Friday, July 27, 2012

Moving Forward

Thank you for the kind comments concerning my grandfather. I'm looking forward to celebrating his life with my extended family next week in California.

Sam continues to improve, though the nights are tough. Poor guy. As hard as the surgery was on him, he had a number of comments that made us smile. His first coherent sentence in the recovery room was, "This is not a very special day for me." No, indeed.

When his Uncle Dave came to visit the first words out of Sam's mouth were, "How's Clara?"

On the drive home Sam requested a milk shake so we stopped at McDonald's. He quickly befriended another 4-year-old customer and upon our departure told her, "Maybe we can get married someday. I think we'd be natural friends." Love that boy.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Gratitude and Heavy Hearts

Dear Friends,

Thanks so much for your prayers for Sam's surgery. Despite a breathing hiccup on the front end, he seems to be quickly on the mend. Towards the end of our hospital stay a nurse asked Sam if he needed anything else. "Just a hug!" was his reply. Needless to say he quickly won over the staff. Above is a picture a few hours post-surgery when Gracie the therapy dog came for a visit.

Sadly, just before Sam was taken back to the operating room I learned that my grandfather passed away. I knew he was quite ill but was still surprised by the timing of his death. Assuming Sam continues on the same trajectory, the plan right now is for me to fly to California next week for the funeral.

While a trip out west is normally planned with great enthusiasm, this one comes upon me with a heavy heart.



Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Operation Remove Those Tonsils

(Sam posing with the tray of food he pulled together all by himself when he heard John had strep throat...because when your throat is on fire you really want celery and pretzel sticks.)

A common question John and I are asked is, "How is Sam sleeping these days?" For the past year or so our knee-jerk response has been, "Great!" But everything is relative, and it wasn't until this March that it dawned on me that perhaps Sam wasn't sleeping "great", perhaps we were just glad to only be woken up once a night instead of five times a night. 

A typical week of sleep for Sam consists of three uninterrupted nights, three nights of getting up once, and a night where he awakens twice. He wakes up during classic asthma times (1-4 am) and is often snoring and sweating profusely (as in sheets so wet you have to change the bed). There are other less than pleasant symptoms as well. Since December of 2010 Sam has only had five consecutive nights of uninterrupted sleep.

After a few more appointments and changes in medication we are pulling the trigger and removing his tonsils and adenoids tomorrow morning at Peyton Manning Hospital.** He has been officially diagnosed with an obstructed airway disorder which means removing the tonsils and adenoids will give him more breathing space. That's the hope, at least.

Thankfully, surgery is scheduled for early in the morning. Sam is excited about the ice cream, nervous about his "swallow hurting", giggly that he has to wear a "girl gown", and greatly relieved he's not going in for another sleep study. I don't know how many times he's told me, "I will go to the hospital and I will ride in the wagon, but I will NOT do another sleep study." Deal.

So, any advice on keeping a 4-year-old comfortable after a tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy? I've been told to plan on a 2-week recovery.

Consider your advice solicited!

**For those of you who are curious, we are looking into the possibility of Sam getting what's known as the "intracapsular technique" which is a less invasive way of removing the tonsils. We won't know until tomorrow whether or not he can go this route or will need to do the more traditional procedure.