Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Got a head? Get a helmet!

Seriously, if it weren't for wireless internet and cable television, I'd be going NUTS right now! Before I share an update with you and show you some hospital pictures, let me first share with you some pictures from this past weekend.

Andrew took a good nap because I promised he could play with Play-doh afterwards. Benjamin enjoyed watching while chewing on Tad's tag. Andrew was a bit distraught that he was chewing on the tag. I said, "Well, it's his toy." To which Andrew replied, "But I share him!"

I'm not sure what Andrew's smile means here...

Benjamin isn't so sure either.

Matthew got home from Orlando last night at about five. When he unpacked his medals (5K and marathon), I made him pose in them right there in the kitchen. He said, "In my GAP Christmas shirt? In front of the fridge?" I said, "YES! It's perfect!" So his smile isn't really genuine. It's more of an "I-am-acting-like-I-like-my-wife" smile. (But of course he loves me...)

Speaking of that, if you want a good laugh, here are three pictures of Matthew during the 5K:


Now an update from Children's, which is where we are right now. I'm watching American Idol!!

The surgery went well. He didn't poop before surgery, and the surgeon decided not to do anything about it. She seemed to think it would be fine. I have major doubts but really have no choice but to just hope and pray she's right!

He was really doped up on the morphine, which was good for his comfort but not for "waking up" his systems. That was ten hours ago (or so) and he still hasn't peed. So they're waiting a little longer and then they'll have to put in a catheter to draw out some urine. At one point, he was only having ten breaths per minute when he was first moved to the room, and he was on oxygen for awhile. But both of those things have already been resolved. The doctor thinks it was just the effects of the heavy narcotic after surgery.

He has pretty much been sleeping all afternoon/evening. He occasionally lets out what I lovingly refer to as the "pteradactyl screech" but then drifts back into sleep. We brought his mobile (THANKS AGAIN, MJ!!!) and it is wonderful.

He can't eat by mouth for about two days, so I am pumping and they're freezing the milk. Tomorrow sometime they'll put the breastmilk down a tube in his nose that goes down *past* the repair to the gut. (The surgeon put in the tube during the surgery.) He also has a tube in his other nostril that is draining fluids out of his stomach right now and will stay there for two or three days.

The only scar or marking he has from this surgery is a scar on his abdomen. I haven't seen it yet b/c it's behind a bandage. He does have an IV in his foot, but nothing like all the pokes and prods of open-heart surgery.

With all these little set-backs (no urine yet, being on O2, etc), Matthew and I both just know that Baby Benjamin is strong and brave and that he is in God's hands. This surgery is totally a walk in the park compared to what he went through last October. And that wasn't as bad as it could've been! I told Matthew today that after being on a pacemaker, a catheter is nothing!!!

The room here is okay. It smells like a hospital and the couch/bed is smaller than a twin. So it most definitely only sleeps one. Thankfully we live close. So it's 9:35 as I'm typing this and Matthew (who took a 2 1/2 hour nap on said couch/bed) has already headed home. He had a bit of a loooong weekend. :) I may go home and sleep tomorrow night. We'll see.

Andrew is having a ball with my mom. I think my mom is glad to return to work tomorrow because a toddler is a LOT of work. Non-stop talking and questions and clinginess at times. My SIL Edie is watching Andrew the next three days while my parents are at work. My mom will work a shortened day to be able to let Edie drop her kids off at school and pick them up. I would be completely bewildered without my family. I can't imagine. Thank You, God, for my family.

Oh, speaking of family, I am supposed to give a special shout-out (holla!) to my older brother, Michael, for helping me figure out my email. I didn't need his wireless card; I just needed him to talk me through how to fiddle with my Outlook in a way to configure my outgoing mail server dumaflautchie. And now I can send and receive emails. Yay!!!!

Now onto the pictures.

Waiting to be taken to the OR:

"Oh, my goodness, Matthew, did you see this???"

"This is my favorite toothpaste! Go to Walgreens and buy me some!"

I'm not sure what *my* smile means here! (Is that even a smile?)

Awwww....now *that* smile I recognize!!

"And Benjamin, this is how you blow a bubble with your gum." (I think he kind of looks like me in this picture...anyone else?)

