Friday, May 20, 2011

Paranoia is kicking in hardcore!

The days are just flying by here.  Feels like just yesterday that I was in the hospital with the lil man and now here we are, almost six weeks have gone by.  We had a bit of a set back on monday with the shunt.  Austin had been very irritable for days and just got worse to the point that he was inconsolable sunday night and monday morning.  We went down to the surgeon's office, and found out that Austin's shunt was over-draining and he was dehydrated.  So his drip was turned down and we had to give him Pedialyte for a few days.  Now he's back to himself again thank goodness.

Brings me to the paranoia in the house.  Its out of control.  We worry about every little thing with him.  We were told all of things to look for which could cause concern with the shunt not working properly, however its hard to know if Austin is exhibiting normal newborn behavior or if it is something more.  I hate feeling like this.  And as much as I worry or not worry about things, Kevin is one hundred times worse than me, so we don't balance well.  I anticipate the paranoia to remain for a long time, but hoping that it subsides at least a little otherwise we are all going to go nutz!!!  I have to keep reminding myself that Austin is doing well and I am thankful everyday for my little miracle. 

His incisions look better and better everyday and you can tell that he is feeling better.  He is putting more and more weight on his right side of his head.  We have been doing tummy time and he is doing great.  He can pick his head up and turn it from side to side.  He even rolled over twice from stomach to back.  (Not on purpose of course, but because he was so worked up and upset from being on his belly that he arched himself over).  Pretty amazing stuff considering Jake didn't even hold his head up until he was 5 1/2 months old!  Jake loves to do tummy time with Austin too and is such a great help with diaper changes, baths and getting Austin to stop crying.

Here are some new pics of the little guys....

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Events of this week...and guess who's ONE MONTH OLD!!!

Austin is one month already and weighs a whopping 9 pounds, 9 ounces!!!  Time has gone so fast.  I'm happy that surgery is over and done with.  Surgery was scheduled for this coming monday, May 16th and I figured I would have all weekend to prepare myself (and him) for our stay at the hospital.  But, the past two weeks we have been very paranoid over every little thing that Austin has been doing (or not doing).  We have made ourselves worried sick about him and as much as wanted to enjoy him, we were just always worried.  Our poor pediatrician seemed to get a phone call from us every few days.  This past monday night, we once again called our pediatrician because Austin's head circumference was measuring 39.5cm (it had gone up a whole centimeter in a week!) and we also began to notice that his veins in his head were more pronounced.  Thankfully, our pediatrician, once again, told us that he was not concerned and that because Austin wasn't exhibiting any of the more common side effects of hydro (like bulding soft spot, irritability, lethargy, bulding veins), he felt that surgery on monday remained the best course of action.  This time though he told us to just reach out to the neurosurgeon the following morning and let her know what our concerns were.

So, Kevin and I went to sleep feeling confident that nothing was overly alarming with Austin and that waiting another week for his surgery was not going to have a permanent negative impact on him.  Tuesday morning started off normal, I took Jake to school, stopped at the pharmacy to get some Mylicon for Austin (which they didn't have of course) and then headed home.  I left a message for the neurosurgeon around 10am and decided to leave a message for the nurse around 10:30am when I hadn't heard back.  But the nurse answered, so I told her what our concerns were.  She asked me a bunch of questions...was his soft spot bulding...NO....has he been eating, peeing and pooping normally...YES.....has he been sleeping alot....YES, BUT JUST NORMAL NEWBORN SLEEPING....was he more irritable....NO, BUT IRRITABLE FROM BEING GASSY.  She then told me that she would run it by the surgeon and see if the surgeon thought it was fine to wait to see us on monday, or if maybe the surgeon wanted us to come into the office sooner than that.

Ok, no I went back to my activities and began to go through all of the billions of clothes that Austin and Jake have that they could now fit into and could be washed.  The house was a disaster, but I didn't have anywhere to go this day, so I figured I would do much needed laundry, vacuum, and tidy up throughout the day. 

Around 11:30am, the nurse calls me back.  She tells me that the surgeon feels that we should take Austin straight to the Emergency Room and she would like to do the shunt this day.   OMG!  I instantly go into panic mode...I haven't even showered yet, let alone have any clean clothes for myself or the baby and still have to pack all of the things I can think of for our 2 night stay at the hospital.  Kevin gets home in record time and we leave the house at 1pm after all is said and done.  Two miles from the hospital, we hit major traffic.....5 lanes on the highway are going down to we sit.  Austin, mind you, has not eaten since 10:30am and now is screaming hysterically in the back seat.  He refuses to take the pacifier, so poor thing is left to just cry and cry and cry while we sit in stopped traffic.  FINALLY we get to the emergency room at 2:45pm.

From there, things just moved so fast.  We met with the surgeon briefly before surgery.  She says "So, he wasn't acting himself today and was just sleeping alot?"  I say no, thats not what I said to the nurse.  Then she says "And you said that his veins appear to be buldging?".  Again, I say no.  We tell her that we spoke with our pediatrician the night before who told us to call her.  She asks what the pediatrician said about him and we tell her that the pediatrician was not concerned.  Kevin and I then put two and two together and realized that the surgeon was given some misinformation about how Austin was appearing that day, hence the rush to get him to the hospital.  But since we were going in for surgery in 6 days anyways, it made sense to just move forward with the surgery on this day.  (The surgeon later would explain to us that Austin's veins were more pronounced than they should have been and when she did the surgery, the fluid was building and beginning to cause pressure in his brain).

