Hello everybody! This is Jason with the daily update. I'm feeling a little pressure today because my friends, the Thurmonds, just stopped by and told me they could always tell who was writing the blog because Kristin's posts are saccharin-sweet, real three-hankie numbers. On the other hand mine are allegedly "hilarious" (it must have been the B.A. Baracus allusion). At any rate, I'll do my best to deliver. Onto today's events...
Samuel woke up this morning a happy-go-lucky 8-day-old whose stormy ocean eyes were wide open and very alert, which is how I like him best; I think it's because I'm less afraid of him falling asleep and not waking up. He was in fine fettle, despite a couple of issues with his "pressure trials," the tests that would determine whether or not he was able to breathe without the ventilator. Leading up to yesterday evening, the doctors were concerned that Sam may not be ready for extubation yet, not only because of a possible pleural effusion, but also because he was struggling with tachypnea, a very high respiratory rate which can sometimes be a sign that the heart and lungs are not working efficiently enough. They wanted more information. His doctors wanted more tests run to avoid extubating him prematurely. During the overnight trials, perhaps as a result of the tachypnea, Sam experienced supraventricular tachycardia, or SVT in medical lingo. The great irony here is that SVT is the exact opposite of bradycardia, the condition that had so frightened us in the days leading up to his surgery. Instead of having an exceptionally low heart-rate leading to too-slow respiration, now Sam had an exceptionally high respiration rate leading to a too-high heart rate. Did I mention Sam is not without a sense of humor?
Nevertheless, after a chest x-ray, a clean ultrasound, and this morning's rounds, the doctors decided to extubate anyway on the condition that Sam return to CPAP immediately. Enter...the white ninja reincarnated!
He was not happy. In spite of the nurse's and my wife's admirable efforts to keep ol' Wolfman calm during the proceedings, you can see he was not only less-than-thrilled about losing his pleural crutch but also unappreciative of having to go back on the PAP. He fought like the dickens, which of course nearly led to another attack of SVT.
However, in the end cooler heads prevailed, and while my lovely wife may have worn this expression after the 45 minutes it took to calm him down, he did--eventually--relax into the serenity of the CPAP. Sam was so thankful towards her that he peed on her during the next diaper change. One for the Wolfman!
In the end, with his trusty steed ("My First Teddy Bear") by his side and looking after his hat, Samuel slept. It was a tough transitional day for him, and the day ain't over yet...but the doctors like his progress and are hopeful that he may unmask some time either tonight or tomorrow.
As always, much love and thanks to those of you who are thinking about us.