Hudson had his first surgery on 7/2/13 that week he was intubated. He had a PDA ligation. His PDA was larger than we had anticipated and we were optimistic that this repair would allow us to go home, for Hud to grow and then come back for his complete repair.
Prior to this surgery we went in for a heart catheterization. This allowed the Dr.'s to get a closer look at what was going on within his heart.. Just like every procedure there are risks, risks that you don't think will happen to you. You would think I learned my lesson by now with everything going on with Hud, but I didn't think anything could happen to him....boy does that kid love to prove me wrong. They go through the Femoral artery during the procedure and there is a possibility of losing the pulse in that leg. Sometimes it will return, other times it does not. Hudson came back to me with no pulse in his left leg. I was terrified. They would continuously come by, placing their fingers on his ankle..then checking his heartbeat with their stethoscope, trying to find the rhythm just knew Hud wasn't going to get it back, I thought "Great, now they're going to have to chop his leg off too". I was a nervous wreck for hours. A fellow (a Dr. not a guy) Elliot came in and turned on the Doppler (the same as they use while you're pregnant) to check again. "I think I have one"..he looked over at me in the chair, raised his eyebrows and turned up the volume. There it was, that same echo I heard while he was in my womb.. that broken little heart beating away. I put my head down and shielded my eyes with my hand. I let those hours of anxiety empty out. My nurse, Tonya said "it's ok mom, those are happy tears..we will take those". They were indeed some of the happiest tears I have ever cried. Thank God.
The next day after his surgery, Hud was able to tolerate 21% flow. That was a huge deal for us. Finally, he could survive on room air. We had worked for that since birth so we thought for sure we were on the right track. He had gone through a heart cath, and the PDA ligation so there was no way he would not improve....right?? We had been through so much. Hudson was 4 weeks old and it was time for him to start actually living. He has paid his dues, so he can only go up from here. Hud recovered quickly from the surgery and we could have sworn we were on track to going home.
Unfortunately we were wrong and the surgery didn't yield the results we expected. Hud still had to work hard, still hadn't gained enough weight, and was still somewhat struggling to exist.
They decided that we would try using a cpap mask to give him some extra support. The cannula wasn't giving him enough of a break. He hated the mask, and fought for the whole 2 hours it was on.
That left them no choice but to take it off and replace his cannula. The next day July 5th, only one day after having his breathing tube removed they decided to reintubate. I fought that decision hard.. I ran through all the reasons why and why not to. I was so torn. I didn't think he had enough time without the support to prove himself. I didn't think he needed to have the tube back in so quickly...He didn't have enough time to be a baby, all the sedation and pain killers weren't even out of his system yet. But I agreed, if nothing else but to let his lung tissue catch a break to recover. I could find something positive to hold on to...and I did. Just like I always do. Just like you HAVE to.
So they reintubated my boy and that's where we stood for 2 weeks.