Friday, June 19, 2009

Surgery Day

Whups, it's been a while since I updated! Well school is out and summer is here, so I've had the boy underfoot more often, and I've been trying to get caught up on a lot of projects and get my house more organized. The biggest event of the last few weeks was this: Last week, my baby had surgery. He had his tonsils and adenoids out, wooo!

Poor guy has had problems with them for years, and certainly as long as he can remember. Tonsillectomy as an option has been on my mind for quite some time, but his pediatrician would never commit to recommending it. He always said that Duncan didn't get quite enough infections per year to warrant it, we should try longer-term antibiotics, yada yada. Surgery is a pretty major thing, no matter how routine the procedure, and without the backup of his medical provider I was very hesitant to commit. But when my poor baby got yet another case of strep, complete with fever, inability to eat, and utter tearful misery, I'd had enough. I went ahead and scheduled him for just after school let out.

It's always been a simple procedure, but I was still amazed. Most of the time went into getting down to the Children's Hospital early, getting processed, and meeting with the anesthesiologist, the surgeon, and the nurses who'd be looking out for him.

My worst moment - having to part ways at the OR door. They let me walk alongside the gurney until they reached the operating room, at which point they told me to say goodbye and go check in to the waiting room. I felt a fleeting moment of panic as they wheeled him in, like I wanted to grab him back and forget the whole thing.

My most amusing moment - I'd brought a book, I'd brought a Nintendo DS, but knowing he was in surgery, I instead did the only thing I had the attention span for...I put some meditation music in my mp3 player, sat crosslegged in a chair in the waiting room, and just started meditating, figuring he'd be in at least half an hour. So after about 15 minutes, I became aware that the person next to me was giggling uncertainly, and then someone tapped my hand, and presto! the surgeon was standing over me with a bemused expression, not sure whether to disturb me. I blurted out, "Already?"

So the surgeon, this ENT specialist who'd told me in consultation that Duncan was "borderline, could go either way, totally my decision" yada yada, told me the surgery had gone just fine and that Duncan's tonsils were actually quite large, his adenoids were scarred, and they were definitely obstructive. I actually felt so relieved to be vindicated, hell, I'd have done this long ago if a doctor had recommended it instead of letting me agonize over whether I was jumping the gun.

No great YouTube material or anything after surgery...the nurse told me she'd never seen a kid come out of anesthesia so quickly and smoothly. Apparently he'd told the first nurse that talked to him when he woke up that he was "bored". When I was allowed to see him he just sipped water and told me about how weird anesthesia had felt, that he had forgotten who he was for a moment before he went out, and occasionally sticking his tongue out and telling me things like "one side of my tongue feels bigger than the other" and "my leg feels funny". Once his IV fluids ran out, they took out the IV, let him get dressed, and gave him a sick bag for the ride home just in case.

Recuperating, tonsil-free!

He did get sick right after we got home; post-anesthesia and a long car drive just don't mix. But once that was out of his system he immediately began asking for food, and has made a very quick and reasonably comfortable recovery.

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