Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Dare I post this update...Yes, we are still here in Chicago, but scheduled to fly HOME tomorrow morning at 9:50. It could be a messy flight! Hope the seat beside us is open.
This has been a challenge for our entire family. My heart broke when I called to tell Chase and Brandon that we would need to stay for two more days. Explaining issues difficult even for most adults to wrap their minds around over a phone call filled with my babies tearful pleas was heart wrenching.
Wes just was not doing well enough to safely travel home Tuesday. He has gone 3, 4 and then really stretched it out to 5 entire feeds before vomiting. We have been told that vomiting may just be Wes normal. Wow, what kind of normal is this?

Today seems to be better. He has not stopped vomiting, but has stretched out for 5 feeds, which totals 17 1/2 oz, before losing about 4 or 5 of those. The hope is that Wes will go straight home and stay there, but Dr. Curry has agreed to have him admitted in Panama City, if it is necessary.
Right now he is peeping out the door..tomorrow he will step out that door on his way back home.

Just to let you know the hospital is not as fun as Wes makes it look in all the pictures. Everyone here has worked hard to make sure Wes can explore, grow, and have some fun. It is also in his nature to make the best out of any situation. Not going to let much hold him down for long.

video

Monday, October 15, 2007

Wes has learned some new words. Love to listen to that sweet little voice even when he is telling me no and move. His little way of telling the nurses, doctors, momma, and daddy what he wants. He is has also learned to say Elmo and pee pee. Past two days have been filled with Elmo music dvd. He wakes up, pointing to the tv saying "melmo". Does his little bounce dance in the bed.

Life can be so unpredictable...we move one step forward, yes only to take two back. Wes breathing has improved considerably with no desats. Today things seemed to be looking up! Wes will be discharged tomorrow and after a few frustrating calls and $475 fees per flight to get home, I finally found a friendly woman with Delta who was wiling to really listen to our situation. She waived the fee with contact of a medical case manager here.
The steps back, Wes is still vomiting and now having considerably less urine output. Only two wet diapers all day and Wes has gone through every little pink gown on the 6th floor. I worry leaving the hospital with him vomiting the way he has been. The doctors have all assured us that this too will pass with time and patience. Initially we were told this would be a simple surgery and Wes would bounce back quickly, which makes me question why this is not happening. There is no true explanation, which of course I hate. I need answers and resolutions, when it involves my baby. What can I do for him...hate to see him suffer through, yet another difficult time.

Spreading some of that universal charm...a smile and personality that grabs your heart!

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Wes is doing well. The thought of this hole in my baby's little belly just seemed overwhelming, but like most things I have learned as a mommy, I can do it. He of course surprises me with how well he handles everything. He was back and forth with smiling and fussing today, but overall doing well.
Woke up at 6am for my first lesson. The nurse connected his mic-key button to an extension tube and started pedialyte feeding. This was after a LONGGGGGG night with a screaming baby next door. The extension has to be snapped in and then turned to lock. The pushing to get it snapped in was a little too much for me to try this morning. He is still pretty sore.
He was started on slow continuous feeds of pediasure this afternoon. Nurse came in a little while ago to give me a lesson on giving meds. I flushed the line, baby steps. LOL. Has two ports, one for feeds and one for meds. Positive point is there is no more fighting him with meds.
The pediatrician, Dr. Heckle, bought baby Einstein and Thomas videos for Wes. We have been searching the hospital for dvds for the bed side tv, to no avail. Today she walked in with brand new dvds and praises of Dr. Curry.
Bad news is that we will spend the weekend here. She talked with Dr. Curry and she wants Wes to be set before they send him home. She is concerned, because of our location and the resources in our area for little guys. Of course we want what is best for Wes and now looking forward to returning home first part of the week. Possibly Sunday, but most likely will be Monday. Can not wait to get my arms around my little fellows. Love you so much Chase and Brandon!

