Owen continues to amaze me. He heals fast and has never been sick (knock on wood) despite being in and out of hospitals and doctor's offices his entire life. His strength and resiliency shined the last two days.
The G-tube surgery and insertion went great (Did I ever imagine that I would say that about a surgical procedure to insert a tube into my son's belly?) as did the recovery and the first 24 hours (the "critical period"). The GI surgeon, Dr. Wahbeh was amazing, compassionate, professional and experienced and is someone I would recommend without hesitation. According to the nurses I spoke with, I'm certainly not the only one who thinks he's great - he has a reputation for being one of the best in his field. Dr. Wahbeh said Owen's G-tube was the easiest he has placed in quite a while. The entire procedure lasted 15 minutes. Owen was in recovery for a mere 45 minutes.
The most difficult part was handing him off to the anesthesiologist, Dr. Orr, right after he smiled and cooed in front of both she and Dr. Wahbeh. They were totally charmed and immediately Dr. Orr said she should be the one to hold Owen since Dr. Wahbeh would be "the one to poke into him." Fortunately, Dr. Wahbeh found the humor in that remark. And off Owen went, in the arms of Dr. Orr. The second hardest part was lifting up Owen's gown once he was in his room to have the first look at the tube.
You learn how to maximize your in-patient stay at Children's and while we were there, I requested consults from Dietary, Physical Therapy and one with Robin Glass from Occupational Therapy. Robin is an amazingly talented, well-known, humble and very likable woman who we met in August during Owen's initial admission. She has researched and written extensively on infant feeding issues. We left with so much great information and good tips from Robin on helping Owen to overcome his oral aversion. He is also scheduled to see her in a few weeks in clinic for a feeding evaluation followed by a swallowing study to assess the efficacy and mechanics of his oral feeding abilities.
Kelsey surprised us with a visit Monday afternoon and took the photos that are posted. He is so busy right now, with a spot on a panel discussion tomorrow at the University of Puget Sound in Tacoma, "Making a Profit While Making a Difference," event and with numerous other projects and engagements in addition to the enormous task of running GFC. We are now more comfortable with our roles - mine as a stay-at-home mom, working on GFC projects from the home office when I can and Kelsey managing the business operations - both the day-to-day and the long term planning. We are both busy, as we like it, and life seems so much more managable now that there is a sense of routine and predictability.
The G-tube (more accurately known as a PEG tube) in the photo will be replaced in eight weeks during an outpatient visit with a much smaller "mic-key button." The larger tube and "button" (plastic piece that lays against his abdomen) are typically only used during the initial healing stages. The "mic-key" is a small, plastic piece that a feeding tube snaps into while feeding. It is extremely low-profile, comfortable and means that Owen will be able to once again enjoy "tummy-time!"
Thank you all for the emails, phone calls and text messages throughout yesterday and today. It's what gets us through these bumps in the road.