Tuesday, July 28, 2009
I saw on Steve's blog that Stellan is in trouble again. Poor little guy is living with a nasty heart arrhythmia that just will not quit. So, I headed over to Stellan's mommy's blog to see what has been going on. I've been there many times before.
Everybody knows MckMama. She's like this world famous blogger with the cutest kids you've ever seen (except for mine, or course). And everybody knows Stellan. People all over the world have taken pictures with his name to show support to his family.
Then it hit me. What if there are people out there that don't know Stellan and his mama? This thought led to another. (My brain sometimes works that way...) I read a lot of blogs. Some of those blogs are blogs that everyone has heard of and read, and some are not so popular, but equally great. So, what if I did, like a review, of different blogs in all sorts of categories for both of my readers? Okay...all three of you...
I really do come across some great blogs. Medical blogs, educational blogs, family blogs, technical blogs.... Hmmmm.....maybe I'm feeling a blog project coming on....
Posted by Lisa Schaffer at 10:51 PM
Wednesday, July 15, 2009
And we've had some good ones over the years. Some are timid, others are over-confident and some are down-right cocky. In the end, they each learn quite a bit about many different conditions by taking on my kids!
We always get asked if a new resident can listen to Eli's heart. We always say yes, of course. I mean, it is a teaching hospital. It's not every day that a resident has a chance to hear the 'Chitty, Chitty, Bang-Bang' coming from a child's chest. We did joke at one time that it was a-dollar-a-listen when the parade of students seemed especially long....
So this brings me to our doctor visit yesterday. Can I just say, if you use a teaching hospital, never, ever schedule a routine doctor visit for July. New residents plus back-to-school rush equals a very long day. But, I digress...
The resident we saw had an exceptional manner about her. She was confident, while projecting a friendly, humble air. She was great with Eli and I was thankful that I had decided to take him alone. I usually take two or three at a time-to really test those residents. Just kidding.
Back to yesterday.... As we were going over my list, and I always have a list, the resident asked me about my 'heart concerns'. So, I go into the story.
Last week, while at an outdoor event at our church, Eli wanted to jump in one of those bouncie houses. It was hot, but the sun had already gone down, so it was pretty bearable. He went in and bounced for what seemed like forever, but was actually less than fifteen minutes. When he came out, he sat so I could put his shoes on, then fell back on the ground, panting. Other than that, he was acting fine. I took him inside for water and that's when I saw it. His face was bright red and blue. It wasn't just me being paranoid-he was definitely grabbing attention.
My gut told me he was fine, but I thought I'd mention it. That and the panting. He does that a lot. But, he's so much more energetic now and he plays outside more. I figured it would all fall into the same category as 'once a heart kid-always blue in the pool'. Did you know that CHD causes a child's circulatory system to develop a bit differently in an effort to oxygenate the body? Yeah, that was my gut feeling.
Anyway, I told the bouncie house story to the resident and she is looking at his medical chart on the computer, trying to sort out his CHD and the surgery he has had. She makes the statement that he should be okay since he's 'fixed'. Then she listens to his heart.
I don't think she was prepared for the 'Chitty, Chitty, Bang-Bang". And to be honest, I haven't thought to ask about the heart sounds since Eli had his surgery. I have no idea what it sounds like now. She handled it well, though. Then she stepped out to go over my list with her attending physician.
They both quickly returned and said they had put in a call to Cardiology and would like to have us worked in just to check things out. So, before I knew what was happening, we were being shuttled out of there and up to the 3rd floor. I kept saying that my gut was telling me that everything was fine, but their near-panic did break me down a bit.
Eli's cardiologist met us in the office and after a quick O2 check (high 90's), he listened to our story and to Eli's heart. I told him about the resident's reaction and my gut feeling (a mother's gut feeling, no less). He pointed to the scar on Eli's chest and smiled. "When you have one of these, you automatically get special attention." No kidding! Better safe than sorry....
The cardiologist called it 'Racoon Face'. The red robber mask with blue eyes and nose is what I called it. He explained that it was caused by the Glenn shunt, the complicated circulatory system (see??) and the exertion, but is totally expected. As long as Eli feels and acts fine and shows no signs of obvious struggle, he can jump in the bouncie house to his little heart's content (pun intended).
Now that we have this resident broken in, I think we'll keep her for a couple of years.
Tuesday, July 7, 2009
I'm going to post something new on this blog!
We've had an incredibly busy and complicated late spring/early summer. We've added Asperger's Syndrome and seizure activity to our family's list of 'conditions'. We've experienced a senior prom, the end of our first year in public schools (long-time homeschooler here), extended school year programs and IEPs.... I started working again. Freelancing as an independent contractor. It's been a long time and it takes a lot of 'me' away from my family.
I make it sound a bit heavy and overwhelming, and much of it has been. However, the good times have rolled and I'm sure they'll keep rolling. Everyone is healthy in spite of the A's: Autism, Asperger's, Asthma, and ADHD.
And the CHD (congenital heart disease).
Oh, and the seizures.
So, for the hand full of folks that come here to read about our crazy life, I promise I plan to come back....hopefully sooner rather than later!
Posted by Lisa Schaffer at 9:09 PM
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