Sunday, May 27, 2012

We're Home!!

We got the go ahead Sunday morning (4 days post-op) to go home.  So exciting! One of the doctors came and changed Mallory's dressing and put her in the helmet.  He explained how to change her dressing every morning with antiseptic strips and gauze over that.  We will probably have to do that for about 2 weeks.  She will be in the helmet for 3 months until the bones are in place properly.  There are dissolvable plates holding everything together.  They will dissolve in 12-18 months.  Amazing, isn't it?  We signed all the papers, got our prescriptions and we were home by 10:30 am.  Overall, it was a great day- she took a 3 hour nap and is taking only regular Tylenol for the pain.  I know she was thrilled to be out of a crib and moving around.

As for the rest of her recovery- we will be resting at home for the next 1.5 weeks.....just the two of us while everyone is at work and school.  She will wear the protective helmet to keep her head safe.  We will be going for follow-up appointments at 10 days, 6 weeks, 6 months, 12 months and every year after that until she is a teenager.

This has hands-down been the worst week of my life.  But I can honestly say that the anticipation was so much worse.  Everything went extremely well- better than can be expected.  An amazing friend of mine was shocked by how quickly Mallory bounced back from all of this.  She explained that Mallory was "her hero".  Since then, I cannot get the word hero out of my head.  I have SO many heroes after this week.  To name a few:

Mallory- first and foremost......She has been a champ.  Way better than I would be!   Well, better than I have been after my own surgeries!!

Dr. Lisa David of WFBH- Plastic Surgery -  She is amazing!  My child's life was in her hands and she "walked" away 4 days later........what more can I say?

Lauren - my cousin who so willingly donated blood because Kit and I were unable to.  Mallory did in fact need a transfusion during the surgery and we are so thankful for your donation.  I love you!

Our parents- as I said in an earlier post this surgery was more stressful because of the two that I had home.  All 4 of her grandparents were so helpful and completely took over the care of Kaitlyn and Lauren.  It helped so much to know that they were taken of.

Kaitlyn and Lauren- my 2 oldest sweeties were so good during this time.  It was hard for them to see Mallory and I go for 4 days but from what I hear they were great!!

Kit- the little things you did for me meant more than you know.  Seeing you with Mallory and the love that you feel for her remind me why I fell in love with you in the first place.

Friends and family- so many of you have gone above and beyond during this time.  Thank you so much!!  We could not have gotten through this without you.

I am sure I may have a post here and there as time goes on simply to finish up on this Cranio journey.  But for now, you are up-to-date.  I kind of like this blog thing though......

Hhmmm.....maybe Working Mom Stays Home with 3 Kids Over the Summer?   More of a comedy than the drama genre.

Stay tuned!!!!!!

Saturday, May 26, 2012

3 days out

Sorry for the delay in updating.  Things have been going so well.  The doctors and nurses have all commented on how well she is recovering.  Today I am going to chronicle using pictures.

Resting peacefully yesterday- 2 days post-op

 Getting her dressing changed and draining tube out

 First time I got to hold her:

Final nap of the day on Friday at the PICU

Breakfast 3 days post-op!  Swelling down and she ate banana and Cheerios.

Going for a walk

Getting some fresh air on the rooftop

Friday, May 25, 2012

Day 2

I had every intention of updating last night but as soon as Mallory went to bed, I went to bed!!

Ok- was overall a pretty good day.  Her surgeon came in the morning and said all her vitals looked good and she was ready to move to a regular floor.  We were released from seeing the respiratory therapist which was another good thing.  Mal was up on and off throughout the day.  She was still in some pain but definitely better than the night before.  She was running a fever all day- about 101.  This is a normal effect of the surgery but I know this added to discomfort.  She was on her painkillers all day which helped her to rest.  Both Kit and I were able to hold her for a while.  She took a little nap on us-  heaven.  We waited all day for the move and were finally told that there were no beds available :(  Boo- I was ready for a calmer, less depressing floor.

But- I think God may have kept her here for a reason.....our night nurse was amazing!!  She was so knowledgable and fabulous with Mallory.  She changed a bunch of things with her medicine and apparatus that made her so much more comfortable!!  We both had a much better night.  Of course, we were still up every 2 hours when it was time for her morphine but only for a few minutes and we would back snoozing.  Ladies- reminded me of the post-partum floor.

I held her again this morning for a few- so sweet.  She is on a bunch of different meds- all just to help her feel better.   The doctor came this morning and took the draining tube out of her head and changed her dressing.  She looks different because of her new head shape but still absolutely beautiful.  The incision looks good and not very noticeable since they kept her hair.

