You might be wondering, why put it into his small intestine? The theory was that since his stomach apparently wasn't working, we could just bypass his stomach and put the feedings directly into his small intestine. Then the food could just move down the rest of his GI tract. At least that was what was supposed to happen.
The problem with this plan was in the execution of it. This was one of those things that sounded good on paper, but in real life wasn't very easy at all. In order to thread the tube down his nose, through his stomach, and into his small intestine, the doctor would have to use the x-ray machine. Unfortunately, it took considerable time and skill to install the tube, and the worst part was that Christopher had to be awake for the entire procedure.
I have never had any type of tube put down my nose, but believe me when I say that it does NOT look like very much fun. I think I would rather have a root canal. It was very difficult to watch them do this to Christopher. I tried to console him as much as I could, but when they are shoving a plastic tube down your child's nose there's just not a whole lot you can do or say to make it better.
The whole thing took about 45 minutes or so. It seemed like 45 minutes of torture. All I kept thinking was that I hoped that this was going to work this time. I couldn't help but feel guilty about all the things that he was going through, and I couldn't bare the thought of him doing it alone. I vowed to be there with him for everything. If he had to do it, I was going to be there to hold his tiny, little hand. I just wished neither of us had to be there at all.
With the tube installed, it was time to hook him up and give this tube feeding thing another shot. As the machine started dripping small amounts of formula into his intestines, I said a little prayer that this was going to work. He really needed it to. His weight was down, and his newborn body was tired. He needed nutrition. He needed calories. He needed this to work.
The picture on the right hand side of this blog (above the archive section) shows Christopher with this tube in. As you can see, the tube had to be taped to the side of his face to secure it. These tubes can dislodge easily. If it were to slip backwards into the stomach, then we would have been right back where we started. These tubes also have to be removed every 7 to 10 days or so unless they come out on there own first. This is because they are very irritating to the nasal passageways, and they need to be moved to the other side of the nose, to the opposing nostril. That means more x-ray exposure, more gagging, and more misery.
These were difficult days for sure. Sometimes it felt like it would never end. Would things ever get better? Maybe they wouldn't get better. Maybe they would just get different. Only time would tell.
If you have never accepted Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, you can pray like this: