Well, Shep has acquired his first cold this week. We know this is what the winter holds and we have and will continue to do all we can to protect Shepherd from illness- that is all WE can I said. Sometimes that will be enough, sometimes not. But always is he protected in the loving care of his Heavenly Father. The boys came down with colds and were quickly whisked away to mimi's palace (to stay with my mom and enjoy bubble bath's, cable TV, and lots of being doted on) last week. We thought Shep got by without catching anything but as the week progressed he began to get a little cold. For his first cold, it wasn't looking bad. Some extra secretions then eventually some wheezing and o2 at night while he slept his deepest. Eventually, we decided to see the pediatrician (we all try to keep him out of there as much as possible because of all of the germs and remember we do have nurses at our house). Yesterday we went in and our doctor felt it would be safest for him to be watched closer throughout his illness. He had us transported by ambulance to UNC, we spent the day there having x-rays, etc run and they ultimately decided to send us home. They thought he could have been admitted but with the level of care he gets at home we might as well keep him out of the germy hospital, too. Our pediatrician had a mild hemorrhage at the news we were headed back home, which left me a tad nervous at the judgement call that had been made by the ER and pulmonary folks. But after talking to numerous people, I felt very confident that home was the best place for Shep. Since then, he has not gotten worse, respiratory wise, but continues to have lot's of bronchial spasms where he can't stop coughing and eventually throws up, he still has a wheeze (which we are treating with neb treatments and oral steroids) but his xray came back clear for his lungs. Today he began to act a lot sicker, though still no fever. He has slept all day, is lethargic, though still eating good, praise God. I could just tell he felt terrible and seeing as this is like day 7 of the virus, it didn't seem to make sense... till they called back with the results from the culture we had done earlier on in the week. They show that 3 different types of bacteria are growing at Shep's trach site. There's really no telling how long they have been there what they've been up to but were sending Mr. Antibiotics that way. So my guess is that all the respiratory stuff is viral and the overall feel bad, look sick is the infection.
Trach infections are pretty common for trach patients, but are still bad news. God made sure that one of my highly trained PICU nurses that we brought home from the hospital was here today and she helped us decide at a crucial point wether or not he should be hospitalized again today. We have decided to just watch him very closely tonight and take it as it comes. This may seem crazy to some. He is sick and sick kids belong in hospitals. BUT, if he were to go to the hospital right now, they wouldn't do much more than what we can do at home. AND if he goes to the hospital he will be put on the floor, where he will be cared for a by a nurse who doesn't know him and has 4 other patients to care for. And though I love me some Tori & Dean on cable, I am not that desperate. And God know all of this, so He made sure that the night nurse we have all weekend is also a nurse of 20+ years who trains EMS to treat children. I think she's pretty qualified to take care of Shep at home, in his crib, with one-on-one attention.
But, please continue to pray for him. The concern, though not likely (otherwise we wouldn't be here) is that we face an emergent situation here at home. So please pray for discernment for all involved in Shep's care and quick healing. Thank you guys soooo much.