Friday, January 30, 2009


Troy and I are not the most political savvy couple, but yesterday was a day we have been dreaming about, including the rest of Illinois. Blagojevich was impeached! The details have been in the news and this is a new start for Illinois which has a history of political scandals. The last governors election had horrendous candidates that Blago won because he had the most experience and was the current governor. Troy and I couldn't give anybody except the Green candidate our vote which now gives the Green party an automatic in when the next election comes around since they got a considerable number of votes. Our hearts do go out to his innocent girls who are young and have to indure the talk of their parents for some time to come.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Our Best Christmas Gift

I know it is a little late.... but it warms up my heart, especially with a bone chilling winter, post-op palate surgery and sleep deprivation! Things are a lot better around here and we are seeing the light around the corner!

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Our Themesong

YouTube - Ralph's World - The Coffee Song

Last night was a rough night as Ty continues to deal with a low-grade fever, runny nose and cough. Poor guy is miserable and was up every hour. Any secrets you have in dealing with these ailments?

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Pics from the Hospital

Morning stretches before surgery.

My miserable boy after surgery.

Ty catching a few ZZZZ's with YaYa Daddy after surgery.

The comfort of monkey's.

Mom and Ty watching Curious George with our monkey friends.

This is how we slept the first night after surgery.

Our little cleaning boy in the playroom one last time.

The hospital stroller that took MANY laps around the hospital.

We are now 8 days past surgery and we are ALL still recovering. I am sleep deprived as Ty wakes up every 1.5-2 hours during the night and wants to go downstairs and play. He puts up a HUGE temper tantrum if he doesn't get his way. He is also very clingy to me right now and tolerates his dad and grandmother, but prefers to be in my arms. We have been told that for every hour under anastehia (I don't know how to spell it and spell check is not helping) , it takes one week to get out of the body for things to return to normal. One week down and 2 weeks to go! I hope that holds true as we desire to have our little guy back to normal. His schedule has been thrown out the window and we do get smiles every now and then. Motrin seems to make him feel the best and this is when we receive the glimmers of normalcy. Ty is eating more and instead of sticking to his pre-surgery schedule, we feed on demand. He is unable to sign "drink" with his elbow restraints, but has adapted and now goes "AAAHHHHMMMM". It is precious.
Update: I wrote this 2 days ago and saved it as a draft due to the little guy waking up from a nap. He is now waking up every 3-4 hours a night which is better, but now we have a major head cold. My mom left today and Ty has been curled in my arms most of the day. I never knew so much nasal nastiness could exist. We are ready for normalcy around hear and eager to go out to eat. I think we have a big celebration coming once Ty is done with the restraints and syringes.

Thursday, January 08, 2009

A Late Update

Ty after his cleft lip surgery in November 2007 thanks to Love Without Boundaries.

I know we are a little tardy with an update, but we found it next to impossible to blog while at the hospital. We were released on Wednesday and Ty is becoming more himself each and every day. We are so grateful for Shriners and their team of doctors, nurses and the remainder of their cleft team. They treated us with such care. The Ronald McDonal House near Loyola rocks too! Troy took us by so he could check out after we were released from the hospital and he gave us a grand tour. The house is 15 years old and modeled after the book, "The Secret Garden". The house is 39,000 square feet with 18 rooms including a secret stair case that leads to a tree house, playroom and so much more. It feels like a home and so much better then hotel life. We will be able to stay there for follow up appointments which is so great to hear!

