Twas the night before surgery #10, when through most of the house -- not a creature was stirring (...shockingly at 8:15 p.m.). Andi's gone to snuggle into hopefully a deep slumber with her Poppa and Ginga. They came from Alabama to be here for her surgery. Tomorrow, early, early, early morning - we will jet over to the hospital for a 6 a.m. check-in, surgery will start at 7:30 a.m. It is scheduled for a 2 hour surgery block. Recovery can be 1/2 hour - 1 hour for her to wake. It will be a day of close monitoring, watching, working to manage pain, and get food down her comfortably. I know if there are narcotics used in surgery, the stomach will be slow to wake. However, for Andi's surgery - they aren't planning to use any heavy narcotics. Probably just some good ol' fashioned Michael Jackson preferred Propofol.
In a perfect world that wasn't run by the insurance companies and the good ol' fashioned dollar. It really would behoove the medical community to consider this option: surgery on the kid - give the parents a Propofol nap instead of sitting in a horribly stale, sterile, uncomfortable chair in a public waiting room while the Dr's do their thing. Instead, let's give the parents a deep rest - so that when they awake they can perform dance rehearsals for 'This Is It' or simply be the medical parent that isn't totally exhausted with fear, anxiety, and more stress than one face deserves. Instead of 'Haggard, party of 1' -- perhaps we can reward them with the quick spa experience, minus the spa. I can't tell you how many of my CHARGE family members would kill for a solid, worry-free nap. I mean... actually, most people I know would kill for that. Why can't it be a perk to the torture being bestowed your child.
For those families living in the hospital. You have rounding Dr's with students (in a teaching hospital like the one we were in) and then you have nurse rounds (depending on the severity of the floor or wing you're in) and you have all these people "rounding" to check on the patients. Where's the bar cart lady to make "rounds" or even a hospital sponsored happy-hour mingler for parents in the parents lounge? Every parent on the floor is going through their own personal level of hell... let's commiserate together over a cocktail and do the 'what you in for?' instead of just grunting at one another on the elevator in pure zombie mode? I mean, it really could be a useful networking tool for people living their different levels of hell... In our four+ months of hospital living, I think we only talked to one other family. I didn't leave the room much except to go get a coffee at Starbuck's or a fruit/cheese snack. I think I went to the cafeteria twice. I think I went to the parents lounge (where they had free coffee, water, ice, and a table to chill at) ... twice. I also went to the kids play area twice. I was a zombie and my focus was on Andi... but even then - I still suggested the bar cart parent mingler to my nurse friends.
So... ideas aside... I can't help admit that I'm pretty petrified about tomorrow. I just imagine the Dr. drilling a hole behind each of Andi's ears and I go a little cuckoo. Another anesthesia, her 10th. Another procedure... another surgery. But I think the thing I dread the most is saying goodbye to her before they put her under. Saying, 'see you on the other side, baby girl!' The what if's and the what the f's will rule the noggin' - just like they always have. When she was younger, I mean, like less than four months old... it was easier to let go, and leave her with the anesthesiologist. I believe it was her 3rd surgery, the Pediatrician's nurse (whom we love) carried her to the pre-surgery room. But now that she's Andi -- lover of all things music. Sassy and zesty with a side of sauce -- I think saying our goodbye's tomorrow will be tougher.
I am glad that Poppa and Ginga are here. It not only makes Andi happy - it soothes some of my nerves. I hope they know their 'showing up' means more to all of us -- not just Andi.
Tomorrow is operation hearing improvement. It's go-time.
Please send your best vibes to our lil' big girl. (She's prideful about being a "big" girl -- so let's send our BIG GIRL your best energy!) ... and know that might be vodka in Mommy's sippy cup! Walk a block in my shoes, bitches! :)