Saturday, December 19, 2009

So I've seriously been slacking on the updates and I apologize. It seems that so much has happened since the last post but when I try to sum it up it remains the same.. Jacob has had a rough few months. He just can't seem to kick the sickness. Matt and I came to the depressing conclusion last week that he has been to the doctor at least once (most of the time twice) a week since Sept 21st.
Since the last post he has experienced fevers, vomiting, cough, running nose and a rash. We have seen specialists on top of our pediatrician. The fevers, vomiting, runny nose and cough seem to be some type of virus that is hanging on. The dermatologist confirmed Jacob has three skin conditions. Eczema which I self-diagnosed a long time ago, dermatitis which was causing the rash, and another really long word that basically means pimples that are highly susceptible to a staph infection (no kidding!). We now have daily bleach-like soaks and special creams and lotions to avoid another abscess situation.
Poor little guy is a real trooper and most of the time you would never know he is sick. We have been very careful about where we let him go and who he is exposed to but it doesn't seem to be slowing the sick germs down. We are praying for a much healthier 2010!! Here's a few pictures of the times Jake did get to venture out!

Thanksgiving at Nonna's with Daddy and Great Grandpa Bayerl

Just a cute picture .. at home though. We got a new camera so this was a test shot. Gotta say I LOVE the new camera!

Uncle Ryan got to come home for 10 days!! This was his first night in town and Jacob was very excited, as you can tell!! Ryan is now stationed in Las Vegas at Nellis Air Force Base and we look forward to seeing him soon.

Since Uncle Ryan was in town Santa came early to the Close family so we could all celebrate together. Jacob got a wagon and LOVES it!! He would ride in circles all day if someone was willing to pull him.

Jacob crawling around like crazy.. He is taking up to 10 steps at a time now and is getting pretty darn good. Watch out!!

Jacob saw Santa in a nontraditional way this year. We were hesitant to take him to the malls or out to some of the outdoor events we were invited to because of his health. However, we happened to be grabbing a quick dinner at a Mexican restaurant by our house with Aunt Terri and Santa was there. We seized the opportunity and here is Jacob's first Santa picture - at least we will never forget where we were!

We are getting excited about Christmas next week. This year more than ever we are thankful for our friends, family and our health. Most of the time Jacob hasn't been able to go to our normal babysitter and we have relied on help from friends and family. We are so grateful for every one's help, support and prayers. We hope everyone has a wonderful holiday!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Sickness Update

Hi everyone,

Just a quick post to give everyone an update on Jacob. He is doing 1000% better. We had a rough start to the week but it finished much better. Jacob was having trouble keeping down food and medicine for the better part of the week so on Thursday the dr finally changed medicines. This one seems to be going a lot better - gotta love grape flavored medicine.

He's starting to act just like the old Jake. He does get tired easily and is taking several naps (some really long) during the day. We could get used to this.

We even ventured outside on Sunday, this was the first time he had been out of the house since leaving the hospital, to get pictures taken. We still need to be very careful with germs and what he is exposed to but we also need to slowly expose him to germs as well. He still will not be able to go to the babysitter for a few more weeks.
Please continue to pray that his immune system slowly builds back up and we don't catch any sickness in the next few weeks.

Family Shot

Not quite sure about these blocks.. or the pictures for that matter.

All smiles now

Not sure why they had a log there but we went with it

Such a cutie.. wouldn't even know that less than a week ago he was so sick.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Doctors and Diagnosis

Now for the bad part of November. We've all been through a lot in the past few days. Here's a summary of what has happened with our little one since last Friday.

On Thursday night Jacob started acting really crabby. We assumed it was teething since he wasn't running a fever. He moaned and cried off and on all night. Matt started getting him dressed at 7:15am and noticed a large mass on his stomach. He called me at work and I quickly called the doctors office. The doctor wanted to see him immediately thinking he had a hernia.

When Matt got to our pediatrician he immediately found out it was much more serious. Jacob has an abscess in his abdominal wall that needed emergency surgery. Matt and Jacob were sent directly to St. John's Children's hospital. Our pediatrician called and let them know we were on our way and alerted the surgeon. I met them there.

The emergency department (ED) doctor decided to drain the abscess in the room to culture the fluid. Jacob was screaming in pain and it was very difficult to get the IV in. They also drew blood. We quickly learned his white blood cell count was four times what it should be. We were admitted and the surgeon came for the consult. The surgeon did not feel that the surgery could be done on Friday because the ED drained too much fluid and the surgery would be too difficult. We would have to wait for the next day.

Picture from the ED

Overnight the abscess got larger and the infection spread. When our Pediatrician came in the next morning learned the infection was septic and had spread to the blood, this was the worst case scenario from the night before. The surgeon came up around 10am and we were set for surgery in 20 minutes. At around 11am they cut two small holes in Jacob's abdomen about 1 inch apart and inserted a drain that would stay in.

