First I am going to say how incredibly blessed and overwhelmed we are with the outpouring of support, prayers, well wishes, and good thoughts for Tyler. Keep them coming because I believe they are really working. Natalie gave a great overview of what happened yesterday. Had Schuyler not rescued my Tyler from the water he would surely be dead. How is that for a great back to school essay? “What did you do this summer? “Well, I kicked around with my friends. Played a little soccer and video games. Went to the beach and did some fishing, body boarding, and saved a life…..” Not many 16 year olds can say that for sure. Schuyler, we are humbled and words cannot begin to express what you and your family (mom, Jon, your grandparents, aunt, and uncle) mean to us.
The EMT’S arrived and managed to get Tyler intabated and loaded into the helicopter however during the flight he got agitated and pulled out the tranche tube. Then, to add insult to injury, he threw up and aspirated the vomit and salt water. Horrid combination for the lungs. I am told that when the med flight landed they wheeled Tyler in while doing chest compressions because he was under full cardiac arrest. And, I am told he had 2 or 3 more cardiac events before they could get him semistabilized. His lungs were so badly damaged that they had a heck of a time getting his blood to stay oxygenated and this quickly became a huge concern. On our way to Wilmington we got a call from the pediatric doctor telling us that as a “last ditch effort” we could have him hooked up to an ECMO machine which would take over for his lungs and heart. Essentially allowing his body and organs to rest and to also filter and resaturate his blood with oxygen. As Tyler was being wheeled back to surgery Schuyler’s mom made it her mission (and you can imagine how difficult this is in a non relative situation) to tell Tyler that Trey and I were coming and that we loved him. She did exactly what I would have wanted to do if I could have been there and I am so thankful that Tyler had another “momma bear” looking out for him.
So here is where we are today as of 11:00 pm on Friday. Tyler is in the CVICU (cardio vascilurar ICU) area of the hospital in a room of people that have a good 60+ years on him. It’s like Duck, Duck, goose. Old, Old, Old, YOUNG!!! Just kidding. I am obviously using bad humor as a cooping mechanisms. But most of these folks have had open heart surgery and other heart related issues. Tyler is considered to be on life support at this time because his body is relying on this machine to keep him alive.
Here is where your prayers and thoughts are helping and this is why I want you to please, please, please continue to do what you are doing. As of this morning, Tyler was relying 100% on this machine. We were given a time line of 48-72 hours to see improvement but in the last 8 hours or so he has shown signs his body has begun to heal and as of right now he is down to 65% reliability. He is making me nervous because I feel the more time he lets this machine do the work, the more time his body has some help and aid n healing. But, the child won’t slow his roll 🙂 The doctors and nurses all assure us that this is great news and we are hopeful this continues in this direction. They were able to wing him off of the three blood pressure medications he was on and he continues to hold a steady pressure. YEA!! They also took him out of sedation for a minute and he moved both arms and legs and was able to wiggle his toes when I asked him. Again, all great signs we are moving in the right direction.
He is on blood thinners to keep any clots from forming and had to have a slight procedure on his nose last night to stop the bleeding due to those thinners. They did put a tube going down to his stomach about 3 hours ago so he didn’t collect air and they are hope full to begin feeding him tomorrow with the aid of that tube. And while they were doing this they were able to remove most of the gauze from his nose. He has a large tube pulling blood from his leg and circulating it through the machine and back into his neck closest to his heart, which is for the ECMO. He is a little bloated from all the fluids which is expected. And he has a tracheotomy. Also part of his shoulder and arm look like a tie dye shirt. Heavy bruising from the chest compressions and they think he may have some tissue damage from all the meds they had to give him when he was in cardiac arrest. But considering everything else, that is small potatoes.
We are told he is a “unique case” here at the hospital and I can’t begin to tell you all how many doctors and nurses are looking in and consulting on his case. He and Schuyler are celebrities here at CLUB ICU. 🙂 I would say our next big mystery to uncover is how he is neurologically which we won’t know until he is completely out of sedation. We just don’t know how much, if any damage was done to his brain due to lack of oxygen. But that is another bridge to cross, we aren’t there yet and I refuse to worry about it. So, keep those prayers and good throughts headed Tyler’s, and Schuyler’s way. Both of these guys are great young men and have many, many happy years ahead of them. Schuyler will be the tall one and Tyler will be the one wearing SPF 250, a life jacket, arm floaties, bubble wrap, insulated socks, steel toe shoes, and a construction cone hat.
Cause momma said so!
The Internet connection here is lackluster and less than steller. I know alot of you have sent messages, prayers and thoughts and I am forever grateful from the bottom of my heart and sorry I can’t respond to them all.
But PLEASE keep them coming because I can assure you that they are working. Hugs to your kids, tell them you love them and let them know how important they are. Tyler could swim but whatever happened, happened in water that was waist deep. You just never know. I will continue to keep you guys posted.
Love, Michelle, Trey, and Tyler.