Austin was taken into surgery at around 4:30pm.  We are told that the surgery itself only takes about an hour, but with prep, it would be about two hours before we would see him.  We are taken up to the PICU waiting area and Kevin insists on ordering Chinese food (because he found a menu that says they will deliver to the hospital and he is starving!).  Around 5:30pm, Kevin heads down to meet the delivery guy and I take out a magazine.  Two minutes later, I look up to find the surgeon coming in to talk with me.  I panic because its only been an hour.  She quickly calms me down and tells me they are all done, Austin did great, and that we would be able to see him in a few minutes.   Phew.  We were taken into the room five minutes later. 

Austin did awesome at the hospital.  He was groggy and cranky and slept alot, but he ate and his vitals were perfect.  We were told all along that he would be staying two days, so we were shocked when they told us the evening of his surgery that he would most likely be going home the following day.  And, wouldn't you know it...we were walking out of the hospital at 5pm on wednesday.  24 hours in the hospital...thats it! 

To top it all off, we are sitting in the hospital room waiting for Austin's last dose of antibiotics yesterday and I'm flicking through the TV channels and stop on "House".  One of the doctors is sitting with a patient and they begin to recite a passage from the Bible about how God puts you through trials and tribulations to see if you will put your faith in him that he will help you get through it.  And once you give your faith to God, true miracles will occur.  WOW.  Thats the story of Austin's life.....

I went searching for that passage in the Bible and on the internet, but couldn't find it, but thought that there was a reason I turned on the TV right at that moment. 

Austin continues to amaze us all everyday!  He is such a miracle and we are reminded of that every second of his life.  And this is just another instance of how amazing he is.  So, we weren't even prepared to have the surgery so soon, but within a day and a half, he had it and is already back home and pretty much back to his normal self!

God is good, God is great, and I have all the faith to know that Austin is going to continue to amaze all of us everyday of his life!!!  We are so blessed....

And again, many many thanks to all of you who have continued to pray for him and our family.  He hears your prayers loud and clear and has granted your requests and will continue to grant them.  THANK YOU!  We pray that Austin's body will work in perfect harmony with the shunt and he can resume his life without extra fluid buildup!!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Resting peacefully in the PICU

Austin is resting peacefully now.  Surgery went very well yesterday.   He was in and out in a little over an hour. Just about everyone we have encountered has said how routine this surgery is. Kinda crazy to say that about brain surgery.  Im just glad its over.  We should be heading home later on today.  Thank you for all of the thoughts and prayers.  I cant say enough how good our Lord and God are...

Please keep the prayers going for a safe and speedy recovery.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Heading to ER

We are heading to the hospital...surgeon wants to do the shunt surgery today.  Please say a prayer for Austin.  Ill update when I can.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Travel Boppy

When Jake was a few months old (after several sleepless nights and lots of spit ups) we decided to try him in the Boppy pillow.  He instantly loved it, it kept him up at an incline and just made him more comfortable sleeping.  Well, he ended up using the boppy pillow for several months (maybe even longer, I can't remember now).  I just remember that it was very hard to break him of the habit of having the boppy to sleep with at night.  We relied on it so much that we had our "home" boppy and our "travel" boppy.   The "home" boppy got so much use out of it that I had to throw it away when Jake got older.  The "travel" boppy on the other hand, was not used nearly as often and I was able to hang onto it.

Austin has been having some major gas issues and the poor thing just can't seem to get comfortable after he's eaten for quite some time.   He is also starting to take after his older brother and spit up quite a bit (although thankfully nowhere near how much Jake used to spit up...knock on wood!)  So, this weekend I broke out the old "travel" boppy....knowing that Austin is really too little to use it for long periods of time, but figured he might enjoy sitting in it for a few minutes at a time.  And....I was right.  He was fussing like crazy and then when he hit the boppy pillow, he just calmed down and began to look around.  Got a clip of it (don't mind the spit up at the end of the video, haha).

In other news, lil guy is growing like a weed!  And thinks he's hungry every hour and a half, so there is no rest around this house.  We went to the pediatrician last thursday and Austin had gained 7 ounces in a week.  Not too shabby.   I'm hoping we can add another pound on him before his surgery in two weeks...may be wishful thinking, but at the rate we're eating, could be very realistic.  His head circumference is measuring 38.5cm now, but its expected to grow as his body is growing as well.  He has to go for his pre-op bloodwork on friday..not looking foward to that. 

Jake is absolutely in love with him now.  As soon as Austin fusses or cries, Jake's running to get Kevin or I to tell us that Austin's upset.  He even said the other day "I miss my baby brother" (even though Austin was right next to us sleeping).  He continues to talk about when Austin gets older they are going to play together.  Can't wait for that to happen!!