Thursday, February 19, 2009

and so it goes

Many of you have heard this story, but some haven't heard how Monday went and so I post. I apologize now for the length!

Monday morning at 8:15 we loaded Lauren up and drove to the hospital. We checked in to radiology and waited for the morning of tests to begin. Lauren made sure to delight all the receptionists and other patients waiting with her silly grins and nosy ways.

The first test they did was an ultrasound of her kidneys. The technician assured us that most babies enjoy the ultrasound as the gel is warm and it sort of feels like a massage. Not our precious little girl! From the moment we took off her clothes and laid her on the ultrasound table she was screaming. It didn't help that I had to pin her down so the technician could get a good look at both of her kidneys. Of course neither Shawn or I could tell anything from the hazy pictures on the screen.

The next thing they did was walk us a half a mile to an area with really sick babies and kids. This was where they would place her catheter. It was so sad to walk by each room and see these little babies and children hooked up to monitors. I was so thankful that we weren't in that position and I just prayed for all those sick kids and their families. Our nurse for this part of the day, Susie, was great with Lauren. In fact, her sister is Lauren's regular nurse at our pediatrician's office. It was nice to have someone who knew of the situation. I will spare you the details of the catheter, but just know that it was bad and Lauren let the whole place know it. We had to wait in this area until they came to take us to another area of the hospital. During the wait, Lauren decided to poop. Ok, I know that is gross and very to the point but can you imagine? They had just put in her catheter and the nurse said she was just trying to push it out. Susie changed the diaper. I was relieved she offered because I didn't want to mess anything up and they had to clean things really well.

When we got to radiology, Lauren had cried so much she was asleep in my arms. I felt so bad when I had to wake her up to get her ready for the x-ray. Of course, she wasn't happy at all. The x-ray wasn't too bad. I put on the protective vest and held her while they took pictures of her kidneys. The nurses even gave her a blanket they had warmed up. I let Shawn don the vest for the radiation tests because I couldn't do it. They hooked her catheter up to a bag of the dye and then proceeded to fill her bladder to its fullest. That was the hardest part because the main guy told us that most adults can barely even handle it. It seemed like it took forever for her bladder to fill. She just kept screaming and screaming. Finally, they drained the bladder and got the pictures they needed. Shawn kept trying to get the guy to give us any kind of news but he just said the doctor would call us. We were so thankful to get our baby home. She had a rough morning and ended up sleeping for 3 hours after she ate!

Later that afternoon, our nurse called and said that Lauren's ultrasound and x-ray came back normal. However, they did say that she has urinary reflux. They rank the severity of this on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being the worst. Lauren has a stage 2 reflux issue. We are so thankful that it isn't worse, but still hate to know that her urine is refluxing into her kidneys when she pees. They usually recommend surgery for stage 4 and 5 and a long term antibiotic for stages 1 to 3. Because there is nothing they can do for Lauren to stop the reflux from happening she needs to be on the antibiotic to kill the bacteria that gets into her kidneys. She will be on this antibiotic for 2 to 3 years or until she is potty trained. They are hoping that she will grow out of it.

I am so thankful that it isn't worse than it is, but I would be lying if I said I was fine about having my daughter on any kind of medicine for years. There is something about that length of time that makes me feel sad. I hate knowing that every night we will be forcing her to take her icky, sticky antibiotics. I hate knowing that if we don't give her the medicine she could get kidney infections and scar tissue on her kidneys. I am dealing with this, but I am not completely okay with it just yet. Hopefully, that is okay.

Thanks for all the prayers for Lauren. We know that even though she does have reflux, those prayers were heard.


  1. Oh how I cried when I heard what pain your little baby had to go through. I'm sorry to hear about her condition. Maybe she will grow out of it sooner rather than later! I will keep her in my prayers - and yes, it is OK to not be OK with it yet.

  2. Her eyes are so dark and beautiful. I am still praying for all of you. God will see you through this. I pray His hand will bring you peace. Love always...

  3. So sorry to hear of all of this Jen - We will pray for your sweet baby and also for you and your husband as you deal with this. It will all get to just be routine and you will become "okay" with the whole thing in time.