February 23, 2011

Lizzie's Heart Surgery

Day 1:
February 14, 2011
Taking her in on valentines. They drew her blood and (TRIED) to get a sample of her pee. 
Q: How do you get a 5 month old to pee in a cup?
A: You don't. You tape a little plastic bag to her little privates. When that doesn't work, you find a plastic ziploc bag big enough for her to fit in and put her in it, feet first... and then wait and hope it works. I would have posted pictures of that experience but thought it would be slightly inappropriate.

Day 2:
February 15, 2011
We checked in at primary childrens at 6:oo am. Gave them our sample of what pee we could catch in the plastic bag. First we talk to the nurse practitioner, then the heart surgeon, Dr. Burch. He explains the procedure and of course gives us all of the risks. He explained that where the hole is located in Lizzie's heart, there is a chance that the conductor could get damaged and she would have to depend on a pace maker for the rest of her life. Of course at that point I had a melt down. After talking to Dr. Burch, in came the anesthesiologist. Did some more talking, I don't remember a word he said. Thank goodness Clay was listening. We dressed Lizzie in her robe, carried her to the operating room and then handed her to the anesthesiologist. I didn't get any pictures at this point because I was crying, really emotional and didn't think to take out the camera. After sitting in the waiting room for a long 5 hours, the surgeon came in and explained that the surgery went well except for one thing. After he finished the surgery, her heart was beating all on its own for about 20 minutes and then stopped, something he had never seen before and explained that her heart was in fact depending on a pacemaker. Once again, I broke down. They called us up to the pediatric intensive care unit where she spent the next two days...


Day 3:
February 16, 2011
They took the oxygen machine out and she was still obviously in pain and just out of it. At this point, her heart was still on and off the pace maker and she was still really swollen. I was in shock when I saw her right after the surgery, it looked like someone had filled her up like a balloon! It was so sad.

Day 4:
February 17, 2011
We showed up at the PICU early in the morning and found our baby girl with the coolest hair do I have ever seen! I'm sad to say, I cannot take credit for this one. The nurse that was with her that night, bless her heart, had good intentions. Lizzie's hair can get really out of control at times. To be really honest, we laughed really hard and shortly after snapping a few pics, we washed her hair and gave her a little shampoo set..
 Things started looking up, a little more awake but still with chest tubes. Only used the pace maker once and got the big i.v taken out of her neck!

Day 5:
February 18, 2011
Lizzie got her chest tubes taken out and was acting a little more like herself. I wish I could thank personally whoever invented these weird little singing animals. This is Lizzie's favorite toy. When the i.v team put more needles in her arm, she didn't even notice! Didn't even flinch! Just as long as her little pink  thingy was singing to her, she was just in love. 

She even attempted to smile!

Day 6:
February 19, 2011
Lizzie was sent to the childrens surgical unit. This meant she was closer to going home! She was moved to her own room and Clay and I got to sleep in her room with her (I slept on the couch, Clay slept on the floor). We were so excited at how well she was doing and couldn't believe how quickly she was recovering!

Day 7:
February 20, 2011
Lizzie was laughing and smiling a lot more, her heart was beating completely without the pace maker and she was doing well.. so despite how tired we were we couldn't help but feel excited and hopeful.

Day 8:
February 21, 2011
 We were told that we would be going home. The cardiologist told us we have to stay one more night because they want to monitor her just a little longer. We were really board, tired and ready to go home! Lizzie started to get really restless hanging out in her bed, hooked up to all kinds of wires and heart monitors. We took her on a ride around the 3rd floor in the wagon. She loved it, and we loved that she finally got to sleep!

Day 9:
February 22, 2011
Finally going home! We were so excited when they told us we could officially get released! Lizzie was completely off the oxygen, and had not been dependent on the pace maker for a few days. We were honestly so excited to be going home so soon! We had planned to be there for at least 2 weeks because of how her heart reacted right after the surgery. Lizzie truly is one strong baby girl! She surprised us all and recovered so much quicker than we had even expected! We are grateful for our family and friends and are extremely grateful for everyones prayers.
 We are so excited for our Lizzie and can't wait to watch her exceed our expectations again and again in the future!


The Gardner's said...

She's beautiful.
So happy that it went well, she's truly a trooper!

Jade, Maclee, Briten & Jalee said...

I am so happy for you guys that things went so well! I have to say though I bawled the whole time I was reading! you and Clay are so strong! And I love all her faces she pulls!

Lindsay said...

So glad things are going well for your sweet girl. Hope Lizzie continues to get better. She really is such a beautiful girl!

mstokes said...

Oh I am so glad to hear that everthing is well. I have been thinking of your little family everyday this past week. What a week for you too. I can't even imagine! I would still love to see you guys.

Rachel said...

Hey there... So I hope u don't get freaked but I found your blog through carly's. I have been thinking about you guys ever since we met in the waiting room. I am so happy things went well with your little angel. Man is she the cutest thing!? I'm glad that you guys busted out of there sooner than expected. Good luck and give that little girl a squeeze from us. We were praying for her.

Jesse, Nicole and Elle said...

I am so glad things went well! I can't imagine how hard that was for you guys. Those pictures with all the tubes broke my heart. What a strong, cute little girl!