"Once our eyes are opened, we cannot pretend we don't know what to do. God, who weighs our hearts and keeps our souls, knows that we know, and holds us responsible to act." Proverbs 24:12



“There are no strangers here; Only friends you haven’t yet met.”- William Butler Yeats





Friday, April 10, 2009

The Nails....and The Nails!



"While we were still helpless, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. For one will hardly die for a righteous man; though perhaps for the good man someone would dare even to die. But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us." - Romans 5:6-8


Some nails I am so very thankful for. And. Some. I am definitely not!


Good Friday is a day of mourning, of sadness, of reflection at the injustice that lurks in the dark world that we live in. Yet, our omnipotent God knew. And He loved us so much that He sacrificed His son, His only son, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, so that we may have eternal life.

That afternoon when that cross was raised in Golgotha, when our Lord willingly suffered and died for each of us, when nails were hammered into his flesh, after he had been spat on and humiliated for our sins, we had no idea that it would be the greatest gift we would ever receive. My heart breaks at the thought of how Jesus suffered for me, a sinner, on that cross. It breaks when I think of what an offensive, repeat offender I continue to be. Yet, His love for me is so great that He continues to remind me that it's OK. He loves me. His unconditional love is something that I could never be separated from. (Romans 8:35-39) Much like the love I have for my own Bouquet of Blessings. Thank you, Lord!


Now, speaking of blessings.


Around 1:00 p.m. yesterday we were wheeled down to the pre-op. After reviewing every possible scenario with Dr. Hero and the new ENT, which by the way I happen to love, they confidently headed into the OR.

About an hour later, they emerged through the doors of the waiting room where I nervously sat praying and wishing them through.

They smiled and immediately reassured me all was well. Then they asked that I follow them into the conference room. I hate conference rooms. (Conference rooms will always remind of Angel's story.) Conference rooms seem to never be a place for good news.

The new ENT first commented on the fact that the previous ENT who had done the adenoidectomy at MCH did a great job! That was a huge relief. Then they proceeded to tell me about Kai's present surgery.

After scoping and completely going in from nasal cavity down to his airway, they found that one of the "ports" on each side of the flap, which are quite small to start with (on purpose to prevent excess airflow into the nasal cavity) seemed to be the problem. The port (breathing hole) was covered by tissue, therefore leaving him only one side only to breathe in from. When he falls asleep and his muscles relax, that covering tissue sort of flops down over the port, blocking the airway. When the adenoids were enlarged due to the respiratory infection he had weeks ago, it threw him over the edge. Dr. Hero solved this by cutting back about 2/3 of the tissue that surrounded the port.

Is it the answer to stopping the de-sats? We're not 100% sure, but it definitely was a contributing factor. We will now do a repeat sleep study for his apnea in about 6-8 weeks. He will remain on the monitor at home for that time, and is also now on preventative medications (Nasonex and Claritin) daily for an undetermined length of time.

After the doctors left, the nurses called me into the recovery room where my boy was having a raging fit as he was coming out of anesthesia. Oh. My. Word! That's where the other nails come in.

I had meant to clip Kai's nails before leaving Ft. Myers, but in my haste, I completely forgot. As I approached the crib where arms were flailing, screams were shattering glass and eyes were shut so tight that I thought they'd burst, he reached out and literally clawed me. I hadn't even spoken so he didn't know it was me. I immediately retracted. This time more cautiously I approached the crib again and tried to whisper (but ended up shouting for him to hear me above the screams), "Kai! It's Mama. I'm here baby. It's OK!" He then whipped around towards me and before I could jump back, two little hands with outstretched claws fingers dug deep into my arm and left their mark as I pulled back. He reminded me of a documentary I had once seen on feral children.

By then, one of the nurses whose job I had taken over by holding him down, had gone to get the anesthesiologist. Shortly afterwards, he rushed in with syringe in hand and gave him a dose of Presidex, a sedative to allow him to go back to sleep without compromising his respiratory function the way morphine would (not to mention that he's allergic to morphine). The response? NOTHING. The wildcat was still on the loose, attempting to rip off any wiring attached to him, throwing his beloved pillow across the room, pulling off his hospital gown and almost choking himself in the process. Another dose 4 minutes later. Again. Nothing. Finally, the doctor said it was not working, which was quite obvious to those who only really understand medicine in layman's terms, such as moi. He ran out and ran back this time with a syringe filled with Diprivan, a medication used to maintain general anesthesia. He immediately was out. The doctor instructed the recovery room nurses to allow him to sleep it off and not wake him. Which meant we remained in the tiny, frigid cold, dark recovery room for what seemed like forever.

About 3 hours later, I gently spoke to him trying to rouse him without startling him. It worked! He accepted his pillow from me and let me stand by his crib stroking his hair as he came in and out of conscienceness.

We came up to the room where he had some jello, some juice and a dose of Tylenol with codeine for pain.

