The night after surgery we were able to get a parents room right next to the PICU (Pediatric Intensive Care Unit). It was a small double bed but it was a private room away from the beeping and constant visit of the nurses. We slept really well considering. Around 5:30 am we were woken up by a Code Blue. My heart leapt into my chest. Once we heard the room number and realized it was not Beckett, we were so relieved, yet our hearts sunk knowing what was happening. Sleep did not return. We got up. I pumped (which I’ve become a pro at this week) and we got dressed and headed over to the PICU to check on our baby.
He was so puffy and completely out of it. He had a hard time focusing. It was so hard to see him like that. We asked how he did and they said he did amazing. For pain relief, he was allowed to have a dose of morphine every 2 hours. Over the past 12 hours, he had only needed 2 doses. That was amazing! Right after surgery and he barely needed anything. The nurses were telling us about how some of these Kasai babies come in with a constant morphine drip and he barely needed any. As we were in there with him we noticed that he was sucking on his tongue for comfort. He wouldn’t take the bink and he couldn’t eat but man he could suck on that tongue like crazy.
Because he was doing so great, we were actually released from the PICU around 10:30 that morning. That was awesome to be able to move up into a regular room where we had more privacy and we could actually stay in the room easier with him. This was a hard day. He just progressively got more swollen as he had the IV fluids pumped into him. His skin started getting tight and his mouth and tongue were so dry. We had to keep wetting his lips with water and applying chapstick to help with that. He was just not himself. Very sleepy and very cranky. The doctors mentioned that an important next step was for Beckett’s bowels to wake up (sounds, passing gas, bowel movement etc). The nurses continued doing vitals throughout the day and every time they would tell us that there still were no bowel sounds. That was hard to hear. I knew it would take time but they just weren’t waking up and I had this fear that they wouldn’t ever wake up. That evening we wanted to hold him again. He had been sleeping most the day so we didn’t want to bother him but finally we just wanted him. To hold and snuggle him. So we had the nurse help us and Shawn sat in the chair. He got situated and then the nurse laid Beckett in his arms. Beckett started to scream. He just screamed and cried and after 5-10 minutes of trying to console him with no luck, we put him back in bed. He stopped crying. That was so hard. Looking at Shawn’s face, seeing that feeling of rejection. Oh how it hurt. We knew he didn’t feel good but it didn’t make it any easier to not be able to hold and love on your two month old baby.
Written by: Kimber