A funny poster I saw. I had to take a picture of it. It's what I do.

My view from the couch/bed. The bathroom (which is actually quite roomy but again has NO counter space or shelves or anything) is right around the corner.

In recovery. The line across his chest (more visible in other pictures) just shows where the iodine is from cleaning the area. Look how looooooong he looks here! The band on his right arm is simply a blood pressure cuff. I've already explained the tubes in his nose. His IV (for fluids and meds) is in his left foot, all wrapped up to protect it. The small tube coming out of his right sock is just the oxygen sensor, which is just a sticky sensor taped to his toe. The scar from this particular surgery is on his lower right abdomen under that rectangular bandage. Thus, the roadmap of Benjamin for today.

You can see the iodine line a little better in this picture.

The first 30 minutes of Matthew's nap were in this chair while I snoozed on the couch/bed. Looks very comfortable, doesn't it?

Awwww.....bliss. Two more hours of nap were here. By the way, I need a new name for the couch/bed. Any ideas?

My favorite picture of the day. He is just too precious. But you can't have him. He's mine. :)

Until tomorrow!!


Kara said...

Oh Benjamin, you are such a beautiful and amazing little boy. WTG getting through surgery like such a champ!

Angela, I'm so glad it all went so well. You are blessed to have such a great family and such a beautiful boy! But I know you know that :)

Give him a kiss from us. You're continuously in my prayers.

Oh, that's my fav toothpaste too! I love it when it's on sale!!

I'm not clever enough to think of a name for the couch/bed, but I would include the word "hellish" lol.

Amber said...

1 - I used to be called Amberdactyl!

2 - I love the brotherly pics. They are sweet together!

3 - Carsyn is prepared to clear out his savings for a "Circle of Life" medal. OMG. He sings that stuff at the top of his LUNGS. Complete with hand motions.

Anna said...

Hey! Glad to hear everything went okay. I was thinking about you today.

The couch/bed: it's a bouch. :o)

Jax Hatmaker said...

Hi Angela,
This is Carie Hatmaker from WPBC. I've been lurking sice MEMS sent your link out with a prayer request for Benjamin's open heart surgery.

Just wanted you to know I am rejoicing for the success of today's surgery and praying for poop!

Your blog is a blessing and you have precious boys!

Anonymous said...

So glad that everything went well. That is awesome. He is such a trooper and does so wonderfully. I will tell you something (not sure if I've ever mentioned this to you before). As an adult, a mother, I realize how much my mother must've been through when I'd have all my surgeries. I just wanted to let you know that its not that bad on him. He knows no different...what he does know and will remember is that his mother is always there for him when he wakes up...and that she is always smiling and taking care of him. Its much harder on you then it is on him :)

Was thinking bout you guys today. So glad that it went well.

Ruby's Mom said...

I'm glad he's doing so well!

Diana said...

Let me start at the top... Ellie is a tag woman. She loves the tag on almost every toy. Emma always tell her she is playing with it wrong. LOL. Ok I thik Feb. is dental health awareness month perfect toothpast mention there. I love that kind I buy it in bulk when it is on sale. I just actually used it!! I love the marathon pics of Matthew. He doesn't even look red faced or sweaty. I would look slumped over and half dead. AND on to the man of honor B!!! Benjamin looks like such a trooper pre-surgery. I am so glad he is still to young to know what is coming. I pray all his surgeries are over before he is to the age of explanation. He looks like he is doing well considering his situtation. Keep us updated and the pee and poop! I love ya! Buzz me if you need anything.

Megan said...

It's the beouch! LOL!

{{Hugs}} from Stella.

Jenn said...

Angela, you are an amazing mom. you really are.

Benjamin is such a sweetie, and Gretchen is right - he will remember only that you were there for him all the time. He looks so little and all those tubes are a bit daunting until you start explaining what they are for.
Hope he recovers well from this surgery.
You continue to be in my prayers. You are indeed blessed to have such a beautiful family, and your dear sweet Benjamin is such a treasure.

The Bed/Couch needs a name - I vote for "Horizontal muscle stiffener." Im sure it lives up to it's name. Congrats to Matthew on his marathon medal - that's quite an accomplishment too!! But Surgery boy trumps him :p