Saturday we also learned the infection was strep and staph. We got back to our room after surgery and got the first dose of the very powerful antibiotic to fight the infection in the blood. Jacob had an allergic reaction to it (called red man's syndrome) and after a bit of drama the nurses got that under control. He would need to be pre-medicated before receiving it going forward. We had also been on morphine because the pain was so high but Jacob started itching so bad his eyes were swelling so we quit that and moved to Tylenol with codeine. They also confirmed he had cellulites (very painful) around the abscess.

This was immediately before the surgery. Pain meds were obviously not working.

After pain meds started working

The next day we learned the original cultures had been contaminated and we would have to wait one more day to determine if the 'best-guess' antibiotics were the right ones. This was Sunday and we had what we were calling a 'chill-out' day. We had lots of visitors and appreciated every one's support and prayers so much!! At this point, something was working because Jacob was much more comfortable. He was even smiling. At this point, mom and dad could breath again.
This was Sunday.. there was a LOT of wagon rides while we were in the hospital. It was the only thing that stopped the crabbiness and screaming. Jacob LOVED riding in the wagon. The floor we were on was pretty small so we went around in circles .. over and over!

More Sunday pictures... starting to feel better. Standing on his own! The day before he wouldn't even sit up on his own. Very sad :(

Feeling better still.. visiting with Grandma Beffa
Overnight, Jacob decided he wanted to go home and created yet again more drama by ripping out his IV. The nurses didn't fall for it and he got a new one at 2:30 in the morning in the opposite hand. Nice try little one!! We are really starting to wonder what he's going to be like as a toddler - or worse a teenager!

On Monday the drs came in and confirmed that the infection was also MRSA. It's an infection that is highly resistant to some antibiotics. At this point we had a sign put on our door saying we were in isolation and gloves and gowns must be worn.

However, we also got good news that the 'best-guess' medicines were the right ones. The pediatrician wanted us out of the hospital as soon as possible because of the risk of respiratory infection. Jacob's immune system certainly could not handle anything more. The surgeon came and removed the drains. There was a few conditions of our release (both mine and the doctors). Before we could even go home Jacob had to keep down a bottle (my condition). He hadn't been eating well. As of 4pm on Monday he had kept down 1 bottle so we were going home. We also had to be on antibiotics at home and we will have daily dr visits (drs conditions).

Monday - Jacob with Nonna before isolation playing in the play room.

Last wagon ride before going home.. looking better still. This ride was in our room bc we were in isolation by this point. Amazing how that works.. okay to be in the hall one minute - the next you are confined to your room but nothing has really changed.
The story doesn't end there.. We got home and Jacob proceeded to throw up the bottle he had at the hospital and his first dose of antibiotic. He went to bed and slept well but woke up with a dry diaper.
Today he took his first bottle and dose of antibiotic fine. We went to the doctor this morning and they think that he has C-diff. It's a virus that he possibly picked up in the hospital - it proved the doctor's point about leaving the hospital asap. We are waiting on the test results before knowing anything else. However, he did throw up the rest of the doses of antibiotic throughout the day.
We definitely know he's not feeling well - he's just not our little Jake. It's very sad to see your little one in pain and going through all he has gone through in the last 5 days. He sure is a tough little boy.
We can't say enough about the wonderful doctors and nurses that cared for Jacob while he was in the hospital. We truly had the best care. Our , pediatrician Dr. Bob (Hoffman) is the best. He was highly recommended to us but you never know how great they are until you go through something like this. If there is a lesson to take away I would say be sure your dr goes to the hospital and doesn't leave you in the hands of the hospital doctor. I'm sure they are highly qualified but nothing is better than knowing the face that walks in at 5:30 am to give orders and who you will see post-hospital.
We appreciate all the prayers, visits, phone calls, balloons, toys and everything else everyone has done for us. Please keep the prayers coming we have a long way to go!!

Parties, Milk Shakes and Goats

November started off great. We had Jacob's friend Daniel's first birthday.

Happy Birthday Daniel!!
The boys had a great time riding in the wagon Daniel got for his birthday.. little did we know we would have much more opportunities for wagon riding very soon.

We also took at trip to Crown Candy and the zoo. Jacob wasn't a big fan of the zoo. He was awake for about 5 minutes while we visited the goats and then he was asleep the rest of the time. He did like the chocolate milk shake at Crown Candy.
Jacob getting ready to eat his milk shake!

The only time Jake was awake at the zoo- he couldn't have cared less about the goats. I guess he's still too young. Better luck next year!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Happy Halloween!!

Jacob and Daddy before getting ready. Jacob was super excited and happy!!

Ready to go Trick or Treating.. Jacob was a monkey. Very fitting since he wants to climb everything!!

