During this time of such crazy mommy emotions, I've neglected to mention all of the amazing things happening for J-O-E-L!!!
We went for an appointment on Veteran's Day, and Dr. Ricker was so pleased with Joel's progress off the ventilator that he made new orders for Joel to be off the vent during all waking hours! We are so pleased with this news. It allows us to have more freedom, and our schedule has cleared up too. J can come in the kitchen with me when I'm cooking dinner. He can come in the bathroom with me when I'm putting on my make-up....normal. Key word is normal. Even though the winter "scare" has gotten me a little undertow, having a cordless baby is absolutely wonderful. I'm so proud of him. He's been on these new orders for 9 days now, and he's handling it great!
We got connected to a feeding team out of Mary Bridge, a combination of J's G.I. doc, our dietician, an occupational therapist, Diana, who we worked with as an inpatient, and Jennifer Sarver, (who we LOVE!!!,) our speech therapist. We've been working so hard at home on Joel's feeding trials, and they're a total pain in the butt....so much preparation for 30 seconds of show, followed by barfing, or gagging, and that pretty much sums it up. I've been eating cold dinners for a solid month, (as us typical mommies do,) and although there are nights when I want to just skip it, we don't. I've never been so proud as I was at that appointment. Joel has a new habit of hating his therapies. We have 4 in-home therapies a week, and the moment those women walk in the door, Joel rolls over, telling us, "Nope, I'm not doing work today."
At the feeding appointment, Joel did a solid hour of work. It was awesome!!! They introduced new instruments for us to use, switching from a spoon to a "dip," and considering the amount of food he was actually taking by mouth, he'll be getting more from dipping. Our hard work has payed off.