Saturday, March 12, 2011

Pancreatitis, party of one.

This winter has played havoc on the health of my boys, all of them. We've battled RSV, stomach viruses, strep and even allergies. So, last week when Joshua started running a fever and was lethargic with no appetite, I wasn't too surprised. His brothers both suffered from bouts of tummy trouble recently, so I really believed Joshua was coming down with one of the many bugs running amuck. Thursday morning, however brought a whole different twist to things.

Joshua has the tendency to be a little stubborn, it's the character trait that has helped him do so well in his illness. Stubborn didn't quite describe what his nurse and I were dealing with. He was being so difficult. Then the screaming began. Not long after the decision to pack up and head to the hospital came with heaviness. It's always a tough one to make. Every time now I pack a bag knowing very well we could not be returning home for days. So with bags packed, we headed in.

As VIP frequently fliers, we head straight back to the ER exam area. I guess there are some perks to being chronic. Still, the waiting game is exhausting. A blood draw here, abdominal x-ray there. Wait. Wait. Wait. Joshua's feeling much better by 7:00pm when the doctor comes in with that look on his face. "Well, it's Pancreatitis."

Oh, man. Didn't see that coming. My heart sank. I felt so bad for discounting his screams as anything but pain. Holding tears back as best as I could, I begin the formation of our game plan. Now what? He was doing so well. Eating whatever he wanted. No tube feeds. TPN only 3 nights a week.

Now, I have to make this little guy understand why he can't even have water by mouth.

I'm crushed. Devastated. Helpless.

"Mom, I'm hungry."

Ugh! What is a mom's natural response? It's our job to meet those kind of needs of our children and I can't do anything about. Frustration doesn't even begin to describe it. I get so tired of coming so far and gettting so close, just to be thrown back to step one all over again. Why?

I know God has a plan. I don't begin to doubt His order of things. There are big things planned for our little trooper. I ask that He also use me, if only to be a comforter to someone else living this roller coaster lifestyle.

The Lord absolutely has his hands on Joshua though. That's what I have to stop and remind myself. So, pitty party over, be strong and lead on. He's following my lead and I know if he sees me down, it's not going to help him at all. Joshua will get through this, no doubt. He's already handling it much better than last time.

Joshua's lypase levels have dropped from well over 4000 to 660 already. Another 160 or so and we will try some Pedialyte. It's a slow process and obviously some dietary changes are going to be taking place. Trial and Error. Seems to be a reoccurring theme around here.

But, were pressing onward. With the Great Physician on our team, there's no doubt we'll be victorious. We continue to pray and ask that everyone remember us in their own prayers. We need God's healing hands just as much now as ever.


  1. I know it's easier said then done, but I have to say it. If God brought you to it, He will bring you through it! You are all in my prayers, may God grant you the peace and serenity to get through this day by day, week by week!

  2. you guys are definitely in our prayers. hang in there!

  3. Just wanted to say I feel his pain and yours. I am a grown man and it brought me to my knees and tears. I was so thankful when I got to eat some jello ! Tasted like steak. Ice chips where even good. My advise is be real careful introducing him back to food. Dr's did not explain diet to me the first attack. Or the second. I think it was the third ? Its been a year and a half and still dealing with it. Also Im sure he is on morphine. Be careful with pain meds. For me the withdraw from those have been a battle. He will be in my prayers. God Bless

  4. Just caught up on facebook and saw that Joshua is back in the hospital. God does have plans for this little guy and throughout this illness he has shown all of us such strength and endurance. Dana, you are such a wonderful Mother and Joshua is so lucky to have a loving and caring family. You are in our thoughts and prayers...
    Love, Judy