Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Weaning Woes

They've started weaning Our Boy off his sedatives, so he's becoming more aware. They have to do that in order to wean him off the ventilator. He has to basically consciously exercise his lungs again because the machine has been doing the work for him. This all means that he has to go through the discomfort of being awake with a ventilator tube shoved between his vocal chords and down into his lungs. It's very uncomfortable, especially after over a week. There's a balancing act that the doctor has to do with keeping him comfortable enough not to stress him, but uncomfortable enough to wake him up and get him off the ventilator as soon as possible...

It's like watching a mother cat wean her kittens... it seems so cruel, and yet it's good for them, and they're crying piteous little cries. Alex isn't crying (yet) but he's grimacing and wincing. It was stressful enough that I felt stressed; I didn't want him picking up on my stress, so I came home to try and relax and let the wonderful CMC staff help him through this. Cindy and Anne (2 great nurses) said that was a very smart choice, so I'm trying not to feel guilty. Ugh.

Weaning sucks.

Sorry, bad pun.



Anonymous said...

I support you on taking some time away from the hospital. That must be horrible to have to watch, and it doesn't sound like there's anything that you can do at present to provide comfort. Don't feel guilty! You're doing great. I appreciate you taking time to keep us posted with blog updates, as I'm sure others do too. Alex is going to need your support when he comes home. I think it's just as important for you to take care of yourself and keep your strength up. You must be a nervous wreck. It's probably the last thing on your mind — but I encourage you to try and eat well and make sure you're getting some sleep! And in banker speak, "leverage your resources". When others come around to help, let them take over and relieve you for a while. I'm sure that's what Alex would want. If I could get any time off from work, I'd be there in a heartbeat. I love you guys. Please let Alex know that I am thinking of him every day.

Bulldog Pottery said...

We are checking in. All of this sounds like a big trial of life. Thinking about you and wishing you and your family all the best.

Anonymous said...

well, sounds painful but it's progress. hopefully this stage will speed along and he'll be extubated soon.

Alex Solla said...

Thanks, everyone. I have absolutely no problem finding people to delegate things to. There are so many people that want to help, I feel as though I owe it to them to let them. Alex often helps others, and it can *seem* like he never needs anyone else; I think some people are relieved to be able to reciprocate for once!