Our first 'trick or treater' was Jacob's friend Daniel... or should I say Elmo. The boys had a good time playing and even shared their treats!

When Elmo left we were off to Great Grandpa & Grandma Bayerl's. Jacob got his first cookies with sprinkles. He was immediately convinced they were good stuff!

Next we were off to Grandma and Grandpa Beffa's. In all the Halloween excitement we forgot to get a picture with Grandma and Grandpa... but Aunt Terri dressed back up in her Octomom costume for us. Look at all those babies!!

Off to Nonna's. By this time we were bribing him with yogurt bites. It had already been a long day but we got more places to go..

Last stop, to see Jacob's cousins Lydia (flower) and Ella (princess). Such cute little girls!

Another picture of Monkey Boy!

Look at that tail! He did great in his costume and kept it on pretty much all day.. even in the car seat. I was shocked at how little the hood bothered him.

Family Picture

Also, we wanted to let everyone know that Jacob's surgery last Tuesday for tubes went great and there were no complications. He still had a bad ear infection when they went in but they cleaned it out while they were in there. Hopefully this will end the ear infections!!

One more update.. Jacob went to the dr this month for this 9 month checkup. He is developing right on track (aka speed crawling, climbing and getting into every cabinet, drawer and light socket that he can). He is currently in the 50% percentile for weight and 75% for height. Next dr apt is in 3 months.. when he's 1 year old. How crazy is it that he's going to be 1?!?!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Pumpkins and Ears

A quick post to get pictures of the pumpkin patch out there and give an update on Jacob's ears.

We went to the pumpkin patch a few weeks ago and Jacob had a great time. We did get the car stuck there because of the constant Missouri rains but somehow Matt managed to get it out. You can only imagine the conversation in the car when I kept pressing the gas!! Poor Jacob!!

Now for the ears.. As many of you know Jacob has had constant ear infections for over 8 weeks now. We are scheduled for surgery this coming Tuesday. He will be getting tubes in his ears. A minor surgery but we are hoping that it makes a HUGE difference in his constant illnesses. He hasn't slept through the night in weeks and now has a bad cold. We are hoping that he gets better by Tuesday and they will still do the surgery. I'll keep everyone updated!! And please pray for surgery on Tuesday!!
Next post will be Halloween pictures.. hopefully Jacob will keep his costume on long enough to take pictures!!

Friday, October 9, 2009

Uncle Ryan's Graduation

Jacob had a lot of 'firsts' the past week. His first vacation (which involved a 14 hour car ride), his first hockey game, his first military experience and the list goes on.

Last week my brother, Ryan, graduated from basic military training at Lackland Air Force Base in Texas. It was truly an amazing experience and one that we will remember for a long time. Jacob was excited to see uncle Ryan as you can see from the pictures below.

We spent 5 days in San Antonio and saw a lot of the town and military base (a first for all of us). But most importantly, we got to spend a lot of time with Ryan. He is currently stationed at Lackland for another 8-10 weeks for additional training. After that he's hoping to go overseas. We are very proud of him!! See below for lots of pictures from our trip!!

Our first glimpse of Ryan. The first family activity is the airman run. Ryan is the one in the front with glasses. You do not get to see your airman before or after this event.. literally they just run past you.

Second family activity is the coin ceremony. This is where the airmen receive their coin and technically graduate. It's hard to see but this is actually Ryan receiving his coin.

The funny thing about both pictures above is we had no idea where Ryan was. It was total luck that I happened to take both pictures at the perfect time. After going back and looking through the pictures we were able to pick him out (after about 20 times of looking at the pictures).

After the coin ceremony, we finally got to see Uncle Ryan. Here is Jacob seeing him for the first time in 9 weeks. Before Ryan left, Jacob and him were real buddies and spent a lot of time together.

My mom, Jacob's Nonna and Ryan.

The following day was the official graduation parade ceremony. It was freezing outside. Here's Jacob waiting in the car for it to begin.

Uncle Ryan in his bunk. Look how tight that bed is made... you really could bounce a quarter on it! (His is the lower bed)

Uncle Ryan and Jacob with planes.
All of us at dinner.. Me, Ryan, Nonna, Matt, Grandpa & Grandma Bayerl.
Jacob at the same table in his high chair.. it was a little lower than the rest of the table. Poor guy!

All of us at dinner again. Me, Jacob, Nonna, Uncle Jeff, Matt, Ryan and Grandpa Bayerl. This is at the pizza parlor on base.

Uncle Ryan and Jacob

Me and Ryan

Jacob at his first hockey game. This didn't last long but he was out!! The minor league hockey team offered special discount to the graduates and their family. Plus, if Ryan went to the game he got to stay off base later in the evening and spend more time with family and friends. Not sure any of us really watched the game.

Having fun with Uncle Ryan

Bye Bye Uncle Ryan.. See you at Christmas!