The boys are all growing up so fast Zander is seven soon to be eight and is already in second grade. Treyson is in preschool again this year and loves it. He just turned five. Brig is two and so much fun, busy but fun.
So I don't know where the time has gone. Its almost like I forgot about the blogging world for awhile. Well I will try to be better. We just had our family pictures taken, it was so much fun and the kids did great. My sister took all of the pictures and did a great job!
The other day I was reading a blog of a mom who's daughter had swallowed a battery and the reason she posted was to make others aware of the harm a battery can do. I thought that was a very cool thing of her to do. I have thought about sharing Brig's story, but I don't want to remember it. The more I have thought about documenting it the more I have felt that it would be a good idea for a few different reasons, one for Brig in the future if he ever has any questions I want to be able to answer them with clarity. The second reason and the reason that I chose to document it on my blog is so that others can learn from our mistakes. I don't want anyone else to have to go through what Brig has. My hope is by sharing his story people will become more aware of the danger of batteries and it will hopefully prevent someone elses child from swallowing one.
I am not sure when Brig swallowed the 3V battery we are thinking it was mid to late September. Brig started demonstrating signs of an ear ache or so we thought. His balance was off, he was very cranky and irritable. He stopped eating lost his appetite and any time we tried to feed him he would chew it and just spit it out. He had a runny nose and sounded so raspy. I took him to several different doctors and none of them could really see anything wrong. I knew in my heart that something was wrong so I kept taking him into different doctors in hopes that one could help. I took him to an ear nose throat specialist twice in hopes they would do something. The doctor again told me that he did not see anything life threatening and we just needed to give it time to clear up it was probably just a cold. This was not an acceptable answer to me I wanted something more done, I truly thought it was something to do with his ears because of his history with ear aches, so I told him I wanted tubes. They did a hearing test at which time Brig would not cooperate but did find from the little cooperation he did do that he was not hearing everything which they thought was caused from the fluid behind his ears. The doctor said that he would do tubes to help with that. Well I thought this is great problem solved right, WRONG he did start feeling better after the tubes where placed his runny nose left and he stopped screaming all the time, but he was still very raspy and not eating well. I decided to take him out for a walk since it was a nice day and he hadn't been out for awhile. He was so happy I remember thinking maybe the tubes will do the trick. He was walking along the sidewalk talking and just so happy to be outside. Then he stepped off the sidewalk and fell. Poor kid I took him back inside because he was pretty upset, he did calm down really quick so I didn't think anything more. I did note that his balance was still a little off though. The next day Treyson had a field trip with his preschool and I had volunteered to go with them. Brandon had the day off and stayed home with Brig while I took the other boys on the fieldtrip. At the end of the fieldtrip I got a call from Brandon saying that Brig had woke up but he wasn't using his one arm. He thought that we should take him in and have an x-ray done. We thought that maybe he had sprained his wrist when he fell. We took him in and he had broken his arm. We were very surprised because he slept all night and only had cried for a few minutes after he fell. We just thought wow this kid is a tough cookie. The doctor said it was very common for little kids to react this way. A couple of days later after he had his cast on Brandon's mom and sister came for a craft class that I was hosting to do temple pictures. I was telling Nisi all that Brig had been through and that I was still really frustrated because I felt something was still not right. The next morning before the class Nisi came upstairs and said "Jillian I think Bring might have aspirated something into his lungs." I looked at her a little puzzled and she said "he probably swallowed something have Brandon take him in and have them do a chest x-ray while we are at the class". I told Brandon what his mom had suggested and he readily agreed. We were both willing to give anything a try we were so frustrated. He took him in and called me at the class and said that he had swallowed some type of coin either a nickel or a quarter but that we needed to go to Primary's to have it removed because of the length of time we suspected it was in there.
We left for Primary's that morning Oct 29, 2011 that day will forever be imprinted in my mind. They took Brig into surgery to remove the object, it seemed to take forever. We thought it would take about 15 minutes and hour later the doctor came to report that Brig had swallowed a battery and that a lot of damage had been done. He said that the battery was stuck in his esophagus and had burned all the way around and was embedded in the tissue. The doctor then told us that we would need to admit Brig into the Hospital and watch him for the next 24 hours to make sure that everything was okay. We had no idea where the battery had come from, neither of us had ever seen it before. I remember when Brig came out of surgery I was so relieved to know that the problem had been solved but I was so scared of what was going to come.