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Wes has his button...
much relieved that he got the button right away. Often doctors use a different type of tube for the first 6-8 weeks, which is what we were told to be prepared for. He is out of surgery, sleeping now. Just been laying here with mommy and daddy, watching a little baby einstein and resting.
My heart was warmed and spirits lifted yesterday by some thoughtful posts, emails, phone calls, some wonderful visitors, lots of love from home, and my hubby walking into the door. Everyone's support has meant so much.
These hospital days have slowly broken me down. In a way, I felt as though I had failed Wes. Here he is a 18 months old, so much he has dealt with and now a g-tube. Worked so hard against this feeding tube, since the day he was born.
Honestly seeing him after surgery was such a release. Yes, always makes me weak in the knees to see the pain and fear in my baby's eyes, but it is over, the fight, the struggle, the surgery, and now seeing the light at the end of this hospital stay in just a few days. Still going to love on that little belly, just going to give him a few days to recuperate.

Life is a journey to be taken day by day...
Wes is also doing well on the 6th floor here. Of course you know how quickly he steals your heart.
Such a little flirt!
Day one on the 6th floor has been a difficult one for me. Being on the 3rd floor for two weeks in August and two weeks now, we knew everyone. Had a little hospital support system there. Something to be said for familiar faces. Now we are on the 6th floor, next to a baby who is apparently alone and not happy all through the night and all morning. I honestly feel I have reached my breaking point. It is so much more than the move, days isolated so far from home, awaiting another surgery for my little man. Woke up this morning, ready to leave. Wes finished his last dose of antibiotic last night and had a culture and some other blood work early this morning. Hate the idea of a g-tube. Love that sweet little belly, lots of kisses and tickles there. His surgery is scheduled for tomorrow, not sure a time. Tearing up as I type those words...I am just so emotionally exhausted.


We have made some new friends here in Chicago. Wes loves music therapy.

Monday, October 08, 2007


Ok, I think I am a pretty reserved person and often hold back when I feel like exploding. Today was one of those days, I held back just how angry I am that Wes had to be moved to the 6th floor. Emotional day for me, there is a lot to be said for familiar faces.
Being away from family and friends has to be the most difficult aspect of having Wes' care so far from home. It meant so much to look up and see my cousin, Chuck, standing in the door. Wonderful timing! All the places he could have been sent for work and he was sent to Chicago.
Joey is flying back tomorrow in time to be here for Wes surgery Wed, which will be great for Wes and I. Desperately hoping to return home Friday night. In time to see my boys play soccer Saturday! I am so looking forward to getting back home, to all of the things we often take for granted...

Sunday, October 07, 2007

The view from Wes room is a breath taking look at the roof. Tuesday will be two weeks in Chicago and all I can tell you about is the green, blue, yellow, and purple color scheme of this hospital room, how a shower can somehow bring back a little of your human side, and almost every moment of 5 Baby Einstein videos. He loves those videos, grabs his attention. Must be a comedy, because he throws his little hand up laughing at the puppet lion.
Today as I was taking a shower Larissa, a student nurse watched Baby Einstein with him. When his nurse walked in, Larissa was talking to Wes in Russian. The video starts out in Russian, which made her think we spoke Russian, so she was trying to comfort him in Russian. Wes has been fortunate to have such wonderful people caring for him. Take care of your nurses, they truly are an integral part of your care in the hospital.
His g-tube surgery is scheduled for Wed, Oct 10, which I have woke up each morning dreading, questioning, and ready to run from. Antibiotics end on Tues, which leaves no time for anything else to arise.
There truly is a breaking point in a hospital and I have reached mine a few times now, which has opened my eyes to the value of a hospital Social worker and the volunteers. Wes is still in isolation and no hope of getting out. Our social worker, Audrey, has stopped by everyday to visit and check in on us, even called Saturday. She has been a great resource and a wonderful person to talk with.
Wes is really doing well, back to the little happy fellow and yes putting big smiles on his nurses faces. Such a little flirt! Stuck in a hospital room, yet not much slows him down, always smiling and ready to play. Just loving life...

Monday, October 01, 2007

Here are some photos to melt your heart.




Yes, my little man misses his big brothers!

Turns out that Wes has salmonella infection. This morning Dr. Heckle, peditricain, said that many people carry this bacteria in their intestines. Both the C-diff and salmonella bacteria have overtaken Wes' intestinal system after strong antibiotics have mess up the bacterial balance in his intestines. The salmonella bacteria has entered Wes blood, oddly enough though his stool cultures have been negative with any type of bacteria. Because Wes has had a recent surgery and more to come, he needs antiboitic treatment to fight this bacteria.
Today he is again isolated in this hospital room, but enjoying some Baby Einstein movies. The peditrician is switching him to bolus feeds, big feeds a few times a day, instead of continous, which requires him to be constantly connected to a feeding pump. After one week in his hospital bed with this nasty infection wearing him down and causing vomitting and diarrhea (over a month) he has gotten pretty weak. Yesterday he was not able to walk, very unsteady and wabbly. Today once they start bolus feeds he will be able explore this "big" hospital room and just get out of bed.

