Wednesday, February 28, 2007

We're Home!!

Finally, it seems like it has been a long time, but after a week we are all together again. Thanks again for all of your prayers, I know they have blessed our family, especially Della. When we were admitted into the ICU we were told that we should expect to be at the hospital for 2 to 3 weeks. As I looked at her with a breathing tube, feeding tube, IVs, and monitors everywhere, I never would have thought she would be home a week later.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Going Home For Realsies

Let me start off by saying I am working off of three non-consecutive hours of sleep right now, so I apologize if this entry isn't coherent. The Dr. gave Della two goals to meet before they release her. She has to be off the oxygen for at least 12 hours and maintain a saturation level of 90% or above and she must eat 3 oz. in 20 min. every 3 hours. They turned off her oxygen this morning at 8 am, so even if she does make it 12 hours, they won't release us at night. So it looks like maybe tomorrow, fingers crossed. I will be so glad to sleep in my own bed and not on a hospital chair/pull out bed that is saturated with spit up and who knows what else. However I can see myself at home hovering over her wondering what her O2 saturation level and heart rate are. Staring at a monitor all day does bring a degree of comfort. I'll post again tonight. As for now, I am going to bed.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Almost home?

Della is doing so much better. She accidentally pulled out part of her feeding tube last night, so the nurses finished pulling it our for her. They also took out the IV in her hand but left the one in her head 'just in case'. She is slowly being weaned off the oxygen and her O2 saturation is between 98 and 100% which is much better than the high 60's low 70's she was at when we got there. The Dr. hinted around that she could possibly go home tomorrow if her O2 saturation was in the 90's without her being on oxygen and if she is drinking 12-16 oz. a day, which she is well on her way to doing. This is such good news, especially for me since I really don't want to spend any more nights in the hospital than I have to. No more 12 hour shifts and shuffleing Archer back and forth to wherever. Thanks again for all of the well wishes, prayers, phone calls, e-mails, and offers to help. A special thanks to those who have helped take care of Archer.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Out of the ICU

Della was moved out of the ICU this morning, so that is great news although she is still in the hospital. She is also a lot more alert and awake which makes it even harder to leave her there, but I know she is in good hands. She also has to have breathing treatments every four hours from the respiratory therapist and plenty of suctioning inbetween them. Hopefully she will come home by early next week, fingers crossed! A special thanks to all of out family and friends who have helped us, especially with Archer. We really appreciate it.
Della is no longer getting fluids from her IV's although she still has the catheters in her head and hand. She also takes a few ounces from a bottle, but she has to be suctioned out every hour so that she can breath easily and eat. Hopefully she will be moved out of the ICU tomorrow and then come home a few days after that. Here are some pictures from today. The transport team and the Dr.s and nurses who admitted her on Tuesday came in for their shifts tonight and all of them are amazed at her swift recovery. They make comments like "She's a strong little girl" or "Some just get better faster than others". Even though I agree that she is very strong, I know that her speedy recovery is a result from the prayers that were offered in her behalf. Thank you all. Here are some pictures from today.

The yellow tube is her feeding tube, the clear is the oxygen, and all of the stuff on her head is for the IV. Her face is still very swollen from having the IV fluid start to fill her 'third space' or surrounding tissue. I just couldn't post pictures of her on the vent, it was just too sad. She looks so much better now. Also the thing laying on top of her is called a 'froggie'. It is a large bean bag that lays on top of her and makes her feel almost like she is being held. Della LOVES it. The nurse will come unwrap her to listen to her lungs, suction, change her diaper, etc. and Della will be fussing and unhappy, but as soon as that frog is put back on her, she settles right down and for a real treat sometimes they even put 2 on her. I will also say that Chad has the uncanny ability to capture my neck fat on film.

Friday, February 23, 2007

Best Day Yet

The blood transfusion really gave Della a lot of strength. Her color is better, her blood pressure is up and her heart rate is down. This morning I was told that she might be able to come off the vent on Saturday but a few hours later when the Dr. came around she wanted Della off the vent. that day. Four hours later they pulled it out and after a lot of coughing, she is breathing on her own. I also was able to hold her which was the best part of my day. It seems like it has been forever since I have been able to do that. She is also taking in more calories through a feeding tube to maintain her weight. Thanks to everyone who has prayed for her because I truly believe this is the sole reason she has made such a speedy recovery. Hopefully she will be moved out of the PICU and come home in a few days.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Della Updates

I think that from now on I will post updates here so that I will stop filling everyone's e-mail in-boxes. Today has definitely been better than yesterday, maybe because I got 12 hours of sleep! Since a virus can't be treated they are treating her symptoms to save her energy to fight the virus while it runs it's course. She is still on the ventilator as well as sedatives to keep her calm and out of pain. The Dr. treating her today told me that she is severely anemic and that she needs a blood transfusion as soon as possible. Unfortunately the screening process is so rigorous that it would take 5 days to prepare blood donated from her family (i.e. Chad or myself). So she is receiving someone's blood as we speak and although I am nervous about the transfusion, I am grateful that someone was willing to donate. Hopefully this will bolster her immune system helping her to fight off the RSV even faster. On a lighter note...her Pediatric ICU nurse went to my High School and she has been so accommodating. She even let me change her diaper which is a big deal to me considering that I can't hold her or touch her without wearing gloves, a mask, and a gown. So although things are still serious, it looks like Della will pull out of this OK with no longterm repercussions. I will try to keep this updated as much as I can, but I can't guarantee anything since I spend every available moment at the hospital. Thanks again for the outpouring of well wishes we have received. It has been such a comfort.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Thursday, February 08, 2007

One Month

I know I am slow to post and I apologize. Our home camera was stolen so Chad and I share his work camera which he uses almost daily and it doesn't always make it home. Anyway, Della is a month old already. She is growing (and eating) a lot. I also get a lot of sleep, so I am feeling good. Only 2 more weeks and I can resume normal activities like vacuuming and exercising. Archer will be thrilled to start walking to the library and park again. Meanwhile he will probably continue to test my patience with his pent up energy. Thank goodness for preschool! If only it were 5 days a week...

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Chwuck E. Chweese (Archer's Pronunciation)

Only 550 tickets!

Archer and Nathan love Chuck E. Cheese. Tyler not so much.


My favorite quote about the teeth came from our neighbor: "Hey Archer, I didn't know you were British."

I know it looks like he has a cateract, there is something going on with my red eye editor.

I think Jack spent a total of 45 min. on the jet ski ride and of course, true to their rivalry, Archer had to do whatever Jack was doing.

Tokyo Drift.

Thanks to all who came to the party yesterday. I think Archer felt really special being the center of attention for awhile since his sister has come into town to steal his thunder.