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Tuesday, May 3, 2011

More Daniel Updates

A lot can happen in 24 hours in an ICU. We had a few harrowing moments that were probably only harrowing to my parents, not to medical professionals. But all of those things cleared up, for example: lots of blood filtered out of me after the surgery, twice that of any other baby in the ICU(after an infusion of platelets, clotting commenced and the bleed stopped); a fever crept up slowly to 38.3 but then just as slowly slunk back down to 37.7; then random bleeding from my nose and mouth gave us a scarefrom a small cut they later found on my palette.

Much is going on around me as I sleep. I heard the doctors conspiring against me when, from a deep sedation, my hand went straight for the tubes stuck up my nose and mouth and I yanked hard. The doctors were impressed with my handiwork but upped my sedation levels to counteract my prowess to keep me still and prevent me from damaging anything, including myself. If they had read my blogs, they would’ve had the intel on me: I am a warrior who battles sleep, even medically induced sleep.

Another thing I hear all day long is mommy and GongGong blasting the doctors with questions: “How does this machine work?” “What is this number supposed to be?” “What are these wires connected to?” (I do have a lot of wires and tubes draped all over me.) Mommy had explained that she was a reporter and that GongGong was an engineer and so we were naturally curious about how things worked. Finally, after one brutal interrogation, the surgeon scolded them. “Your job is to be the mom and yours to be the grandfather.” He explained to them that medicine is an art, that 2+2 equals 5, not 4 like in engineering. 

After the surgeon left, GongGong looked around at all the equipment surrounding me, the seven IV lines dripping into me controlled by computers, the breathing machines and multi-function heart monitors, and whispered to mommy, “All of this is a result of engineering.” So take that surgeon!

Well, I take that back. The surgeon apparently is an artist. He did some artwork on my heart. When the cardiologist came to do an ultrasound yesterday to check up on the “heartwork” all the doctors and nurses gathered around. And then there was a collective gasp. “If this isn’t one of the best AV Canal repair jobs then it is THE (best),” one of the doctors said, a take off on an Israeli expression about a girl who was one of the prettiest if not “the.” 

I would like to add that even under sedation, I was able to help the doctor do the ultrasound. My hand involuntarily reached for the probe and I guided the doctor along. Of course I’m experienced in this, having assisted in previous ultrasounds. But now I can do it with my eyes closed!

So it appears we are out of the woods now and on the right path to recovery. Pretty soon now my eyes will open and I will be posing for the paparazzi yet again. I bet you can’t wait! For now, here are some photos from my pre-op photo shoot:

Mommy is trying to evade my gaze as I had to fast
and, well, mommy reminds me of food!

Me throwing a pout mommy's way. That's what she gets for not feeding me.

Halfway into my hospital garb.

Now in the OR waiting room. 

See you later, Abba.

Despite the threat of my screams for lattes, mommy bravely
escorted me into the OR where she held my hand until I fell asleep.

My last pre-scar photo. We would reunite 6 hours later.


  1. The lump in my throat has returned and the tears are proud of you sweet Daniel and so proud of your mama and daddy too. What a brave family you are. We can't wait to see your beautiful eyes soon...we are praying for you so often.


  2. You are a super brave guy and we are sending you some big loves from New Zealand. Your Mum and Dad are so cool - you are a lucky guy to have them on your team. Love from Samara, Tanner and Brooke Johnson (and our Mum and Dad too).

  3. Hugs, Kisses and prayers to all.

    Margaret & Elliot