|The "feeding system"|
The feeding specialist put an NG tube down Christopher's other nostril to see what was going on down in his stomach. When he did, saliva and lots of gas came out. I told him that we had been having to put an NG tube down every once in awhile to relieve Christopher's stomach. Since Christopher had the Nissan surgery, we found that the wrap around his esophagus had been successful at keeping him from throwing up. The only problem was that he could no longer burp. Since his stomach was unable to empty, the gas would build up in his little stomach and cause pain. Likewise, all the saliva that he swallowed would pool until it caused him discomfort. It was necessary to periodically empty his stomach for him with the tube.
This didn't seem like the best way to feed your baby, but it seemed to be working. It was definitely strange looking, but it was eating. At this point I didn't even care what it looked like. As long as he could get calories, grow, and live I was okay with it It seemed that at long last we just might have a solution, a way around. If the stomach didn't work, feed him through his intestines instead. Who knew that was even possible?
The doctors decided that it was important for Christopher to continue with this "feeding system" for awhile in the hospital. They wanted to be sure that he would continue to tolerate the feeds and gain weight before he could go home. They put him on the "wait and see" plan. He would spend the next few days hooked up to his new "feeding system" while gaining weight and recovering from all the trauma his body had been through.
It was such a huge relief to see him comfortable and able to sleep. He pretty much spent the next few days sleeping non-stop, and I took advantage of all the quiet time to get some much needed rest myself. For the first time in a long time, I was also able to spend some time holding my baby, rocking him, and watching him sleep. Except for the feeding tube down his nose, it almost seemed like a normal mom and baby moment.
I began to dare to think the thought that we might get to go home soon. Do they even let you go home if your baby has to be fed like this? How am I going to do this at home anyway? It all seemed pretty scary. I tried to tell myself to celebrate the moment. Enjoy the victory we had achieved. I could worry about all that later. For now, he was quiet. He was sleeping. He was satisfied.
|Even though Christopher couldn't eat by mouth, he always sits with us at the table because meals are family time.|