Wednesday, September 9, 2009

4 Weeks Old Today...Time for an Update

As of 11:29 this morning, Jackman was 4 weeks old. I'm learning the difference between the whole weeks vs months thing. He is still not a month old, that won't be till the 12th at 11:29 am.

Anyway, just an update: Yesterday, Jackman had an endoscopy, and a scope through his g-tube. He had to go to the OR for it, but there was no real surgery. The surgeon was looking to see if there had been any growth at all since they checked him about 3 weeks ago.

Well, the first time they checked him, they wouldn't even tell me how far apart the two ends of his esophagus were, but they said it was a lot. The surgeon ran down the list of possible treatments: 1) Wait and hope the two ends really start growing toward each other and attach them later. 2) Stretch the two ends together and attach them. 3) Do a series of several surgeries to stretch the ends together to be attached. 4) Move his stomach up into his chest and attach it to the esophagus.

After talking to the surgeon the first time, option 1 was out, 2 was unlikely, and 3 looked like what was going to happen. Yesterday, we expected to get an idea of the schedule for surgeries on option 3. We were anticipating his first surgery soon, and hopefully getting to bring him home in between surgeries.

The surgeon told us yesterday that the gap between the ends of his esophagus had previously measured 7 vertebral units, which means they could count 7 individual vertebrae on the x-ray in the background, behind his esophagus. He demonstrated with his hand approximately 6 inches. Understandable why options 1 and 2 weren't really a consideration.

Here's the good part. Jackman's esophagus had grown so much, the gap was down to 3 vertebral units. In 3 weeks, it had grown the length of 4 vertebral units. The surgeon was astonished. He said that was much better than average. He said in fact, it's not unusual for the esophagus to grow only 1 vertebral unit in 12 weeks! Jackman's grew 4 in just 3 weeks. Is it possible for a miracle to be several weeks in the making? I guess so. Praise the Lord!

The surgeon was very pleased to pass on the news, and said on the spot that Jackman will remain at Childrens for another 4 weeks until they can check him out again. He made it sound like options 2, and even 1, may be on the table according to what he's seen. He had totally written them off before. I could tell he was amazed.

Well, that's the update. We probably won't have any new news for a few weeks. That's fine with us though. It's nice to just go up there and visit and not have to worry about what's going on with him. We see so many others whose children seem to have so many problems. It's really scary, and sad, because two babies have left NICU following the two nights NICU was closed. We don't know what happened to them, but the weren't in any shape to go home. It hurts just thinking about how hard it is for some of those parents. There are times I almost feel guilty for how healthy Jackman is. There are times the nurses are bragging to us on how good he looks and how alert he is, and I wish they would stop because other parents are nearby, and their child is hanging on by a thread.

God has been so good to us, and to Jackman. We didn't do anything to deserve His favor, and there's nothing special about us that Jackman should be so healthy. That will knock you down a few notches, to realize Jackman could just have easily had the problems some of the other babies are battling.

We aren't complaining about having to stay another 4 weeks. You better believe we are as happy as larks. I hope no one says to us "Oh, I'm sorry". It doesn't make me mad or anything because I know they mean well. But we don't need condolences. We want everyone to be as happy and excited as we are. God has been too good to us for us not to be happy and thankful to the point of looking like idiots to the rest of the world, and that suits me just fine.

I'm looking forward to the 8 week old report, but I ain't in no hurry to get there. I want to savor this time. I really can't tell that the feeling is any different than it would be if he was at home with us. I just know we thoroughly enjoy every single visit, and we've got the parking deck tickets to prove it.
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  1. The power of prayer & faith is evident in your little man! God is good isn't He? I hope Jackman enjoys the blankets. We love you guys!

  2. He is so cute! Your faith is beautiful, and God does amazing work. Dave and I will be praying for your family.

  3. I'm so very happy to hear the news about Jackman's prgress. Truly awesome. He is growing so much, and so attentive! I think he likes getting his picture taken ;)