Tuesday, December 29, 2009

The Best Christmas Present

Samuel had a wonderful first Christmas at his Uncle Grant and Auntie Sarah's (my sister) home where our family celebrated Christmas again this year. This Christmas, Shirley proposed that we only give a present to one other family member, and that the present should be - at least partly - handmade. I don't think Shirley realized how much work she was making for herself in our family at least, as she ended up helping all three children make name signs for their 3 cousin's bedroom doors out of coloured mosaic tiles. And I have to confess, she did buy the parts and do most of the work on the handmade necklace that I gave to my mother....choosing necklaces and making homemade gifts.....they're tough enough on their own but when you put them together!














With two sleepless nights back in hospital just prior to Christmas (see earlier blog), and then the rush to get presents bought, wrapped and food prepared for Christmas day, Shirley's body decided it had had enough and reacted as it normally does when she's exhausted - Strep throat! So she's been in bed since Boxing Day with fever, agonizingly sore throat, vomiting, headache and inability to do much else but sleep. By the time we realized what it was, all the doctors' surgeries and most pharmacies were closed for the holidays, so we called our good friends up in Samuel's Ward 26b who were happy to help out with a prescription and enough antibiotics to get Shirley through the two-day public holiday. They understand that it is in Samuel's best interests that Shirley recovers from this illness as quickly as possible so a) she doesn't pass it on to Samuel, and b) she can get well enough to share the load in caring for him, as it's a lot for one of us to keep up with all his needs for an extended period. Fortunately my family have come to the rescue and the girls have gone to stay at my sister Sarah's place for the last few days while Mum has stayed here with me and taken over the household chores so I can focus on caring for Samuel and Shirley ( I'm still getting used to having family so near that we can call on them at times like this when we need help, it would be tough living anywhere else right now). We'd value your prayers for her, it's really knocked her this time and she isn't responding to the antibiotics as quick as she usually does.

I had a scare today about half an hour before I disconnected Samuel from his TPN, I noticed blood running back inside the line the opposite direction to the flow of TPN. That's never happened before and either means the pump isn't working properly or the positive pressure connector that should prevent any backflow is faulty. I got on the phone to Biomed who are contracted to provide all our TPN needs, and we figured out that it's probably not the pump, so it's probably the connector which get's changed every time we hook up the new bag of TPN. If any other TPN families out there have experienced this before, I'd appreciate your advice as it seems to be a bit of a mystery to Biomed and our TPN specialists at the hospital. Hopefully all will go well when I hook him back up to his new bag in an hour, and it was just that 1 faulty connector in 10,000 that slipped through quality control.

We didn't send out a Christmas newsletter this year, as we figured there's not much more to say then what's already been said in the 100 or so blogs over the past 6 months. If you read this blog on a regular basis then you probably know more about what's been going on in our lives this year than you know about most of your other friends. You'll also know that 6 months ago it seemed almost too much to hope for that Samuel would still be with us this Christmas, let alone living at home. That is the greatest present we could have hoped for this Christmas and we're so grateful to you all for sharing from near and far in both our joys and our sorrows during 2009.

Here's a special New Year's message to you all from Samuel. Happy New Year and we look forward to bringing you news of Samuel's progress in 2010.

Francis


video

14 comments:

Hamish said...

Hello, just wanted to feedback on the blood running back into the line thing at the end of the TPN run. We've found this happens from time to time if Aria was moving about or we had to move her. If your TPN has a down ramp at the end the pressure being exerted by the pump is less that the pressure of the blood pumping around with the movement. In this situation we often put them pump back on for a minute at a higher rate just to push the blood back in. I don't think it is anything to worry about.

Nicholls's said...

It must be an encouragement to have friends who can relate to your situation and able to give advice - most of us are blessed to never have to deal with all this medical technology. I hope we won't ever again take for granted the blessings of 'normal everyday life'. Sam & Family will remain our No 1 website for 2010. With our love and prayers. M&S

Hamish said...

Hi Francis, what I do is when the infusion is complete, if there is blood still in the line, set up a new program of perhaps 200mls over 15 minutes. Turn it on and when the blood is pushed back inside, stop it and turn it off. Not absolutely ideal but it prevents the loss of that precious blood.

Anonymous said...

Uplifting you all...we've felt blessed to be able to walk through this time with you and trust that you'll all grow closer to God in the coming year. Thank you for taking the time to update and share your ups and downs. Our love to you all

McLays

anita said...

Hi Shirley- thanks for the email- replied with a suitable novel length reply. Was just thinking that if you watch the clip of Aria on youtube that was on the sunday morning TV show you actually hear Aria comment on the blood flowing back into the line and Hamish telling her it is ok cause wiggle juice will push it back in. yeah- it happens a bit.

Anonymous said...

hey Francis - hope you are taking good care of everyone. I can imagine Shirely being flat out and exhausted - that girl gives it 100 plus percent. Wonderful to have family nearby to support and help you all. Glad you had a good family time over Christmas and some great shots of Sma - what a fantastic present which seemed such a distant possibility 6 months ago. Lots of love to you all MERRW

familyofgirls said...

Our DD Tahlia just loved watching the video of Samual. She is only a week or so younger. I often wonder if babies can understand each other as she certainly seemed to. Her response was lots of giggles and smiles for Samual :)

God bless.

Margo said...

The Best Christmas Present by far!
Wow what a year it has been for you all. Thank you so much for keeping us up to date with your blog. I know it is your diary of events, but thanks for sharing them with us.
I wonder what amazing things God has in store for you all in 2010?
Take care Davy Family. And thank goodness for the 'www' to keep us all in touch.
Love from The Millens xxxx

Anonymous said...

Dear Davy family,Christmas love to you.It has been a great blessing to follow little Samuel,s progress,and I pray that you will know the loving presence of the Lord Jesus in 2010 as He continues to lead and guide you each step of the way.Little Samuel,s face is a joy to behold.Christine Leaf

Anonymous said...

What were you doing to get Samuel talking-pulling his toes? What a wonderful sound! Happy New Year to all 5 of you. With love, Nancy Lewis

Samantha said...

Get better soon Shirley! Take care of yourself!

Happy new Year - here's to a fantastic year for you all and Samuel!

Susana Asin - Verrier said...

Hello there...
Wanted to let you know that you are a very encouraging family to us all and we know that 2010 will be full of blessings from our God for your family... HE is the ONE that brings peace, comfort and joy to our hearts... Love, Susana, Gui and Joaquin

Anonymous said...

Merry Christmas Davy Family from the Davies Family in Thailand. thinking of you and hope shirley that you get well ASAP! As always love and prayers from us to you!

The Heslop Family said...

Happy New Year to you, too, Samuel James!! Big hugs to all your family, especially your Mummy. I hope she has made a full recovery now.
Big hugs, Bron and the boys xxoo