Sunday, September 30, 2007


Wes is still here in the hospital. Again I feel complete confidence in Wes care here at Children's Memorial. He a spinal meylogram Wed showed the success of his neurosurgery last month. NO leak!!!! Even with this information, Dr. Bowman has stayed very involved in Wes' care.
Unfortunately due to his prior C-diff infection, g-tube surgery was postponed until Friday. Wednesday and Thursday brought high fevers, which resulted in his surgery again being postponed. Yesterday his pediatrician here, Dr. Shah, told us that Wes has a very serious blood infection. At this point no specific name, only referred to as a gram negative bacteria. Initially Dr. Shah and Dr. Bowman felt there could have been contamination, b/c this is so serious and unusual. Yesterday afternoon was very scary as Wes began vomiting that was alarming to his nurse and doctors.
Today Wes has shown some signs of improvement, lower fevers and no vomiting. His second culture results today did confirm a gram negative bacteria. This morning because of the vomiting and gagging, Wes pulled his feeding tube up some. X-rays showed that it is still in his stomach, which is to his benefit. He has been taking very little by mouth for many days now. At this point we do not know when his g-tube surgery will be schedule. With this infection he will need at least 10 days of IV antibiotic treatment. Today Dr. Bowman told us how important it is for Wes to be here with this infection.
Due to me making reservations with the wrong Ronald McDonald House, Joey is homeless and floating between waiting room cots and the chair bed in Wes room, when his nurse allows two parents to stay in his room. At least we have been fortunate enough to be isolated in a private "suite". Wes' first few days, his nurses and doctors come in with the full yellow suits, which oddly enough Wes seemed to think was funny.
There is a point in the hospital when you really begin to break down with each issue weighing down heavier. Beginning so far away from our boys, family, and friends also adds to this difficult journey.
I know Wes webpage reaches many wonderful people. I would like to request that you all pray for Mr. Charles Creamer, and his family. His daughter Marie Lee is close friend of mine and their family is faced with some very difficult decisions after a very lengthy battle in the hospital with several lung infections.
Love to everyone!



Sunday, September 23, 2007


Wes is such a busy little guy. He is all boy! After his surgery and returning home, he is back to full speed. He has dealt with some issues, but has not slowed down. His sleep apnea has come back full strength. Dr. Curry feels the best option at this point for Wes is a g-tube, which will help with food irritating his airway and help Wes gain some much needed weight before his palate surgery. (Here is link with pictures and explanation of g -tubes
http://www.rileypediatricsurgery.com/Gastrostomy.htm)
He is scheduled for g-tube for Wed Sept 26th in Chicago. Yes, back to Chicago! Dr. Bowman wants Wes back for scans and where all doctors involved are aware of his neurosurgery and airway issues. His surgery site is actually visible through his palate.
The antibiotics he had post op in the hospital caused an intestinal infection, C-Diff. This has caused horrible diaper rash and put us on alert for side affects. It can also cause this surgery to be postponed. Dr. Bowman has arranged for Wes to have surgery with the head of the pediatric surgery department, Dr. Reynolds. She does require that Wes have a clear culture before proceeding with surgery. Last week this infection appeared to be resolving with Flagyl, but today this does not seem to be the case. Friday the local hospital sent out a culture that will not be back until Monday. Joey and I are suppose to fly out Tuesday. Wes will be in the hospital for a few days following surgery and in Chicago one week post op to learn how to care for and change the g-tube.

