Saturday, July 14, 2012
After our day of disappointment, travel and recuperation we are ready to get the ball rolling on plans to get back to Ann Arbor next month. Greg's contact at our hotel said that unfortunately, the UAW is hosting their national convention in A2 that week and getting a room anywhere in town will be next to impossible. They can not offer us the same amount of nights we had remaining, but they did have a late cancellation for four nights, so we know we've got a place to stay through the night of August 10th. We will hope that by that time he is well enough to be floor status, at which time we can both be with him overnight. We may try to get a room at the Med Inn for the 11th through discharge, but I honestly don't know if I can handle stepping foot in there. It just holds so many traumatic memories. We had purchased tickets for Connie and I to fly home in time for heart camp next week, but since things have changed, and since he's growing rather weary of another long car trip, we decided to see if we could change our flights to August 7th and have Greg meet us at the airport in Detroit and drive us to A2. I think it will help his spirits some and keep him out of rest stop bathrooms and hopefully well enough to go through with the surgery next time. Thankfully, it only cost $26 total to make the switch. We got lucky there. On the health front, he hasn't vomited anymore since yesterday evening, but he did have two accidents overnight. He's such a big boy, he even got himself changed and cleaned up. Thank you for your continued prayers. We know that the peace we feel is a direct result of so many lifting us up.
Posted by Erin Beckemeier at 11:22 AM
Friday, July 13, 2012
We rolled into the driveway just after 7:00 to be reunited with the other kiddos. Karsten was so cute. He did really well while we were gone... like it didn't even phase him. He said hello to his brother and then went on about his business. Connie's loose stools improved drastically and he kept everything down most of the way home. Just this side of Springfield he vomited again. I think he started taking in more than a small sip and that triggered it. All the pedialyte and crackers came up. I was a little concerned we might end up needing to get him on some IV fluids, but he's urinated a few times and his eyes aren't sunken in. We'll.call the ped in the morning if he struggles again after breakfast. Looks like heart camp is going to be a reality now and he'll have more time for summer. I also like that the new date is on a Wednesday. I wasn't too crazy about major surgery just before the weekend when staffing seems pared down a bit.
Posted by Erin Beckemeier at 9:47 PM
That's the new date. We do have the benefit of it falling within the 30 day window so as long as Kim can wrestle his blood work papers away from the people in the PACU, we can forgo more pre-op testing next month and just show up on surgery day. Pray for health! We are heading home today, even though we have all three started having GI issues. He wants to go home, so to home we go!
Posted by Erin Beckemeier at 9:48 AM
Never thought I'd be thrilled that my child is sick, but I am thrilled that he is sick in the hotel rather than sick trying to recover from major open heart surgery. He is continuing to dry heave/vomit and just had a bout of diarrhea even! Dr. Bove must have a sixth sense! What a blessing that he felt uneasy in moving forward! We returned to the hotel to discover a gift had been left for him at the front desk. It was a present from Con-way Freight across the street. Here he is opening it.
Posted by Erin Beckemeier at 9:11 AM
Conway threw up again before bed and the apple juice from very early morning. We were told to bring him in and they'd reassess. We got there and told the nurse who didn't seem overly concerned and said it would be anesthesia's call. The fellow and another doctor came in and heard all about it and didn't see any reson not to proceed. He has no temp, sign of infection or any other systemic issue. His labs from yesterday were normal and show no elevated counts or problems with electrolytes. They paged Dr. Bove to fill him in and he feels it is unsafe to proceed at this time. Greg is ecstatic and relieved. I can't help but be disappointed. Of course I don't want him to go through a risky "elective" surgery if he is compromised in any way, and in my head I know that this is a blessing in disguise and today just wasn't the right day for this. But my heart is sure heavy, knowing we'll have to do this all over again, only now it being more likely that he'll have to start kindergarten late and all that goes along with the travel details, etc. I have a new job this school year, too, and am pretty nervous at the prospect of needing time off before I start! I know his safety is number one, but these are real concerns that I can't help but worry about. He was so disappointed he wasn't getting his heart fixed today, and Dr. Bradley even came by to visit, not knowing it was off. We joked that this was the second time Connie's invited him to the dance and stood him up. The last time was in the cath lab in '09 when he attempted an ablation for the first time. Now we wait to hear from his schedulers, but they advised us to go back to St. Louis. We were told we'd know more by 11am about when he can be put on Dr. Bove's schedule. He was very sorry. I feel bad for him, but sure respect him for making such a difficult decision.
Posted by Erin Beckemeier at 6:53 AM
Thursday, July 12, 2012
Left the hospital at quarter to five and Connie took a very long nap. Just after he woke up and got dressed to go to the pool, the phone rang and it was the cardiologist we saw today. She said plans have changed and after further review of today's echo, they want to replace a valve as well. They are looking to use a donor cadaver valve in place of his native pulmonary valve, along with the new conduit. This is a disappointing development, as it means he will now need valve replacements in the future. The average valve lasts 10-15 years, but that's what conduits are supposed to last as well and here we are just five years later. Oh, and he threw up again tonight after another headache. He doesn't have a fever and says it was a migraine. Hospital seems okay with the news. After welling up for just a moment while I was on the phone with the doctor, I have given it to God and trust that He knew about this even before Connie was conceived. Also, Dr. Bromberg reminded me that we are one of the best places in the world and if their collective, brilliant minds think this is what is best for our boy, then so be it. Please keep praying. We are at peace.
Posted by Erin Beckemeier at 8:36 PM
We opted to eat breakfast in the little Subway cafeteria in the hospital prior to the start of our appointments today. Right away he went down for x-ray and did a marvelous job. He was an old pro! Then back up to the coordinated care section of the heart center. There he got a visit from Rachel, a child life specialist. She talked to him and gave him a few cool toys he could play with while waiting for his tests today. He even got to keep the toys! He told her how much he likes bowling and that he went to Bel-Mark Lanes yesterday.
Posted by Erin Beckemeier at 4:48 PM
Wednesday, July 11, 2012
Today we had the whole day to do fun things around town to try and take our minds off of what is to come. The plan was to go to the beach/splashground in the morning and bowling in the afternoon. We slept in (we needed it!) and didn't get going until close to lunch time! He was dying to bowl so we went to Bel-Mark lanes first. He bowled three games and had a grilled cheese sandwich and milk. Then we went back to the hotel to grab our suits and head to Independence Lake. We got there, but on the way he said he had a terrible headache and was almost crying. He said it felt like a migraine. Sure enough, he threw up. We turned around and went back to the hotel and he threw up again before taking a very long nap. At dinner time, he woke up and decided to rally! We went to the Cottage Inn for dinner where Greg had what he said was the best pizza he's ever eaten. We walked next door for gelato. Connie loved the lemon blueberry flavor. We decided it was just like in the book Olivia Goes to Venice. A few blocks away was Pinball Pete's. Talk about a fun arcade! Connie got his fill of skee ball, air hockey and pinball.
Posted by Erin Beckemeier at 9:04 PM
Tuesday, July 10, 2012
We made the trip up to Ann Arbor in about 8 hours today. Only two stops and no traffic. Thank you for all the prayers for safe travel. We did happen upon two accidents that we narrowly missed. One was a large object that went through someone's windshield, and another was an overturned semi on an off ramp moments after we exited. Here he is posing in front of the Con-way Freight headquarters located across the highway from our hotel. How cool to have a building named after you!
Posted by Erin Beckemeier at 8:15 PM