Our Big Strong Boy

I’m sitting by Mattie’s bedside watching him rest peacefully. He did very well with surgery, had a good night, and is resting well today. His is pretty well sedated so that he doesn’t move around and get himself into trouble.

Yesterday was a crazy day. If it wasn’t crazy enough on Tuesday to find out that Mattie would have surgery in less than 24 hours and that it wouldn’t be the surgery we had anticipated, Wednesday turned out to even crazier.

Tuesday evening Kansas City was multiple severe weather alerts including a Tornado Watch. Nick was on his way with friends to pick up Amy from the airport, so I called to check on him. They were almost home but had stopped for dinner. They decided to leave the restaurant and just come straight home. Taylor and Isabelle, who had just had a disaster preparedness class at school, put their education into action and prepared our basement with supplies in case we needed to spend time down there waiting out or enduring a tornado. They thought of everything and did a fabulous job.

Wednesday morning, John and I were up bright and early for a 7AM meeting with the surgeon. The surgeon reiterated what we had heard before, that this he assessed Mattie’s condition again, and felt that he was very high risk for the AV Canal repair. He felt that placing a band on the pulmonary artery restricting a good deal of the “overflow” of blood to the lungs (due to the heart defect) could have a very positive affect on Mattie’s heart and help him to be better prepared for his larger heart surgery.

The hope is that this PA band, will cut the flow of blood to the lungs down giving the lungs a break, and that it will also allow the heart muscle that has been pumping way too hard and has gotten large and hard (like an overworked muscle would) to calm down. (Imagine if you had been working out your biceps like crazy and cut back your exercise to just normal daily activity, within a few weeks/months, you would loose some of that muscle tone/hardness. Well that’s what we want Mattie’s heart to do.)

As we waiting out an 11AM surgery time, and stat with our sweet boy, we started getting wind of the weather reports and the fact that we were now under a Tornado Watch (with tornados touching down about 15-20 minutes from our home in Grandview). John stepped out to check on the kids, meanwhile I got a text from John’s mom who was with our kids stating that they were all safe in the basement.

The hospital then went under “Code Grey” and all the babies on the NICU were moved into interior hallways. Mattie was moved as far as they could, but we were limited due to the ventilator. The blinds and curtains were all closed around the bed spaces near the windows, and we waited out the storm for about an hour or so.

The kids at home remained safe and we were so grateful. It was very hard being separated from our kiddos at a time like that.

Mattie went to surgery about 2PM and everything went really well.

We are so grateful for the prayers and for the Lord’s protection over Mattie during surgery and our entire family during the storm.

We are now in the PICU not the NICU, so we are acclimating to a new area of the hospital and doing well. I hope to get all of Mattie’s letters and pictures hung again in his new room today.


3 thoughts on “Our Big Strong Boy

  1. praise god the surgery went well,and that you are all safe!!!you are such a tough mama i just don’t know how you do it,you are such an inspiration to me.You have given me such perspective with my littles that i do not take for granted any of the gift that my children are.Thankyou for that:)i will continue to pray,please give him some extra hugs from his friends in idaho.
    sincerly siobhan

  2. What a day yesterday! As if surgery wasn’t stressful enough – just throw in a tornado or two! So thankful that Mattie’s surgery went well and that everyone is safe in KC. We were praying up a storm! (No pun intended!) Your family is definitely a team and your older children are amazing! Kiss Mattie’s sweet head for me.

    Love, prayers and hugs to all. Mrs. I : )

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