Thursday, August 23, 2007



We are home! Wes was cleared to travel home Tuesday.
Wes had a myeologram last Tuesday, dye injected into spinal fluid, he is tipped upside down, and then a series of scans to look for a leak. There was one questionable area according to the radiologist. With this scan and the fact that Wes’ nose is dripping clear fluid and his eye is watery, Dr. Bowman feels his palate repair needs to wait until another myelogram study. This will clear him of any possibility of a leak. He should have another in 6 to 8 weeks from now. He will also have a MRI of his head and spine. All of scans have been focused in the front of his head, while there are some additional issues at the base of his head. For now we continue to watch him closely for any fevers, which he has been, fever free since we left the hospital.
He is recovering well! I don’t know who was more excited to be home! Amazing how much your kids grow when you are away.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Wes was released Thursday afternoon!! He has been enjoying time free from wires, nurses, doctors, and even momma and daddy. We have been letting him walk and play independently without a padded room. Does not mean we are far behind or that my heart does not race with every wobbly step. He is doing great!
His breathing had improved immediately post-op, but as the days have passed his nights and naps are again filled with gasps and difficulties breathing.
His appointment is Tuesday with Dr. Bowman and if he is cleared we hope to fly home Wednesday. The thought of home warms my heart and mind!

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Sorry it has been so long since, I have updated. Wes’ fevers finally broke on Sunday. Dr. Bowman was still concerned with his drippy nose and decided to move his myelogram, dye inserted into his spinal fluid in addition to a series of x-rays and CT scans.
Yesterday began with Wes choking up his OG tube, then the afternoon was spent waiting for him to return from the myelogram. Dr. Bowman was pleased overall with the scans. She is aware of the radiologist concern with one area, but feels that this area is part of his nasal septum.
She has been very conservative with Wes case, handling each issue delicately and thoroughly. This morning she decided to forego any further testing and release Wes tomorrow if he is fever free without antibiotics for 24 hours. No fevers and then he can have his PICC line removed. He went through a very traumatic experience to get this line.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Fever is back! Not quite as high, yet high enough to need a rectal temp and another fever work-up today with blood test and urine, which means another catheter.
His swollen droopy eyes tell that he does not feel well, yet he still pushes through, rest, play, rest, play...
Loves to take a stroller ride. We did get to spend a little time in the family area on the 5th floor today. He was immediately back in the Flintstone cars. He kicks back and enjoys ride.
Hopefully tomorrow will bring answers and NO fever.
Somewhat feel I am updating blow by blow. Yesterday Dr Bowman came in to do Wes spinal tap. Once we discovered he would not be having any sedation, I was so relieved to see her face. Not the norm for her to do the spinal taps. She was very particular about how Wes’ puncture was done.
Poor little guy had absolutely nothing, but some numbing cream on his back and mom’s hand to squeeze. He felt so bad, just did not have much in him to put up a fight. The spinal fluid did appear very clear, which was a great sign.
Fever was still very high and he spent the night having hourly temp checks. Yes, the kind no one enjoys. This morning around 5 am, Wes’ fever broke. Around 8 am he started sitting up and seems to be feeling much better. Nsg team came by this morning and said his lumbar puncture came back clear. Not sure on all of the other test, but his antibiotics have been bumped up as a precaution. I missed this nsg stop as I was consumed after the nurse this morning left his diaper twisted.
Right now Wes is sitting up in bed next to me and playing with an amazing collection of toys he has acquired during his stay. Of course the hospital water pitcher is his favorite. He will need his own toy box before we leave.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Yesterday, Wes had a good day. Actually went to the 5th floor to see the Rainbow Dogs. He was not sure about those doggies, but enjoyed being pushed around in the little flintstone car and took away a mini dog that has been clutched in his little hand while he naps. The past two days he has had two wonderful nurses, Ingra and Tristen, that have been on top of everything.

Today Wes is feeling pretty bad. This morning he spiked a fever, 103.5. He had Tylenol, which did not bring it down at all. He has been having HOURLY rectal temp checks. So far he has had a battery of blood test, urine which he was catheterized for, chest x-ray, CT scan, been thoroughly checked physically by a ped, ears, eyes, stomach, chest...all checked fine, and seen by and physically evaluated again by the infectious disease team. Nsg nurse practitioner, Kathy, removed his bandage to check his incision. Yes, of course pulls at a mom's heartstrings to see, but it does look well. We are still awaiting blood test and ct results. Right now he is NPO, awaiting a lumbar puncture to check for meningitis.

