Thursday, June 29, 2006

Updating the banned words list

Woody's up and down week has begun to level out somewhat. His dips are not as low as they were earlier, and he's showing no signs of any other major troubles brewing, unless one counts his major lung secretions1. That could be a sign of an actual lung infection, it could be that he's just a little more phlegm-y than the average bear, or it could be a sign that his lungs are just trying to expel a bunch of crap that's accumulated down there. This, of course, is what I prefer to think it is.

I am always profoundly thankful that Woody's range of issues are primarily confined to the lungs. Sure, there are exceptions, like the aortic clot (which remains present but not growing nor obstructive) and the slightly enlarged kidneys (again, a long standing monitored issue but not really a big deal) and the hernias (which are, I must say, getting rather impressive. When changing his diaper it gives the impression that he's got enormous balls). But if you consider what else could be going on, none of these are things we really worry much about.

His whole digestive tract, for example, is really impressive (Nurse M2 refers to eating as "his specialty"2). He was increased again today to 16q2 (16 mLs every 2 hours a day), which is getting up there. 16 mLs is about a tablespoon, which doesn't seem like much, but if you consider that they told us he was up to "full feedings" at 10q2 less than a month ago, it is. And he continues to, uh, excrete well too.3

In reflecting upon some of the rhetorical constructs of the last forty-eight days, I thought it best to update the banned word list. From previous entries, we have identified the following as terms that we are sick of:
  • de-satting

  • roller coaster4

  • white-out

  • honeymoon period

  • wet lungs (suggested by Grammie)

To this, I am going to go ahead and add another turn of phrase:
  • "It's an art, not a science."

I mean, yeah, I know that breastfeeding, baby cares, and treatment of any number of these issues are as much about what works, feels right, and can be intuited as what can be demonstrated by way of evidence, reason, and testing, but that terminology is getting ooooooooold.

1. Phlegm balls.
2. "He's a Baggins, not some Bracegirdle from Hardbottle."
3. And with power, I might add. Maggie made the mistake of not shielding his posterior the other day while changing him, and he managed to demonstrate how far he could go with that particular function.
4. A new nurse actually said this to me the other day again. I was dumbfounded, as in "I've been coming here the last 45 days and you think I haven't heard that before, the tiredest cliche in the NICU vocabulary?" But I kept my mouth shut.


At 3:02 PM, Anonymous Grammie said...

Add "wet lungs" to the list. I don't like that one either!!

At 4:36 PM, Blogger Nathan said...

Oh, good point. I'll add it.

At 12:00 AM, Anonymous djseivert said...

keep up the fight, Woody.....we are adding our own list, Spunky, Tough Guy, the Champ, and Miracle Boy!!!!praying in Seattle this week, with the girls and the Oregon gang, much love, Deb


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