Today is day 8 in hospital with Alice. Yesterday we were all so excited to be given the news that bowel sounds could be heard – well bowel “flutters” to be more accurate. This was the news we had been waiting for all week. This news meant that Alice could start eating. She started with a piece of buttered toast. My mouth was watering as she ate it. Over the last week, I had been so careful not to eat in front of Alice. With her not being able to eat I didn’t think it fair. Now with my tummy rumbling she was eating hot buttered toast in front of me. It was a good sight. If she could keep this down then she could move onto other foods at lunch and tea time.
The good news was that since eating the toast yesterday, Alice has kept her food down, and, together with a good night, she has had the cannulas removed from her hand and arm, this was closely followed by the nasogastric tube being removed. When the registrar did her rounds she mentioned the “H” word – this was code for home – but she didn’t want to raise Alice’s hopes. She would need to monitor throughout the day and then get confirmation from the consultant after he came of theatre in the afternoon. Until then we would need to have patience.
Alice had really improved so much, she was able to sit up for long periods in her wheelchair. We had permission to leave the ward, so went to the chapel for a few minutes then on to the play centre. Alice seemed keen to play on an i-pad rather than all the lovely toys available. It was interesting looking around the room, as pretty much every kid there had their head in a screen!
We returned shortly to the ward because we needed to empty the catheter. There we spend the rest of the afternoon painting and completing activities that the playworker provided. I was beginning to lose hope of a discharge when at last the consultant appeared. He was pleased with Alice’s progress, and said that he was happy for her to go home. He reassured me that we could call the ward at any time if we had any concerns. He made sure we had all the medications from pharmacy and follow up appointments.
We were good to go! It felt great to be going home and it was good to be together as a family again. It was also nice to be in a place with no machines beeping, and for the first time in many days, a good night sleep would be had by all!
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