Saturday, May 28, 2011

"Yummm Yummm Yummm"

After 3 weeks of a liquid only diet, Annika had her splint removed from her mouth Tuesday morning. She went into surgery at 7:30 and we were in the car by 8:15! A pretty quick ordeal! Luckily, it was a beautiful day, so we spent our day getting some work down around the house and playing outside.

Wednesday, we were able to start giving her stage 1 baby foods, which are more liquidy. When I fed her the baby food, she was so excited, she just said "Yummm Yummm Yummm" every time I gave her a bite. She ended up eating 4 small jars of food in one sitting. Since then, she has been consistent in her eating, and goes to her high chair when I ask if she wants food. She also really enjoys "pink milk" right now (milk with strawberry sauce).

On Tuesday, we will start to give her some stage 2 baby foods, and maybe some smooth yogurt. We also have her post-operation appointment with Dr. Mann next Thursday. At that meeting, I hope to hear the rest of her feeding transition schedule. I'm thinking that by 4th of July, she'll be able to eat pretty much whatever other kids her age eat!!! Dare to dream.

The 4th and final surgery for awhile will be scheduled for sometime around 4 months from now. We won't get that date for another month or so.

Thanks again for all of your thoughts, cards, gifts, and especially prayers for Annika and Ross and I. Please continue to pray that this feeding transition will remain constant and exciting for her!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Recovery so far

Peanut after a long day in surgery

There are some things only a mother can fix.

Hangin out in Annika's HUGE hospital room (more pictures of the room to come later)

Daddy is a great snuggler too.

In this close-up, you might be able to see what looks like a tiny white snow fence over her top teeth. This is the splint that will cover the entire roof of her mouth for the next 3 weeks.

Good morning!

Let me just say that I fully expect today to be an improvement from yesterday. With that said, we have not started off on the right foot exactly. Sleeping in a hospital with a child is never peaceful, as nurses check on her quite often in the first place. Combine that with an uncomfortable little girl who had trouble breathing throughout the night, and you end up with about 4 hours of total sleep. When Annika slept, she slept well, but it did not last for extensive periods of time. She woke up moaning and crying often.

Other than the lack of sleep, the doctor was able to take her nasal canule out, and she is breathing fine on her own, although she still has some yucky build up in her throat that sounds really uncomfortable. They also asked that we start trying some pedialite via syringe to get her used to drinking on her own. She's just been on an IV up to this point. She is not a fan of anything comeing near her mouth right now, so I've gotten a total of about 4 teaspoons in her so far today. They are also beginning to take her off of morphin, and we will try some tylenol w/ codine instead.

As of now, I'm optomistic that we'll be able to come home today. The only contingency is her being able to drink consistently.

Thanks again for all your prayers! Please continue to pray for Annika as she is frustrates with being tied down with IVs and tubes. Also pray that she won't feel pain.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

3 down, 1 to go!!!

It's about 8:30 and Annika is resting peacefully in Kelli's arms at the moment. I say at the moment because she has had some pretty good spells since we've been in her room where it is obvious that she is in a lot of pain and not happy about it. Since surgery she has been struggling a little with breathing because of a lingering cold and her normally wide open breathing passage that has been cut in half. The nurses put her on oxygen through a nasal canula which seems to be helping to stabalize it. The surgery went well and as planned and they also put tubes in her ears as well. The Dr.'s office called yesterday to tell us that the time was bumped up to 11:40 a.m. which we were happy to hear because it would be less time on an empty stomach after she woke up. What amazed Kelli and I the most was how happy she was for the two hours after we registered at the hospital before her surgery started. A fifteen month old that hadn't eaten for 8-10 hours and played like a little angel isn't normal and definately showed the power of prayer. The doctor came to see us at 5:00 after surgery and explained what he did which still confuses us every time but she is in great hands with Dr. Mann. He was able to use cheek fat and the sides of her gums by cutting and folding it up and sewing it to close off her palate. It should have been a really long wait for Kelli and I but once again time just seemed to pass by nicely and we were both very calm during the whole process. This is our first stay in the new Devos Childrens Hospital and it is amazing, our room is at least twice the size of the previous two and has very large windows in the room as well.
We haven't had to try to feed Annika yet but when we do it will probably be with a syringe. From the sounds of it the first couple days will probably be pretty rough from a pain standpoint and then from there hopefully she will rebound and just have to deal with the feeding adjustments. Please pray that she will start breathing more easily(this is important in order for her to be able to go home tomorrow), pray that the transition into new feeding methods will go smoothly, pray for patience for Kelli and I as try to keep Annika comfortable.
Thank You