Showing posts with label MACE. Show all posts
Showing posts with label MACE. Show all posts

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Countdown to Number Six

One week from now, Kingsley will be in surgery for the sixth time.

The big M&M.

I'm having a lot of trouble with this one. Like the tendon release surgery last year, this is elective. It's our choice. His life does not depend on this . It falls under the category of "quality of life", as in, we hope to improve Kingsley's by doing this surgery. This massive, long, complicated surgery.

Also like the last surgery, we have had a lot of time to plan this one. To sit and ruminate. To think of all the things that could happen. All of the things that could go wrong. So, I've had a headache for about a week that just quietly throbs behind my eyes. In a way, it's like when I was pregnant with him and just had to act normally while inside it was the one, single thought always in my head: the countdown.

One week.

Seven days.

Actually, less than seven. We go into the hospital on Tuesday so that Kingsley can be prepped in advance, which I hear is quite unpleasant.

I have five and a half days to finalize all of the childcare arrangements for the girls, clean my house from top to bottom, pack for him, pack for me, spend as much time with the girls as I can, and somehow get Kingsley ready for what is about to happen to him.

Kingsley knows he's having surgery, he knows what the outcome is going to be. He's not altogether impressed with the idea, but he knows that I will be with him the whole time and I will make sure that he's not in pain. He knows about the drains, though I'm sure he has no idea what that actually means. Sometimes it's hard for kids to wrap their head around these things. And adults, sometimes it's hard for adults to wrap their head around these things.

My biggest (okay, second biggest. Maybe third.) fear right now is that the surgery will be cancelled. That all of this anxiety and planning and preparation will be for nothing. I want to put Kingsley in a bubble and protect him from any germs. Then I want to fast forward to about 3 days post op and have everything healing smoothly.

Breathe....

Friday, May 30, 2014

Hey There, Stranger

WWe are all alive and doing well ;) I'm going to attempt a recap of the past few months without boring you all. 


I guess first was Kingsley's MRI. It went just fine and the results were undramatic. Everything is stable. I have been panicking about Kingsley's scoliosis for the past year or so, I feel like it is getting worse. King's neuro did say that before we do anything with ortho to correct or stall the curve she would like to do a detethering. But right now no one thinks anything needs to be done, so basically chill out, mama. He will have an x-ray in the fall and they'll see how things are then. 


In other medical news, we have made the official, official, official decision to do the MACE and Mitrofanoff. The plan is to do them in February, right after Christmas and birthday excitement  are over, when there will be a lot of time to recover before summer. I'm. So. Nervous. I know it is the right decision for him, I'm so excited for it to be over. 


As May winds down, I'm so aware of the end of the school year coming. While I do love summer, it's dawned on me that come the end of June, Kingsley and I will not be alone anymore. The girls will be off for the summer and then they all go to school in September. My days at home with my baby are dwindling and that makes me sad! I have loved being at home with these kids far more than I ever thought I would. 


So, what have we been up to? Gardening, swimming, reading, and yoga mostly. I am forcing my interests on my children ;) Kingsley has recently gotten two new sets of wheels. Obviously, the kid cannot have enough wheels in his life. The first was a Radio Flyer Cyclone. It isn't made for kids who can't use their legs, but it works for him. Unlike the plasma car (which we also have and he likes), his legs have somewhere to rest without having to strap them on and the seat has a bit more stability. 


He also got a bike! Kingsley has been obsessed with bikes this year. He begs for one. He pleads for one. And like a gift from an angel, today one just showed up! King goes to a play group where there is a fabulous volunteer who has an adult son with SB. He had outgrown the bike, so they've given it to us! To say that Kingsley is in love is just such an understatement. He can't stop talking about it. He has made me promise over and over that he can ride it tomorrow aaa soon as he wakes up. It's such a gift. 


The rest of our days have just been filled with regular life stuff. I am on Instagram @jillbells That seems to have taken the place of my blogging lately. So much lazier. ;) 

Monday, January 13, 2014

It's A Big Deal

A couple of months ago I was out at Target with Kingsley and being unfamiliar with the store, we wound up in the underwear aisle. Kingsley, naturally, started screaming and cheering the fact that there was Thomas the Train... underwear. My heart squeezed. I turned him quickly and got out of that aisle. Fast.

Underwear is like the Holy Grail in our world. Social continence - the ability to stay clean all day long, though with non-traditional methods - is a huge quest. The very very bottom of the spinal cord is the part that controls continence, so nearly everyone living with SB has to work to achieve social continence in some form or another.

I have probably said far too much about our quest for social continence ;) It has been a battle for about a year and a half now.  I have been googling and googling and emailing and messaging and reading and consulting and trying and trying and trying again.

And then this weekend, Kingsley wore underwear all day. And all day today.

Underwear. 

All. Day. 

Kingsley. 

Do you know how long I've waited for this day? It was pretty darn exciting. 

I kind of feel a teenie bit like we are cheating on the underwear thing. While our #2 issues have been completely, totally resolved (ALLELUIA!!!), the brand new #1 issue is still there. I can't figure it out, but as the timing was exactly when we figured out #2, it must be related. So, anyway, to address that business, I got Kinger what I call men's maxi pads. They're Gentlemen's Incontinence Pads, but let's be real - they're blue and shaped like a pear instead of an infinity loop. Whatever you want to call them, they are significantly cheaper than diapers. Although, it was more awkward buying them than when I stock up on KY (which is not a wink wink thing, it's for Kingsley and I do buy about 10 tubes at a time and get a lot of averted eyes by cashiers). 

So, with one of those guys hidden in Kinger's Toy Story unders justincase, he is good to go! 

He is still going to have to wear a diaper at night for the foreseeable future until we get that stuff worked out.  He doesn't actually care what he's wearing or even notice. I mean, other than the big underpants parties we had all weekend. ;) 


However.

As thrilling as this is, it is not a permanent fix. The things we are doing now, the way we do them, Kingsley cannot be independent. It is different for every person, there are so many relevant factors - gender, leg/body functioning, age, continence issues... but we have come to the conclusion that for Kingsley to be both continent and independent, surgery is his best (and likely only) option. This has not been an easy decision, despite my previous thoughts on it. The procedure(s) we are investigating are far more invasive and scary than we first thought. The recovery will be long and unpleasant. The risk of complications are real. But, we have yet to find someone who regrets having the procedure done. The only regret we have heard is the regret that it wasn't done sooner, when they were younger. I don't know when we will be having it done, but the decision has been made. The next chapter will begin. 

Thursday, October 10, 2013

... And Then My Head Exploded

I wasn't exaggerating when I said our lives revolve around poop these days. It still does. Since meeting with the general surgeon a couple of weeks ago, I have also met with the GI again, Kingsley's paediatrician, and today King's urologist. It's been great, and by 'great' I really mean mind-bogglingly ridiculous. 

Here is a breakdown of what we are discussing:

GI: do a cecostomy and do it now. Stop messing around and cut to the end where this happens either way. No MACE, MACE is bad. Maybe a mitrofanoff. 

Surgeon: no cecostomy, there are too many risks. MACE would be better, but try enemas for now. 

GI: what?? The risks are minor. Don't do enemas, that's a waste. Try senna for now [sidebar: worst advice ever. That was an ugly, ugly week]. 

Paediatrician: Cripes. I can send you for a third opinion, where would you like to go, who do you want to see? Are things better in Toronto? [another sidebar: is there anything better than a dr that admits this isn't their specialty and refers to experts whenever you ask? No. There isn't <3]

Urologist: cecostomy? Never. He needs a MACE and I will do it. And maybe the mitrofanoff, we will see, but likely [insert awkward moment of him trying to explain why, LOL!!] And yes, do the enemas now. But get a MACE soon. 

Which is about the time my head exploded. What do we do? Whose opinion do we trust? I have no idea. At this point, we are going to hang out with PEG until after the casts (that he gets Tuesday) come off. Then we will try enemas. Then we will start talking about a timeline for the MACE and investigate the mitro further. There is some security in knowing that this is somewhat status quo in the SB world. 

Good grief. Kind of makes me want to punch myself for ever whining about potty training Rach and Cor. If only a sticker chart and Strawberry Shortcake underpants could solve these problems! 


(not that you shouldn't whine about how awful potty training typical kids is. It really is horrid. Worst 2 months ever. Kind of. Well, whatever, it sucks, I remember.) 
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