Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Allergic Reactions and the Swimming Pool

What else can we be allergic to?  How about swimming pools?  Wouldn't that be fun-especially in this wonderful Texas heat?

We had such a fun weekend with grandparents and the kids were thrilled to swim in their hotel swimming pool.  Five minutes in to the swim Bee's eyes were itchy and swollen.  After ten minutes, she was looking swollen all over.  We decided it was time for her to get out.  And even Tiger was having problems with itchy and swollen eyes. 

We have been swimming before......many times.  But obviously the chemicals in this pool were not balanced. 

I rushed Bee to the hotel room, rinsed her face, and gave her a benadryl.  Then we loaded the car to head home for showers and clean clothes. 

She was looking worse by the minute and was starting to sneeze and sound congested.  When that happens, my only thought is anaphylactic shock.  Thankfully we live seconds from a fire station so we pulled in and rang the bell.  The firemen were quick to take us inside and check Bee's oxygen.  Her oxygen levels were holding steady and her lungs were sounding clear even though she was very congested.  EMS arrived seconds later and checked her pulse, blood pressure, and her oxygen again.  Sweet little Bee sat in my lap watching the team around her, never making a sound.  We decided to wait there for a little while to keep watching her, so while we were waiting the firemen took her on a tour of the station and of the engines.  Bee seemed unimpressed but was happy to be carried around by the firemen.

I got to answer all the questions and complete a pile of paperwork while Bee took her tour.  After that she was checked one more time, and everything seemed clear.  Her swelling was going down and she was looking more like her little self.  She was finally able to manage a smile. 

Then we finally made it home.  After a long shower, some lotion, some comfy jammies, and a few books, Bee was sound asleep and back to her normal (yet sleepy and Benadryl-medicated) self. 

I made several calls to the hotel to inquire about their pool.  I was told that they were having problems with the pool and that the hot tub was closed.  And I was told that the pump wasn't working properly and that someone was scheduled to come fix it in a few days.  I asked about the chemicals and was told they hadn't been checked for a few days.  Great!

I called back the next day to get more information about the pool because now I was determined to find out what the chemical imbalance in the pool was so I could report it to our doctor.  I was immediately transferred to the general manager who informed me that there was nothing wrong with the pool, that the chemicals were perfectly balanced, and that the chemical levels were checked 3 times a day, every day.

Clearly a different story than what I was told the day before.  I think someone was worried about a lawsuit, don't you? 

Nothing anyone can say will convince me that the pool was fine and that it was safe to swim in.  How many times this summer have we been swimming without any problems?  There's no other explanation for Bee's sudden, severe reaction.  But since our lawsuit crazed society has the hotel managers scared and lying to me, I'll never know what was wrong with the pool and what chemical we should be wary of in the future.

Swimming will never be the same.........

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