Thursday, October 25, 2012

Home - Well for now...

We came home last Thursday with Liam from the hospital.  He was really doing well and then BAM, we hit a wall when he began to have multiple BMs on Saturday.  That is, 15-20 BMs a day.  By Sunday his bottom was red, raw and bloody.  I was NOT prepared for this at all.  Our surgeon said that he may have a couple "accidents" thinking he was potty trained, but that should be it. could have told me the amount of BMs he would be having!!!!  I would have totally protected his bottom and would have used preventative measures to keep his bottom healthy.  I called the doctor's office on Sunday concerned with what was going on and got the doctor on call who said that it was completely normal for him to be pooping this much. 
When Liam woke up on Monday morning two of his steri strips had come off and one side of his incision looked like it was opening, so I took him in the the office.  His incision was fine but the doctor said we needed to get Liam's bottom under control - You think????? (insert sarcasm)  I ordered some paste that they recommended because no pharmacy had it or could order it for me (national back order - of course right?)  We have started using the paste and he seems more comfortable with it on, but it is a wrestling match trying to get him cleaned up and the diaper paste on.  Now let me say that the paste has been great for comfort, but it is a pain in the you know what to clean up.  It turns to a glue like substance once he has soiled it and becomes very sticky. 
Believe me I have done my research and I am trying everything I can to get this under control while he is having so many BMs.  Baking soda soaks in the tub in the AM and PM, Maalox on his bottom for the acid, no stink barrier wipes and stoma powder (from his colostomy), Ilex & Vaseline.  No more wipes.  Only tissue and mineral oil to clean the bottom. 
Have any other solutions that have worked for you....please let me know.  Remember this is not your normal diaper rash - his skin is so broken down that it bleeds. 
Hoping and praying that we get a breakthrough soon.  Fred and I are leaving on Saturday to visit family in CT and go to his 25th high school reunion.  My mom will have the kids and will have to manage Liam's bottom while we are gone.  This is a large undertaking!!!  God bless her, she is an angel to do this for us.  I am a little nervous about leaving him like this, but we really need to go see some family that has had some really bad news recently.  We will be coming home on Sunday, so we will only be gone one night.
On Wednesday, Lily will have her bone graft done and possibly a revision on her lip (again).  I am still in limbo about the lip.  She will only need to stay one night in the hospital.  My mom will be helping out with the kids again.  I don't know what we would do without her!!! 

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Day 3

Well it is day 3 in the hospital with Liam.  His procedure for part 2 of the pull through for his Hirschsprungs Disease went well.  We arrived at 5:00 am on Monday and he was taken back at 7:00 am.  The surgery was supposed to take any where from 1.5 - 3 hours.  However, the sugery took a little longer than expected.  He did not get out of surgery until around 12:15 - 5 hours later!  The portion of the colon that had to be removed was larger than expected, so the surgeon had to go up and release some tension further up so that we would not have any tightness. 

We have kept the pain to a minimum with doses of morphine in between his other pain meds.  For the first two days he has had nothing by mouth - only IV fluids.  He has been a real trooper, never even asking to eat.  He did get a little upset yesterday when he wanted something to drink, but we just had to devert his attention and he was fine.  He truly is the best patient ever!!

The first night my sister came up and stayed with me and brought Liam these...
Thank God for sisters!  In the midst of emotions and exhaustion from sugery, she takes my mind off of these things for a period and we talk and laugh - laugh a lot!  Thanks for always being there for me sis, I love you.
The next day my mom and dad brought Morgan, Mason and Lily up for a visit.  Liam could not wait to see them!  He has missed his brother and sisters very much. My friends Kim and Elizabeth came up and brought me lunch and hung out for a while.  Thanks girls for good food and good friends.  Fred stopped in before heading to Mason's parent/teacher conference and my mom and step sister and her family came up that evening.  I think the 3.5 hour nap that afternoon did him some good!

Liam slept through the night and woke up happy this morning.  After the surgeon came in this morning he released him to popsicles, ice chips and water.  He also had the catheter taken out and wants him to get up and move around.  Hoping to introduce more liquids tonight as long as he tolerates the other stuff today.  So far so good. My mom and Lily came by and visited this morning and brought Liam a cars balloon that he has not let go of all morning and is still holding onto it as he sleeps.  Thanks mom for bringing me coffee each morning and visiting with me.  Sure does help the time go by.  My mom is the BEST!  She arrives at my house at 6:45 in the morning and juggles the kiddos all day until Fred gets home.  On Monday and Tuesday she had my kids and my sisters kids with lots of running around.  I don't know what I would do without her. 

Thanks to all my family and friends that have reached out and called, texted, visited or reached out to us in some way.  It means so much!

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Exciting News!!!

At precisely 5:30 pm on Tuesday evening, we received "THE CALL".  Yes, that's right we are no longer waiting!!!!  We were finally able to see the little boy we have been praying for for so long - OUR SON.  Unfortunately, we are not able to give any details or show his sweet face before we pass court in Ethiopia.  We hope to receive our court date in 1-3 months.  Please pray for a speedy process and that everything goes smoothly.  I don't think my heart could take anything less at this point.

Today we went to the pumpkin patch with my sister and her kids.  It was a great to have the distraction with Liam on his bowel prep today for surgery tomorrow.  We have been fasting and dosing MiraLax every hour.  Truly not fun!!!  The kids had a lot of fun and it was a beautiful day to boot.


We will be arriving at the hospital at 5:00 am tomorrow.  Liam is scheduled for surgery at 7:00 am.  The surgery should last about 2 - 2.5 hours.  Please keep him in your prayers tomorrow.  I pray that we are in and out of their quickly and his recovery goes smoothly. 

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Retreat, Fall Break & Surgery Update

On September 14th Oaks of Righteousness hosted their second women's retreat.  God showed up in amazing ways once again and once again I was blessed with family and friends that attended.  And a huge shout out to my dear friend Melissa Smith for traveling all the way from Louisiana and leaving her 5 kiddos behind to attend. Check out her blog at  I can't believe that I didn't get a picture of us together when she was here...really bummed about that.  Our sons were foster brothers in China together and we had the privilege of traveling together to bring them home in January.
Here is a picture of my sister (founder) and I (co-founder) on the last day of the retreat.  So blessed to be able to be in ministry together with her and an amazing team of women.


We headed to the Tennessee mountains for Morgan and Mason's fall break from school last Friday.  We had a great cabin and enjoyed just being together with no "life" distractions.  We didn't have the great weather, but made the best of it.  Our first day we went to the flea market, antique shopping and some down time.  The day was rainy off and on, so took it easy.  The next day we headed to downtown Gatlinburg and spend the day there.  The weather was great and it was nice to get out and walk around.  On the way back to our cabin we did the corn maze and hay ride with lots of other kids activities.  On our last day, it rained all day so we took in Wonderworks which was a lot of fun for all. 
We finally heard from the doctor's office regarding Lily's surgery.  They had a cancellation on Halloween, Wednesday- October 31 at 8:45 we took it.  At her age, she won't even miss trick or treating. After this bone graft is done, she should be surgery free for a LONG time.  Hallelujah!!! 
Liam had his pre-op appointment today.  All went well.  The surgery should last from 2-2.5 hours.  He will go in through the same incisions as before.  Pain should be less than the first surgery and we should be in the hospital for 3-4 days if there are no complications.  A little over a week and we will be done with this colostomy bag for good!!!