Two Tubes Removed!!!!!

Though I haven’t seen Trish much since Friday, she’s still a bit giddy about the whole meeting Zac Efron thing.  She won’t stop humming songs from High School Musical so I guess turnabout is fair play after my whole Barbie fling.  It has gotten me a bit nostalgic about my own high school experience in North Jersey and how it parallels life at East High–a fresh-faced milieu of multiethnicity (except most of the kids at Madison High had zits and, amidst the vast Italian-American majority, diversity didn’t extend much further than our German-speaking Austrian family);  the spontaneous song and dance that burst out at most every sporting event (as long as we avoided the section of the bleachers where all the kids in Ozzy T-shirts were smoking); and the expansively choreographed production numbers all of our dances became (if plots to see who could get one of the girls from St. Elizabeth’s to slow dance with you all the way to the end of Freebird count as choreography).  OK.  So it was nothing like my high school.  Let me know when James Gandolfini is coming.

If you couldn’t tell, my spirits are up today because it’s a very good day.  Rudy’s kidney function kept up and was steady overnight.  The team is still watching numbers to make sure nothing gets too high, but as long as he continues to pee, there’s a significantly less concern.  Some of the key numbers (potassium, phosphorus, electrolytes) are even starting to decrease so that means the kidneys are removing impurities from the body like they’re supposed to.  Please keep praying but we can also be thanking God for putting us in a markedly different place than we were yesterday.

The big development today is that Anita and Carol came in to remove both chest tubes today.  Although Rudy has been without chest tubes, this is the first time they’ve ever been removed as opposed to falling out.  There hasn’t been any output for 24-48 hours and the chest Xrays have been looking clear so we’re optimistic that the pleurodesis was effective in putting the chylothorax behind us.  We will continue with routine chest Xrays, but hopefully this front will keep quiet so that we can focus our attention on the other key parts of the battle–breathing and eating.

I’m going to stay with Rudy for a couple more hours and head home this afternoon so Trish and I can be together with Wilson, Max and Olivia for a couple days until we all come back on the 23rd to celebrate Christmas as an ENTIRE family.  It’s going to be hard to leave Rudy, but perhaps a break will give him a chance to rest, heal and be ready for his brothers and sister to hold him for Christmas (remember there’s no tubes).  We’ve mentioned it before, but he really looks beaten up from the week he’s had–huge bruises on his side, feet and arm, a huge incision on his right side from the pleurodesis, stitches on both feet, dressings on both sides from where the chest tubes were along with the usual collection of IV lines.  But NO CHEST TUBES!!!!  What a tough, tough kid!