Life since surgery

The surgery itself went well, although Dr. Douchcanoe really lived up to his name, imo. We got up at 5:00, hospital by 5:30 (it’s only a few minutes away). They got us checked in and into the pre-op room relatively quickly. They have a play room back there (!) so we took him there to let him play until they were ready.

The Boy in his gown in the pre-op room

We warned them that he fights things that are on his face, so they gave him Ver.sed in order to make him calm – now that was funny. Less than 5 minutes and he was a woozy baby.

After the Ver.sed, woozy baby

They allowed one of us to put on the “bunny suit” and go back to the operating room with him. Aaron let me go, preparing himself to deal with a sobbing wife. I didn’t, though. It went REALLY well. The Boy attempted to crawl out of the crib when we left his daddy, but as you can see, he was in no position to actually get up. I pried him off the side and he just laid back. We walked down the hall to the room with nary a sound out of him. Put the fun mask on him so he could have the gas before the IV and in less than 10 seconds, he was OUT. I left, went back down the hall, and we began the wait. Aaron finally sent me to go eat and bring him back food, and I got buzzed that the doc wanted us. I hauled butt back to the waiting room at 9:00, but we weren’t supposed to be done until 9:30 so I panicked. Yes, at it being early. I’m funny like that. Well…Dr. D was supposed to do a consult with us afterwards…and we waited…and waited…and waited. They finally took us to see the Boy in recovery. He was sitting on a nurse’s lap, looking very confused. He wasn’t sure if he should cry or not, until he saw Aaron and LUNGED for him. He managed to pull off one of his arm splints in recovery too, which should have been my first clue as to how the next 3 weeks would go.

Eventually we got up to his room in the pediatric unit. It was 2:30 before the stupid surgeon FINALLY showed up to talk to us, for all of 5 minutes. Lord Almighty I hate that man. The nurses agree with me that he’s a misogynistic bastard, but that he’s good at what he does. Since he’s the only one in 300 miles, he damn well better be! At any rate, Aaron ended up holding the Boy for the entire day. He would NOT be put down and would NOT allow his mama to hold him for more than 30 seconds. Aaron’s shoulder is still recovering and we’re almost at the end of the 3 weeks. Thursday night I took the Boy and managed to get him to sleep on me, forcing Aaron to go home and shower and rest. He was covered in blood on one shoulder (drool from the Boy) and looked like the survivor of a zombie attack. Friday morning they unhooked the Boy from all the IV’s and tubes, to hopefully jumpstart the eating. He figured out that he was free, and that there was a door, and the rest of the day was spent walking around the pediatric unit and/or pulling him in the wagons they have.

The Boy in his wagon

Thursday and Friday we tried and tried to get him to drink but he refused. We wouldn’t be allowed to go home until he was drinking, and it was looking like we’d have to stay Friday night too. Around 6:00, our favorite nurse was in the room with us and said “If only we could make them understand that if they want to go home, all they need to do is start drinking. That’s it. Drink = home. But they just don’t understand.” Aaron offered the Boy his sippy and he promptly downed 2 oz! Tell HIM he doesn’t understand, will you?? We took him with us down to dinner (bad idea! He wants solids, thanks! And french fries!!) and he drank more down there. We got to go home at 8:00, since he’d downed 6 oz in less than 2 hours.

Since then, it’s been interesting. It took him a few days but he finally got back up to regular eating volume. He doesn’t drink much at daycare, but he does at home. Apparently it’s not unusual for kids to refuse to eat/drink at daycare, so I’m not overly worried. He’ll snap out of it eventually, most likely when he can eat solids and/or feed himself again. The splints don’t seem to bother him. We take them off in the morning to get him dressed and let him feed himself breakfast, and when he’s ready, he’ll point to them and hold his arms out. He REALLY doesn’t care. It is less frustrating for him not to be able to bend his arms than it is to have his hands removed from his mouth and to be told no. He hates being told no. HATES it. He’s learned how to bend his arms, unfortunately. He’s also learned how to put small things in his mouth without using his arms – he just puts whatever it is on the table and then bends his head and picks it up with his mouth! I am raising a smart toddler, apparently. I feel like I’m always 2 steps behind the puzzle that is “very smart child”. Don’t get me wrong – I’m glad he’s determined and creative and persistent. These are things I’ve been trying to teach him since the beginning, and I always knew it would bite me in the ass some day…I just didn’t think it would be so soon. This is not the time for him to display this talent! I am very glad that I removed all the toys that he usually puts in his mouth. What he’s getting in right now is paper, which probably won’t hurt him because it’s not hard or solid, really.