Monday, August 06, 2007

Positive notes: Wes was sitting up in our lap playing. He loves seeing the boys and Taylor. The swelling also went down enough for him to be able to open his eyes.
Wes will have a CT scan next Thursday. Dr. Bowman will then determine if he can be released from the hospital and have feeding tube removed.
Wes will go in tomorrow morning to have a PICC line placed. After tonight, this is welcomed addition to his web of wires. The antibiotic and pain meds are rough on his little veins. This also saves him the repeated sticks for blood draws. He did come out of surgery with an arterial line, which saved him many sticks, but could not come to constant care with this line.
Tonight he blew an IV line and was in miserable pain. His little leg had swollen terribly. Of course this happened or was realized as the nurse was holding his pain medication. Instead of relief, he spent two hours screaming in pain, kicking heating packs away and anyone else who dared near him, and then he received a BIG ouchie for a new IV.
Hoping for a little more sleep tonight, this may be the case out of shear exhaustion from his experience this afternoon. Last night he wanted to be held all night. He would stick his little hand out of the crib wanting to hold my hand. Of course that was not enough and at 2am and no rest for either of us, we cuddled up in the chair. “Slept” sitting straight up!!! Nurse has me prepared tonight with a “comfortable” reclining type “chair”. Who makes this hospital furniture????

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Wes was moved last night to a step down from the PICU. Constant care unit is basically six beds divided by curtains. All neuro patients, which is better for Wes. Last night they also removed his arterial line and catheter.
He is doing better since Dr. Bowman came into the ICU and laid down the law on his pain meds. Pain is still an issue, but better.
He is being fed with an oral gastric (OG) tube. He is finally getting some pediasure, but is not real happy with this tube and has tried to maneuver it out with his tongue. With his palate open there was just too much communication. This will remain for about two weeks.
His little eyes are swollen badly. Both have been swollen completely closed. His arms are in no-nos to keep him from pulling out the OG tube. This keeps his arms straight, but he still manages to let me know, he wants to be held. Reaches up and clinches his little fist. It is a difficult task with the swelling and wires, which have lessened in the past day. Even lying in my lap, he does not want to be touched or any type of movement. Want be long and he will be running from anyone in white coat or wearing those latex gloves!
Yesterday Dr. Bowman proudly showed me his CT scans. Both of his encephaloceles are covered with the bone graft from the top of his head, just a bit larger soft spot. His surgery was perfect!!!
Recovery will take time, but he is such a strong little fellow!

Friday, August 03, 2007

Wes is coming out of surgery!!!! They are still working with his breathing tube, but actual surgery is OVER. Dr. Bowman and Dr. Vicari came out to tell us everything went perfectly. He did indeed have two encephaloceles, which are repaired now.
He will have a g-tube for about two weeks, due to the communication of his open palate and the surgery site. Anesthesiologist is trying to remove his breathing tube. We will know soon, but will not be able to update for awhile. I will be with my baby!

My boy is such a strong little fellow!!
Latest update, it is 3:30pm and Wes is doing great. Estimated they will be finishing up in 1 1/2 hours.
Thank you all for lifting Wes up in prayer!
Wes is now in the guided hands of Dr. Bowman, Dr. Vicari, and Dr. Schroeder. Wish I could say his transition was smooth...The anesthesiologist gave him versed, which should calm him down. Instead he had an opposite reaction, startled eyes, shaking, and pushing everyone away. The positive aspect of this medicine is that he will not remember any of this traumatic experience. Everyone in the room reassured us of how closely they will be monitoring and caring for Wes.
Dr. Bowman came in this morning thoroughly explained the procedure and answered all of our questions. She did feel the need for Wes to have a feeding tube for about two weeks post op, as his palate is open and way too much communication/exposure. This did come as a shock, but also a reminder that she has a well thought out plan with Wes' best interest top priority. As she walked away to the OR, she held my hand and gently told me they would take care of Wes. I feel in my heart that they will with the guidance we have all prayed for...
First update, after over an hour in the OR, Dr. Bowman is now setting up to begin surgery. His broncoscopy and feeding tube were the first portion and so far everything is going smoothly.
Warning: my post for the next few days will be scattered, as this morning handing my little guy over was the most difficult thing I have ever faced.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Tonight at the Ronald McDonald House, tomorrow night Children's Memorial. His MRI and Stealth CT Scan are scheduled at 1:30pm, after which he will be admitted. Long day! Nothing to eat after midnight. Yeah, tell that to my little 6am breakfast man.
Enjoyed a day at Navy Pier today with all three boys and our friends here in Chicago. Chase and I rode the Feris Wheel and saw the beach on the lake! Beautiful blue water. Wes and Rebecca danced for a band on Navy Pier. Such little charmers, the ladies brought them each two leis, all eyes were on them. He loved the loud music. Care free and loving life. His positive energy is so lifting.
As Wes' surgery draws near, I ask you to surround him in love and lift him up in prayer. In your mind and heart wrap him in a blue blanket of love. He will find safety and strength in the warmth of the the love that surrounds him.


Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Flights have been scheduled and doctors have all given clearance for Wes' surgery. Joey, Wes, and I will fly out July 30th. Wes will be having a MRI, CT scan, and some other test before surgery. He will also be seeing yet another ophthalmologist for pre-surgical evaluation and post evaluations. I would absolutely love to get some answers about Wes vision, but not setting my hopes too high, three ophthalmologists later. It would be nice if this doctor has some experience with children with nystagmus and midline defects such as Wes.
Months ago when, I was making this decision, I felt as if my heart would literally stop. A friend emailed asking about living with the decision of Bowman vs any other neurosurgeon, regardless of the outcome. I knew that Bowman was the doctor for Wes. After wards there is no going back, wishing I would have done this, researched that, or gotten on that plane and taken my baby to Bowman.
Last night Wes breathing sounded very familiar. An unnerving familiar! Opened up his little mouth and there was this purplish tissue, protruding through his palate again. Heard this gurgled struggle before about two weeks ago only to find what Wes' ped and I feel is his encephalocele. Although it is not a significant amount visible, it is enough to make my heart stop, enough to make me grateful that the wait is coming to an end.
This journey has lead me to knowledge and strength I never imagined, yet it has also filled my heart and mind with fear. Knowing that Wes' neurosurgeon is making all of these detailed preparations and arrangements is so reassuring. She will get final scans just before he goes into the operating room. I have confidence in her skill and ability and find such peace in knowing that Dr. Bowman will be caring for Wes.

Thursday, July 12, 2007













Wes' surgery was confirmed today for August 3rd by the ENT. When I called again last week for confirmation from the neurosurgeon, I discovered she and her nurse were out on vacation until July 16th. Wow, we have an entire two weeks to prepare. If you are interested in updates I added a feature to add your email address and get a notification when there is an update to his blog. Although I can not imagine there will be much time for updating, I will "TRY" to update his blog occasionally after surgery.
Tuesday was Wes' endocrinologist evaluation with Dr. Nancy Wright in Tallahassee. She again discussed the diagnosis of
Septo Optic Dysplasia and the possibility of hormones deficiencies due to the involvement of his pituitary gland. His past two urines were very diluted, so he will be evaluated once again next week then there is a possibility of a water deprivation test. This will test for diabetes insipidus. NOT diabetes mellitus, or associated to blood sugars. Diabetes insipidus is when the pituitary gland does not release an anti diuretic hormone.
As of now Wes' hormones are all normal, with the possible exception of this anti diuretic hormone. He will need to be evaluated every six months, as it is possible that as he grows his pituitary gland will not be able keep up with his body. His pituitary gland did not develop correctly and there is also a cyst present in that area. His age has made it difficult to fully assess his pituitary gland through MRI’s, so the details we have are inconclusive.
The next two weeks are going to be full, preparing for Wes' surgery and lots of appointments. On an exciting note, Brandon'
s birthday is July 25th!!!











Nothing beats a good day at the beach (with Cheetos)!!!









Monday, July 09, 2007

Oh yeah, totally boy here!!! Wes has learned how to crawl and the higher the better. Like climbing on top of the table in not enough, he needs to stand completely up and reach for the sky. Mostly he is just crawling to places that let everyone know he is a big boy. His favorite place is the couch, just to sit by himself, like the big guys do. Well today the couch was a little bit bigger than he was and he took a bump to the head.
The moment I picked him up all I could see was a major EGG!!! A few seconds later he was all smiles, sporting a diaper and first of many adventurous discoveries.
Just in case you had any doubt about how tough this little guy is!


