We want to give you an update from all of Bella's appointments prior to leaving Virginia as well as a synopsis of our trip home. She has more appointments in the coming weeks, so we will tell you more then as well.
Last Monday we started out at the Pediatrician. They were happy with the way she looked for the most part. She was up to 6lb 10oz and 18.75 inches. I thought she sounded a little gurggly, but they seemed to think it was a preemie thing. There is a small hernia along her incision from the bowel reconnection, but they thought Dr. McGahren should be the one to look at that more closely. Blood was also drawn to check her bilirubin level, but we would have to wait half the day to get the result of that blood work. As long as it didn't increase from the prior test, she would be clear.
Next was Surgery. The resident was 45 minutes late and that made me a little edgy since the day was jam packed. Once he came in, I stressed that our next appointment was soon and I wanted to speak with Dr. McGahren. Luckily he popped in about 5 minutes after the resident made he assessment. Overall he was pleased with the way Bella looked...except the hernia. Yep, that's for sure what it is. He said that it wasn't anything that he would fix right now anyway; just have our pediatrician in Texas keep an eye on it and he would recommend someone in Lubbock to correct it in the future. I think parting ways with Dr. McGahren was the hardest considering everything he did for Bella.
And not to forget the Ophthalmologist. I made it there just 5 minutes late and Dr. Carter got us right in. He was so great tending to our situation. He was also pleased with how Bella's eyes are progressing, saying that everything was heading in the direction he wanted. Yet she is still at risk for crossed eyes and/or needing glasses for severe near-sightedness. Now she has an Ophthalmologist in Texas and a follow-up 2 weeks from today.
We thought the last one would be the Urologist, who gave her a clean bill of health and stopped the amoxicyllin, but pediatrics called back...her bili was 7.3. They were concerned that there was more going on and wanted to do more labs.
So, instead of going to pack and head out...it was back to the Pediatrician for more blood work. They put a "stat" mark on the labs so that results could be obtained quickly. The pediatrician would not clear her until these results were back and the GI doctors were okay with her progression. In other words...the return home was put on hold.
Thank goodness the results came back before 5pm. The pediatrician called to let us know that her PT and GGT were actually down from the last review in late January. Indicating that there was nothing severe going on from a GI stand point and we could start back to Texas. We just have to be sure to see the GI specialists soon.
Well, now the real adventure begins. To put it simply...I mailed 9 boxes home via UPS, we bought a waterproof canvas roof carrier, a 100qt ice chest for breast milk, and we could barely see out of our blind spots when driving. The car was perfectly arranged for a driver, a baby, and a back seat babysitter. Needless to say, all of that STUFF took extra long to pack. Luckily Nurse Kam spent the day with Chris getting the car ready, after picking him up from the airport. That was a life saver considering we spent more time at the hospital than originally expected. We started the day thinking we would be able to head out of town by 3pm; that turned into 7:30pm. Our first destination was Knoxville, TN to stay with one of my dearest girlfriends, LaSaundra. WISHFUL THINKING! We stopped at Wendy's around 10pm for a pick-me-up meal...3 hours later we were stopping because Chris got food poisoning...and we were still an hour away from LaSaundra's place. I made him pull into a Hampton Inn and we got a room for the night...which turned into 2 nights. He was so sick and weak that we spent Tuesday hanging out in the hotel room, actually he slept all day. Fortunately I was still able to meet up with LaSaundra for an hour or so. It was so great to visit with her and watch her hold Bella. Wednesday was a prosperous day. We made it to Memphis in great time and were able to spend about 30 minutes with Fred, Erin, Avery, and Gabe (it was nice to finally meet them). Chris drove the second leg of the day to Little Rock, we found another Hampton Inn and the whole family was down for the count and a much needed good nights sleep. But oh Thursday, rain for several hours in the morning, several stops for the baby, and an over turned RV on I-30 in Dallas. A 5 hour trip turned to 7.5. We made it to Mansfield and spent a good hour and a half with my Aunt Debbie and Uncle Tim. We all ate a quick bite (yummy tacos!), that included Bella...Aunt Debbie got the feed the chunky monkey and was so surprised at how she packed away the juice. Instead of spending the night, we decided to get back on the road, figuring that it would only take 3.5-4 hours to get home. We were anxious considering this was the day we were supposed to arrive home before the "food poisoning". NO...try 5 hours. We pulled up to the house in Midland about 1am Friday morning. Can someone say EXHAUSTED for me...I'm too tired to do it!!!
Regardless of a heavy, tiring pursuit home...it was all so worth it. Having Isabella in this house, with Cooder and Juno, with her room, and our bed...oh, nice comfy bed...was so splendid and rewarding.
So Isabella gets to see her new Pediatrician tomorrow, Dr. Singh-Johnson. I am excited to meet and work with her. So, until our next update...may peace be with you and love find an overwhelming place in your heart...God Bless!!!