How to feel completely helpless as a parent

In the scheme of not-really-scary things happening to your child that look really bloody scary, fits / convulsions rank right up there. You are helpless and totally freaking out the first time your child’s eyes glaze over before they fall over and start shaking.

The Child had her first fit post-norovirus, and we spent an uncomfortable night in hospital where she was under observation as she did not present with a temperature. As she was perfectly fine after, I managed to sort of put it out of my mind and get on with things, although I was quite shaken at the time. And then she went on to have a series of fits a couple of weeks ago — five in 18 hours. She’d been slightly grouchy and off her food and drink in the days immediately prior, which we’d put down to teething. With a high temperature presenting after the first two fits but having a perfectly normal temperature for the following three, the paediatrician eventually posited that she might be suffering from atypical (or complex) febrile convulsions.

I read that as: The Child’s body reacts to infection by having fits. Preferably more than one, just to be extra terrifying. And she stops breathing when she fits as well, which is also pretty heart-stopping from the parental point of view. So the hospital scheduled tests.

Gangsta Smurf after her EEG
Gangsta Smurf after her EEG

While we wait for the NHS to get back to us with her test results, we are incredibly paranoid parents, and we’re co-sleeping full-time so someone is with her as much as possible during the night. All I want to know is why she’s getting them and how we can manage them. Give us answers, dammit.

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