Sunday, July 11, 2010

July 11, 2010

Today was a very good day at the hospital! I'm starting to get more and more comfortable day by day and starting to get the idea of what routine to follow and how things work being a ICU mom. First, I just want to say how fortunate I am to have my family and friends. Without everybody, I definitely would not be able to do this. Secondly, I want to confess, and I feel awful for doing so and I am definitely going to try to change, immediately...but I have been treating my immediate family, not the way I should be treating them. With all of the stress going on and early mornings and late nights and long days and changes in hormones, I have been very short tempered lately and snappy. I need to realize that my family is just trying to help me and give me the extra support I need. Now I got that all off my chest, onto Laura.

Laura had a great day today! When I walked into Laura's room, she was on a glowing green mat, which I found out was because her bilirubin levels were high, which is very common in newborns. So I was not taken back by the news. Laura's nurse had informed me that Laura had no significant problems on the overnight and that her sats her holding up good. The nurse, Joanna, also informed me that Laura had been weened down on her nitric oxide and was holding up good. Laura's doctor came in and to my surprise told me they were going to operate tomorrow. I did not think it would be so soon that Laura would have the surgery.

So tomorrow they are going to be fixing Laura's coarctation of the aorta. This will be the biggest of the surgeries she will need. Coarctation of the aorta is a narrowing of the aorta, which is the heart largest vessel for supplying blood to the rest of the body. Once the this problem is fixed, she'll be weened off of the breathing tube and then fattened up like a turkey for the next surgery.

Throughout the day, I met with many different cardiologist fellows and surgeons and anesthesiologist. Each one explained their parts in the surgery and the risk and answered questions and had me sign consent forms. Despite of the reason I was signing the consent forms, one of the forms made me stop and think to myself; "I'm her mom, I'll be making decisions for her and signing things for her throughout her life." Just the simplicity of signing that form brought happiness to me because I now share that "gift" most moms talk about. Just knowing that I am a MOM really brought light and happiness to me in the situation of signing papers for open heart surgery. I guess in all, it is moments like that, that keep me sane throughout this whole journey.

When I arrived from dinner, I was informed that Laura was completely removed from the nitric oxide and her sats were holding up very well. I was so thrilled to see an "up" in the journey, because just the other day I was mentioning how I had to get used to seeing "downs."

In light of everything, I find it funny how Laura, although deeply sedated, already has a stubborn, but cute little attitude to her. I was getting ready to leave and she started to de-sat a little. The de-sat was nothing major, but enough to cause the respiratory therapist and her nurse to try and bring up her oxygen levels. Just like yesterday, the nurse and respiratory therapist suctioned her and gave her an albuterol treatment, because she was tight (narrowed air passages) and just like yesterday, her sats stayed the same, low. By now, I am getting used to her routine of doing this. They called for a chest x-ray to make sure the tube was in the spot. And just as x-ray gets to her room, what do you know, but her sats go back up to normal. Same exact routine as yesterday and according to the respiratory therapist, same routine she pulled on the overnight. So the respiratory therapist told me, as did Laura's nurses, that Laura seems to like being the of attention and that when people are not paying attention to her, she will make sure she gets their attention. A very stubborn little one, just like she put me through eight months of pregnancy. So once relieved by the fact that she was stable, I went home.

So tomorrow is the big day, the reason I came to Children's Hospital Boston, and the reason I can not sleep tonight. I will say my prayers and hope as many people out there who know about her surgery are sending their thoughts and prayers as well. Because of her smaller size, the doctors told me this surgery's complication level doubles. So lets hope for the best!

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