Monday, October 5, 2009

Pacemaker Check

Braden had his 6 month pacemaker check at Children's today. His pacer is still checked over the phone every other month, but we get to go to Seattle for these bi-yearly checks like we had today. It was strange to drive onto the property this morning; Darth and I experienced a flood of emotions. We had our middle daughter and Braden, the other two girls had colds and had to stay away with their germs (they shared them with Darth's mom instead!). After checking in, we had a delicious cafeteria breakfast and headed down a floor to wait. (The breakfast actually was great, there is a lot of variety to choose from. We just had to eat there SO MANY TIMES during the hospitalization that it has taken us a while to want to eat there again.) Sissy went to the sibling playroom and Braden, Darth, and I started off the series of appointments with a chest x-ray. So grateful for Children's. They are so geared for kids (obviously), that it was a relatively quick and not-too-upsetting experience for baby. We have had our share of x-rays with Braden so this time was much appreciated.

Next we went in for the vitals: weight, height, blood pressure. I think he was somewhere around 17 and a half pounds. It was in kilograms and I don't make that conversion in my head yet!

Now off to the exam room. We had an amazing tech do the speediest EKG ever. It was over before it began. Darth and I were watching her get out all the wires and both thought, "How is Braden going to do with this?" He has such busy hands now that we envisioned him pulling off the leads as fast as she placed them.

Another tech came in to do the pacer check: more leads, more holding still. Braden did great with this test too.

The cardiologist came in to debrief with us. Basically, all looks great. Braden's pacemaker battery is full, meaning that he isn't using up a lot of battery at this point. Good news because it puts battery replacement that much farther away on the horizon. The test results showed that he still has an underlying rate, but it is very slow, more like a sleeping rate than an activity one. This has shown up in the past and was confirmed again today. It is a comfort to know that even though he needs the pacemaker at this point, the heart could still beat without it. The communciation just isn't working from atrium to ventricle. Still praying . . . !

Thanks for all your continued support. God is still getting the glory from this little wonderful Braden boy! We are grateful for His blessings.

-Jenni & Darth

Friday, October 2, 2009

Fall News

We are living at full speed these days. Braden is enjoying going to all his sisters' soccer games and school events. Soon he will be more quarantined as the "buggies" and viruses start emerging. Since he is crawling and putting everything into his mouth, keeping him germ-free is a challenge. Braden did pick up a small cold, but has remained his happy-go-lucky self. He can be up at all hours of the night and still be sweet and active the next day. Can't say the same for mom and dad.

Braden has popped through both top teeth, with a sizable gap. It will likely resolve, but he has a slight hill-billy look. Very cute. He has also become very chatty with his adorable baby vocabulary. Just this week he started signing "please" during meal time. I think his "please" was to have another bite of mommy's ice cream birthday cake.

Pacemaker checks and routine well baby appointments are all the excitement Braden has had lately. We are definitely enjoying the normalcy. Braden has a pacer check at Childrens' Seattle on Monday. Please continue to pray with us for a miracle healing. We know God is able and are praying that He is willing. This pacemaker issue continues to stretch our faith in the trust department.

We aren't sure if Braden will qualify for the RSV shot again this year. He is doing so well it is not likely. We are just continuing to pray that the Lord will protect him this fall and winter from sickness. It is definitely more challenging to have a mobile baby stay germ free, a rather overwhelming undertaking. So glad we can take these concerns to Jesus. We are doing our part to keep exposure down, but we do have to keep living life as normally as possible. The fact is, he is going to get a hundred kisses daily from his sisters and there's not a lot we can do about that. The girls just can't help themselves. Oh, Braden is also giving kisses now, super wet and slobbery ones. Adorable!