It's been three weeks to the day since Jackman had "the big one". Obviously, we are still in the hospital. We kind of new we would be hanging around the hospital for a while after the surgery, but with no idea how long. We still have no idea.
Me and Lisa are really okay with not knowing at this point, but I know for our family and friends, it's driving them nuts... maybe even you too. Every time we run into someone, the first thing out of their mouth is "how is Jackman?", then they ask, "when's he coming home?". I know they get tired of hearing me say "I don't know", but that's the truth.
So just a little update on how the boy is doing: He is healing up nicely. He is still being weaned off the methadone slowly, and has a little way to go yet before he is completely off it. He shows hardly any signs of withdrawals most of the time, except just a little when they drop his dosage (even though they dropped it again today and he was happy as he could be).
The main problem he has now is feeding. He can't eat. He throws up everything he eats. Because of this, he hasn't even got to work with taking a bottle. We were told before the surgery that he would have problems with reflux (throwing up) to some degree, but I would have to say it's extreme since he isn't able to keep any food in his stomach at all.
To make sure that Jackman gets some real nourishment, they put in a feeding tube that goes into his stomach, and down into his intestine. The milk bypasses his stomach altogether. He has another tube right beside it that drains his stomach. We don't know when they will try to start bottle feeding, but he is getting milk now.
It sounds like this reflux problem could last a while. Whenever we do get to bring him home, he may still be on a feeding tube, and we would have to work with bottle feedings. We do know that as long as his reflux problem is as bad as it's been, he will be in the hospital.
Naturally, we want to get the boy home, but to be honest, we've had so much fun with him since he's gotten back to his old self that we haven't been that concerned with getting home. I just wish everyone else could get to see him.
It may help you to know that Jackman is far from suffering. On the contrary, he has a half of a dozen nurses wrapped around his little finger... In Three Shifts! When I came in the door three nights ago, they were playing. Last night... watching a movie. Tonight... playing. He even has a physical therapist that comes around with a mat so he can get some floor time and work on getting those crawling muscles built up. He gets lots of love and attention 'round the clock.
Coming home, whenever it happens, will be a big change for us. But it is going to be an even bigger change for Jackman. As far as he knows, he's home and where he belongs now. As far as he knows, all babies are suppose to have fifty-dozen hoses and wires attached to them. As far as he knows, good ole dirt and germs don't exist (we'll get in the dirt as soon as he gets home, maybe even eat something off the bare counter, or even the floor, like real men do). He will definitely notice the change, but I think he'll like it here with us.
He will be home one of these days, but we're determined to enjoy every day with him until then as well. It's hard to imagine not going to the hospital anymore. The people and patients in the NICU are his family too, and it kind of makes them family to us as well. We will really miss being there when the time comes to leave, but I have a feeling the boy will keep us so busy that we don't have time to sit around and be sad. Hardly... we are going to have to have a party just to show him off.
Our church, Concord Baptist Church, is having a baby dedication service on January 17. I had expected to be a part of that service with our son, but that's not likely anymore. I was talking to a friend about that today, and I told him "it's, okay. I dedicated Jackman to the LORD a long time ago". He said to me, "a lot of people have dedicated Jackman to the LORD". He's right.
Me and Lisa are still thankful for all the prayers, and thankful to God for ministering to us through all of you.