Another morning, and Big Kid still hanging in there. I can't begin to tell you how touched we've been by all of your comments and well wishes. Thank you so very much.
Kitty, Big Kid's girlfriend, sat with us yesterday. I refused to allow her into his room until she went to the doctor and got a clean bill of health. Maybe that sounds harsh, but since she and Big Kid were sharing space, I was worried not only that she might be ill, but that she might bring something into the ICU. She couldn't get an appointment with her doc for almost a week, so she went to the emergency room and waited three hours until she could be seen. She's ok, thank goodness.
I have to say that sitting vigil with her was a trying experience. Not her fault, she's a very sweet person. But she has some kind of nervous tic that kills the switch that controls her indoor voice. And the more anxious she gets, the more she has to talk.
Every time a new doctor or RT or specialist or whatever came in to talk to me, they couldn't figure out who to address as his mother. I could see their eyes shift back and forth between us, so I'd stick out my hand.
"Hi, I'm Attila. I'm Big Kid's mom."
And Kitty would stick hers out next and blast, "AND I'M KITTY. I'M BIG KID'S GIRLFRIEND!"
Then their eyes would shoot back to me. After about the 4th time, I didn't have a cringe left in me.
gah. For those of you new here, Kitty is 5 years older than I am. Long story, think bad country song, and I'm not going to go into my struggles with this relationship now. I know it's kind of funny when you think about the scenario, and maybe one day we'll look back and laugh, but right now, I'm all out.
Big Kid's temp is now normal, as is his heart rate. They took him off the medication that was keeping his blood pressure up, and he's holding his own there.
Unfortunately, he wasn't able to keep up his oxygen levels at 70% oxygen, and they had to put him back up to 80%.
Two steps forward, one step back.
He was much more active on the new sedation, and was agitated easily. He kept trying to get himself out of bed.
I took Kitty out to lunch, and when we got back, Big Kid's room was full of people. And a new, big, machine that was screaming. People were rushing around, passing tools and tubes and talking in low urgent voices.
I swear to God, I thought he'd crashed. The world just dropped out from underneath me.
As it turns out, the doctor was unhappy with his oxygen maintenance and decided to try him on an oscillating ventilator----one they use for premature babies. Instead of 12 big breaths a minute, it emits 300 small "puffs". It's supposed to be gentler on the lungs, but they have to medically paralyze him to use it. The machine is very loud, and the effect on his body looks somewhat violent.
There wasn't a crisis that precipitated this, it was just something the doctor thought might work better. They had to turn his oxygen up to 100% and it was still at that level when I left a few hours later.
Hubby came shortly after and stayed until late in the night. By the time he got home, they had dialed the oxygen back to 80%. When I called at 3am this morning, he was down to 60%, although he was having trouble maintaining if he was moved.
Small steps. Small miraculous steps. Stable is good. Stable is good.
Thank you again for all of your notes of support and hope.