"I went to the woods because I wanted to live deliberately. I wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life;
to put to rout all that was not life and not when I had come to die, discover that I had not lived." ~Henry David Thoreau

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Devin's Surgery

Devin had his surgery today and I'm happy to say it was a roaring success. I've been nervous about it since we found out he would be having surgery one month ago, and I'm glad it is over. I've had a headache this week trying to "farm out" the older kids because today is a school day and everything surrounding it presented different obstacles. But, it all worked out and I am indebted to my sweet friend, Emma, for taking the three kids bright and early this morning while it was still pitch black outside. Bless her heart, I owe her a big one.

We checked into the surgery unit at 7:00. As many times as I have been to this particular hospital, it makes my heart ache each time as I see all the sick children. In the registration waiting room there was a little boy with dwarfism (cutest guy ever) and another girl connected to all kinds of tubes being wheeled around my her mom. There were also itty bitty newborn twins with who knows what happening to them. And then there was our guy who is healthy as a horse and strong as an ox, except for this one issue. I thanked my lucky stars that he was the healthiest kid in the room.

Devin loved being in this new place with all the new toys and things to explore. He loved the giant fish tank and kept "telling us" about everything in it. For a kid who hadn't had anything to eat or drink all morning (and he is one who yells at me for a cup first thing each morning because he's so thirsty) he was doing fantastically well.

He was then fully examined by the nurse practioner and he became very leery. Hhhhmmmm, new clothes? New people? Strange things being done to me? I sense a disturbance in The Force. Something bad is coming.

Cody wasn't able to come to the hospital when Devin had his tubes done last summer, and it was emotionally draining on me being a single mom that day. There is a reason why you have someone come with you when a loved one is having surgery. I was very grateful that he was able to be there today. Devin clung to him, and in my huge condition, it would have been pretty hard to chase him around and let him climb all over me.

The anesthesiologist was possibly the best one I've ever dealt with. He was so kind and compassionate and really talked to us. I am horrified and scared of general anesthesia, especially when it is happening to your baby. People are very naive when they think that GA is no big deal. Depending on the procedure being done, it's possbly the riskiest part of surgery. Taking a person to the brink of death, and then bringing them back...well there is a reason anesthesiologists get paid so much money. And I was glad Devin was in his care.

Because of his age and how much he hates to be away from Mommy and Daddy, they gave him a tranquilizer before the anesthesiologist took him back. That REALLY made him mad, but within two minutes he was punch drunk and didn't know which way was up. (see picture below)

It's very hard to see your child be wisked away and put into the care of complete strangers. You just have to pray and trust that those strangers know what they are doing and won't let anything bad happen in that mysterious OR. As Cody and I walked back down the hall, he put his arm around me and my eyes welled up with tears. I think of my dear friends and family members who have children with medical issues who have undergone numerous surgeries, and my heart hurts for them. I don't know how a parent could ever get used to that sick feeling in the pit of their stomach.

Even though my baby was being cut into, I couldn't ignore the insane hunger in my huge belly so we headed down to the cafeteria. They assured us that we would be paged if something went wrong, so we got some breakfast and I tried to talk about other things. We then headed back up to the waiting room...and waited. Finally Dr. Barnhart came in and told us that the surgery went very well and Devin was being taken to recovery. Whew! He said not only did the right side have a substantial hernia, but there was a hydrocele as well and that was causing a huge amount of the buldging. They went in through his belly button to check out the other side of the groin, and found an even BIGGER hernia there too. So they fixed everything and he shouldn't have anymore problems.

Only one parent was allowed in the first part of recovery, so we chose it to be me. Devin was like a caged wild animal as he tried to wake up. He did something similar after his ear tubes last summer, but this go around was a lot worse. Partly because he is older, and partly because he was under GA for so much longer. He was hyper and crying and climbing and kicking. His heart rate was sky high and he was hot, so they had him stripped down to a diaper. After about five minutes, I realized that he was going to send me into labor if I kept holding him, so I went out and traded places with Cody. Then after about twenty minutes they took Devin to a new room and I was able to go back in. He had calmed down a lot, but was still very unhappy. Eventually he started doing a lot better and we all got to come home. He is currently sleeping off his nasty anesthesia hangover and hopfully he will sleep all day and all night. The poor guy has had a rough day and we are all glad it's over!


Bel said...

Oh man bless your heart, it would be so hard to see your baby go through surgery specially when you are so pregnant. I am soooo glad it went well and like you said its over. Devin is such a cute handsome little guy, now he is all healthy and hopefully by tomorrow he is ready to run around again :) Best of luck!

Joey and Nettifer said...

Glad it went well! Let me know if you need any help - holy cow you are doing a lot being so close to having another baby!

Gina said...

I'm so glad everything went allright. I would be pretty scared too. Seeing him in that tiny little hospital gown made me tear up. :)