First off, Happy Birthday to David today!!! We are going to celebrate together later when he brings Andrew to the hospital. It has been a week since Andrew was here to visit Benjamin and a lot has happened. It will be fun to have the boys together to interact and I think Andrew will really like Benjamin's new unit. There's a toy room right down the hall from his room that I am sure he will make himself right at home in.
So the first night on the new unit went well. He fell asleep around 10:30 and slept until the nurse did her assessment at 6. I was also able to sleep during that time. They came in twice during the night to check him. I was SO happy that they discontinued the labs they had been taking. They told me that they would have to stick him at 4:30am for lab work but then said they didn't have to. When he was in ICU he had a line in his leg artery that they could get blood from easily but that was taken out yesterday. I don't think it would have been any fun for ANYone to have to try to get blood in the middle of the night so we were thankful they changed the order.
He started eating more solids yesterday for dinner. He even had his favorite staple cheerios. So there's no problem with his eating and swallowing. He still has sleepy eyes but the brightness is returning more and more and he's definitely getting stronger. He was even trying to play a little peek-a-boo at breakfast. :)
He doesn't like me to leave his side for a second and is always watching every nurse or doctor very closely as they come to see him. He finally started smiling a bit and even almost a little laugh when I was tickling his foot today. And he said Mama for the first time yesterday since being here. Music to my ears!
Like I said, I can't walk away for even a minute without him crying for me. But sometimes nature calls and when I came out of my minute break in the bathroom, I was so surprised to see that he had pulled to standing! He's getting stronger but they still put in a referral for PT and OT. I assume that will start tomorrow. I am also looking forward to him seeing the music therapy intern again now that he isn't as hooked up and can interact more.
I sat in on rounds this morning and it looks like we'll be here another couple of days or so. They need to wean him down a bit more on his sedation meds that they gave him to counteract the withdrawl symptoms that he had before he's ready. We are very anxious to take him home as you can imagine, but also want to be very certain that we won't end up coming back here so we are fine with him staying as long as the doctors think necessary. His pneumonia came on so suddenly and was so bad, so we will be more hypersensitive to any cold or cough that he has for awhile. I heard from one of his respiratory therapists on the ICU yesterday that the junk they were getting from his lungs was the nastiest stuff she had ever seen! I knew it was bad, but didn't realize it was THAT bad, so we are just fine with him staying here a few more days to make sure he's healthy before coming home again.
They have mass here on Mondays and I went last week. I really felt some peace there, esp. when I saw that the priest's name was Fr. Anthony. Saint Anthony holds a special place in my family. If you aren't familiar, he is the patron saint of miracles and of lost things. Benjamin's middle name is Anthony, after Saint Anthony. I am hopeful to be able to get away for a bit tomorrow to attend again. I remember when I moved to Iowa for grad school, I didn't know anyone and wasn't even sure it was the right place for me. So I started attending mass, which was so comforting since it was the only familiar thing there to me at the time.
I think that does it for updates for now. I will try to post some pictures later of the visit with David and Andrew. Until then, please continue to pray for Benjamin's complete recovery and for him to remain healthy and strong. Thank you again so much for the prayers and good thoughts! Happy Sunday!!