Yesterday morning, we ventured to DuPont for a breathing test in their PFT Lab. (PFT stands for Pulmonary Function Test.) Isaiah's been doing remarkably well in terms of his breathing....he hasn't needed his C-Pap, he no longer sleeps with his pulse ox (unless he's sick) because we don't need to monitor his oxygen levels....but last year we did this test and found out that Isaiah would benefit from oxygen when flying in an airplane.
Last year's test was traumatizing...for everybody involved. Isaiah cried. I cried. Techs teared up. The doctor held Isaiah's iPad to no avail....Apparently after we left that day, their team sat down and said "how can we do this better?" (I would have thought they would have chalked it up to a grumpy and overwhelmed one year old (and a crazy over-emotional mama)....but nope, they are awesome and decided to reevaluate things. They now test one less aspect than they did before. The mask isn't as invasive and intimidating (last year's mask was covered in extra sensors and tubes)...
When we arrived yesterday, it was like they were waiting for us as this was the real test of their changes. We were a bit more prepared this time...Isaiah is a year older, and although he does still cry and fight things, he handles them better than last year...even if it is just slightly better. He has his wheelchair and thats what I try to keep him in when he sees his doctors and does tests as it gives him a sense of being in control of the situation. Daddy came along to give Isaiah a second, familiar and loving face as he sat during the test. I also let him do as he wishes on the iPad, which is his favorite thing in the world...and that's really what got us through this year's test.
The test is just ten minutes. They basically lower the oxygen concentration in the mask and have him on a pulse ox to monitor his oxygen and heart level.
and once he was calm, he did beautifully. They were able to get accurate, fantastic readings. Isaiah sat mostly at 97%. He did blip down to 93% once but it was so quick and not a concern.
and so we are so excited because ISAIAH DOES NOT NEED OXYGEN when we fly to Florida this summer! Last year, along with his stroller, travel highchair, car seat, car seat base (which we should have checked...lesson learned), and our regular carry ons for us and Isaiah (cough cough diapers, toys, SO MUCH EXTRA baby needs), we had to carry an oxygen concentrator (which was much bigger than we were anticipating) and a bag along with it (which held our pulse ox machine, extra probes for that, oxygen cannulas, tubing, etc etc etc). I am exhausted just thinking about it.
This time we are cutting the carry ons down, cutting the high chair (well that'll go into our checked baggage) and car seat base, and trying to go lighter....except well, we are bringing his wheelchair along with the stroller (and both will be gate-checked).
I keep seeing bringing both as a positive....At the airport, he can travel around in his wheelchair and we can use his stroller to carry our carry ons and car seat. ;-) We weren't planning on bringing his wheelchair, but with Isaiah's independence and our comfort level with Disney World (yep, we're going back!), we want to have it for evenings here and there at the parks where we'll plan to just have dinner and meet a few characters. We also want it for around where we are staying so he can have some down time in it. (Last year we'd put him in the crib to unwind midday and he would just roll around and yell like a maniac. SO MUCH ENERGY from so much to see! The chair will get that energy out so he can get a good nap...hopefully....in my dreams.)
Seriously though....can't you just picture him wheeling up to Mickey? (ahhh my heart is bursting)
Honestly, I was not happily anticipating going through everything to get to Orlando and home....but now that we don't need to bring oxygen because our baby is so strong??? Let the count down to summer begin...Bring on our Disney trip!
and thanks to the awesome team at DuPont/Nemours for changing that breathing test to make it less scary for our Isaiah. You guys rock.