Why yes, that is my husband clearing snow off the driveway with his excavator…isn’t that how it’s done at your place?
Thank you all so very much for the kind words, prayers and support. I totally feel like we’re surrounded by friends who care and that helps immensely.
Chuck and I have been discussing the possibility of a vascular ring for months. We’ve done our research. We knew it would involve heart surgery to fix. We’ve had many discussions about it and I’ve shared about our suspicion of a vascular ring with friends and here on this blog.
But you know what? Talking about the possibility of a vascular ring and having your child be diagnosed with one are two entirely different things, as it turns out. I can’t imagine getting this diagnosis out of the blue, when all you were expecting was something related to breathing issues…At least we were prepared. I read my Facebook status updates and my blog entries and it’s like reading someone else’s. I mean, your kid, doesn’t get diagnosed with a congenital heart defect. That happens to other people. Maybe a friend, a relative or a blog you read…but not you.
Kind of like Apollo’s birth…none of it seemed quite real. And after the fact as I told friends and shared it here…Once again, those things don’t happen to you. It’s something you watch on Discovery Channel…then tell your friends about because it was so bizarre.
I’ve mentioned here before how I stared at Apollo’s face at I held him in my arms at the hospital, and I told myself I wouldn’t treat him any different from the other kids. He birth was crazy and traumatic, yes, but he came through with flying colors. His Apgar scores were 8 at birth despite all the drama! He was fine and I wouldn’t treat him like he was fragile or sickly just because of the circumstances of his birth. But as time went on it became very clear he wasn’t like any of my other ten babies…and we had to treat him differently.
There were times when I really thought I was crazy. Did I have some pathological need to view Apollo as a sick baby? On his good days I would wonder if I was exaggerating things. Should I leave well enough alone? Was it fair to put him through miserable tests just because I thought he was sick? Despite “knowing” that something was wrong, I would have days where I doubted myself. I wondered what my friends and people at church thought…I mean most people who see him wouldn’t know anything was wrong. If they saw him on a good day his breathing my even be inaudible. Did they all think I was crazy? Comments that were meant to be encouraging “he looks great!” “his breathing sounds good” made me feel more crazy.
It’s hard to not be angry with the occupational therapist who told me Apollo was just “afraid” to eat…Chuck said, “He is afraid to eat…he’s afraid he’ll choke to death”. It’s hard not to be angry at the ENT who said “His airway is fine. It looks completely normal to me.” And I suppose it’s fine to be angry at them, but I’m not focusing my energy there. I am going need all my energy for the upcoming appointments, tests and surgery.
We don’t know any specifics about Apollo’s heart and we won’t until he is thoroughly examined by a cardiologist (the one we talked to Wednesday was just the one who read the MRI). What we do know is he will have many more tests, he will have to have surgery which I know from my reading will mean at the very least 2-3 days in the hospital in Seattle and possibly a lot more than that.
It will mean keeping up with homeschooling, the house, meals and appointments with the other kids while making numerous trips to Seattle. Chuck will have to take time off work for many of those (obviously he needs to be there when we’re making decisions with the cardiologist). Our children at home will be left a lot, at home or with friends, worrying about their brother and missing their parents and their routine. It’s going to be a long road for everyone. Your continued prayers and support are welcome.
I’ll be making an ever popular “button” for Apollo that I would love to have you share on your blogs. Feel free to add Apollo to your church’s prayer chain, share with your small groups, etc. Heart surgery is never routine and without risk.
And tomorrow, I will blog about something other than Apollo. I think it will be therapeutic for me.