Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Surgery

Thankfully, our first surgery with Joshua is behind us. Now, if we can just get through the recovery period...

We arrived at the hospital very early yesterday morning with Joshua totally wound up and ready to go. We changed him into a miniature hospital gown with tigers on it, to his great delight, and he ran around showing off his new outfit to anyone who cared.

He looked, in my opinion, way too small to be in a hospital gown. My emotions went back and forth from anxiety about sending my baby into surgery, to a sense of awe at what modern medicine was about to accomplish in a very routine sort of way. The next time I saw him, his mouth would be completely whole and repaired and he would have the chance to learn to speak normally.

Our biggest worry at that moment was how he would respond to being wheeled away from us and into a room with strangers in masks. We expected that our last glimpse of him going into surgery would be of him crying and reaching out for us.

The nurses assured us he would be fine, but after watching him wreak havoc all over pre-op for an hour, they went off in search of the anesthesiologist and came back with something "to get him plastered."

Pretty soon he was stumbling around drunkenly, singing and giggling with an occasional hiccup and not a care in the world. "I get a lot of requests for that stuff," the anesthesiologist admitted.

And so as it turns out, he was wheeled away from us waving bye-bye and still giggling through the haze of his inebriated bliss.

But after surgery was a very different story. We were with him when he woke up, finding himself swollen and bloodied with the added insult of arm restraints. He was extremely angry and quickly found the strength to let us know about it. It took no less than three adults to administer medicine to him as he thrashed around.

Yesterday was a very long day trying to manage his pain, confusion, and dealing with the sheer force of his anger, and yet a walk through the hall of the pediatric unit quickly put things in perspective for me. How brief a moment we would walk through the difficulty that is a daily reality for many families.

Today is much better. Joshua has made a tentative peace with his arm restraints, but finding himself on a liquid diet today that someone else would have to feed him has been a bitter pill to swallow for our little control-freak. This too shall pass, or so I'm told.

God has been very good to us. We are thankful for modern medicine, good nursing care, and our access to them. We are thankful for family willing to watch our older kids (again!), and we are thankful for the many friends who have supported us with prayer and other practical things. AND we are very thankful that the arm restraints are coming off in nine days!

1 comment:

naimo family said...

so maybe the anesthesiologist could start selling that majic syrup on the black market and we could give it to our kids before sunday school. no more tears!

glad joshua is doing better today. we will continue to pray for the little guy.