assumption. And that’s what sammy took away from it… so we know for sure for her best sammy. It is her understanding that after things like this she gets help in an area and feels better. So she too is hoping that o cent this is all said and done she won’t be so congested and have difficulty with sleeping all the time. And I sure hope that is the end result for my sweet girl.