Thursday, September 27, 2007


Phoebe is back to being a happy kid. She's over her cold, which is GREAT. AND I think she might have gotten her days and nights straightened out. She had been having a hard time sleeping through the night since the surgery, mostly because pooping was waking her up, but also lately because her congestion was making it difficult to breathe. She hadn't slept much, due to the cold, in a couple of days, and last night (drumroll...) she slept from 10 pm to 3 am. Yay! Unfortunately, Mommy now has the cold.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Home Again

Phoebe is home and doing great! We are so pleased with her progress. Her recovery from the surgery at the hospital was "textbook". Every day brought more positive changes, and it has been that way ever since. She continues to smile, laugh and play despite what we have dubbed her "poop attacks". She is still a little uncomfortable when she poops, but it seems to get a little better each day.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Getting better

Phoebe is doing well. Wednesday was a good day, with a couple little blips. She still has all of the tubes we talked about before. For most of the day, she was very sleepy. She would wake up every few minutes and cry a little, then fall back asleep. So we thought she was in pain. We called the anesthesiologist, and he came up to see Phoebe. He said he thought she was not in great pain because he already knew the epidural was working (it was used during the surgery) and because she was consolable. But, he wrote orders for morphine and another pain reliever that is similar to ibuprophen, in case she became inconsolable later in the day. She started to wake up for longer periods around 2 in the afternoon. The nurse said it was because the anesthesia was wearing off, which happens about 24 hours after it is given. But, we thought she was waking up and crying because of pain, because she started to cry inconsolably. So the nurse gave her morphine, and she instantly stopped crying. Phew! We were glad we trusted our gut; she just doesn't cry unless there's something wrong! Phoebe has a catheter for urine, and later in the day, we noticed the flow of urine stopped. So the nurse called the docs and they upped her IV fluids. But still no urine. So eventually, the surgical resident examined her and tried flushing the tube. There was a blockage in the tube; after it was cleared, she was peeing constantly! By the later evening, Phoebe was awake for a 10 minute block of time- the longest all day. It reminded me of when she was a newborn- as soon as she opened her eyes, we would try to be right there so she saw us & knew we were there, and then she would fall right back to sleep. But we got to play with her a little, and at the end of the day, we got her to laugh. Yes! That was just the best. Mommy turned 27 today, and that was the best present EVER. Phoebe's incision looks great, and we're looking forward to seeing some of the tubes start to disappear.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Sunrise in the hospital

Phoebe came out of surgery yesterday just fine. Everything went just as expected. At about 8:30, the transporter camte to Phoebe's room and he lead us to the surgery holding area. In that room, we were asked a million questions (again), her ID was checked, and we met with the surgeon and the anesthesiologist. The docs came in at about 9:00. They told us again everything that was in the plan for the day and gave us opportunities to ask any last-minute questions. Mommy could barely speak; there was a giant lump in her throat and there were tears were streaming down her face. The anesthesiologist came back into the room at about 9:45, and gave Phoebe a sedative that made her really loopy. We hadn't been able to feed her anything since 4 a.m., and it had now been five hours without anything in her stomach, after a day of just clear liquids. Needless to say, she was very tense wondering why she couldn't have any food. She instantly relaxed and this dopey expression came across her face. That's when Mommy really lost it. At about 10:00, Daddy handed Phoebe to the anesthesiologist and he took Phoebe in his arms and carried her to to the OR. Mommy and Daddy stayed in this room for about 15 minutes, and cried, reminded in such a way of the heartache we've already been through, and hoping that our little baby girl would come out ok on the other end of today's surgery. Once in the OR, it took about an hour to get her ready with the anesthesia; the surgery itself started at about 11 a.m., and was finished at about 3:30. The great news is that because the surgery was about 4 1/2 hours (under 6), Phoebe did not have to go to the PICU. She spent a couple of hours in the recovery room and was then taken right back to her regular hospital room.

Phoebe looks great, for having undergone major abdominal surgery. The docs are giving her extra IV fluids, so she looks a little puffy, and she is pretty zonked from the pain medications so she's sleeping a lot. She has several tubes going to and from various places in her body. There is an N-G tube draining any fluids her stomach produces, so they don't build up in her stomach and make her bloated and uncomfortable, and so they don't travel throughout her digestive system and irritate the sutures when her intestines wake up (the body stops them from working for a few days after they've been manipulated in surgery). There's her Broviac IV, which is duck soup, old hat. She's getting just some fluids at the moment. The docs are hoping to start TPN again maybe tomorrow or Friday. Then Phoebe has an epidural for pain management (like what Mommy had during delivery). The epidural is on a constant drip, and provides her with a local anesthetic and fentenyl, an opioid that makes her loopy. Coming out of Phoebe's incision is a tube draining fluid from inside the abdominal cavity. This is there because there is a ton of fluid in the abdomen after such a surgery; after the surgeons finish sewing up, they wash things off help stave off infection, and the "gut" naturally "weeps". This fluid needs to be removed because, as we all know, germs like dark, warm, wet places. The last tube is a catheter for urine. They gave her this for two reasons: to avoid manipulating her body for diaper changes (cuz of the major ow-ie on her belly), and to be able to measure her output so they can balance her fluids via IV. Her incision looks great, too. Overnight, Phoebe pulled out her N-G tube. The nurse called us (to tell us they put in another one) in our hotel room but we were sleeping so deeply that we didn't even hear the phone. They made loose little splints for her arms from gauze and tongue depressors to keep her from pulling it out in a frenzy again.

Phoebe did great. She is a champ. For now, she is resting quietly and healing up. Thanks for checking in!

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Phoebe goes to the hospital on Monday morning. Mom and Dad are coping well. We have our anxious moments (well, mostly Mommy) but we have been successful at talking through the scary thoughts. We look forward to being on the other side of this, and back at home. For now, starting on Monday morning, we will feed Phoebe just clear liquids (juice and pedialyte) up until her procedure on Tuesday morning. The surgery is scheduled for 9 a.m., and is estimated to last about four hours. The surgeon plans to perform a Duhamel pull-through (for all you google-savvy folks). After the surgery, Mom and Dad will be able to be with Phoebe when she wakes up in the recovery room. If the surgery lasts under 6 hours (which is more likely), she will go right to the regular pediatric floor. If the surgery goes longer than expected (over 6 hours), she will have to spend a day in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU), to recover from anesthesia effects. Needless to say, we're hoping everything goes as planned. There is a computer available to parents in the Pediatric floor at the hospital; we will update as we can but there may not be pictures until we're all back home. Until then, we leave you with these images of happy Miss Phoebe.

Sunday, September 2, 2007

Sitsy Mac Sits-up-herself

Saturday morning, we could hear that Phoebe was awake. She wasn't crying, but she was making her playing sounds. We could also hear that she was playing with her aquarium (the white and aqua thing by her feet). We expected to see her spinning the little toy on it with her hands...but she was facing the opposite direction than she had been placed, and she was watching her foot as she spun the toy while chewing on her binky. Wiggle monster!
One of these mornin's, you're gonna wake up smilin'...Guess who's sitting?!
Teething brings out the maniac in the best of us.