Tuesday, August 30, 2011

One Year Post Surgery

At my 19 week appointment with my MFM specialist, I found out that Hudson had only one kidney. I went to either my OB or the MFM specialist every week, and the appointments became so routine that I told Dave not to worry about taking off to go to this particular appointment with me. I would be in and out and would bring some 3D images home just like every other week. Little did I know that it would be a scary appointment and the one that I would need him at the most. I knew something was wrong when Jodi kept measuring, measuring, and remeasuring in the same spot during my ultrasound. I told her that she had to tell me what was going on, and she did. When Dr. Ware came in, Jodi showed her everything on the ultrasound, then she explained, drew diagrams, and went over research with me. I was so overwhelmed. Hudson had hydronephrosis is his solitary kidney and a mega ureter. They could also tell that he was refluxing urine. We would have to wait until after he was born to find out the severity of the issue. As I was leaving my appointment, Dr. Ware followed me out into the hallway to wait for the elevator just to make sure that I was alright. She was so great.

No one ever wants to hear that there is something "wrong" with their baby. We quickly realized that there wasn't anything "wrong" with our baby. This was how God made Hudson and he was "fearfully and wonderfully made". These unexpected kidney issues were not the plans we chose, but they were perfect plans none the less. We found comfort in knowing that we were doing everything in our power and that we had the best medical care possible.

I visited Dr. Donohoe (ped. urologist) before Hudson was even born so that we would have a plan of action immediately after birth. There were several tests that he needed the first day of life, and several more the following days. When we were discharged from the hospital, we didn't get to go straight home. We had to take Hudson to CMCG for Dr. Donohoe to examine. It was determined that he was refluxing urine at a grade 4 out of 5 and that he had a blockage near his bladder in his ureter. He needed surgery, but the good news was that we could wait about a year. His bladder needed time to grow so that they could do one permanent operation instead of a temporary one and then have to go back and do more later. Now that I had him in my arms, I appreciated his life more because of his diagnosis. It also made me treasure every single moment with him.

This was at his first birthday party a few days before surgery.This one is from his one year photo session.

The night before surgery. Even though we began preparing ourselves for the surgery as soon as he was born, it was still difficult when we finally knew the date that it would happen. There was no way to truly prepare for it. All we could do was try to get used to the idea.

Waiting in the pre-op area. This was taken after he was given his "happy juice" that made him really relaxed. It's so strange for me to see that pacifier in his mouth. That was the last week that he ever had it.

August 31, 2010 came and I really do not know how I made it through that day. The Lord sure was with me, because as I think back, I cannot understand how I was so calm. We have a wonderful friend that works in the OR who made things much easier for us. Scrubbing in, carrying my baby to the operating table, and leaving him there was the hardest thing I have ever done. As I turned to leave him in the room, I noticed how bright, cold, and sterile it was. This was no place for my baby. It was time to trust the medical team. I knew he was in good hands. I knew that God was guiding their every move and thought, and giving them the focus and concentration that was needed to fix my baby. The surgery was supposed to last 4 hours. Those 4 hours came and went. I received calls from the nurse in the O.R. every 45 mins. with updates. We soon found ourselves the only family left in the waiting area. It turned out that Doc had to do more than expected, and the whole thing took almost 7 hours. Here is the first update that I posted after surgery with all the details.

It was so hard to see Hudson in so much pain after surgery. He was given a spinal but it didn't take. The first night was critical. We stayed awake waiting on his kidney to produce urine for the first time post surgery. It took longer that it was supposed to and we were a nervous wreck. The kidney had been through so much that it was explained to us that it was in shock and had to "wake up". He also started running fevers and got croup from being intubated for so long. He hung in there and was such a little trooper. We were (and still are) so thankful for all of the love, support, and most of all prayers that brought Hudson (and us) through these very rough days.

I'm starting to feel a little better. I can sit up in my bed now.God was (is) so good and Hud bounced back in about a week. He had complications with his medication, and had a few allergic reactions, but we worked closely with his Doc. to stay on top of these issues. He had to go back 6 weeks later to get his stint removed, which meant he had to be put to sleep again and intubated. This procedure was much quicker, and you can read about it here.

