As we were driving back from the Bay Area, we learned from Nurse Gloria and Dr. Andy that the conditions were right for pulling the tube once again. Rudy’s chest Xray looked clear this morning and he was breezing through any sprint the team put before him this week, so they told us they were going to try it around 2pm. Just before 2pm, as I was thinking to say a prayer for Rudy, Trish and I heard our cellphones chirp and Denise (the full service nurse) had sent us picture and video messages of Rudy off and running.
We got home and Gloria confirmed that Rudy was sailing smoothly. In fact, she said that he just about got the tube out himself as he started working it with his tongue as they removed the tape. So, please pray that the lungs would stay clear of fluid. One of the questions remaining from last time was whether Rudy had a strong enough cough to clear his lungs (like most of us do). To this end, the team is hoping to get started on more nutrition tomorrow morning. They do feel like the NJ tube they inserted earlier in the week has found its way to an acceptable place so they can start to feed him directly to his intestines. They gave him a small amount overnight but then had to cut it in order to extubate. Hopefully the added calories will give him more stamina this time around. Breathing takes substantial energy for Rudy–seeing him last week after four days of breathing, there was a marked difference in his appearance as much of the pudgy face was burnt up by breathing. Wish it worked that way for grown-ups.
We’re back in rainy Goleta now with three great kids who were lovingly spoiled while we were gone, but appeared generally happy to see us. We’ll all go down to see Rudy on Saturday–always great to have the whole family together!