During Jacob's time on the oscillator we found ourselves hitting an all-time emotional low. Sitting for hours on end staring at his giggling, paralyzed, almost lifeless, body, was very wearing. As Katy stated in her post Newborn-ness, postpartum-like symptoms were setting in. Not only did she feel them, but I began to feel them as well. There was a huge feeling of disconnect to our baby. Our baby boy who had long, skinny arms, legs, fingers, and toes became very swollen. His extremities had become little Vienna sausages, and his face was alien like. In fact, if they would have changed his sheets or removed his decorations from his bed, we wouldn't have recognized our own Jakey. We knew in our hearts that Baby Jacob was in there listening to us talk or sing, or feel our touch. The lack of connection through a hand squeeze or peek at his beautiful eyes, was difficult for us to endure. This time was so difficult that we refrained from taking more than just one photo, which wasn't even him at his worst, as we would never want to take ourselves back to that horrible time.
|Not even at his worst|
Good news came on day seven of oscillation. His CO2 levels fell and his oxygen numbers increased. The chest x-ray showed significant development and fluid release of his right lung. The surgical team made the decision to remove the oscillator and vecuronium drip (paralytic), and return to the conventional vent at higher settings. After two hours his blood gas showed minimal improvements, but stability. This morning the team was astonished by his over night gases. They reflected his best ever CO2 and acceptable oxygen levels, resulting in major weaning of his vent and nitric oxide.
This evening, Jacob continues slowly adjusting to his new vent settings. His sedation level has lowered, and he has become more alert. We even were blessed to see his blue eyes. It took quite a bit of time to finally struggle to open them a crack. When he would hear our voices, he would muster up the strength to open his eyes wide to see our faces. He was alert and awake for nearly two hours. The connection that we failing to have just 48 hours ago had vanished. Our sweet Jacob was back with us even if just for a little while. (He is still quite heavily sedated with morphine and ativan drips.)
|Opening his swollen eyes at hearing the sound of Mommy's voice|