Today was a busy news day. Luke had a really, really, really good day. Can I hear a yee haw, complete with an arm swing and cowboy hat?
In a nutshell…his PDA closed, VSD is still there, on TPN, but no longer NPO, the NEO increased his feeds to 12cc Q3, the MRI results are pending and all that makes MOM PDH. Translation?
PDA: patent ductus arteriosus (all babies are born with this “hole” which connects the aorta and the pulmonary artery, typically is closes shortly after birth)
VSD: ventricular septal defect (this is the hole between the lower two ventricles, by all accounts the cardiologist thinks Luke’s might be getting smaller and closing on its own)
TPN: total parenteral nutrition (all of Luke’s nutritional requirements that he gets via his IV)
NPO: nil per os, Latin for ‘nothing by mouth’
12cc Q3: 12cc of milk every 3 hours
MRI: magnetic resonance imaging (the big machine with the hole in the middle that uses a magnetic field to visualize the internal makings of the body)
PDH: pretty damn happy
I hope you’re all still with me 🙂 All kidding and medical lingo aside, I was overwhelmed by the many graces that flowed upon Luke today. So many, that I actually felt a little guilty and a little stunned. I know that probably sounds weird. But after you hear about the rest of my day, you’ll understand.
At rounds, we upped Luke’s feeds again. I’m still cautiously happy. So far, so good. As we were wrapping up rounds, Dr. Johnson, our cardio, brought me the definitive good news that Luke’s PDA had closed (which a couple of weeks ago we didn’t think it would) and that his VSD was on the right pathway to closing. Honestly, I had to ask him to repeat it twice for me to believe it.
Today the NICU was a flurry of activity, anxiety and drama. We had a transport arrive from Seton Main hospital this morning and it was not good. From what I gathered it’s a very tiny preemie (a 27-weeker) that needed emergency surgery. It was a dad gum convention in Room 6 this morning. Neos and nurses were running up and down the hall, EMTs were whisking the baby in and you could just feel the stress. The baby was so unstable that the surgeons performed the surgery in the NICU at the bedside.
I was so shaken, that I just sat in Luke’s room, holding him, listening to our classical music, with tears filling my eyes. In those quiet moments, I prayed for that family, especially that Mom whose head was probably spinning. That was us just three weeks ago. That same surgeon operated on my little one. That same neonatoligist cared for Luke. And to think that just 24 hours prior, Room 6 was filled with so much joy because a baby was going home. To be perfectly frank, I felt guilty for hoarding all the good news. As thankful as I was that Luke was doing so well, I was angry that another family had to experience such heartache.
In the blink of an eye the NICU transforms from tears of joy to tears of sorrow.
In a heartbeat, a baby goes from stable to critical.
In a flash, a family’s life changes forever.
So, we continue on the roller coaster. Seatbelts fastened realizing that as quickly as the journey goes up, the next dip could be around the corner. And when it ends is anybody’s guess.
Luke, you were a trooper today. Be nice to your new buddy this evening and don’t hog the nurses, ok? God bless you sweetheart. See you in the morning.