The surgery and recovery have been so different then I anticipated. I was so concerned about keeping Ty healthy for his surgery that I didn't focus on the surgery itself. It was a huge victory and relief when the pediatrician cleared him for surgery Sunday night. It wasn't until about 6:15 Monday morning that the tears started running down my eyes as I knew I was to wake Ty up at 6:30 and dress him for surgery. I was extremely exhausted after very little sleep due to a loud crew of evening nurses. Ty had a rough time going to bed in his new surroundings and I finally had to put him in his crib and hang out in the restroom. Troy did a great job explaining the entire surgery day, but that night was HELL! Ty wanted to be held at all times and our nurse was so kind to bring in a lazy-boy type chair for us to sleep in because Ty didn't want anything to do with the crib. We got little snippets of sleep here and there in between watching PBS kids, crying, bloody drool, and nurses doing their job which Ty despised. Our last evening was better as we were released from PICU to our original room. Ty slept in his crib that night and woke up every 2-3 hours for cuddles and drinks. It is amazing what your body does on adrenaline! Now that we are home, I am EXHAUSTED! Ty still woke up every 1 1/2 hours and then finally had a three hour stretch from 3-6 a.m. My recovery worries have also been reversed. Ty does not seem to mind the elbow restraints and in fact I think he finds them comforting like newborns who are swaddled. He is able to do everything except feed himself. Feeding has become our issue. After all our practicing with the syringes, Ty puts up a fight! I have a little move that I do to restrain him to get that first taste. All is well for the most part after that. He is still not eating like he used to, but I figure it takes time and he will eat once he is starving. We are so excited my mom from Texas is coming in this evening to stay with us for a week and help out! I just want some sleep.

Monday, January 05, 2009

The Little Man from Henan is a He-man

Troy: Ty's surgery was a huge success today in Chicago! Praise God!!! Thank you, Thank you , Thank you to everyone who is praying for our family and especially our Little Man from Henan. We have felt your prayers today! We started the day with the nurses waking Ty and Amy up around 6:30AM to get him ready for surgery. I spent the night in the Ronald McDonald House in Chicago and made it right at 7:00AM when they were starting to walk us all up as a family to the surgery prep room. I held him as they gave him the grape-flavored sedative to make him more and more loopy and get him ready to be wheeled into the operating room. He kept playing with a toy and over the next ten minutes got more and more loopy with the meds. Amy and I had to laugh when he would pause for a second, because everything was going in slow motion for him at the time, throw a smile our way and chuckle as if saying "Boy, this is good stuff mom and dad. I'm feeling really, really, really good right now! Let's try this stuff as home sometime. This type of grape juice rocks!" The nurse joked with us that every parent needs a little bottle of that grape-flavored stuff in their house. It works miracles! Ha! After another ten minutes had past, the nurses told us it was time to give him his last hugs and kisses before surgery. Needless to say, the tears flowed for both Amy and I as we hugged and kissed him bye-bye. I know it is one of the hardest things we have ever had to do in our lives together. But soon, there he went down the hall on the rolling bed with three nurses around him and we knew he would be better for it. Right after, Amy and I went to find the waiting room, sat down in the chairs, cried some more together and entrusted Ty into God's hands through prayer. Then the waiting began. Overall, we waited for three hours until after 10:30AM and we're summoned to his ICU Room where he was starting to wake up from surgery. It took a while for the anesthesia to wear off, but he finally started to get back the Ty twinkle in his eyes. As you look at him, the left side of his face is swollen and he has his tongue stitched down by a stitch that comes out first thing tommorrow morning. The string attached to the tongue is taped to the side of his face. We learned that this is a precaution so he doesn't swallow his tongue. He has a lot of bloody drool coming out of his mouth that goes down his chin that we have to periodically wipe away. He also has blood coming out of both nostrils in his nose at times. All normal occurences for cleft surgery. His arms are in braces. One of the hardest moments of the day was when he tried at the same time to but both fingers in his mouth to pacify himself and he couldn't. He was not a happy camper! So, we gave him his Sock Monkey and that has done the trick for now. We have been taking turns sitting with him throughout the day in a rocking chair and rocking him to sleep. The two keys today have been medication and hydration. They are keeping him comfortable with pain meds while trying to keep his mouth moist with apple juice and water. So, I just left at 9:00PM from the hospital and Ty was sleeping in his crib and Amy was getting ready to sleep in the comfy chair in his room. Most to all, I want everyone to know how proud I am of my son today. What a trooper! An absolute He-man. But, I am so proud of my wife as well! What an amazing wife! What an amazing mother taking care of her son today! I'm blessed to be her husband. To God be all the glory for this day! Until tommorrow, all our love!