I was feeling quite worried about Ethan.He had been vomiting after every feed.Not just once, but 3-4 times.And not small vomits, but huge projectile ones that went everywhere.All over the floor, all over Ethan, and all over me. I was changing Ethan’s clothes at least 5-6 times a day.One night, Ethan vomited about 6 times in a row, I didn’t think that he would stop.Ethan was crying, I didn’t know what do. I didn’t know if this was normal? I got told that it was. As long as he’s gaining weight. Which he was to start with. So, I wasn’t too worried.When he started losing weight. I began to worry. I went to the doctors and got prescribed Gaviscon, and told that I wouldn’t be seen again until January.Which, was a few weeks away. I didn’t think that was good enough.Especially, since my baby had been losing weight, and he’s only six weeks old. Luckily I saw the midwife the next day. She weighed him and he had lost more weight. He had lost 430 grams in 6 days. She was concerned, and referred me to the hospital emergency department. I didn’t really have time to worry. I had to organise care for Riley and Hannah.Luckily I have kind neighbours, who could take care of them during the day.I had to ring my husband and let him know what was happening.Then I ran around like a mad thing, trying to get bags packed, hoping that I had everything.Then it was getting there.
While I was driving I just tried to focus on driving and the music playing, so I didn’t have time to think.Once we got there I got told to wait, that the doctor would be there shortly.I tried to read and concentrate on my story, but found that I would be reading the same line, over again. About half an hour later, near Ethan’s feed time. The doctor came. I had to explain my story, again.And that I needed to feed Ethan.I was taken to a room, where I could feed Ethan. And talk to a set of doctors from the Paediatric team. Where once again I told my story.That Ethan was six weeks old.He was born a bit early at 36 weeks. He was breastfed for two weeks, then bottle-fed. It wasn’t until he was just over a month old, that he started vomiting after feeds, and during feeds. Doing big vomits, that would go everywhere. It was not until he was losing weight that I was concerned.The doctors checked him over.His temperature, his heart, and his tummy.But,until they had done some blood tests, they could not tell me what the cause of the vomiting was.They said it could either be a urinary infection or a condition which I got the doctor to write down for me, called, Pyloric stenosis.They said that was quite rare, so I wasn’t expecting Ethan to have that.We were booked in to stay at the children’s ward.It would probably be longer than an overnight stay.
Once we reached the ward, there were more doctors to tell my story to.Ethan got his bloods done very bravely.They said that they were testing to see whether he had indicators for Pyloric Stenosis.Ethan was then put in a hospital gown, a festive one, since it’s nearly Christmas.I was told not to feed him.As they wanted to test the fluids in his stomach.He had an iv put in, and had fluids going down him to keep him hydrated and to give him nutrition.We were then given our room.It was approaching late afternoon by then, so I went out to get some meals.When I came back the doctors had the blood tests back and said that there was an indication that Ethan had Pyloric conditi.But they had to be 100 percent certain that, that was what he had, as it requires an operation.So, he was booked in for an ultrasound scan to confirm the diagnosis.Until that happened I couldn’t feel certain.I planned for an early night.Luckily Ethan loves his dummy, and he was quite happy to suck away on it.We both slept quite well, despite being in a noisy hospital.
The next day, the scan confirmed that he definitely did have, Pyloric stenosis.That was a relief,to know that was the cause of his vomiting.And that it could be easily fixed.
Pyloric Stenosis:- is a narrowing of the pylorus, the lower part of the stomach through which food and other stomach contents pass to enter the small intestine. When an infant has pyloric stenosis, the muscles in the pylorus have become enlarged and cause narrowing within the pyloric channel to the point where food is prevented from emptying out of the stomach. (Kids health.org).
Then just lots of waiting.Waiting for the surgeon to talk to us.He reassured us that it’s a very straightforward surgery, with a fast recovery.That he’s been doing them for twenty years.He’s done hundreds of them.We felt that Ethan is in good hands.The surgery won’t take place until the next day.So we will be here over Christmas.We have to change our Christmas plans to boxing day.As I don’t want to miss watching my children open their presents.But right now we have to do what is best for Ethan.And it doesn’t matter that we will be in over Christmas.Until Ethan’s operation it’s just endless reams of time to fill in.Trying not to worry about what is ahead.Only trying to focus moment by moment.I don’t feel strong at all.I just know that I can’t break down.I have to remain calm and in control for Ethan.That I can only concentrate on the moment.Trying not to think too far ahead.I put my trust in the doctors hands.And tell myself that they know what they’re doing.
The name of Ethan’s surgery is called,Pyloromyotomy:-Which involves cutting through the thickened muscle of the pylorus, is performed to relieve the blockage.The pylorus is examined through a very small incision, and the muscles that are overgrown and thickened are spread and relaxed. (Kids health.org).
This is what the incision that the surgeons made on Ethan’s tummy looks like.It will eventually fade, and become a small scar.Pretty incredible!
The day of the operation, I was feeling anxious but ready to get this over with.The morning was spent in anxious anticipation.Trying to fill in the time,but not really able to concentrate.When we were called,Ethan was wheeled out in his cot, sucking on his dummy, oblivious to what lay in store. My eyes were dry.I wanted to cry,feeling that Ethan was too small for this.But I knew it was for the best.I said goodbye to Ethan, then went back to the ward, to have lunch and wait for the call.Casey arrived with Riley.It was good to see them both.It wasn’t long before I was called to recovery.I got there and found Ethan swaddled and looking sleepy.I hopped on the bed and got to snuggle with Ethan, as we were wheeled back to the room.Once we there, Ethan was transferred to another cot.I was told that he couldn’t be fed for 6 hours.So he had to be content with the dummy.I spent some time playing with Riley.It was nice to spend some time with him, as I had missed him and hadn’t seen him in a few days.We did puzzles and played blocks.It was hard to say goodbye, but I knew that I would see him soon.
Then it was just Ethan and me, again. I looked forward to feeding Ethan in the evening.At 8 am.I was able to feed Ethan his first bottle.He was to start on 25ml.I got told that he could still vomit, up to 48 hours after the operation.At Ethan’s first feed he scoffed the milk down in a minute, with no problems.I headed to bed not long afterwards, as I knew that I would be up in the night, for feeds and replacing, Ethan’s dummy.At his next feed, he went up to 100ml.He managed half and unfortunately it all came back up.It was discouraging.But since, I was told that was normal I was not too worried. Ethan was given smaller amounts for his next feed, but he’d still bring it up.So, he would be quite unsettled, as his stomach is still empty.As soon as Ethan started keeping down his feeds, things got easier.Since it was Christmas eve, we got a visit from Santa.There was a sack of goodies for Ethan and Riley.And because Ethan had been keeping down quite a few feeds, we were allowed to go home on Christmas day.That was the best Christmas present.Having Ethan well and going home.
Psalm 139:13 “For it was you who formed my inward parts; you wove me together in my mothers womb.I will praise you , for I am awesomely and wonderfully made.