November 2, 2011

Day 21

When I arrived for rounds on Tuesday morning, I was just catching the doctors as they were leaving the room. I'd been stuck in traffic and missed most of what they said, but I got the highlights from the charge nurse and then got filled in by our regular nurse later. Basically, they were really pleased with the progress he'd made over night and were feeling comfortable enough to send him up to the Progressive floor. They removed the rest of his IVs and had to start another one in his scalp (poor kid looks like a unicorn, but it doesn't seem to bother him at all). He is continuing to need oxygen support, but only a small amount through his nasal tube. His pain was fairly well under control and could monitored on the Progressive floor. His little tummy was huge and full of air, and you could tell it was making him vastly uncomfortable. Overnight they tried to suction out some of it without much success. They gave him a suppository in hopes that it would alleviate some of the pressure. It's not a huge deal medically, but it has been making him fussy.

We spent our last few hours in the ICU packing up and waiting for a new crib. He accumulated a lot of stuff over the last 3 weeks!

Around noon, we were taken upstairs to the new room. It's much bigger than our ICU room, with an in suite bathroom and a couch that converts into a bed-like bench. The nurse came to get him all settled in, took his vitals, hooked him up to the new monitors, and then...well, she shut the door and walked away. It has been 3 weeks since I've been in a room alone with my baby, without someone else peering in. It was exhilarating and frightening all at the same time.

Because the level of care that he needs from the medical staff is drastically lessened now, the level of care that we have to provide as parents is drastically increased. No more going home to get 6 or 7 hours of sleep before heading back down here. We are on the clock 24/7 now. It has been a pretty abrupt reminder of what life is like with a 3 month old. However, at least once we get him home, no one will knocking on the door wanting to mess with my baby every hour or so despite the fact that he is peacefully sleeping.

After Samuel had been settled into the new room for a while, we let big brother Luke come down for his first visit. He wasn't able to see Sam while he was in the ICU, so it had been almost 3 weeks since he'd seen him. I wasn't sure what Luke's reaction would be, but I couldn't have imagined anything better than what it was. He charged into the room, excited at first at seeing me. When I picked him up and showed him it was Samuel in the bed, he gasped! He tried to dive head first into bed with him and almost made it. Travis came to hold him because I just wasn't strong enough to restrain our little wrestler. With his dad holding him, he leaned down and grabbed Sam's pacifier. I just knew he was going to try to put it in his own mouth, but much to my surprise, he leaned over and popped it right into Samuel's mouth like he'd been doing it all along (Samuel hadn't been able to use a pacifier prior to the surgery).

I don't think I have the words to express how wonderful it was to have my little family all together again...even if we were still in a hospital room. It was a good moment.

Samuel wasn't very comfortable for most of the afternoon/evening. He's been sleeping a lot, but not happy when he is awake. We are still figuring out what regime of pain medication he needs, so it takes a little bit to get him settled again. He has not been eating well since yesterday...only an ounce or two, here and there. His little tummy looks painful, being so full of air. I wouldn't be hungry either if I had all that going on.

I think the doctors hoped he would be able to go home on Wednesday, but it's not looking likely. He just isn't comfortable enough, yet. I can't wait to have him home...but I want to make sure he's really ready for that big step. Soon. Very soon, I hope.

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