Brig immediately wanted to eat after surgery and so they allowed him to have soft foods. He was so hungry he ate mac and cheese, pudding, yogurt, you name it anything soft that you put in front of him he downed. All of the nurses and doctors were so surprised but said it was a good sign. The next morning they took us to the radiology department to have an esophagram done to see if there were any rips or tears in his esophagus. The report came back that his esophagus was in tact but he had a considerable narrowing where the battery had been and it was very swollen. After the surgeon received the report they thought it would be in Brig's best interest to put a feeding tube in so that his esophagus didn't close off the whole way. I was devastated, I couldn't believe this was happening to my baby. They were no longer allowing Brig to eat only drink which was so hard for him. They started feeding him through the tube and he just was never satisfied. The next morning the doctor came in and saw all of the fluid that Brig had drank and asked if he really had done that. We said yes and voiced our concern that he was not satisfied with the tube feedings and that we felt he needed to be able to eat by mouth if that was possible. The doctor was hesitant but said we could try if that's what Brig wanted to do. Well sure enough they allowed him to have a very soft food diet, pretty much anything that could go in a blender to be pureed. He was in heaven he ate and ate and ate. The doctors were again surprised, but decided that Brig could take all of his nutrition by mouth but the feeding tube had to stay in for four-six weeks to make sure the esophagus didn't close off. We were able to bring him home later that day, it was Halloween. The boys were so excited, and we were so excited to be home as a family again. We had a follow-up appointment at Primary's in five weeks at which time they would decided if the feeding tube could come out.
Two weeks after we had been home I received a call from Brig's doctors office stating that we needed to come in tomorrow and have an MRI done of Brig. I was a little surprised and asked why, an answer that I was not expecting nor wanted came. The doctor had gone to a conference about kids that had swallowed batteries and the harm it could do. They had two different cases in Texas of children that had swallowed the same size of battery and it had not been in there as long. Both of these children died two weeks after the surgery, because as their bodies healed the scab or burnt tissue from the battery had softened and the battery had burned their aorta. These children had bled out within minutes. Well I was freaked out, the next day was exactly two weeks from when the battery had been removed. I remember feeling like my baby is going to die within the next 24 hours and there is nothing that can be done. On our way to primarys we were both so scared and nervous about what the result were going to be we couldn't take our eyes off him. We kept waiting for blood to start trickling out of his little body. They did the test and we received the best news ever, because of how the battery was placed, it did not burn his aorta. It burned in the opposite direction. It burned his trachea and also a spinal bone. The doctors felt that this would heal over time. We were so relieved!!! The doctors sent us home with his personal cell phone# and said that if Brig had any bleeding we were to have him life flighted to Primarys's, he also said there was a chance that his trachea would open up because of the burns and if we noticed any coughing while Brig was eating that we needed to bring him in immediately because that meant that the trachea had opened up. I remember being so relieved but at the time so scared of what was going to come.
About three weeks after we had been home we were giving Brig a bath, (it took two of us, one to keep the broken arm out of the water and the other to keep the feeding tubes from coming out). We decided to re tape the tubes because they were getting loose so we took the tape off in the tube so it wouldn't hurt his skin as much. Well you are all probably going to guess what happened we were getting ready to start taping the tubes back on and he riped them out. When I say rip I mean ripped. It was so far out that we couldn't put it back in. Bradon removed it the rest of the way and I made the dreaded call to the doctor. The doctor was very nice and asked how he was doing with eating. I told him great we couldn't get him to stop. He said what do you think about leaving the tube out because if he is eating well it will stay open and we will move your appointment up and check him out again. I gladly agreed the feeding tube really bothered Brig he had broke out all over his body with a rash where the tube had been taped to him. We made another trip down to Primary's and had another esophagram done. It was still very narrow, but they did feel that the tube could stay out because he was eating so well.
