Friday, August 3, 2012

Tube Time

The last time I wrote about Silas, the doctor had just scheduled him for an NG tube.  We had talked with him a lot about what was going to happen – and thank goodness, he didn’t remember his first NG tube experience (when he was 2).   To give him something fun to think about, I promised him a trip to the hospital’s gift shop after it was over.

We were admitted to the hospital, and all-to-soon the nurse came to take him for the tube placement.  It’s done in a center room on the same hallway as his room.  The room’s not very big, and they asked that only one of us go with him.  I (very quickly) voted that Criss go.

Although Silas returned to the room with a look of pure shock still on his face (trying to take in all that had just happened), they praised him for doing such a good job.  After he had a moment to gather his thoughts, he said, “I want to go to the gift shop,” and off we went.  His eyes landed on a large, plush, Spider Man ball, and his mind was made up.

Here is Silas leaving the hospital with his new supplies the next day.

Three weeks after the tube was placed, we had another appointment with the GI doctor.  In just three weeks, Silas had gained 5 pounds and grown 1/3 of an inch!  The doctor was very pleased, and I was happy with how much healthier he looked with a little more meat on him (not that he was horribly underweight, but he had not gained any weight in nearly a year).

Our local Children’s Hospital has been in the middle of computer system changes as well as constructing a new building.  The GI doctor wanted us to see him again in two months (Sept.) and talk about G-tube surgery at that time – after the hospital had finished moving into the new building.

Our initial feelings were relief at having a little more time to process all of this.  But, as the days dragged on, Silas would comment on how uncomfortable the NG tube was and how he was growing tired of having something taped to his face all the time.  He also preferred not to have to start school with the NG tube – since it’s so much more conspicuous than the G-tube.  So, I eventually called to see if there was any way we could get it done sooner.  Why postpone the inevitable?

At first there were no openings until September, but just this week they called because there was a cancellation.  We go in a little over a week.  It’s the week before school starts, so that is good.  Besides not having to start school with the NG tube, he won’t have to miss school to have it done.

In the midst of all of this (a few weeks ago), Silas was complaining of arm pain.  We’re still not exactly sure when he hurt it.  We went to a local doc-in-the-box who said Silas had a buckle fracture and wanted to put his arm in a splint.  When I found out it could not be taken off and was not waterproof, I decided that was just a little more than I could handle at the time, and we left with it in a sling.  We then saw an orthopedist who said it wasn’t too bad, and he let me choose between a waterproof cast or a (removable) brace.  Of course, by this time, Silas was all excited about getting a yellow cast (his favorite color) that all of his friends could sign.  I talked him into the brace, and the doctor found a gray one that people could still sign.  (Yeah!  Problem solved.)  The brace also helped us avoid another appointment to have a cast removed.

During the day, Silas wears the backpack that holds his feeding pump and other supplies.  At night, he has a pole that everything hooks to.  It’s very cute to watch him roll his pole down the hallway after he wakes up each morning.  I smile every time I hear those little wheels rumble.


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