Thursday, 31 October 2013

Kids' Thoughts

The girls yesterday decided to sit down and write some poems.  It's amazing how the poems reflect what's going on in their hearts.  They're hurting now, as they witness Jacob's suffering taking on a different level.

Many issues in his life,
Yes, crying he does every day.

Being mean to Jacob is very mean.
Remember to ask God for help.
Often he didn't grow for a week.
Tears does he have.
He is so special to me.
Even a child is know by his doings. Proverbs 20:10
Running he sadly will never do.

Boy, o boy, a broken thigh.
Really, really did he cry.
Off to the hospital he went,
Keeping his leg still while it was bent.
Emerge was a home for an evening,
Never did we dream of the being.

The day after daddy's birthday,
He was not happy that day.
I wasn't happy when I heard...
'Going to the hospital' was my sad word.
Home he was to be cured.

Monday, 28 October 2013

An Unexpected Finding

Jacob's irritability has been high since last Thursday.  His stay at the respite home (Thursday to Saturday) was an adventure for the nurses, as his irritability was abnormally high.  I picked him up on Saturday, noticing that every time we moved him he would cry.  By Sunday morning I was really contemplating taking him back to emerge.  I was going to change his diaper late morning when I realized his leg was extremely swollen and hot.  An emerge trip was a definite, with an answer to his irritability.

After the x rays were taken, it was confirmed that his femur (thigh bone) was broken.  Poor guy!!  I can't imagine having a broken bone for several days and it not being in a cast.  That's one of the hardest things for me to deal with in this whole event.  This boy struggles every day, every night, to some degree or another, and then this.  It breaks my heart!!

After weighing different options, it was concluded that they would plaster cast the leg, but not set it, as setting the bone takes sedation.  What that means for him down the road, I'm not sure.  The doctors were not comfortable sedating him, taking into consideration his neurological condition.  They aligned it as much as Jacob would allow (which was A LOT more than I would have allowed!!)  I can't believe how tough that little boy can be!  What a trooper!!  

He was admitted to the paediatric floor where he was kept for observation for the night, I was so disappointed that our previous night nurse, Kim, wasn't working at the hospital.  He seemed to be OK over night, so next week Monday we go for a follow up appointment and to get the plaster cast removed and a fibreglass cast put on.  That should be way lighter, and much easier to handle.  This cast is huge!!  The next week is going to have its own challenges considering how easily it can be to break/misplace his hip with all the weight on his leg.  I don't want to think about those possibilities.  All the 'what if's' have to be put aside, but its brutally hard right now.

Through all the darkness, we are thankful that he didn't need surgery.  I was just imagining the doctor putting in a screw and shattering his fragile bone.  As much as a broken leg isn't what I was looking for, in many ways it's easier to deal with than a pneumonia!  God provides us what He seems fit.  At times, the clarity to that truth becomes quite hazy!    

Thursday, 24 October 2013

Different than Expected

Well, this morning our whole house hold was up very early due to Jacob SCREAMING.  Not just crying, but screaming.  The nurse was doing everything she could think of, but still no success.  I took Jacob from her but wow, he didn't appreciate that either.  After administering Tylenol he was finally quieting down, just to get fired right up again.  After some time we gave him his sleeping med, to see if he was just tired and couldn't settle himself.  It settled him somewhat, but he was not near as relaxed as usual.  We waited until 8:30, and as soon as he was lifted out of his crib, he was crying hard again.  It was confirmed at that point we had an emerge trip put into our day that we were not expecting.  Jacob was scheduled for an admission at Kids Country Club, but there was no way I could bring him there in that condition.

Our night nurse was extremely concerned, so she stayed with Jacob and myself up until the moment I left for the hospital, at 8:40.  To understand the picture maybe better...the nurses usually leave at 7:00am and are ready for some well earned sleep.  This morning she was in no hurry to leave.  She decided that she wanted to go with us to emerge, as she was also curious to find out what was up.  At least I had some company - and fun company too :)   
We were helped immediately :)  Chest and stomach x-rays were taken.  Urinary tract infection test was done, and blood work taken (after 2 tries.)  All showed nothing wrong.  Hmmm.  Jacob's life can be a guessing game, which today was no exception!  They thought maybe the screaming was because of teething, a charlie horse, pulled muscle, brain misfiring, or just a bad day.  It's so hard to know anything concretely with kids that are extremely complex!

We'll see how he does at Kids Country Club, as I did take him there after the hospital.  As long as he was being held he was ok.   I'm hoping he doesn't give them too much trouble!
The nurse left us at that point.  What an amazing nurse.  Talk about going above and beyond her call of duty!!  She deserves more than a 'Hero's in the Home' award!!  Thanks Ashley!!

We see God's upholding hand in this way too.  To give us a nurse that is so compassionate and helpful is totally given from God's abounding mercy.  

Saturday, 5 October 2013

Thank you!

We had a community meeting on Friday to discuss the latest observations regarding Jacob.  The meeting involved most of the people who are involved from the community.  It was a relaxed meeting, but one of the most encouraging meetings we've had to date!  We have a GREAT group walking this path beside us!
Becky, our case manager lead the meeting.  She is one who's understanding and compassion goes above and beyond the average person out there (even in the medical world!)  Her listening ear is always ready to listen to our joys, sorrows, pains, concerns and amazement's.  Her one observation that really stuck yesterday was that Jacob is teaching all of us!  When we all thought he was heading in a certain direction, the path changed and now he is on a different path (and a much better one!!)

Next, they asked me to share my findings in the last few months.  It was short, but I was thrilled to say only positive things!!!  He's still gaining weight (he hit the 11kg this week).  We've been seeing plenty of smiles and giggles this week, let alone periodic coos in response. Also, Marije and I just completed an infant (well, and maybe not such an infant) massage course which he responded extremely well with.  It was super fun.

One of the MANY smiles we saw yesterday!

Our weekly nurse gave a report saying how difficult it is to diagnose Jacob, because of the abnormalities of the brain stem.  A fever could mean nothing, but if he should have a fever, he may not have one.  This aspect makes it hard to figure him out.  Basically she summed it up that we must take Jacob each and every day as he is and deal with what he gives us.  We've been told that we have one of Oxford County's best visiting nurses.  Providence!!  She's been with us the longest of anyone in the community, and has sure walked this road, compassionately right beside us.

O.T. and P.T. summed up their time with Jacob as one that is continually changing.  Jacob needs frequent position changes and chest physio to keep his lungs in tip top shape.  Incorporating different play options is vital to keep his body in moving, workable condition.  They are such a fun pair!  I feel spoiled to have them working with us! 

Our nurse manager gave the report of the struggles with night nursing - nurses leaving for different jobs, nights not being able to get filled, communication issues and several other issues.  We're hoping that in the future this part of our life gets easier!!

The social worker talked about the success we just had regarding funding for the hi-low base and extra respite. She was still excited for us.  She does all the paperwork for most of the government and funding applications, as  I would need a PHD to understand them :(  She sure makes our life much easier.  Hats off to Tammy!

Community Living Tillsonburg was also represented and talked about the snoezelen room and have Jacob's siblings come with Jacob one time, to see exactly what happens in a snoezelen room.  What a great idea!!

The team together is strong, energetic, caring, understanding, supportive and extremely capable.  I love the unity that is felt when they are all together - they are a strong driving force all working for Jacob's comfort.  We feel truly blessed to have each and every one of them involved in our case!  Thank you from the bottom of our hearts!!