Thursday, February 13, 2014

Sometimes, All You Can Do is Laugh

So as many of you know, Max has been through a lot over the last 10 days. He has had over 100 "procedures" to be exact. He was born, immediately intubated, taken from his mother, poked, prodded, suctioned through his nose, transferred between hospitals, cut open, had enough blood drawn to nearly require a transfusion, scanned a multitude of times, nearly had his kidneys fail, had multiple catheters placed all throughout his body, had his core temperature lowered to 16 degrees, and had his heart removed in favor of a better model. But throughout all of this, Max has been strong; proving beyond a doubt that he deserves his "Mighty" title.

Pictured: Max's new heart. He may have grown a bit since you last saw him.

However, there is one thing on this earth that Max completely despises. Something so foul that the mere sight of it has the power to wake him a morphine-induced coma with the strength of a thousand babies allowing him to immediately free his hand and push off his weighted blanket.

The resemblance is uncanny.

At this point, you may be asking yourself: "what in the world could be happening to this poor child that is more traumatizing than a heart transplant? Why would his loving parents let anything so horrible happen to him?"

Well, the answer to those questions is relatively simple: Q-tips.

Yes. Those Q-tips.

One would think that the sight of a yellow procedural mask or a suctioning tube would elicit such a response, but no, Max is perfectly fine with almost all of those things. In fact, he is generally so cooperative for everything that when the majority of the nurses and physicians think he is still sedated, he generally isn't. That is until the Q-tips come out. As these tools of destruction come near, Max's sixth sense kicks in, the adrenaline starts pumping, and he is on full alert.

Q-tip inbound, 12 0'clock. Battle Stations ready. 

We knew he was a fighter, but I don't know if anyone was quite prepared the Hulk lurking within. He likes to distract the Q-tip-wielding nurses by locking eyes, piercing into their souls, and then trying to punch them with his battering ram of an arm.

We feel bad for the little guy that such a benign thing is so absolutely terrifying for him, but it is slightly humorous that of all the things to be truly terrified of, we never would have expected the Q-tip to top the list. We joke with the nurses that in in distant future Max will go to use a Q-tip and have some sort of Vietnam-esque flashback causing an overwhelming outburst of hatred for the tiny cotton tools.

This is a pretty accurate interpretation of an angry Might Max.

 If you can't find times to laugh within the situation, it gets much too depressing to handle. Even though it is heartbreaking to see him awaken at the mere mention of swabbing his nose, it is nice to see that he is fighting so well and that his survival instincts are very strong. We have had a few bumps over the last 24 hours and unexpected hiccups--sometimes literally--but Max is being watched closely and alterations in his care are constantly being made.

Throughout everything so far, he is doing better than expected overall, so that is a definite plus and what we choose to focus on.

His mercy is the only thing keeping him from breaking my finger.

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