Monday, August 16, 2010

Just beat it, beat it, beat it...

No one wants to be defeated.

--Michael Jackson, "Beat It"

So yesterday our excuse for the late post was that there was nothing new to report. Today our excuse is the opposite. We had a post halfway written this morning when the stream of doctors and tests started. Now that post is pretty irrelevant and outdated, so here's the latest.

It has been a pretty full day of activity--it's amazing the difference in the pace around here on a weekday versus the weekend. This morning they performed another echo to look at how well his heart is contracting. Still squeezing some, and a little better than before, but still not quite good enough.

Then came the big test. All the docs on his case came to the room, and they turned down the flow on the ECMO (bypass machine) to 75% flow. His blood pressure, heart rate, and rhythm stayed steady. That meant his heart was doing the other 25%. Also, his heart started to contract better! This is what a normal heart should do. When it gets more full of blood, it squeezes harder.

Since he did so well, they went down to 50%, and got the same response. The doctors looked at one another, and the fellow on his case asked, “25%?” The attending agreed, and everyone got ready. They made sure the echo technician was ready so that he wouldn’t be turned down too long while she got the images. The ECMO specialist told everyone he was turning down the machine, and I felt a combination of excitement, hope, and sheer terror. I constantly shifted my eyes from Jay to the screen of the ultrasound to see what his heart was doing and to the monitor to see what happened to his blood pressure and heart rate. And what happened?


Nothing! Glorious nothing! No alarms, no bells, no whistles! His blood pressure even went up a bit, and his heart rate stayed steady. Again, his heart squeezed a bit harder with the extra blood flow.

So this is obviously great news. But he clearly is not ready to get off ECMO. Now the plan is to give him a couple of days and reassess his heart on Wednesday. As one of his doctors said, "He has a bit of homework to do over the next couple of days, so he will be ready for his next test."


TOJ said...

I'm crying tears of joy! Jay is a rockstar!

Stefenie said...

That is great news to hear!! Praying things keep going in the right direction!

Anonymous said...

Most awesome news! Dance, scream, rejoice. Its really well deserved- All of you. Big hugs to both boys. YEAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!

Laura Huneycutt said...


Joye said...

More tears!!! Go, Jay, go!!!!

blair said...

Oh, this is wonderful! Just after we were talking about things changing quickly--and they have and I am so grateful! Keep up the great work, Jay! What a blessing to read this post.


Anonymous said...

We are all team Jay!!!!!!!

Bright horizons @ NCSU infant room

Anonymous said...

God is good!!! I am so glad to hear the news. You must be
hearing another "echo" coming from here in the south- echos of shouts of joy from all Jay's prayer warriors.

Keeping on those prayers.
Aunt Al

NCarlalina said...

Been praying for Jay's heart all day! Soooo glad to hear there's good news! Will keep praying for him and also for you and Derek.

- Carla Flowers

Mindy Marshall said...

Praise the Lord! That's great news. Praying that he does his homework tonight and tomorrow and that he aces the next big test on Wednesday! Praying for Luke as well. Hope the little one is on the road to recovery. Love to you all! Aunt Mimi.

Anonymous said...

That is the best news I have heard all day! Go Jay!

Dee and Bob

Anonymous said...

What terrific news! I'm writing through tears...tears of joy! May Jay's little heart gain strength each day; may you and Derek be comforted in knowing that your faith community continues to pray for you and rejoices over every small step toward healing.

Mary Alice

Ann Lawrance said...

Best news yet--keep it coming. I'm doing my telepathic tutoring-knew there was a reason to fully retire!
Love you all,

Jessica Mullen said...

Yay! We love the good news - keep it coming. Jim and I are sending you guys tons of love, thoughts and prayers.

Jim and Jessica Mullen

Lisa said...

So happy for your good news! We're praying for even better news in a few days.

Anonymous said...

Praise God! What amazing news! Praying for continued improvement and endurance for you and Jay.

Cara Lynn said... this post to Jamie through tears--your little guy really does respond to the
PRESSURE of tests...praying that he continues to ACE them.
Hope you all have a good night's rest and that Jay keeps cramming for the next exam.
Sending our love and prayers from NC,
--Cara Lynn (for Jamie & Jesse)

Amy said...

Thank God for such encouraging news! Go, Jay! By the way, Jen, you've become quite the suspense writer.

Jamie said...

So so happy! I bet silence never sounded so sweet as when they turned that machine down! Lots of small baby steps eventually lead to milestones... keep those baby steps comin'!
Love you guys,
J and J

Sush said...

Wow...go away for a few hours and wondrous news occurs! Yay for all of you and Praise the Lord! Prayers and love are still in abundance for all of you. Luke's feeling better, Jay getting stronger and passing his next 'test', and peace and rest for all of you gathered around the big CHOP!
BIG HUGS...Susie

Anonymous said...

Yay! I'm so excited to hear that!!! Keeping ya'll in our prayers!!

Meredith and Ragen

Amanda Grace said...


Anonymous said...

So very happy to read this post!! I'm throwing good karma little Jay's way. A little rocky mountain air does a body good.
Alexis & Kyle

Anonymous said...

So glad to hear this great news. What a fighter little Jay is! May God continue to bless all of you with his strength. We'll continue to hope for more good news,

Nancy Kiltie

ANAPatterson said...

Yeah JAY!!! You are doing awesome little man keep it up! Hugs from NC.

The Pattersons

Anonymous said...

Hallelujah! What fantastic news to end the day! I am so pleased for you all to have this encouraging news. . .hang in there, Jay, and continue to heal!! We continue to pray for comfort and strength for you all--each of you individually, and particularly for Jay.

Blessings to you all~
Maria Childrey and family

PS: I LOVE the music selections that you have chosen for each entry. . .it's so creative and a great touch!

Anonymous said...

So glad to hear the great news! One step at a time.....Sending love, prayers and encouragement your way.

Kimberly Taylor

P.S. When Matthew sees the great picture of you guys, he says, "There's my friend, Jay!", with a sweet smile on his face. :)

Anonymous said...

Wow, what wonderful news! I couldn't have done it; I would have suggested the doctors stop at 50% and not pushed their luck. I held my breath as I read your post.
May God continue to hold you in His arms and give you strength and hope in facing each new step of this journey.


Anonymous said...

What wonderful, wonderful news! We'll keep praying for Jay's sweet heart to get stronger and for you all to get some much-needed rest as well.

Lynn Marshbanks

Anonymous said...

I learned about your son from my friend Neva - I'm following your sons progress and am SO HAPPY for the great news. I will keep praying for him as he continues his recovery! God bless you and your wonderful family!!

Sherry Parker said...

I work with your Dad at Covidien We have a big picture of Jay posted in our office and continue keeping him in our prayers and thoughts daily. We follow his progress each day and rejoice at the great news today. God be with you and your family!
Sherry Parker