Monday, August 28, 2006

Good week to be Woody

As things continue to go well, it's getting harder to come up with things to report. I mean, how much can one really say about "chubby. cute. all well" as opposed to explaining what terrible obstacles were getting in his way earlier? The other thing that has made it more difficult to post as much as before is that he's far more interactive, awake, and alert now, so it's tougher to justify stepping out to the computer when I can just, you know, hold him.

All that being said, he had another great weekend, and I can see some definite progress beyond anything we've seen before. We're definitely in uncharted waters, and it's pretty fun and a little scary, if for no other reason than because we're obviously going to get to take him home in the medium-range future, and that's going to frighten the bejesus out of us.

First things first-- Woody's blood gases continue to be strong, and his nutrition labs are also right on target with what we want them to be. Since he's doing so well with his breathing, Woody was given the go-ahead to try a once-a-day breastfeeding attempt yesterday, and he and Maggie have given it a try a couple of times. Maggie feels really happy about this, and I am too, because she's put so much effort into trying to make it happen and here it is. Woody's not exactly gotten the hang of the whole process yet, but he's making some good attempts and has been able to latch on for a bit at a time. Maggie's milk supply is low enough that it's not like he's going to get drowned by attempting to feed, so that's actually a positive. When he starts getting the hang of the suckling, he's going to get a breathing/eating study that is conducted by adding some barium to some formula and having him eat some while in a live action x-ray machine. That way they can see which pipe it's going down, because obviously it's pretty disastrous to have him aspirating food right now.

Since Woody had the tube down between his vocal cords for most of the first 100 days, they've grown in an open position, which means not only is he pretty hoarse still, it also compromises his ability to catch any liquids that go down the wrong pipe. You and me, we don't even notice it much, but we have our vocal cords as the last line of defense to not just breathe in stuff that we mis-swallow. So until we have confirmation that Woody's compensating for that handicap, they're not going to try to switch his feeding from tube style to bottle style for the primary way of geting him calories.

The other big news of the week is that we're finally ok with having other people hold him besides me and Maggie and the nurses. The first person to give this a shot was Grandma Stiffler, who held him yesterday. Maggie and I called it "operation make Dianne cry", but it wasn't exactly that hard. Now we have many more relatives to get up here and make cry, starting with Krista, who comes in tomorrow. More grandfolk arrive on Friday, and they can hold and get weepy themselves. He's just so big and ... normal, and he's come so far since he was the little alien-like tiny thing that they first saw in the isolette.


At 11:35 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think we should have a "Hug Woody Day" You could sell raffle tickets-cause you know there are a million people out here that would pay good money to hug that cute boy-If you think about it, he already has his own season (The summer of Woody) so an offical day that he could have every year isn't asking too much! Just a thought

I hope to hug him soon,
Love Angie

At 2:01 PM, Anonymous Auntie Val said...

Well, even if you don't have anything to say, you can still keep posting lots of cute Woody pics. :D

At 4:21 PM, Anonymous Aunt Susan said...

Okay, I am not holding him, but still crying anyway, does that count??

At 8:44 PM, Anonymous Ysa said...

Nathan, I am so happy for you and Maggie and Woody. It's been incredible to watch the journey that you have been on as a family. I think about you all constantly.

I may not know you all that well, but I'm so proud of you and your wife and your wonderful son.

I say we all get together in Chicago again. If for no other reason than for me to give you and Maggie and Woody all these hugs I've been storing up. xoxox

At 9:45 AM, Blogger Bill Hooker said...

it's tougher to justify stepping out to the computer when I can just, you know, hold him


You're gonna ruin my tough guy image if I keep reading this blog where people can see me.


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