We were scheduled to come back two weeks later to see if there was any improvement and to also see if his trachea had healed. The doctors felt that the best way to do this was exploratory surgery. The doctors report came back okay. His trachea looked great but that they had to dilate his esophagus in order to get the scope past the constriction. The doctor said it was so tight and narrow that we would need to do more dilation's. We were scheduled to come every other week to have his esophagus dilated through surgery. We went two more times and the doctor felt that it wasn't really working and that we were not making any progress. The doctor decided to try a different form of dilation to see if it would be more productive. We were again sent to radiology to have balloon dilation's every week. After his first balloon dilation there was progress the radiologist said that his esophagus was stretching nicely. We had to go three more times to get his esophagus back to the normal stretching size it should be. Just this week we received a call from the doctor and we are going to stop the dilation's and see how Brig does. We are very hopeful that he won't have to have it done again, but only time will tell.
Brig is doing so well now. He has returned back to his normal, active, happy state and demeanor. We are so grateful for the power of faith and prayers from many family and friends. This experience was so long and hard but could have been far worse. I can't help but think that Brig has a special purpose to fulfill. He truly is our miracle baby, and we are so thankful to have him.
Side note, we have found that 3v batteries are in the gift cards that play music, dvd remotes, and digital thermometers, and some toy remotes. We believe that the battery Brig swallowed was somewhat worn out already because the damage was so minimal to what it could have been for the length of time it was in. 3Volt batteries are everywhere and seem so harmless, but they are so dangerous!!!
This time of year always goes by way to fast this year has been no exception. We are all very excited for Christmas, to spend time with family, friends and of course for Santa to come. I had very good intention this year to get Christmas cards mailed but it just didn't happen. So I thought I would do a mini Christmas letter on my blog and call it good. Lets see where to start, this year has been very eventful. Brandon is still in school, he only has seven classes left before he graduates, we are anticipating graduation this coming year, so exciting! I am doing well, enjoying being a Mom and working from home. Zander is now in first grade and learning and growing so fast. We have been so amazed at how fast he picks things up. He is reading very well, and loves math, it just amazes me at how much his little brain can process. Treyson is doing well in preschool as well. He now knows all of the big and little letters and enjoys doing his flashcards everyday. He still has another year and a half before he can go to kindergarten but he is loving school and being able to play with all of his friends. Brig is such a busy little boy, he is feeling much better and his body is continuing to heal and get stronger and stronger. We are so grateful to still have him in our family and would like to thank each of you for your prayers on his and our behalf's. We know that it is through faith and prayers that he is still with us, and are so grateful and thankful that he is doing so well. We are excited for the upcoming year and we are looking forward to a great 2012!
Yes, it has been forever since I have posted but for some reason I was having problems signing into my blog. However today when I logged on it let me, so here goes. BRIG IS WALKING!!! Such an exciting day at our house. He has been trying all week and it's amazing how fast they catch on once they start. The boys are so proud of his accomplishment they still get so excited for him everytime he takes a step its pretty cute.
So I don't have any pictures downloaded to update, but I started feeling a little guilty because it has been so long since I posted. I thought I would just give everyone a little update about what we have been up to. I will start with Brig, the child is now MOBILE. Yikes three kids that are all moving all the time pretty busy. It is so funny because Brig was a little behind on crawling and sitting up and within one week he learned to sit, crawl, and sit back up from a crawling position. He has been a busy little monkey but it is so fun watching him grow and watching the boys interact with him. He now has six teeth and more coming in. He doesn't do things small by any means he got all six within two weeks from the first one. It seems like they just keep popping up. I took him in for his nine month checkup and he is right on track. He is a big boy, which cracks me up because he was so small when he was born. Treyson is getting so big too. I can't beleive how fast they grow. Trey is three and getting bigger and bigger everyday. He talks non stop which is good because he is becomeing more and more confident and his speech is getting better and better. He and Zander are best buddies and spend a lot of time playing together. I love to watch them play and get a long it is so nice. Zander is doing very well in kindergarten and learns new things everyday. Its so fun for him to be able to go to school but I will admit I love having him home on days there is no school. He is such a big helper and loves to help with Brig. Brandon is in school and doing very well. He works so hard, and is so busy but is doing very well with working full time and going to school full time. He has almost been in school for a year and it feels so good to know that we are working towards something better. As for me I am still working from home and loving it and being able to be home with the kids. I am busier then I ever imagined but wouldm't have it any other way.
My super talented Sister took pictures of the boys and they turned out way cute. I did this as a surprise for Brandon for Christmas but couldn't wait to show everyone else. Good thing he doesn't get on my blog. :)