Today was one of those roller coaster days. We were already feeling pretty anxious with the fact that Nicholas would be going for surgery but we had organized Alex's schedule and had everything planned to take him to the hospital after his feeding and still have a good hour to take turns spending time with Nicholas before surgery time. We got a call two hours early that they were taking Nicholas down to Pre-op right then. WHAT? Luckily we were already ready and Alex already fed so we jumped in the car. Apparently the surgeons schedule freed up so he just wanted to get started and I know he's a fabulous surgeon but must not either have kids or its been too long that he doesn't remember that maybe the parents want to be there prior to surgery to hug, kiss, pray and love on him.
We made it to the hospital in record time and I even called a dear friend who lives nearby the hospital to see if she could meet us to watch over Alex while we literally ran to see Nicholas. She dropped everything to help us (thank you Lisa!!!) and we were so grateful that everything happened pretty smoothly after that. We got to hold and love on him before he got taken away.
The surgery went very well and we even got to see for ourselves afterwards that things....ahem...look very different, much more normal in the nether regions. He will be sore and swollen for a couple weeks but his intestines are now back up where they belong and no complications are anticipated.
The hardest part of all of it for Mom and Dad was seeing him back on the ventilator and later in the day, fighting against it and wincing, etc. The fighting was a good sign but seeing your child in any discomfort is 1,000 times worse than going through the discomfort yourself. I've heard many people say this over the years but it takes becoming a parent to truly understand it. I know this state was temporary but seeing him like this brought me back to much darker memories and all the more grateful of how far both of the boys have come.
Thanks to Grandma, Mark and I both got to spend a lot of time back with Nicholas after surgery and Alex had a full day seeing the other side of the NICU. He can't wait to have some hanging out time with his brother though.
Mommy snuck up to see Nicholas again tonight while the other boys stayed home and cuddled. The nurse was very optimistic with how Nicholas was doing but all I could see was when he wasn't drugged up, he was uncomfortable and fighting against the ventilator. Needless to say I came home feeling very helpless and stressed out. Because of his severe lung disease, we weren't sure how long it might take him to come off the ventilator but it couldn't be soon enough for any of us.
Then the best news came about 9pm tonight when his nurse called us to tell us that they took him off of the ventilator already and he's doing GREAT!!!! She also said that she is starting to hear bowel sounds so more than likely they can try to start feeding again tomorrow. We are so relieved and thrilled and feeling so absolutely blessed at the gifts we continue to receive.
I can't imagine that I won't say this to my boys every single day for a long time to come but just in case I forget and they read this someday when they are older: thank you, thank you, thank you to two of the most amazingly strong, courageous, resilient, and simply awe-inspiring boys that a mother could not even have dreamed of asking for. Thank you for fighting so long and so hard to stay here with us, its been a very long three and a half months, your entire life, but I promise to do everything in my power to make sure it only gets better from here (alot better)!