So this isn’t a super exciting post. But it’s informative and hopefully can help if you’re ever in this situation. So as most everybody already knows, Liam had an emergency appendectomy the other night. Because I never have really known much about appendicitis and the symptoms to look for, I thought I would just briefly write down what happened to help others be informed. Also, I have a feeling that some will ask what happened. So this is my way of sparing myself from repeating it as much.
So it all started on Monday around noon when Liam told me his stomach was hurting. He said he didn’t feel sick, it just hurt. When I asked him where, he pointed right below his belly button. He spent the rest of the day lying on the couch and even took a nap (which hasn’t happened in years.) I went out to run a few errands. When I came home that evening, he was playing on the iPad (a special treat, reserved for Don’s weekends.) When his turn was over, he immediately got up and ran to the bathroom to throw up.
Okay, so it’s a stomach bug? That’s what I assumed anyway. The next morning Kai and Kingston came in my room to tell me that Liam was throwing up again. I was actually quite surprised that no one else was sick because they had all taken a drink out of the same mug the day before. He was still complaining about stomach pain. So I got him situated on the couch and they spent the morning watching tv. He finally asked for toast around noon but it took him an hour to eat just over half. Still, at this point I’m still assuming stomach bug.
Around 2:30, Liam walks over to me, hunched over, and says it is hurting on the lower right side of his stomach. I knew that’s where the appendix is located so I immediately googled “signs of appendicitis.” One of the things that immediately popped out at me was that the “pain usually begins below the belly button before moving to the right side.”I asked Liam if he had been feeling sick or just hurt. He said that the only time he felt sick is when he was throwing up.
After consulting a dear friend, she told me to apply light pressure to the spot that was hurting. I could tell it was very painful for him and it didn’t hurt him when I pressed anywhere else. So I immediately called the doctor’s office and got an appointment with the nurse practitioner.
(those hospital gowns are the cutest though!!)
At the doctor’s office, it was quickly determined that it was a likely case of appendicitis so we went straight to the ER at Mercy. They ran some tests on him before determining that it was, indeed, appendicitis. So he was prepped for surgery and whisked away. As weird as that moment was–sending my child away to be operated on–I felt an incredible peace throughout that evening after feeling very panicked hours earlier in the doctor’s office. I believe the prayers of so many of you were being answered and we were able not to worry while we waited.
The surgery went well and we were able to go back and see him soon after. He slept until 4 when he woke up asking for food and kept asking to go play in the activity room (that didn’t open until 9.) When he finally was given the green light on eating food, we ordered a feast for him. It cracked me up to see such a huge amount of food for such a little guy.
As soon as the activity room opened, he was in there playing with all the fun toys and games. We spent our whole day there (minus the hour and a half they had to close it for a meeting.) They loaded Liam with toys to take home and we were able to make a build a bear penguin. I can’t recommend the Child Life specialists at Mercy enough. Liam loved them and they were great with kids. They made a scary situation fun for him and made him want to stay.
So now we are home and recovering. Today was the first day he was able to push past the 6 hour mark for ibuprofen. He was incredibly brave through this whole ordeal. When the surgeon told him what he was about to do, Liam said “Oh, I didn’t know it was that bad.” But when asked if he was scared, he said “Just a little, I guess.” He amazes me and I’m so proud of my sweet little guy (who got tons and tons of compliments on his hat while we were there.)
So hopefully he’ll be back to being active pretty soon. Although, after his brothers and sister were home for less than two hours, he already got kicked in the stomach. So we’re watching for fever and bleeding/pus at the incision site. Pray that it wouldn’t affect his healing! The funny thing is that he’s hoping this lands him back in the hospital haha.
Thanks to all who prayed, texted, emailed, thought about us, visited, gave him gifts, etc. It really means a lot to our family that you care so deeply for us! And praise the Lord that it was caught in time!