Today makes one month since Parker was given his super kidney! It honestly feels like it happened a lifetime ago, though. Things are so much different since the surgery, not only for Parker, but for our family. Our life no longer revolves around dialysis. It's amazing how much freedom we have to raise our child now. Before surgery, everything in our life- napping, feeding, errands, appointments, parties- was all dictated by one machine. On Monday I had the pleasure of shipping that machine back to Baxter. It was a bittersweet day in the Porche family! Now, we can do as we please as long as we bring his food and medicine with us, and that is such a relief.
Parker is doing so much better physically. I don't think that he necessarily felt bad before surgery, but only because he didn't know better. Honestly, we didn't know that he was feeling bad, because he never presented as a "sickly" person. Most people who came across him made the comment, "Oh you would never know anything was wrong with him", and it was true. Other than the feeding tube taped to his face, there were no obvious signs. Now that we see his energy level, and how fast he is progressing, we realize exactly how much he was being held down. He is full throttle, all day, everyday, now. For example, before surgery, he was barely walking. He only learned how to about month before, and would take a few steps, get tired, and sit. Now, he is literally running everywhere, and climbing on everything. By 11:00 at night, Jason and I are exhausted, yet Parker is raring to go. Eventually, before midnight, we have to put him in his crib and let him cry it out. Some mornings he is up before 7:00 a.m., while before surgery he was occasionally sleeping until 11:00 a.m.
My baby is starting to really enjoy tasting new things. Anyone who has been around Parker knows that feeding and medicines have been a major frustration for us. If you even so much as looked at him the wrong way while holding food, he would go into a full blown temper tantrum. I mean the kind of tantrum where onlookers think you are torturing your child. There was a point where giving medicine was a three person job- two holding him down, while the other squirted medicine in his mouth and coerced him into swallowing it. Now, I am happy to report that he willingly takes all of his medicines by mouth. I ask him if he's ready to take his medicines, and he answers "eh", which means yes- or "I want" depending on the circumstances. He comes and sits in my lap and he opens his mouth waiting for them. He only takes 5 in the morning and 5 in the evening, which is less than he was on before surgery. It is such a a huge sigh of relief. He absolutely knows where the pantry is with all of the snacks. Its on top of the cabinet so that he cannot reach it. He raises his arms up to reach for it and the whole time he is repeating "eh, eh, eh". While he isn't chewing much of it, and hardly swallows any of it, the fact that he wants it is the biggest accomplishment of them all. He walks around with his crackers, chips, cookies, bacon, French Fries, chicken nuggets, etc and he licks and slobbers all over it. Once it is slobbery and soggy, he usually throws it on the floor. This is something that we are trying to work on fixing before we get home, because I'm sure our dogs would enjoy every crumb of it. We've gotten him to try ice cream once, but haven't been successful since. He tends to like things that are dry and crunchy rather than wet, cold, or mushy.
As for city life, well we are happy that we came here, however we are beyond ready to be home. I truly believe that everything happens for a reason, and that we were sent here to get the best care for Parker. I'm not saying that we wouldn't have gotten good care from New Orleans, but I thoroughly believe that this is where we were meant to be. We have made the best of it, and gotten out to enjoy it while we could, but there is no place like home!