Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Our Day at OHSU

Yesterday we took the next step in Maddie's kidney treatment...a kidney function test at OHSU. As a huge blessing to me, my mom came along with us for the day. I've only been to Doernbecher Children's Hospital once and I'd never been to the main OHSU hospital, so I was a little nervous about navigating the whole maze up there. Thank goodness my mom was there--it took two of us to figure things out! We had multiple appointments in multiple buildings and departments, so it was quite confusing.

We left home before 8:00am and headed up there for our 8:30 appointment in Pediatric Sedation. They put numbing medicine on both of Maddie's hands, while we waited an hour for it to thoroughly work (at this point she started getting suspicious about what was going to happen and told us "I ready to go home now!"...but oh, what a long day we had ahead of us!), and then they took us back to have an IV port put in. This is the part I was nervous about--I didn't want Maddie to have to be in pain or for it to take multiple tries--but Maddie was a pro! Mom and I distracted her by reading Where the Wild Things Are and, although she kept looking over to see what the nurses were doing to her, she didn't even make a peep when they put the IV needle in and bandaged it up. What a trooper!

Next we were off to another building, to the basement level (looked more like a dungeon!) Nuclear Medicine department where they injected some tracing dye (which I later found out is actually *radioactive material*!! Thus the "nuclear" medicine...) into Maddie's IV and they said, "OK--see you back here at 2:15pm." Um, this was at 10:15am! Gee, only 4 hours to kill!

Maddie was dying to go on the cool tram, so we rode that down to the new state-of-the-art OHSU Center for Health and Healing, which is where we went last time to see the urology specialist. (By the way, we just got the bill for that "consultation": $500 for the 20-ish minutes we spent talking to him. Man, I'd sure love to make $1500 an hour! Can I be a specialist when I grow up?!) My mom and I got fancy coffee drinks and we set up shop. We'd made sure to bring tons of things for Maddie--books, flashcards, toys, snacks, juice, Jello, and a portable DVD player. So once she was happy as a clam, my mom and I looked at each other and realized we'd both forgotten to bring a single thing for ourselves! No book, no magazine, no newspaper...and the reading material in the lobby consisted of Sports Illustrated and Newsweek from sometime in 2008 and other magazines of unknown origin. Nothing like staring out the window and twiddling your thumbs for a few hours on end! :-)

The highlight of the day was a little surprise for Maddie--Papa and our friend Cody Schuman meeting us for lunch! Cody is a chaplain for OHSU/Doernbecher and is a dear friend whom we rarely get to see and, let's face it, Papa is one of Maddie's favorite people in the whole world, so you can't go wrong there! :-) We all felt so guilty, though, because Maddie was on a strict regimine--no solid food after 8am, only clear liquids from 8am-noon and NOTHING after 12 o'clock. So she had to sit there, watching all of us eat our food, while we kept denying her anything to eat or drink. Poor girl! Papa cheered her up afterwards by taking her outside and giving her a tour of all the cool cranes, dump trucks and backhoes that were working on a new building across the street.

Then it was on to the main event. We took the tram back up the hill and found our way back to "the dungeon" once again. We were taken to a room with what looked like a huge MRI machine and told that they'd sedate Maddie with quick-acting anesthesia, she'd have an oxygen mask put on, and then we'd have to leave the room for the 45 minute procedure. My mom was holding Maddie on the exam table and they weren't kidding when they said the meds were fast acting--once it was put in her IV, she didn't even make it 10 seconds before she was slumped over and almost snoring! :-) It's a little scary to leave your baby in a hospital room, strapped to a table, but I knew she was in good hands. We waited what seemed like forever while they took photos of her kidneys functioning over time and then we got to come back in again. Maddie was so zonked out!! Totally limp, mouth wide open, like a rag doll. My sweet girl. And just like that, after only 7 hours at OHSU, we were done!

Given the OK to eat and drink again, Maddie snarfed down a raisin bagel, string cheese and cup of juice in about 5 minutes flat! Then off to the store to get her a popsicle, home for dinner and early to bed--for both of us! All that emotional tension and boring waiting really takes it out of you! I'm pretty sure I was already asleep when the clock chimed 8:30pm (and I'm the night owl in the family!).

We should get the test results by the end of the week. Please continue to keep Maddie in your prayers! :-)


Brooke said...

What an ordeal! But, it sounds like your little girl handled it like a champ! Way to go, Maddie!

Mary Ann Noack said...

Hi Lisa,
Reading your blog felt like "home" to me. Adam and I have spent 22 years traveling between Doernbecher and Shriner's up there on the hill. We too have enjoyed Many Many hours waiting and seeing endless doctors. Thankfully, they have always provided us with excellent care. I know you are in good hands. If you ever need advice from someone who has "been there" please give me a call. In the meantime, I will continue to pray for little Maddie, and for you as seek the Lord for the courage to be Maddie's Mom through dificult circumstances. I'm still walking this journey with Adam....just a few years ahead of you. :)

Heather Elizabeth said...

Lisa-don't forget to update us. I am praying for you sister! Love you all.

Katy said...

What a day~and what good girls (all three of you!). I'm still praying....just did this am. LOVE YOU.