Friday, June 18, 2010

Tube-free life

As you might have surmised from the last post, Blaise had her feeding tube removed yesterday at clinic. Her weight was up, even a little higher than her growth curve would predict, and she got really tall out of nowhere, almost 31 inches, bumping her to the *50th* percentile (nutritionist: "Did you stretch her?"). This was after 3 months of no tube feeds, so they decided she was done and out it came. We took Blaise up to her old floor after clinic to see her former nurses and to meet Genevieve. She ran around like the crazy girl she is, to the absolute delight of one of her very first nurses, who I'm sure still thinks of Blaise as a tiny, fragile preemie. Then a quick visit to the vampires and we headed home, tube-free.

In case you're wondering, here's how a g-tube removal works: They just take it out, slap a dressing on it and tell you no food or drink for 4 hours. Then you change the dressing and monitor for leaks. The g-tube site is like a piercing in that it closes up on its own when you don't have anything in it. Because the tissue it goes through is very blood-rich, it closes fast. For some people, it doesn't quite close right on its own and they do a small surgery to stitch it shut. Blaise's appears to be closing appropriately on its own.

So that's it. It's gone. No holes in my kid other than the ones she was born with. My mom asked me last night how I felt about this and the truth is, I'm not sure I really feel anything except maybe a sort of quiet pride. I didn't really mind the g-tube. It was the first thing I learned to take care of after Blaise was born and the first aspect of the whole thing that I made my peace with. It wasn't a troublesome or dangerous thing, like the central line was. It was a mild annoyance with of couple of actual perks (like "venting"). So I'm not wildly overjoyed like I was when the central line came out. I'm glad the tube is gone, but I think I was taking it for granted that it was going to go someday, if not yesterday, then in 3 more months, or 3 more years or whenever the time was right, and in the meanwhile, it was no big deal. The most salient emotion for me is pride, but I've been so proud of Blaise her whole life that yesterday didn't feel all that different. My girl is a champion and a rockstar. She always has been.

1 comment:

vicki said...

I can imagine it feels weird not to have the tube, because even though it was an "add on", it had become so much a part of who Blaise is. Since I have never seen the tube, I just consider the removal a good old fashion miracle!