Friday, January 16, 2009

A "movie" day

Today was filled with much drama and a healthy dose of comedy -- hence I've dubbed it a movie day.

Late yesterday, I was hooking up Lauren's g-tube for a feed and realized that the extension wasn't spinning around the button quite right. From past experience, I knew that it was only a matter of time before the button became unusable. Not only unusable from a feeding perspective, but it would've left an open hole in the button for stomach contents to come back out of. (If you haven't already figured this out -- it might not be a wise idea to read my blog when you're eating.)

Lauren's nurse talked to the nurse practitioner for the transplant service who had thankfully had quite a bit of prior g-tube experience. She felt comfortable trying to remove the old button, but it wouldn't come out. We used half a roll of tape to secure it all together and hoped that it would last through the night.

This afternoon, two other nurse practioners that deal with g-tubes all the time came up to see if they could do a button change. Again, the old button wasn't coming out.

By now it was nearing mid-afternoon before a holiday weekend. The nurse practitioner thinks that maybe it can be done in Interventional Radiology (because they'd be able to see what was going on inside the stomach instead of just working blindly). Unfortunately, Lauren's cardiologist didn't want to use any sedation while doing it. I have no idea how we would've pulled that one off -- Lauren was already freaking out about changing the button in the first place. The IR suite would've really freaked her out.

About this time, one of the surgical np's decided to call the surgeon on call (who coincidentally has operated on Lauren three times in the past). He basically told them that they were all wimps and he'd come see what he could do.

Sure enough, he got the button out with very little trouble. Lauren did a great job as well. She was understandably upset with everyone messing with her tubey, but she cooperated and was just so brave. She's been such a trooper through all of this stuff.

So that's the drama for the day. The comedy came when I realized that it has been several days since Lauren took a bath. She was none too impressed with the bathtub in our previous room and wanted no part of trying out the shower in our new room. I told her nurse that I thought she'd be okay with it after the first time so I was just going to be the mean mommy that threw her in the shower tonight. It has a hand-held sprayer so I figured that even if I just hosed her down a little, it'd be better than nothing.

I started the water so that it'd warm up to a decent temperature, and we try to wrestle Lauren out of her clothes. I'm negotiating who is going to remove the heart monitor stickers, and her nurse is getting ready to wrap her PICC line in plastic to keep it dry. About this time, the sprayer falls off it's perch in the shower and starts spraying all of us. Lauren's nurse and I both got quite wet. Thankfully, Lauren was turned in such a way that the PICC line stayed dry.

In the end, Lauren decided that the shower-torture was not quite as bad as it first seemed. When she got out, I wrapped her up a towel and picked her up so she could see in the mirror. We do this at home, and I always call her "my little baby." She giggled when I did that tonight. I guess I was forgiven for shower-torture this time. We'll see what happens next week.


  1. or maybe if you just spray everyone in the room every time -- she'll thinks showers are always fun! :)
    Glad you were able to get the button fixed! :)

  2. Anthony (now 3 1/2) loves to read the blogs with me. He has been following Lauren for as long as he can remember. We talk about the power of prayer and the things he can do to help people. At preschool the teacher always asks for prayer requests. Apparently, he asked to pray for "Lauwen." He told the teacher that God gave her a bad heart but "it a mi_take and he fix it." happy thoughts and prayers from Washington (the state that is). Heather and her boys



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