Still paralyzed. Poop.
So last night Oakes had a little set back. He had a fever, a little rash, his heart rate went up into the 170's (it is usually in the low 110's) so they went backwards with the vent overnight. He settled out and was stable quickly but they left the vent alone. When I got in this morning they told me they were going to lift the paralytic to just check on him, but as soon as we saw him open his eyes we would re-paralyze him. BIG poop.
Around 10 am they lifted his paralytic. It usually takes about and hour to wake up which was about the case today. He was squirming around just doing a little jig as he was waking up. Since he hadn't made it to the lower vent setting the doctors didn't think he would be comfortable waking up from the paralytic but since the paralytic is a "neuro drug" they wanted to turn it off and see that he was responding appropriately, moving around and opening his eyes. This would confirm that his brain was in good shape. So when the paralytic is turned off it is like (in my words) little electrical messages are slowly shot out from Oakes' brain to his muscles. Randomly a toe twitches, then an finger and the longer he is off of the paralytic the quicker the messages fire and the more movement he has. Legs kick, his tongue and facial muscles move, then eventually he coughs and opens his eyes. So today, Monica, Oakes' amazingly sweet nurse and I stood at his crib side just talking to him, holding his hands, just watching and waiting for him to wake up for the first hour. At an hour out, he was pretty active but no eyes. Then around two hours out we just saw slivers of eyes, no smiles just a few grimaces. He was trying to get his thumb in is mouth though. Right at the two hour mark Oakes was physically working harder to breath, his numbers looked good, but he was starting to show signs of struggle so Monica had to turn the paralytic back on. I think Monica was just as bummed as I was to have to do it, so she thoughtfully gave me a few minute warning that it was being turned back on. She stepped out of the room for a minute to tell the docs that she was going to turn the paralytic back on and when she did I gently lifted Oakes eyelids so he could see me. I knew he could hear me, I knew he knew I was there, I just wanted him to see me, to see my smile and know everything was OK. And selfishly, I wanted to see him. I wanted to see his baby blues. I have just been missing him so much.
Not the news I had hoped to share, but it was still a good day. The good news from the day was that Oakes did so well when they lifted the paralytic. He did not show signs of pain. He was not mad. He was not in distress, did not bare down, hold his breath, turn blue or any of the scary stuff that Monica and I were prepared for today. Doctors did not come running into his room. He was pleasant and sweet, and trying so hard to keep up with the vent. He was actually taking really big breaths on his own, a great sign. Monica suctioned his airways several times and pulled up lots of clean secretions. We did not see blood or anything that was even blood tinged coming from his airway. Another great sign. Then after he dozed back off, his vent was weaned a bit and he has been holding steady all day.
So we now wait a bit and try again in a day or two.
I will post those baby blue eyes as soon as I see them!