Good evening everyone!

Mark Twain is quoted as saying that the only person who likes change is a wet baby! At the risk of starting a literary feud, I must also point out that educationist Roy Blitzer has also been credited with quote; I’ll leave you, the reader to decide who to credit with this wonderful quote. So why the theme of change? Well I needed no help from the authors of the book titled “Who Moved My Cheese” this weekend to deal with the changes in my life. The changes I’m referring to are that I was moved back to Morningside Medi-Clinic this weekend, and upon arriving there, was welcomed into the brand new NNICU, which I will chat all about in a moment.

My Mom and Dad arrived at Unitas very early on Saturday, and they had barely greeted me and settled in with HB (Hot Beverage – aka tea and coffee) when the Netcare911 paramedics arrived to take me back ‘home’. There was the usual exchange of medical data and statuses, as well as forms and charts to be completed and exchanged, after which I was moved from my nice comfortable ‘big boy’ bed onto a gurney. Because I was sedated for most of the week, there was little risk of my thrashing about and falling out of bed, so I spent the time at Unitas in a full sized bed. Admittedly my Mom and Dad kept ‘losing’ me in this large expanse of a bed, but they soon learnt to follow the cables and drip lines to find my little body.

At 9:20, after an uneventful trip through the hospital to the ambulance we were on the road. My old friends Ryan and Carel were off for the day, so I was handled by John, Cornel and Benjamin. Being a Saturday, there was very little traffic going back to Jo’burg so the trip was quick. I was also stable and comfortable so there were no major issues en route, as was the case with my last transfer to Jo’burg during August.

I was expertly wheeled through casualty and up to the 1st floor. Out the lift, and to the right, and past the door to the NNICU. I was so confused, and then I remembered the rumours that the NNICU had been moved. Yes, there were brand new carpets, walls that were repainted, and then through double glass doors into a beautifully lit and spacious unit. On the walls were stunning murals and everything looked brand new. I was wheeled into a huge room that had large windows, with a single cot in it! Could it be that this was my room, and that I didn’t have to share it? Yes, indeed, this was the case. I glanced around the room and spotted more murals for my own pleasure and through the windows I could see natural light, that I’d not been accustomed to. And to boot, through the windows I could see windows beyond that held the passages of the hospital. What was so awesome about this is that visitors could wave at me from those passages. I was really excited about this, as I was hoping that people who can’t come visit me can at least come and see me and wave to me.

My Mom and Dad then went on an exploratory walk through the new unit, and greeting some of my old friends that were still in the unit – Kyle, Isabella, & the twins, and one or two new inmates that we’d not met before. They also discovered that my room sported an en suite bathroom. I believe my new room here is even bigger than my room at home – having heard that I may actually want to stay here; also, I don’t have to fend off any cats here!

Well, enough about my surrounds, and back to my condition. I had a good first night at Morningside, and awoke late in the morning to discover that my heroine, Dr Hay, had come to see me. Apparently she was so excited to see how I was doing that she rushed here this morning. After looking me over, and checking out my stats, she opted to have me extubated and removed from the ventilator. This was done at about noon – what a wonderful feeling not having a tube in my throat anymore. I am being kept on oxygen though, to ensure my saturation remains acceptable. I think to make too many changes at once would be risky. The next steps will be to monitor me very closely to ensure that I cope off the ventilator and then start putting on much needed weight. I’m still sporting 7 stitches in the back of my head from the craniotomy, and these will also need to be observed carefully.

Being off the ventilator has offered me the advantage of being held by my Mom and Dad again, which I really missed for the past two weeks. I spent the afternoon snoozing in my Mom’s lap while my folks played Scrabble. I figured this is what it must be like at home, my snoozing with my Mom and Dad while they lovingly play games, watch TV or read books while tickling my tummy or my back, with a cat peeping at me from a short distance away, and Roxy and Jake patrolling in the garden.

Sadly the late afternoon was a little rough for me. For some reason, unbeknown to everyone, I started getting really nauseas and threw up most of my feed. I also started coughing a lot, which isn’t really a bad thing to get all the gunk out of my lungs. It is unpleasant, but a necessary evil. Early this evening, I started getting an immense headache, probably from the craniotomy, and as the last bit of morphine that I was getting during the past week started wearing off. I became generally miserable, being nauseas, headachy and pretty hungry, as I was NPO (nil-per-mouth) for the morning in order to be extubated, and then when I did eat, I couldn’t keep anything done. My wonderful Mommy held me in her arms for the remainder of the evening. Eventually I did settle and I drifted off to a peaceful sleep.

Lots of love, hugs and kisses,

Jarrod J

Figure 1 The entrance to Unitas

Figure 2 Just before the move

Figure 3 Dad being creative taking a picture from the ambulance of Mom in the wing mirror

Figure 4 Watch out Sandton, here I come!

Figure 5 Being settled in to my new room

Figure 6 Dad taking a well deserved snooze yesterday afternoon

Figure 7 My room!

Figure 8 My Daddy!

Figure 9 Panoramic view of the new NNICU

Figure 10 Mr Mouse hangs around in my room

Figure 11 Some more murals

Figure 12 The ‘viewing window’

Figure 13 My bedroom from the ‘viewing window’

Figure 14 The most inspirational mural

Figure 15 Settling in for the evening

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3 Comments on Who Moved My Cheese?

  1. Oliver says:

    Hi Jarrod
    Now don’t get too accustomed to that nice new room. You have a much better one waiting at home. Glad to hear that you are back in Sandton. Your goal is now to take in lots of food and grow strong so that you can get to see more of that big wide world outside which you’ve had a few sneak previews of on your trips to Pretoria.

    We are so glad to hear that the operations have been successful and that you are now getting weaned off all of that machinery. Imagine how good it will feel to be able to roll around in bed without tubes and wires everywhere.

    We are all praying for you.

    Lots of Love
    Oliver, Gillian, Ryan and Kirsten

  2. Gillian Lederer says:

    Hi Jarrod

    Ditto to the above. I can’t think of anything to add except hurry up, grow bigger and go home …. its about time 🙂


  3. Bronwyn says:

    Good morning cuddlebunny

    So glad to hear that all went so well, and that you are back at Morningside, your new room looks awesome, but like Oliver said, don’t get too used to it, you have a lovely room waiting for you at home.

    Well keep strong little one, time to get bigger and stronger so you can go home.

    Love to all
    Bronwyn, Gary, Brannon, Rhianne

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