Thursday, September 1, 2011

Dominic September 1, 2011

Last night I didn't get to see Dominic til close to 9:30. Surgery went REALLY well, it just took a lot longer than they anticipated. Since there was so much scar tissue, they had to go really really slow. [it took 3 hours just to open him up!] The actual repair to his heart took about 4 hours or so. The rest of the time they were waiting on him to stop bleeding. When the surgical team transferred Dominic into the ICU they decided that they needed to add another drainage tube in his belly and they did right in the room. After that, we were able to come in, give him a kiss and hang out for a little bit and then go get some rest. 

I got back here at about 7:30 this morning to hear rounds. He did great overnight and everyone was extremely happy with him. The goal today was to extubate him [take his breathing tube out] and start weaning him off of sedation. No one wanted to pressure him into healing too fast and so everything has been in God's time. The biggest step for us was extubation. [Kids who have a fontan, like he does, need to breath on their own for various reasons. 1. being they obviously need to breath on their own to go home and 2. when the ventilator breathes for them, the body responds the exact opposite than if he were breathing on his own. It's really hard to heal from such a huge operation, when the body is being forced to do something it doesn't want to do.] Getting Dominic to breath on his own has been quite a task in the past. He can be stubborn {where does he get that from?!?!?!?! hehe} and sometimes doesn't want to do things just because you told him to.... He has needed to be re-intubated [put the tube back in] a few times in the past because we have pushed a little too hard, or he's just not into it. This is just as important as the heart surgery itself. 

So with those goals in mind, here is a recap of our day. Today at about 8:00am, the staff on the PICU decided that he's doing great, lets see how he does when we wean him off of the ventilator. One notch, two notches... he's doing great! Since we want him to start breathing on his own, lets start weaning him off of sedation. No sign of any change in him... that's GREAT! He isn't dependent 100%. Other wonderful things are happening. My wonderful pastor Victor surprises me by being in town. He came to see and pray for my family. He hung out with us, got to know a little bit of what we are going through and laughed with us. [Victor also introduced me to a wonderful family up here who has a 3yr old with heart issues. He has surgery today and came out great :)] Then, we got the sign... he's ready. We are taking that tube out of his lungs. Not only that but, he was completely off of all sedation! PLUS his heart was keeping pace OVER the pacer it was hooked onto!! So in one day, he is breathing on his own, no pain meds (other than tylenol and phentinol which is a little heavier than IV ibuprofin) and his heart is taking care of itself. Praise God!!! 

I also got a wonderful surprise from an old friend. Thank you so much again Tamera for EVERYTHING today. [she came by unexpectedly and dropped off some gifts and it was just neat to see her after all this time] 

Dominic still isn't awake because it takes awhile for everything to pass through him. I don't anticipate him waking up until tomorrow sometime. He looks great and had a HUGE day today. I'm so incredibly proud of him!!! This all is going much smoother than even the docs have expected. Praise the Lord for all things good!! Thank you everyone for all of your love, support and most of all prayer. :) It's obviously working miracles. 


ps please don't post any pictures on facebook. Thank you. 


  1. best news whitney! i have tears in my eyes i'm so happy for you guys. god is good, just keep breathing! love you ♥

  2. So thankful for the good news. We have an amazing God!!! Looking forward to Dominic waking up. May God continue to heal his body and may his recovery by swift. Blessings to you Whit, Deb Dennis