Friday, September 30, 2011

Before and After Surgery X-rays

Good morning to everyone! Just wanted to give a quick update this morning and share some X-rays so you can see the great improvement after Trinity's surgery. Once again her curve pre-op was 85 degrees and post-op 50 degrees. Trinity is doing well this morning with the exception of a small fever and being heavily medicated to control the pain. Thanks again for everyone's continued thoughts and prayers!

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Surgery and Recovery

As days end starts to draw near Miranda and I have a lot to be thankful for. So many thoughts, feelings, and emotions run through the both of us. Of all the feelings, thankfulness is the most prevalent feeling we have.

Last night Miranda and I had an experience that we haven't felt for awhile. We gathered at the Westwood church for an anointing service for Trinity. We were accompanied by lots of friends, family, and members of the church. This was led by pastor Joel and was an extremely overwhelming feeling of support and affirmation that where two or more gather God is there. Thanks be to God for friends and family!

The day started early at 5:30 am as we all were getting ready at the Arthur residence. Out the door on time and headed for the hospital I was soon reminded that dad does not do a lot of big city driving, and " follow close behind me " could be a challenge driving across Minneapolis. We arrived on time to the hospital and got checked in. Trinity was so amazingly strong through the pre-op I couldn't believe it. Trinity brought laughter to Miranda and I as she directed the nurse where her pulse oximeter was to go on her toe not her finger, and was quick to put the blood pressure cuff on her leg and not her arm. " I guess you know how you want things " the nurse replied. Dr. Walker came in and talked us through what was going to happen and as a laid out a general time line. A few highlights were, surgery 4 to 6 hours, 7 to ten day stay after surgery, and keeping Trin intibated for one to two days was probable. We were able to pray with both Dr. Walker and Koop before they took Trin back. God was busy at work this morning! Lastly, came the long walk down the long hall to the ever so dreaded departure of Trinity to the surgery room. Miranda and I were a bit of a mess while Trinity stayed strong not to shed one tear, once again I was amazed in her unbelievable strength.

To give everyone a little background on the particulars of the surgery, we were instructed that they would be placing either one or two titanium rods on one or both sides of her spine. Prior to surgery today Trinity had a 85 degree curve to her spine. When I try to put that in perspective for people I always ask them to picture a 90 degree angle and know the Trins angle is 85. If you look at this on an X-ray it is a bit puzzling. I have a included rough picture to give you a visual of what they are doing.

At around 11:30 Dr. Koop came out to greet us with a smile and provided us a huge feeling of affirmation. Everything went very very well! Wow, what a huge feeling of relief and answered prayers. He continued by telling us that Dr. Walker had the rod placed and was working on getting Trinity closed back up. At around 1:00 Dr. Walker came out to further inform us that everything went as good as it could have and was Trinity was a trooper. A total of 20 CC's of blood was lost throughout the surgery which is less than one ounce, and is hardly anything for this type of surgery. God continues to work!

In the post-op room we greeted Trinity and the nurse and were informed that due to her strong breathing after the surgery they were able to pull her breathing tube. They also informed us that because Trins vitals were so strong we were headed for a normal hospital room instead of the PICU which we were told. God continues to work!
As it sits right now Trinity is doing very well with the exception of a little fever which has been fairly normal with previous surgeries.

The last highlight of the day that I wanted to share happened this evening about 6:00 PM as doctor Walker walked by me as I sat in one of the waiting rooms down the hall from Trinity's room. I stopped Dr. Walker and asked him what was the most people he has had ever praying for him for a surgery. His response was, I'm not sure but I assume I have had some. He then asked how many I thought were praying for him and Trinity today. I said I would say a few hundred for sure. He then shared that he and his family attended church and he was a believer. He followed that by saying that he has had some surgeries that go very well and some that have gone not so well, but today's he said went unbelievably well. He then looked at me and smiled and shook my hand. God continues to work! Thanks to everyone for all or your thoughts and prayers, God has certainly answered them today!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Surgery and Updates

Next week the 29th, Trinity will have growing rods placed at Gillette. With it only being about a week away it is definitely causing some butterflies in the stomach. This was a big decision for Shannon and I, but God has given me a peace about it and we are putting our faith and trust in Him! They are looking at it being around 5-6 hours and she will probably be in the hospital a minimum of 7 days. Last week she had many prep-visits with her pulminologist, pediatrician @ Gillette, and neurosurgeon. They changed her feeding tube from a G-Tube to a GJ-Tube with a long extension so after surgery with her having to be on her stomach this will make it easier to feed her through her tube. They added 4 extra hour of feeds through her tube a day to help with her nutrition and also hoping that she would gain some weight. We also added some protein because the bloodwork they did showed that her levels were low and this will help with her healing. They also see in some x-rays that her bowels are very backed up so they are having us do water enemas that have not been a ton of fun. But hopefully all these changes are going to prepare her little body for this big surgery and she will heal quicker and get along a lot better after surgery.

Today Trinity got some new glasses and they make her look older and soooo cute!!! This is going to be a huge adjustment for her, but Trinity is the queen of adjusting. She also started school last week and loves it. She's in an integrated preschool class 3 days a week in the morning. She has some awesome teachers and nurses!! It has been so neat watching her interact with the other kids. She's not real crazy of gym time because of the noise, but luckily it is a big gym with lots of corners! She will be going until next Wednesday and then will be out of school around 3-4 weeks and then only going back part-time until she recovers from surgery.

The last few weeks have brought a lot of adjustments to the Arthur house. With Aubree starting kindergarten, Trinity starting preschool, many medical adjustments for Trinity, new glasses, and just the preparation of the upcoming surgery there has been a lot of stress and tears. God has blessed us with an amazing family and Shannon and I feel so blessed in so many ways! A few weeks ago we had the privilege of sharing in one of the most awesome experiences. Trinity and Trew were dedicated at Co-Line pond in Sully by Joel Schnell (Shannon's brother-in-law). The day could not have been more perfect! Since moving away from Iowa we have not felt led to join a church and since finding out about this surgery I had felt the need to get Trinity dedicated, but didn't really feel comfortable doing it without our family present. So with much prayer we asked Joel because he is someone that Shannon and I have a lot of respect for and look up to as a Godly man. We had all our family there to witness and to help in praying over our kids and family. It was AWESOME!! There are not enough words to express how amazing the day turned out and how the presence of God was all around us! (Aubree was dedicated in Iowa when she was a baby)

So as next week approaches I am going to work on replacing "fear" with "FAITH"!