This morning he awoke happy and for-the-most-part pain free, with the exception of a terrible rash that has covered his body. Yes. The codeine. An alkaloid found in opium that converts into morphine in the liver. Being that he is allergic to morphine, I should've known. They should've known. Right now, I have one very itchy and red little boy sleeping behind me. A little boy filled to the brim with Claritin and Benadryl.


As to the de-sats, assuming the monitor worked properly, we did great last night! The alarm didn't go off once and my keenly watchful Mama eyes did not see any drops in his levels. Praise God!


We have at least one or two more nights here, meaning we should be home for Easter, God willing. I leave you all with some pictures of my boy. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts for your prayers and wishing you all a very blessed Easter weekend.



Heavily sedated in recovery, after his wildcat tribute.

In the pre-op learning how to take apart the blood pressure cuffs...

....and his heart rate leads.

Being my silly boy!

Cute foot-sies with the now very-familiar-to-us oxygen sensor attached.


Thursday, April 9, 2009

Versed Boy!

I'll be posting about the results of the surgery later this evening when Kai is asleep. Right now the poor baby is in pain. The surgery wasn't as easy as just the scopes being done and sadly, I don't think we've reached the end of the track yet. But, I am extremely happy with the team of doctors we are using. They know they're stuff and are being conservatively aggressive (is that an oxymoron?) when it comes to Kai's treatment.

In the meantime, I thought I'd upload this video clip of Kai in the pre-op room waiting as the Versed (sedative) was kicking in. Notice the swaying and the droopy eyes. He's too funny on that med.

Remember to scroll down and turn off the background music before watching the video.


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Lastly, a few of you have emailed me asking what the plaque said. Here's a close-up picture of the finished product and below is what was engraved on it.

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"A hundred years from now, it will not matter the house you lived in, what kind of car you drove or what was in your bank account. But the world might be a better place because you were important in the life of a child."

Dr. Ramon Ruiz

With forever gratitude for giving me the ability to speak, my family and myself wish to thank you for your genuine kindness, dedication, support and exceptional expertise in your field. It is doctors like you that make a difference in this world.

Adrian "Kai" Bombardier

2009

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Dr. Hero's Exam

This morning we woke up, had breakfast and were sitting in Dr. Hero's waiting room by 8:45 a.m. His wonderful staff sweetly greeted us and played with Kai as we waited for the doctor's arrival. Kai was his only scheduled patient, since this was to be his week of vacation.

At 9 a.m. sharp, Dr. Hero walked through the door of the examining room we were waiting in. After saying hi to Kai and giving me a hug, he turned back to Kai and said, "Wow! It's so good to see you, Kai. It's been a long time!" To which Kai immediately responded, "So? Where ya been?" Everyone cracked up. Yep...that's my boy.

We sat there for about an hour going over the past 6 weeks and all that has happened since. I did tell him about the amount of Kai's de-sats drastically dropping at night. He said he wasn't surprised, but that Kai has definitely "earned himself a laryngoscopy and a bronchoscopy" at the least. Therefore, we are proceeding as planned. If no further obstruction is found, then PRAISE GOD...if an obstruction is found, then it will be corrected while in the OR and again we PRAISE GOD! In the end, that's who is in control and who we will glorify.

Towards the end of our conversation, Kai noticed the gift bag I had sitting by me with Dr. Hero's plaque I had made. Remember the picture you, my wonderful readers, voted on? Well, the plaque with your chosen picture was given to Dr. Hero this morning. He unwrapped it and was pretty speechless, except for the words, "Oh my God, you're killing me here!" as he wiped tears from his eyes. His nurse stood next to him reading it, also with tears in her eyes. Dr. Hero then scooped up Kai, gave him big hug and said, "This is truly the best gift anyone has ever given me!"

I interrupted the tear fest with a request for a picture, to which Dr. Hero kindly agreed (after wiping away tears).

A happy little boy with a very happy doctor!

He then asked me if I was in a hurry to get Kai admitted since tonight was just a night of monitoring his de-sats. I said, "Not really". He then had his secretary make arrangements for Kai to be at the hospital registration between 3 - 5 p.m., leaving us a free day to spend as we chose.

Kai and I then returned to the RMH and hung out for a bit in the playroom, then headed to a beautiful mall here where we walked around, looked at fountains and had a great lunch together. It really felt like we were on vacation.

Around 3 p.m. when we were finsihed with lunch, we again went back the RMH, packed our necessary gear for the next few days at the hospital and walked over to the admitting office.

Kai's demeanor immediately changed once we were in the Special Care unit room. He became very apprehensive and uncooperative. A few resident doctors came in and asked him questions, to which he did not respond, not even giving them eye contact. I explained to them about his trauma with needles and how much he's been through. Immediately they reassured him that they had no needles and that they only wanted to listen to his heart, check his mouth....etc., etc., he again had a change of mood and became happy and cooperative.

Dr. Hero stopped by in the evening to say hi again and to let me know that he had spoken to the staff about Kai's IV. He instructed them that "his special patient will be NPO (nothing by mouth) after 2:00 a.m., but that an IV should not be implanted until he is ready to go to surgery". They will give him the Versed (sedative) prior to the IV being put in. That made this Mama's heart really happy!

