When Weekends Don’t Go As Planned

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I have decided to go for a post of peaceful images of flowers at our cabin for today. My brain needs a little zen at the moment as our weekend did not go as planned.

Now when most people say their weekend didn’t go as planned events such as car trouble, bad weather or a change in work schedules usually come to mind; our was different. On Friday night we drove up to our cabin, we had a meeting we wanted to attend on Saturday and thought going up the night before would mean we could sleep in late before heading off to the afternoon meeting. We were awoken just after 7:00 am by a thumping noise, at first we thought “oh no, not squirrels in the attic again”, and then the thumping got louder and louder as if someone was jumping on top of the roof. The cabin was shaking. At that moment my husband shouted “the kids”, ran into their room, and found our eldest in a full-blown seizure on the top bunk bed. Pure panic took hold.

My husband shouts “call 911” as he keeps our son as safe as possible. I find the phone, dial the number, at this point our four other children are shrieking hysterically with fear. The thrashing stops, then nothing. Our son is breathing but no response to anything. I am now on the phone to 911, they get the details of our son, I am describing everything, and then they ask for our address.

We are at a rural address, it is full of “TWP”‘s and “RD”‘s and numbers, a lot of numbers, especially when you are panicked. My mind races and then I realize the only thing I can do is run down the road and read the sign to the 911 operator. My husband is with our son. Our other children are on the couch screaming thinking their brother will die. I run down the gravel road in bare feet and pajamas to get the address so that we can get help.


I finally give the address to the 911 operator, run back down the road, and find our son still isn’t responding but is breathing. The first responders are dispatched. We wait for what seemed an eternity but in fact was about half an hour. The 911 operator talked to us constantly, reassuring us, asking our son’s condition. A few minutes before the ambulance arrived our son started mumbling and moaning with some weird jerky body movements. We start to feel a bit better with this. Our second son had a couple of seizures as a toddler with fevers, and had come out of them fairly quickly compared to what we had just witnessed. A bit of moaning at this point seemed like progress. Just as the first responders entered the cabin our son tried to sit up. My husband said it was uncanny. It was also a huge relief.

They checked out our son, took all the vitals, and readied him for transport to the hospital. We arrived at the Stollery Children’s Hospital roughly an hour later. The first responders were brilliant. I can not say enough about how great they were. They waited with us until our son was taken over by the hospital and the fantastic care did not end there. Admission, nurses, doctors, everyone was great. They were pleasant, polite and efficient. Tests done, even a CT scan, and all was done quickly. The hospital was clean, cheerfully decorated and the waiting room was great for our other children as it had video games, an aquarium, toys and TV’s.

Four hours later we were relieved to find all the tests had come back normal. We still have follow-up testing to do, but we are blessed that our son seems fine.

As you can imagine we are all still a little on edge, at night we can’t help but check on the kids a few extra times, but knock on wood all seems well.

We will never again say “Our weekend didn’t go as planned.” when something little, like rain on a camping trip, happens.

11 thoughts on “When Weekends Don’t Go As Planned

  1. oh gosh Deb, what a shock! I hope he is well now and that never happens again … I am having an MRI and EEG tomorrow because I had two very minor seizures this year … hope I never have another either … sending love Christine x

    • Oh, I hope all your test results turn out to be perfect. Bodies are funny things. Our son seems fine now but is definitely shaken up mentally, I think he now sees how fragile being human can be. His younger brother is a basket case after witnessing it….he is so worried about his brother he can barely sleep at night.

      When our second child hit school age we thought we were out of the woods with seizures (his were febrile). I never dreamed it could happen with our oldest who is 15 (but no fever this time).

  2. Deb I’m so glad he came through, words can’t describe how you must have felt and still feel, time is a good healer but of course you will all be changed by it, take care. Frances

    • Thank you for your comments Frances. Our other children are just so happy to still have their brother with us. Life certainly throws snags at us from time to time.

  3. Deb, it must have been so frightening for you all, especially being so far away from your familiar home surroundings. It’s unthinkable. Aren’t children amazingly resilient! Wishing you all well and hoping that you can all put it behind you. Patsy

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