Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Heart of a champ

Quinn's heart has improved to the point where he is no longer a pacemaker candidate. It rarely skips a beat anymore and stays at a healthy rate. "Look ma, no pacemaker!"

Having said that, I can now admit how hard I actually took the news back when the doctors said he would need one. He just seemed a bit young to have to worry about one of those for the rest of his life. And this is a lifetime of periodic battery changing surgery he will avoid. I'm ecstatic at the news. We have moved from the ICU into a different section of the hospital where Quinn can begin enjoying a little more of what life can offer. He has a swing, and a stroller for trips around the hospital.

As I pushed him around, he began getting smiles and compliments from many strangers, and many who would stop for a look. I was trying not to walk too tall behind his stroller, because I know how proud I am to be his dad. But what a completely new thing to be sporting my own kid around in public. I was pretty excited, enjoying every compliment he received and feeling more like a dad with each step. Pushing a stroller around was never so much fun.
The plan is that we will be transferring back to Providence this Friday for continued studying on his intestinal repair. The doctors will be trying to figure out why his duodenum is still too small to pass enough milk through to sustain a growing baby. Most likely it will require another procedural repair, but I'm not sure of many details at this point. Any swelling should have subsided by now.
The external tube penetrating his belly seems irritated and started bleeding today. This morning the nurses found blood clots inside the tube while flushing it. Quinn has developed the ability to scream pretty forceful lately, and doesn't hold anything back when he is angry. He has gained almost two pounds over the last three weeks and is gaining physical strength.

To those of you praying that Quinn wouldn't need a pacemaker, I feel I owe a debt of gratitude. I was not praying for him to not have a pacemaker. I didn't want to feel the disappointment if he needed one and it just seemed too insignificant given his other struggles. Steph and I want him to have the best start in life these doctors can provide and a pacemaker may easily have become part of that start. But like I said, I'm 100 percent thrilled at the news of this recovery.


kristin said...

Oh Dan & Steph, I wish you could see how big my smile is right now! It's 1:30 in the morning as I write this - I was in bed, but couldn't sleep because I just wanted to keep checking your blog in the hopes there would be a new post...and here it is. My favorite post of them all.

Congratulations on this wonderful progress. I couldn't be happier for you.


Pop said...

Well Dan,
I like the smile you have on your face in the picture of you pushing the stroller. Much Joy and Thanksgiving for and from those of us not with you and Steph.
The mighty Quinn strikes again!!!
You and Dan....and Quinn will be an inspiration for others. Very tough start but you all three hung tough and now the rewards should start to come your way.
Congratulations to the Marshall family. Pretty good looking family too!!

Love from Kim and Pop

Anonymous said...

I never thought I'd hear a dad say that pushing a stroller around was so much fun! I just smiled when I read that, and then I couldn't see the words 'cause I was so happy I started crying! What a neat holiday present; to see you pushing Quinn around! I am so happy for you Steph; the agony of waiting and not being a 100% sure of how things will turn out, now you just wait to take him home!!

The three of you have made a lot of people smile (and grateful) today just to read this update! God is Good and He will continue to keep you in His care.
Love, Nik

Anonymous said...

Thank God We knew all are prayers didn't fall on deaf ears! Congrats Quinn you continue to amaze us! We couldn't be anymore joyful for you and Mom and Dad. Continued prayers for miracles in the future. Peace and Blessings In 2007 The Rosado's

Anonymous said...

Quinn, you look great in that stroller, maybe your dad will let me take a turn at the wheel someday. Glad to hear that the three of you are moving back to Providence. It is a step closer to home, which I pray you will be back to soon.

Both of you have all the right in the world to be proud, both of Quinn and his progress and of yourselves for the courage and dignity that you displayed through this whole thing. I’m looking forward to the time when I can watch Quinn play with his friends and with his grandpa.

Let’s get his tummy fixed, so I can get him high on dark chocolate and ice cream. Ummmmmm good.

Love all of you.
Grandpa Dan

Anonymous said...


Karra said...

I am so happy for the three of you. When Stephie was saying there was a possibility you were moving to another wing, I was crossing my fingers for you. And Quinn, here is a little secret for you, you have openned something that has been hiding in your Grandpa Dan, and I am can't wait to watch him play with you. You have really touched a lot of us and we continue to pray and cheer you on. Lots of love to the three of you.
Aunt Karra

Robin said...

Wow, what great news!!! Out of the NICU and into a regular room! A swing and a stroller! Wow, you guys must be in heaven right about now!!!

So now everyone can move onto his digestive system--is there such a thing as a duodenal transplant, or an artificial one, or an expansion, or a pig duodenum that would work for a person??? Can't say I know much about duodenums...

Any way, you'll soon be one step closer to home, and we'll ALL be glad for that!

Still praying...Robin

Anonymous said...

I am so happy for you all. I see Quinn growing to be a very very patient young man. Steph and Dan the strength and stability you have shown during this is so amazing. I am glad all the prayers have been answered to this point and we will continue to pray for the intestinal issues now. Have a wonderful New Year.

Anonymous said...

A swing and a stroller ride!!!!! Quinn you have amazed everyone. I never had any doubt that you would pull through with flying colors. Let's get you eating milk now...that is the next goal.
Can't wait to meet you in person.

Anonymous said...

Dear Steph and Dan,I am so very thankful to read your blog tonight. What wonderful news. It seems very significant that you are no longer in the NICU and that you will return to Providence - in much better shape than you left there! Thank you God and JOY TO THE WORLD!

With love,
Mrs. Cherry

Alex and Jessica Bariso said...

YEAH!!!! you go little Quinn.
What a wonderdul late X-mas gift you gave your parents.
I am sure this New Year will be full of surprises and happiness.
with love
Jess, Alex and Isabelle.

Anonymous said...

Hey Steph and Dan,
I am so happy to hear about "The Mighty Quinn" he has definately earned the nickname for one's gonna push him around on the playground!
Maybe Dave and I can come up to Providence next weekend?


Anonymous said...

Wonderful news!
And he's looking just great!
-Hilary B.

The Keenans said...

We're so happy Quinn is getting closer to going home! He's got a strong little heart and he looks great!
The Keenans

Anonymous said...

Dear Steph and Dan,

Quinn looks so big, and more beautiful and dear than ever. I am so very happy that he is doing so much better! I'm wondering if you are in Providence again, and if you are able to stay at the Ronald McDonald House. I know that was so much more comfortable for you two. Thank you God that Quinn is doing so much better. There are alot of prayers and there is alot of love surrounding all of you,

Mrs. Cherry