Friday, June 29, 2007


Did not expect to post so soon, but got a call today. Wes surgery is scheduled for August 3rd. Neurosurgeon is awaiting response from ENT before this is the confirmed date. We should know for sure next week and we can begin to make plans. Another month, definitely not as soon as we had hoped to put this behind Wes and our family.
This does give us a month of summer break to enjoy and take time with all three of the boys.
WAITING!!!!
Thought I would post and update on Wes surgery plans. His sleep study did show obstruction, but Chicago ENT feels that some of this obstruction will be alleviated with this surgery. Plastic surgeon will try to do some minor work to open his nostril during his encephalocele surgery. Both of these issues are contributing to his obstruction. He will also have a bronchoscopy before surgery.
Still waiting for a date. Feeling major frustration as each day passes without any idea of a date.
Wes is doing great! He has learned to climb up on the couch and chairs, but has not got a handle on the getting down part. He is so cute sitting up on the couch with this little smile letting me know he is a big boy. We are working on a few signs, more, drink, all done, and open. He is a bit stubborn and only likes to use the signs when he wants, but is so cute when he does. He has also learned to say uh-oh, which he uses constantly. Loves to say uh-oh and then drop(throw) something down to be picked up.
I would say that an update with a surgery date will follow soon, but for weeks now I have been saying tomorrow only for tomorrow to come and pass with many phone calls. Unfortunately the phone calls are asking for a date not giving a date. I will post a date as soon as I know one...

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Leaving Chicago, babe!!
We have returned from Chicago! Wes' sleep study was not a pleasant experience. He did so well, even smiling, getting all hooked up with the leads on his head, chest, back, legs, and toe, but when he put the nose cannula and the ace bandages around his head and chin he started to really get nervous and anxious. (It did not help that the ENT did a scope down his nose earlier that same day.)
He did fall asleep fairly quickly. I even crawled out of the bed and thought I was going to get some rest. About 15 mins into the study, he woke up screaming and was not interested in going back to sleep or calming down. He did eventually go back to sleep, but the rest of the night was full of screaming and inconsolable wake-ups. I ended up staying in the bed with him and when he did sleep he was resting on my chest.

Finally somewhere between 3:30am and 4:00am he woke up and was not going back to sleep. His little body was literally shaking. I signed to end the study a little early.
Not sure if they were able to get any info from that study. I will truly be amazed!!! This was definitely not a typical night for him.
We also saw the two of the docs who will be in his encephalocele surgery with nsg, Dr. Bowman. The ENT is Dr. Schroder. He is very young, but seemed pretty knowledgable about ca children and encephalocele. The ps is Dr. Vicari. I absolutely loved him. He was wonderful, sitting down and discussing everything so thoroughly with us. He saw a picture of Wes at birth and commented that his encephalocele was apparent then. Although I did discuss the fact that we do not intend on continue Wes' cleft repairs in Chicago, he was willing to give his opinion for future repairs and how he would proceed, which was very informative. He feels there is a possibility that he may be able to do something with Wes collapsed nostril during his Encephalocele repair. Both doctors agree that his collapsed nostril the major contributing factor to his airway obstruction in addition to his encephalocele. Ultimately there is alot involved in Wes' case, which seemed to leave both docs in favor of a temporary trach, but ENT will make a final recommendation after reviewing his sleep study results. The results are suppose to be rushed and complete by the end of this week. It may be the first part of next week before we hear anything.
I am very anxious to get these results and the ENT recommendation. A trach has been a very difficult recommendation to completely accept, b/c his breathing has improved so much. The ps even mentioned that we may question the possibility of proceeding without the trach, but ended in saying he felt the safest route would be the trach.
Wow, when will my little guy get a break. As if he does not have enough issues that will affect his speech. It breaks my heart to think of my very sweet, active baby going through yet another set back, all in our effort to go forward. How can he continue to come out of all this with his precious little demeanor? We will continue to surrond him in love as he continues to amaze me daily with his beautiful smile that he shares with everyone.
No worries for him right now, except for finding the Nilla wafer that has fell on his shirt!!

