I apologize if this is scattered but I have Ethan with me and he isn't going to sit much longer. We had the dressing changes on wednesday (yesterday) and everything looked great. I was able to stay in the Induction Room and watch everything. I have gotten used to seeing him in all of his head dressings and so when they took everything off, his head looked so tiny. All the grafts took, and are healing "remarkably fast" according to Dr. Harrop. The donor sight on the back of his head has already healed, along with his right leg donor sight. The left leg should be all healed by next week and the arms the following week. His head also looked great and will be another week after the arms. Also the piece on the crown of his head that they didn't graft is starting to heal and should be ok on its own. Dr. Harrop then gave us more good news and said if the next dressing change goes well and we can get to the point where we can do them without anesthetic, Ethan can go home next weekend! He will still have dressings on for another 3 weeks probably and would have to come up every couple of days to get them changed....but going home is within our reach. Ethan recovered very quickly this time in the OR and had his appetite back very quickly. He was taken off of all of the pain medications yesturday and still did great after the dressing change. He is much more alert and active now and is walking everywhere. At first he was a little weak but by today he was practically walking unassisted, his socks are just a little slippery. Now that he is off all pain medications and is doing better they unhooked all of his lines, the IV and everything and he is a free man, no cords stopping him. He still has his NG Tube but they hope to get that out in a few days as well. Overall he is recovering very well and we are seeing so many little miricles happening everyday due to all the prayers on his behalf. I am so grateful for the lessons I have learned from this experience, it has been very humbling and has taught me much patience, among so many other things. I have gotten comfortable around here and as odd as this sounds, it feels like home! I am gaining so many wonderful friendships with the nursing staff and all the other doctors, and its a little depressing to think I have to say goodbye soon. They practically live in our room and feel like family! I also worry about the stress of being home and the constant stares and questions. Here everyone accepts him as they see him and I don't get asked a thousand questions. I have now had almost four weeks to think about this whole situation and sort out my feelings. I am content with Ethan not having hair on most of his head, and I'm ok with his grafts on his body. That is who he is now and will always be a part of him. I know he will have many struggles along the way but I also have complete confidence that he will make it through each and every trial that comes his way. I know that Tim and I will be judged as well by those around us and I have come to realize that what they think just doesn't matter. I also have realized to not take offence to every person that stares at Ethan as we pass....they are mostly curious and I would be too! I know that I would not be emotionaly or spiritually where I am today without the help of the Lord....he has given me the strength I need each day to get through this and become a stronger person all together. I constantly find myself asking him for strength, faith and courage to get through this, and I know I will. My parents have been so amazing with our girls and its so nice to never worry about them as I know they are in great hands. We have also witnessed miricles with Tim and his schooling. He has missed several days and went back to school only to have one day to study for his two midterms. He just got the results back from one exam and he got 87% which is great considering our circumstances. I am so proud of him and all the hard work he has put into school and helping me out with Ethan and the girls. I am the luckiest girl around to have such a wonderful husband and family. Now I get to look forward to tomorrow and seeing my two beautiful girls whom I have missed so much. Ethan might get a day pass to leave the hospital as well so I can't wait!Ethan's back....living on the wild side! (don't worry the nurse had her hands right there)
Irish dancers came to the hospital and did an hours worth of dancing. It was exciting! Ethan got right into it and started clapping with everyone else. I'm starting to think I might be bored at home, there is just so much going on around here all the time.
That is the top of Ethans head..we got front row seats!
On Tuesday we were lucky to have some friends come and visit...our home teacher and his family! Their kids were up here for check-ups themselves so they popped by for a quick visit. Ethan was a bit grumpy that day, but Anna and Nathan did their best to make him smile. He loved to share his toys with them but there was no way they were going to sit next to him...he was just too grumpy!
Ethan kept pointing to the window and saying go, so i wheeled his IV pole over as far as I could and he was able to reach. It was snowing big flakes here yesturday which kept Ethan mezmorized for several hours.
He sat up for a long time but eventually that head dressing just got too heavy and he had to lay his head down. Ethan will have the strongest neck muscles when he gets home!
I had to take a picture on the elevator since its Ethan's favorite thing to do lately. Just go up and down, up and down.
Tuesday morning a volunteer came into our room and offered to take Ethan to the tots play room on the second floor. They took him for an hour and gave me a chance to shower and clean up. I took Ethan myself yesturday and he showed me all the great toys!
Ethan found the little grocery cart and wouldn't let it go. He filled it up with all the toys he could find and away he went....out of the room and down the hallways of unit 2! Ethan hasn't walked since the accident so this was a big milestone. His legs were a little wobbly and he was a little weak but there was no stopping him. All that walking wore him out and increased his appetite too. Unfortunatly he couldn't eat or drink because he was going to the OR in a few hours, so he was very grumpy. He did cry himself to sleep and have a nice long nap though.
The New and Improved Ethan!! He went for his dressing changes yesterday and did awesome. He was a little cranky but as soon as we gave him the roll of tape to play with he was fine. I might need to stash a few rolls for when I go home!
Ethan went from michelin man to smurf! Hopefully the blue color will give people a hint that he is a boy
Last night was Pet Pals Night! There were about 7 dogs that came visit, all of them were highly trained. It was great to see all the dogs and the kids having fun. This was Ethan's favorite dog and he wouldn't take his eyes off him. He was huge, taller than Ethan when he stood up. His name was Titan and he was just a big teddy bear, he didn't even mind Ethan kicking him and poking his nose and eyes! Very fun!