Scott and I have commented many times that when this whole mess began weeks ago, we should have come here from the get-go. Hindsight is 20/20. I digress.

Now, it's 12:30 a.m. and the little man is soundly sleeping. He had one quick de-sat around 10 p.m. and it quickly jumped back into the 90's. So far, so good.

The scopes will determine what procedures will need to be taken in the OR. I know God is holding us tight in His grip and I am completely at peace with how things are going. He and He alone knows the outcome of all of this, and I trust in Him completely.

Sweet dreams baby boy.

Perfect numbers!



Fun At Sea World

Some snugglin' time!

Popcorn makes watching the Shamu show so much better!
It's cool to wet the people below!

Ok...this is my favorite picture of the day! Pure joy on his face!

Just hanging around!

My big boy!


He's got that "I'm thinking about what to do next" look.


This picture definitely shows Kai's personality.


Silly boy!

Telling Daddy all about the Elmo show.


Hugs from the Sesame Street bunch!

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A bundle of energy waiting in line to go into the Shark Encounter.

(It's a VIDEO CLIP! - Click on the play button and remember to scroll down and turn off background music!)

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Not What You Wanted

I know that you guys are all waiting for a post full 'o cuteness again with pictures of our day at Sea World. I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but it's not what you're gettin' tonight folks.

Why?

Because I'm plum' exhausted. The boy has completely worn me out.

We were on the road by 7:00 a.m. I could barely keep my eyes open during the 3.5 hour drive, because I ended up going to bed at almost 3 a.m.

Finally, we made it to Sea World. OH MY LORD!!!!!!! WHAT WAS I THINKING??????

As a Floridian for almost my entire life, I'v always had enough sense to know that going to a theme park in Orlando during SPRING BREAK is as bad as falling into a bed of cacti - naked! Why would I do that??????

We arrived there on time, until we hit the exit to Sea World on I-4. From that point, it took us 1.5 hours to get off the exit and park our car at Sea World. That was crazy! Poor Kai kept asking, "Are we there yet?" I kept saying, "Almost!" As we both watched the big Sea World sign just yards away, but unable to move....for over an hour!

Yet, even with the huge crowds and the cold weather (yes, Aus...we wore ski caps and layered clothes with jackets in 58 degrees - we're wimps), we had an absolutely. marvelous. time. We laughed, sang silly songs, ate junk food, and even picked up on some educational stuff when we learned some cool facts about polar bears and sharks. I loved listening to Kai giggle and watching him run around like a looney. My heart melted whenever he'd say, "I miss Daddy." or "I miss AJ and Anna Grace." Man, I love that boy so much. He's got a gigantic heart with a personality to match. Scott tells me often that Kai is my soul. It always makes me smile. OK. Major degression.

I took tons of pictures and some videos, but I truly am wiped out. I will definitely post them tomorrow while hanging out at the hospital though, so be sure to come peek.

We checked into the RMH this evening, had some leftover mac & cheese with chicken and settled into our room, which is again, very nice! Kai told me he was not tired and began to argue a bit about why he had to go to sleep. I told him he could stay up for 5 more minutes. I went into the bathroom to put away our toiletries and when I walked back out, he had completely passed out on the bed. Too funny! So, now he's snoring away as I type.

Tomorrow morning we meet with Dr. Hero at 8:45 a.m. I'm a bit nervous. Kai's de-sat's have gone from 20+ a night to maybe 5 a night...if that. I know that is GREAT news, but I think the doctor is gonna think I'm crazy. Now I'm worried that maybe Kai shouldn't have surgery and that eventually his de-sats will go away all together. But, I'm not a doctor and we'll see in the morning what the real doctor says, although I do think they will still be going through with the endoscopys on Thursday.

Not to mention the fact that I feel so bad for my sweet boy, who has asked me about needles every single time I mention him going back into the hospital. I hate the fact that he has to go through this. I hate it! Poor baby.

So back to today. It was a wonderful, unforgettable day filled with memories that I will carry in my heart for a lifetime.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Heading Out

The packages (Anna Grace & AJ) have been delivered safely into their Po-Po's arms and now I am just finishing up the last minute packing.

Kai was beside himself with excitement about SeaWorld. I think he told everyone who's crossed his path the last two days where he was going.

I checked the weather and was hoping for a typical hot and muggy Florida day so that he could get drenched by Shamu, but alas, he'll be instead wearing a jacket since the high will be 60. Oh well. That's ok! I know he's still gonna have a blast.

I have lots of do and probably won't be going to bed until close to 2:00 a.m. to be up by 5:30, so I'm keeping this short.

Thank you all for the prayers and a big thank you to the Orlando families (especially all the HFS families) that have emailed offering their help and of course, to Po-Po and Ayi for watching our other babies. I am humbled and blessed.

God is holding us tight in His grip! I feel it.....BIG!!!!

As promised, here are some pictures of our boy celebrating his 3rd Forever Family Day! I'll post from the RMH (Ronald McDonald House) when we arrive tomorrow evening.

Enjoy the cuteness!


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