He's even gotten over a few colds since cold & flu season started, including this most recent one which actually spread into his lungs and caused quite a lot of coughing and wheezing. He managed to overcome it though - with the use of regular chest physio & deep breathing exercises and regular ventolin masks; AND with the help of the new oils we've invested in, he was able to stay away from antibiotics altogether! I'm so excited that the oils were able to keep him from getting sicker and prevented the pneumonia from causing a drop in his oxygen levels. Usually that is what causes Tyson to need hospitalization, because his O2 sats are already lower than normal and his cardiologist wants him on oxygen if they drop below 80. With this past cold, he never dropped below 83 even while in a deep sleep. His energy levels did decrease a bit because he wasn't able to be too active without having a coughing spell. Once I started using the oils though, he stabilized and didn't get any worse! I'm so thankful for the chest rub made by doTerra. I know it kept him from needing the antibiotics. I still can't fully believe it myself, but the proof will be in what happens the next time he gets sick. Oh boy, I can't even begin to imagine how happy we'll all be if Tyson can remain hospital-free because of these wonderful oils!!! Is it too much to want him to remain antibiotic-free this winter too?!? I can't even imagine what that would be like for him!
Yesterday Tyson was still coughing with activity but he was still able to enjoy skating at the arena. His endurance wasn't as good, but he still had a very good time! Then we went to my parents' house for Santa Claus and he was in pretty good spirits again. Today he only needed physio and ventolin masks twice. I'm so glad he's better and we can get back into a more manageable routine with him. It was exhausting doing all that physio and oiling and flu bombing BUT it was SOOOO worth it! It has been helpful that the kids are home from school, because Braden and Merrick usually each took one turn with physio during the day. I think our biceps are growing with all that physio :)
So our year in review is a really good review! Once again we see God's hand in Tyson's life and in all our lives. He has protected Tyson from serious harm and has spared him from needing any further surgeries again this year. When Tyson was a baby, he had open-heart surgery in 2008, 2009, and 2010. Now it's been 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 - FOUR years since his last open heart surgery! Four full years without needing surgery. God is so good and we're so thankful for the 'break.'
Upcoming things for 2015 is another MRI in April to assess the small pulmonary veins and get another measurement on his heart's ejection fracture. Then his regular ECHO & cardiologist appointment in May to discuss the MRI's findings and what (if anything) needs to be done. We pray that Tyson's heart remains stable and doesn't decrease in function, and that the pulmonary vein stenosis does not progress.
I'd like to draw your attention to another blog for which I'm honoured to write. I love blogging on here because it's a good way to keep track of everything going on in Tyson's life. Many times I look back at what Tyson endured in the first few years and I think to myself, "Did that really happen?" I love reading back what I wrote and how God has molded and shaped our family to what He wants us to be.
I'm sure you all know how Cardiac Kids is very near and dear to us, since they provide us with wonderful opportunities for our family to go out and have fun. Do you remember the video we took part in? If not, you can view it here at the Cardiac Kids website. Make sure you visit the site and have a look around, there are a few familiar Kottelenberg faces on there!
Well the blog I've been writing for is also organized by Cardiac Kids, with the intention to raise awareness of CHD, provide information, and help other families in the same situation. I was asked to be a regular contributor to the blog and of course I said 'yes!'
My most recent submission was How To Be A Friend To A Heart Mom
I've also written Tyson's Story and Being A Heart Family.
So if you have time, check it out!
Wishing you all a wonderful holiday season
and God's blessings for 2015!