Things didnt go according to plan this year.... the week before Christmas Henley was off school for the whole week with a bad cold - runny nose, very chesty croupy cough and high temperatures. As luck would have it, that week co-incided with our 6 monthly pulmonology visit, so we got to see Dr S. and he gave Henley a prescription for pulmicort, albuterol (2 medicines we always have plenty of anyway and were already giving him) as well as some steroids and antibiotics. He seemed to be doing much better, but all of a sudden Skye got sick too.
The night before Christmas Eve, Skye's O2 sats were 94/95 overnight - lower than usual, but what you would expect for a bad cold (she still has a pulseox at night). On Christmas Eve however, I put her to bed around 9pm and by 10pm I could not keep her sats above her alarm level of 90, depsite much repositioning and several breathing treatments... by 10.30 I decided to pack us a bag (I know how this goes...) and head off for the local hospital.
They were excellent, but of course the first thing they always do is put in a line, so that got Skye very upset as she then had her arm on a board. Next they gave her a more potent breathing threatment and gave her IV steroid, took blood, nose & throat swabs, all the time saying 'lets get you out of here as fast as possible'. By 5am they decided she had not improved and she was already on 30% oxygen and we were waiting for tranport to Florida hospital Pediatric ICU. I followed her in the ambulance and by 7am she was in a bed in the PICU up to 70% oxygen via humidifier to the trach and looking very pale. As this was the first time Skye had been in hospital since the NICU I couldnt leave her so we had Christmas day amidst all the moitors and beeps that go along with an intensive care unit. The nurses and doctors there I thought were really good! They just let me get on with looking after Skye, suctioning her when she needed it or de-satted and generally just being her mom and doing the things I would do at home but with oxygen hooked up!
After a couple of days, her oxygen needs decreased and she was wanting to get up out of bed and go play - we wnt for walks around the PICU and everyone told us we shoud be transferred to pediatric now as they had a playroom and Skye was getting bored. By the next day she was needing oxygen at night only and with several phone calls to our medical supply company and a lot of organization by Alicia our urse, they agreed Skye could go home with oxygen for night time use.
So we are back home -- Skye is on a concentrator at night - last night she had 1 liter and satted at 98 or above, so I will try her at 1/2 liter tonight - we used to have a concentrator that had low flow graduations but this one does not - its a half liter or one liter only!
Here are some pictures of her hospital stay.... Starting with day one and ending just before she came home... you can tell she is ready!
Tuesday, December 11, 2012
Firstly, since my last post the babies turned 3 so I guess by default I should no longer call them 'the babies'. We had a great little family birthday in our backyard, had party hats, a cake, sung happy birthday blew out the candles, took some photos and then at the end of the evening Henley tossed our new camera over the pool fence and right into the pool. Hmmm sounds about right....
As it has been 10 months since I last updated this blog they have grown and changed so much. They are both in an exceptional student education class at the local elementary school and still get speech (both of them) and occupational therapy (Henley only).
Skye lost her MIC-Key button the week before starting school and as she was a good weight and was starting to eat much more by mouth we decided to see how things went. She is doing great and although she doesnt eat any more than before, she is happy to drink 3 bottles of pediasure instead of having them tube fed to her - she even goes and gets one of of the pantry when she wants one!
I have to say since they started school they have both been sick a lot (expecially first 6 weeks) and so both of them went a bit skinny due to feeling ill/having a vomiting bug then a pooping bug). Right now, they have both put a bit back on and are looking good!
Skye still has her trach and wears it in and capped for school, mostly to keep the germs out and keep her safe from drinks (she will pick up anyones glass and try to drink from it, but usually spills it down her neck - VERY dangerous if you have an open tracheostomy!) She also has a nurse in the classroom to keep an eye on her due to the trach and she is very good, so my mind is at rest with her there!
She is also starting to talk. I know she is waaaay behind a 3 1/2 year old, but she will copy lots of things you say now and is starting to use her words to ask for things which is a huge step in the right direction. I also think she is very smart as she can count to 20, knows her alphabet, colors, shapes, animals and she knows a lot of sight words, to the point where is is almost 'reading' her books.
Henley is also doing well at school and I really think he is smart as he knows all the same things as Skye. His speaking however is still pretty much non-existant, although he has added 'no' to his vocabulary recently. If I show him flashcards of colors, shapes and words, he points out anything I ask him (e.g where is the oval shape, where is the giraffe, which word says please etc). he is also getting used to kids a little bit more and doesnt have full on meltdowns in the grocery store because another child screamed. He does have some headphones, however that he uses at school and he puts them on when he wants to if someone is loud, and he uses them at playtime - we also have some for when we go out with him!
Here are some updated photos of them - there is one of Skye sitting in snow - this was only 'fake' snow at Celebration....