Wednesday, November 17

The rest of the story

This post was actually written on Monday, November 22, 2010...

I realize it has been a while since I posted and some of you may not follow facebook, or may follow facebook, but may have only gotten pieces of the story about what's going on with Owen. I'm going to lay it out here in case you were wondering. If you weren't, check back soon for an update or maybe even an unrelated post about something fun! It's bound to happen sooner or later...

So basically, Owen has been fighting ear infections bi-laterally (in both ears) since August. Our pediatrician put him on a strong, broad-spectrum antibiotic right off the bat which seemed to clear it up, but it came back. Our pediatrician's colleague then put him on zithromycin which, again, seemed to clear it up but it came back. We then went to Owen's ENT doctor who cultured the drainage (finding nothing) and empirically treated him with bactrim for two weeks. It seemed to clear up. A week later, we were back in his office and he cultured it again and put him on bactrim again, following up immediately after to make sure it had really cleared up. This time it hadn't and Owen was admitted to the hospital for IV antibiotics and placement of a picc line so he could go home and we could administer the antibiotics intravenously at home. That was nearly three weeks ago. After a week of antibiotics, and his ears not getting any better, Owen's bloodwork revealed that his dosage was too low, so it was raised two days in a row. A follow-up visit with the ENT showed that his ears appeared to be getting better. However, after another week and a half of antibiotics, his ears were NOT getting better, and the ENT stopped the IV antibiotics and decided he needed to remove the tubes, as they themselves were likely covered with bacteria that was causing infections that wouldn't heal. This theory was supported by the fact that three or four cultures (I lost track) never revealed anything more serious than a common staph.

So, the ENT removed Owen's tubes - his third set, mind you, that were only placed to help clear up ever-present benign fluid (no ear infections before the tubes) and improve his hearing. The whole thing is a little frustrating and the first week or so of the Nurse Mommy and Nurse Daddy routine with the picc line was quite stressful in addition to sleep-depriving, but things are settling down and we are hopeful that removing the tubes will do the trick and Owen will be back to his old self again soon.

The ENT prescribed oral antibiotics again this weekend, and we are already seeing some improvement, as they had been draining still even after the surgery. Once Owen's ears are healed, we will need to get busy getting his hearing aids adjusted and completing the assessments and meetings required for Knox County to determine what Owen's needs will be after he turns three on November 30. All of that would normally be completed by now, but the illness and hospitalizations forced us to cancel a few appointments.

Meanwhile, we have Thanksgiving and a third birthday to celebrate, along with my entire family coming in from out of town. We are certainly ready for some fun around here!

Thursday, November 4

Stuck in My Own Stuff

As most of you know, since last Thursday we have been dealing with Owen and the administering of intravenous antibiotics through his "pic-line" every six hours. This has really dominated our lives for the past week. It seems things swing very quickly from "this is not a problem at all" when Owen is all giggles and joy and lets us do his medicine without any problems (or better yet sleeps through it), to periods where both Angela and I are near tears as one of us holds down a screaming frightened child who is clawing and kicking while the other tries to inject syringes full of drugs into our son. To say the least we have been stressed.

Yet, when I stop feeling sorry for myself long enough look at the world around me, I can't help but feel selfish. This week has seen the death and funeral of a man in our church leaving behind a wife and young daughter. I see people dealing with things far harder than anything I have to deal with such as mother loosing a child ( There are still parents sitting at Childrens' Hospital hoping that one day their child will be able to go home. I received two e-mails this past week about children who needed prayer, one an infant who had been shot in the head and one a child born with no expectation of living through the week.

I have it pretty good and have the assurance that there is a God that has it all under control. I also know that that God uses times like these to teach and mold. I just hope Angela and I are not too self consumed to catch the lesson.