Cooper Update: January 11, 2012

I've hesitated to blog too much about Cooper but I feel the need to respond to the outpouring of care and support we have received. We are blown away by all the prayers, Facebook comments and shares, Tweets, texts, visits, food, gifts and calls. We are incredibly humbled & grateful. We are reminded of how blessed we are because of our biological families, our Highpoint Church family and the many friends from around town and out of town.

We realize everyone wants to know what they can do for us. The simple and best answer is to pray. Cooper's greatest need is for God's hand of grace and healing. We believe that God hears the prayers of His people. We believe God uses the creative minds and brilliance of medical technology to save and heal. We also know God can act above all human wisdom and simply heal in a miraculous way. So, when we ask for prayer we truly believe it is the BEST thing anyone can do for us and for Cooper.


1. Pray that Cooper maintain a normal body temperature (98.6)
2. Pray that the infection in his body and bloodstream is completely cleared.
3. Pray that Cooper can remain calm and not do any damage to his breastbone, which is extremely fragile from the infection and surgery.
4. Pray for Amanda, Drew, Wesley, Ford and myself as we do our best to care for Cooper and manage everything else.

The Backstory...
Exactly two weeks ago we brought Cooper to LeBonheur Children's Hospital in Memphis to have a routine heart surgery. Cooper was born with a VSD (Ventricle Septal Defect) AKA a hole in his heart. We have been monitoring his heart his whole life. Just before Christmas 2011 we discovered this hole was starting to cause other problems and we needed  to go ahead and have the surgery to fix it.

The surgery was textbook and successful. We had a few rough moments after surgery which was to be expected. Cooper quickly bounced back and started acting like himself again, just like the doctors said he would. However, Saturday afternoon, January 7th Cooper began to act very lethargic and cranky. We immediately began to worry that he had somehow damaged the site of the surgery. Our next step was a trip to the ER. After a chest X-ray and looking him over it seemed it was a "false alarm." By the time I got home with him he was trembling and feverish and miserable again. His fever only grew into the night and we knew something still wasn't right. We hoped he would get over it by morning. His fever subsided and we thought we were in the clear.

Sunday afternoon he was still acting lethargic so we took him to the Pediatrician's office. He told us we needed to get back to the ER. At the ER we began to piece together that there was more going on than simple post-surgery pain or fatigue. Over the next few days we discovered that Cooper had developed an infection. Thankfully this infection had not appeared to be in his heart but did create a serious issue to resolve. We started some high-power anti-biotics and after a CT scan found that he had a nasty "deep wound infection" growing in his chest. Another surgery was scheduled.

This morning we delivered Cooper to surgery expecting them to open the chest and drain the infection area. When they they opened him up they found infection all over his chest area. This required them to reopen his breastbone in order to clean out the infection. This was much more invasive than we expected. This also means that Cooper's recovery is much more intensive. One of our greatest concerns at this point is Cooper's breastbone healing correctly. The infection caused his breastbone to become soft. The analogy the surgeon used was that his breastbone was the consistency of cheese. As we anticipate Cooper waking up from sedation we fear he will thrash about and cause damage to this very fragile area.

Cooper has about 10-14 days of recovery here in the hospital. When we get home he will continue to receive intravenous antibiotics for a few weeks. In total Cooper has about 8 weeks of recovery to be fully restored to his previous activity level. Needless to say, we are not out of the woods yet. I am certain God is in control and somehow this all fits in His grand plan - i'm just not too happy about it. Right now all i want is for my son to be healthy, safe and back home. But for now we trust in God, we entrust Cooper to God and we will take it one day at a time.

Feel free to share your prayers, encouragements and comments to this post.
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Posted by at 10:12 PM
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