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Wow, where do I begin...I hate this post...Wes journey seems to get more complicated with each turn. I have told this story many times, as most people think we are in Chicago.
We are suppose to fly out Monday at noon, now we wait. Got a call late Thursday night saying local ENT would not give clearance. When Wes had his tubes replaced, he stopped breathing and the anesthesiologist started an IV preparing to intubate him. He did start breathing on his own and did not need intubation. She is very concerned about Wes airway, especially with the added stress of this extensive surgery and the scans prior.
Now Wes must have a sleep study and broncoscopy before the ENT in Chicago will give clearance. These test will take time to schedule. Actually a sleep study was suppose to be order in Oct when Wes was transferred to Shands. Local ENT thought this occurred and that was how Wes was release without the trach. The ENT at Shands just release Wes with the apnea monitor, which by the time he was transferred his breathing had improved. Chicago ENT is not saying 100% that Wes will need a trach, but based on what he has been told he can not rule it out or proceed with the surgery. Until his airway is secure the neurosurgeon feels the risks and dangers are too great. She called Friday and I have been completely in shock since that call. I just can not believe this is happening. It took us two months to get this surgery scheduled. I just can not imagine waiting that long again. I was so prepared and felt at peace.
I will update a new date as soon as I know.

Sunday, April 22, 2007


Wes’ surgery is scheduled and confirmed for May 25th in Chicago at Children’s Memorial.
Time and patience are key when 3 doctors need to dedicate and entire day for this surgery. The led doctor is neurosurgeon Dr. Robin Bowman.

She will be assisted by plastic surgeon Dr. Frank A. Vicari and ENT James W. Schroeder.
The distance was a concern, but is pale in comparison to the intelligence, experience, and talent of a gifted surgeon such as Dr. Bowman. She has given me an unmatched sense of peace since the day Wes was diagnosed. That day she called personally and told not to feel rushed, as we had time to make a decision, regardless of where Wes was transported. At the time, I felt so overwhelmed and such a sense of urgency to make a decision, I was not prepared to make. She calmed my fears with her knowledge and plan for Wes’. She has been the only neurosurgeon who has felt strongly about needing additional scans to get the best possible views before surgery. She has consulted with top neurosurgeons around the world about this condition and has experience with these types of repairs. Wes is in the best possible hands for this surgery.
Please continue to pray for Wes and for guidance of Dr. Bowman hands.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Wes is quickly approaching one year old. ~March 17th
We are still trying to make a decision on who will do Wes surgery.

Just a little slide show of Wes. Hope you enjoy.

View this video montage created at One True Media
Weston Jeremy

Monday, January 22, 2007

Wes' surgery has been postponed. He started getting sick Thurs and was still running fever Friday. Talked with Birmingham and they said anesthesiology would cancel.
We should know something this week.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Wes is growing happily. He is very busy scooting all over the house, a commando crawler. Two days ago he pulled up and held on with one hand. He got a little excited with his accomplishment and started celebrating too soon. Down he went. These wood floors don’t give. Joey may denied it, but he is also saying mama.
It has been sometime since I have posted. Actually discussing and verbalizing Wes’ surgery plans has been a reality that is overwhelming.
Please respect that this is also a very scary time for Chase and Brandon. They are both processing information at their own level. We prefer that no one discuss anything with them. We have only given them a vague explanation that is appropriate for them. They are not able to explain anything or answer questions.
Wes is now being followed by an Endocrinologist, Dr. Wright in Tallahassee. The only concern on Wes blood work results were his growth hormone level. He spent the day in the hospital for a growth hormone stimulation test the first week of Dec. Because his blood was sent to California, we will finally get the results Thursday. This is something that can be treated, but unfortunately with daily shots of growth hormone. Hopefully everything will be fine. I also monitored is blood sugar, but that has been normal. His hormone levels will be monitored periodically as he grows b/c his pituitary gland is involved in this defect.
We have scheduled Wes’ surgery for Jan 22nd at Children’s Health System in Birmingham, AL.
http://www.chsys.org/
Wes will be followed by the Craniofacial Team there. I found these doctors through a mother whose 19 month old son, Eli, had this same surgery 6 months ago. They are live in Lee Summit, MO, and have also searched for the most experienced neurosurgeon. Ironically Wes’ initial appointment was 30 mins after Eli’s. We were able to met Eli, his mom, and grandmother. He was being chased by his mother, running and laughing as we walked into the clinic. Seeing Eli brought me such a sense of peace. Wes’ neurosurgeon, Dr. Jeffery Blount, will be assisted by Dr. John Grant, plastic surgeon. We will travel to Birmingham Jan 5th for Wes’ pre-op to discuss the risks and specifics about his encephalocele surgery.
Continue to keep Wes in your prayers. We are surrounding our boys in love and positive energy.
Thank you all for the prayers, support, and uplifting thoughts.