These 2 pictures were taken about a week after surgery. It was the first day that he got down and played, smiled and seemed to be getting back to his usual self.One thing is for sure. We are so blessed and thankful to have our precious boy happy and healthy. It was tough to see him go through surgery. It was tough to see his scar, and see him hurting and in pain. It made me hurt. Luckily he will never remember it, and his 3 inch incision has faded and is much less noticeable. He is doing wonderful. We go back to see Dr. Donohoe at the end of September. We continue to pray for a good report and for Hud to be calm as they do another ultrasound on him, and what ever else needs to be done this time. It's amazing that it has been a whole year and we are SO glad to have it in our past.

eating a cracker with his favorite cat Macie

Chef Hudson at his cousin's birthday party

Monday, August 29, 2011

Spread the Red!

The countdown is almost over! Football season begins this weekend for the DAWGS! We can't wait. Don't forget to "spread the red".

I'm adding this one to the post too because I love these two so much. They are 2 peas in a pod.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Happy 2nd Birthday Hudson!

(sorry for all the space between the pictures)

On August 25, 2009 I met the most beautiful baby boy on the planet. He was perfect.

You have brought so much joy to your family, and we could not be more proud of you. Last year your first birthday was overshadowed by the looming thoughts of your surgery that was only days away. We were so nervous and scared.

Not this year. We are so excited and thankful to be celebrating your 2nd birthday. You are such an amazing gift to us.

You still love your cars and trucks. You are quite animated too as you make all of the sounds. You can name any vehicle from a fire truck or ambulance to a dump truck or race car.

Thankfully, you still love reading books and have recently gotten into putting puzzles together. You love coloring and painting too.

You tell us any and everything. Having a conversation with you is like having a conversation with a 4 year old. You are very sociable and never meet a stranger.

You are officially into the "why?", "what is that?", and "what are you doing?" stage. You are so inquisitive and amaze us all the time with the things that you tell us.

Your favorite thing to eat is fruit snacks, and that's all you would consume if we'd let you. It's hard to get veggies in you, but I've become pretty creative at mixing them into other things. You also love to eat rice, and PF Changs is your fave. It's still easy to get you to eat fruit and your favorite drink is still water. You will ask for good ole H2O before anything else.

You are wearing mostly size 2t clothes, but can wear some 3t things too. You wear a size 8w shoe.

You are almost totally potty trained.

You went to the doctor last week because you picked up a tick in the country and had to have it removed. You weighed 31 lbs. I'm not sure exactly how tall you are, but I think you have hit a growth spurt. Your legs have gotten so long.

Your 2yr. well visit with Dr. Nesbit is in a few weeks. I will post stats after that visit. You still have a hard time when we go to the doctor. It never phased you before your surgery, but now you are really a nervous wreck when we go and scream most of the time that we are there. I don't blame you though. You have been through so much in your short little life with Dr. visits, tests, and your surgery.

We have your professional pictures coming up soon with Haley. I'm so excited.

You are such a blessing to us.

We love you more than any words could ever express

I'm excited to continue to watch you grow. As much as it hurts my heart for you to be growing so fast, I'm going to remain content in the age/stage that you are in at any given time and just enjoy you.


Love, Mom

Sunday, August 21, 2011

This party was brought to you by the letter H and the number 2.

Here are a few pictures from Hudson's 2nd birthday party yesterday. The kids had a BLAST! It was so much fun.

Elmo loves his goldfish, his crayons too... (goody bags) There's not really a way to make the party room at the Y very cute, but it didn't matter. The big play room more than made up for it.

cookies with H's and 2's

Dorothy the goldfish was an excellent party guest.

Hudson has some lovely ladies. Ila, Catherine, Ella, and Ava are so pretty!

Hey Elmo!

SO much fun was had on this equipment. Tons of room to run around, an inflatable, and the play scape...there is another play area off to the side that you can't see in this picture. Perfect place for an August birthday party in the cool AC.

Ella, Ila, and Hudson playing with the train with Mrs. Ann

Ella, Claire, Owen, Barrett, and Harrison

Climb that wall, Carter!My sweet baby was so cute when we sang to him. He was SO excited about blowing his candles out.

Enjoying the yummy cake

Hudson and Claire in their cute party shirts

Claire and Bops with Daddy

Peyton, Ella and Ella

Our lives have changed drastically since the good ole college days. It's awesome that we are all three moms now.

Look at those future VSU Blazers! They really wanted to stop playing and have their picture taken. Can't you tell?He got pet frogs.

Dorothy made it through the party.

opening presents at homeHe loves all of his wonderful gifts, and had to put his new watch on right away. We are so thankful for all of our friends and family.Off he goes on his new Plasma Car.

It's so humbling to have so many awesome people in our lives that love our little boy so much. We are beyond blessed that so many people came out and helped Hudson celebrate his 2nd birthday. Thank you for coming to play and for all of the sweet gifts.