July 24 8:30 pm
*****WARNING REFERENCES TO ALCOHOL TO FOLLOW******
Several years ago I was fortunate enough to travel to Europe for the first time. I will never forget the first time I sat in a restaurant in Paris and witnessed underage drinking. You see, I believe the term underage drinking is germane to the United States. While trying to decipher the menu (and by decipher I mean make sure I didn't accidentally order snails or something......which I actually did order on my honeymoon and tried......yeah it was gross.....what a waste of perfectly good garlic)....anyway I looked up from my menu to see a family of four having dinner. Two well put together parents, a boy and a girl who were roughly six and eight respectively. So what caught my eye???? It was the four, yes four wine glasses casually strewn about the table as we would have four soda glasses here in the US. It was really a bizarre sight. For them, however, it was everyday life. A glass of wine with dinner was apparently somewhat common place for a child. Wine is good for heart and helps to relax you. We've all done it. Whether it is out with friends or home with the family......a nice glass of wine or a cold beer is great to unwind with. In moderation, what's the big deal? Of course some of us are guilty of "unwinding" a bit too much on occasion. So what about for a micro-preemie (I'm not sure if, and am way too lazy to look back to verify, I have used this term before, but Heather and I discovered it a little while ago. Apparently our two heroes aren't simply preemies......dun-da-dahhhhhh....they are micro-preemies.....action figures sold separately.....yes they were so darn small when born that the word preemie simply wasn't descriptive enough.......by the way.....just a reminder that when they grow up we probably shouldn't damage their fragile male egos by using the word micro very much.....just a thought) okay I'm guilty of multiple tangents in a row......aptly defined as mindless rambling.....so back to the story at hand.....what about a beer for Tyler. See, our arrival today found us faced with yet another very difficult day for Tyler. His nurse was taking care of another baby when we arrived. When we said hello and asked how Ty was, you could tell she needed to talk with us in more depth than a casual report so we proceeded over to see our little buddy and waited for her to finish up with the other child. In a nutshell, Tyler continues to be extremely agitated. He is more wiggly than he ever has been. His agitation manifests itself in constant flailing of his arms and legs which helps to cause severe desatting. Just changing his diaper today saw his O2 drop into the teens and his blood pressure drop dangerously low as well. This was the day the nurse was having with Tyler....extremely labored and unrestfull. Here's where the beer comes in.....finally. Several days ago the docs had placed a standing order with the nurses to use a mild sedative on Tyler if they saw fit. Kind of a micro beer for a micro preemie to help him relax and unwind. Heather and I were both concerned about the need to sedate the little guy. Until today, they had held off on doing so. Today it simply became necessary. He wasn't getting any quality rest, and his continued episodes are becoming more and more dangerous as well as frequent. So we were informed by the nurse today that she gave him a dose earlier on. She said it helped quite a bit. It had been several hours and it was clearly wearing off when we arrived. I cuddled him (cuz Heather was busy with the Great news of the day which I'll get to in a minute.......you know, bad news first so as to end on a good note) with my hands as best I could which seemed to help a bit. It didn't take long though to realize that another dose was needed. The dose helped a lot. He seemed to be able to finally rest. Then assessment time came. Diaper changed, blood pressure taken etc........and yes......you guessed it.....another episode that found the nurse "bagging" my son once again. Doctor present, we got through it. The glimmer of light, the shade of optimistic hope was seen just before we left. He seemed to have settled enough to get an hour of quiet rest....my hope is that tomorrow will show the monumental turn around that Parker saw on his second day of steroids.....let's hope:)
Da-Da-Da-Da-Da-Da-Da.....okay that's my attempt at a blog drum roll.....that's it....you know you are all hearing it in your head now.......you Pavlovian Dogs!!! The drum roll indicates the great news of the day!!!! Parker is not only off the oscillator and on to the conventional vent....he is not only seeing his O2 requirements down to 29%........but Mommy got to hold Parker today for the very first time!!!!!!! The cutest pics in the world are below!!! Yup, Parker's complete turnaround from four days ago continues. We came in today to find him on his new vent. Not only was he tolerating it well, but they had already decreased some of his settings and had him receiving 29% oxygen mixture!!!! ( remember you and I breath 21% and he had been living in the 70's for a long time!!!!). It was great!!! We weren't sure if Heather would get to hold him, since he had just been transferred today, but Allison said let's give it a try. We can always put him back in the incubator if he doesn't tolerate it well. She admitted to us afterward that she really didn't think he'd last long, but he did......45 minutes in Mommy's arms!!!!! It was the best medicine for everyone involved:):) The doc did tell us yesterday that they can often relapse after the steroids stop flowing, but for now he is doing very very well.
Last note: I have enjoyed being able to focus 100% of my attention on the boys for the past four and a half weeks, but duty does call. I will be running my stud gov retreat for the next two days. Not to worry, I will be in constant contact with my beautiful wife and can get home lickity split (there's another weird random word rearing it's awkward head???) should anything happen. I really do think/hope Tyler has turned his corner and tomorrow will find him beginning his miraculous turn around......and with the way Parker is handling life I'm comfortable leaving. Let's face it, we all know Heather is in charge 99% of the time anyway. So what does all this mean to you......well, the next two nights you will be entertained by a guest blogger.....that's right in my absence the real boss of this family will be taking over the blogging duties......personally I think she's going to love it and I will be permanently replaced:):):) Thanks to all of you for your continued well wishes, prayers and overall support......you may not realize it but it makes a big difference:):)