Our only concern is she won't drink anything.  They did give us the okay to give milk and she took a few sips before she passed back out so hopefully she will pick it up today.  Until then she will need to continue with the IV.

That's all for now but I have to share this picture-  Lauren made this card for Mallory to bring to the hospital- and yes, I cried.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

One night down........

Statistics for the evening:

1,500,555 beeps from all the machines on the floor
400 visits from the nurse (or at least it felt like it)
5 doses of morphine
3 hours of sleep
2 bouts of vomiting

and a partridge in a pear tree..............

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Surgery Day

Good morning!  I know that several people will be checking the blog today to stay updated so I will try and keep you posted throughout the day.  Instead of creating a new entry each time I will just add to this one.

We arrived this morning at 7:00 am.  It was so hard leaving the older girls at home and I know it was hard for them to see us go.
They called us to back around 7:30.  They checked her vitals, we met with the all the doctors (there are tons of people involved today!), and they gave Mallory some of that "drowsy juice".
They took her back right at 8:30.  The tubes are first so I am sure we will hear something soon about that.

Sorry- I haven't been good at updating.  The surgery is all done.  Doctor said everything went as expected- no complications.  Thanks so much for all the well wishes and prayers.  We get to see her in about 30 minutes.

Things have been going well since my last update.

At about 1:20 they called for us to come back.  When they wheeled her out of surgery she looked so much better than I thought she would.  I am not sure what I was expecting but she looked good.  She was sucking so hard on the bottle of sugar water no one had to hold it for her- it was just sticking out of her mouth!  It was too stinking cute.

They took her to a room where an immediate team of doctors and nurses came in for the exchange.  There were a lot of medical terms being thrown back and forth......I was starting to feel like I was on an episode of Grey's Anatomy!  But they were very thorough and explained what the rest of the day would look like.

She has basically been sleeping the day away as a result of the surgery and with some help from morphine of course.  I haven't been able to hold her yet because of all the tubes and the arm splints but once we are released from the PICU tomorrow and moved to a regular room I can hug my baby again- can't wait!!

I will make a new post tomorrow and let you know how she is recovering.  Thanks for reading!

Here are some pics:  Pre-surgery on the drowsy juice and wheeling out of surgery- too cute right?

Thursday, May 17, 2012

1 year old!!!

I cannot believe it-  Little Miss Mal is a year old today!  So sad that she is not home with us- but I know she is in good hands.  I made a video of the girls singing "Happy Birthday" and sent it to her.  I heard she was dancing to it.
We received a care package today from an amazing organization-  Cranio Care Bears
Tons of stuff for Mallory, Kit and myself for the hospital stay- I can't thank them enough!!

First day at the beach
6 days and counting...........

Monday, May 14, 2012

9 days out........

I remember when we scheduled the surgery it seemed so.far.away!!!!  And here we are.  Things have been busy but going well.  In typical Anderson fashion, Mallory had 3 ear infections within 2 months.  Her pediatrician gave us a referral for an EENT- shock, gasp- ha!!  Nope, just shocked she was almost a year before it happened.  But the good news is- their office has been amazing!  They have scheduled her referral for Monday, May 21st and if she needs tubes they will do it during the surgery on Wednesday.  One less time under anesthesia is fine by me.  I am so grateful how easy they have been to work with.

We spent the weekend celebrating Mallory's first birthday at the beach.  It was a nice small intimate party. Very relaxing and a good time.  Mallory seemed to enjoy the day.  Well, for those who know Mallory well, she enjoys every single day.   She is the happiest baby!!  And I am one happy mom now that she finally has decided to sleep through the night!!! Yes, you read that correctly.  She was still waking up once a night at 11.5 months.  I think it was paybacks for bragging about what wonderful sleepers I had with the first two.  

My stress is starting to rise...the planning of the next week or two is the hardest part.  When you have 3 kids its not just preparing yourself for surgery but preparing for surgery AND everything that the other 2 children will need while you are out of commission.  This week Mallory is with her grandparents at the beach- quarantined from the germs! :)  A special shout out to my mother-in-law for emailing me Mallory's daily happenings.  It helps me stay connected.  Her birthday is Thursday- so sad not to be with her but know she is in good hands!

I will be back on next week:
Monday- EENT
Tuesday- Pre-Op
Wednesday- Surgery

I will keep you posted.
Thanks for reading :)