First day of daycare

As far as daycare goes, he seems to like it well enough. The first day, I took him to a different room where there were a few kids and a TV and slipped out the door. When I went to pick him up, he actually waved goodbye at another little boy before coming to me! And he “booped” (touch noses) his helper on the nose – not something he had done with someone not us. I guess he liked her! The subsequent days have been a little harder on the leaving. Last Wednesday he actually gave a full-blown cry as I was going. I forced myself to leave rather than comfort him, knowing it would be easier to calm him with me gone. When I went to pick him up, he was outside playing with the other kids and came booking across the yard to get to me. It’s a good feeling to know that even though he’s having fun, he still misses me.

Tomorrow morning we have the appt with the ear doctor to have his hearing checked and to discuss…stuff? The Boy is hearing better. He can hear whispers now, and he’s dancing to music more than he was. He’s experimenting with more sounds. Not everything is “mamamamamama” anymore. He doesn’t have any other words yet, though, and that’s slightly worrisome to me. The unrealistic part expected that he would just…burst into words once he could hear. I KNOW that’s unrealistic, but still…something would be good. He mimics our patterns, at least. Aaron had my pack of colored pens last night and rattled off the colors to the Boy while pointing at them…and we hear the Boy going “uh, uh, uh, uh, uh” as he points at the pens, in the same cadence. I know that realistically it’s going to take time, but I don’t know how much time. He’s really far behind in language skills and, while I know he’ll catch up eventually, I don’t like it. Lest you think it’s easy around here: he’s throwing more and more tantrums because he’s frustrated – between not being able to do what he wants and not being able to tell US what he wants, it’s not going well. As in, close to a dozen tantrums at day at least. This, from a child who is usually very easy going and quiet. He’s throwing them publicly. We’ve had to leave a few places because he’s started a tantrum, and we refuse to subject other people to that while they are eating. We hated it when people did that to us!

Friday is the all-important appointment. Aaron is going in to work a bit late so he can go with me. When we first scheduled it, he wasn’t working on Fridays but he changed his schedule to make me more comfortable with childcare and his dad’s health. So…yeah. We go in and hopefully get the all clear to take his splints off and let him eat solids. I am planning on putting some of his solid snacks into the diaper bag that morning so he can just have them in the office. I want to make SURE it’s going to be okay! I am so excited!

I apologize for the length of this post. The last few weeks have been really really busy, full of information. And I skipped a lot! Thank you for reading.

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  1. So glad that everything has gone well, overall! I’m looking forward to good news tomorrow and Friday!

    I’ll bet he will burst into words soon, he’ll catch up quickly once he gets used to it. The sooner the better, for your sake, with that many tantrums! Those are no fun at all.

  2. Good luck at the follow-ups!

    You know, I had some delayed talkers, and now they don’t shut up, ever. So. I’m rooting for “enjoy the silence while you can”. Though, I spent 3 hours in the car today with a child asking what each and every sign meant, what each construction worker was doing, and the infamous “are we there yet”. So. Um. Yes, I might be biased right now.

  3. I’m so glad to hear it went well, and that he’s adjusting to daycare well. N definitely drinks less at school/daycare setting than she did with me OR her babysitter, so I definitely think that’s normal.

    Now, color me dumb, or just swamped by work, but I’m not quite sure what it is the surgery was for.

    • He was born with a cleft palate all the way in the back, where your uvula is. We were supposed to have it fixed at 13 months but he got rotavirus and it was pushed off. We also discovered at that time that he had fluid behind his eardrums, so when they did the cleft palate repair they also put in ear tubes. 🙂

  4. I hope you get good news at his appointment on Friday! Looks like he’s doing well now.

  5. Anna

     /  September 11, 2012

    Hi, I’m new to here but I wanted to say that I’m glad that your boy is looking well after his surgery and doing ok with daycare. It took a long time for my daughter to adjust (3 months of moving between being upset at drop off and it being really hard, then it was, fine, then it was hard again) and she still doesn’t eat much there after a year, he will find his feet. x

  6. Sounds like things are going well.

    Can’t blame you for panicking when the doc called you in early. It’s a stressful time, and the news could be anything. If anything unexpected happens, you’re bound to worry.

    Language skills will come. He’s at the age for it. And, you know, both my nephews were late talkers. Their older sisters were speaking real sentences by 18 months, easy. The boys? Past 2, and still struggling. But once they learned, we couldn’t get a word in edgewise.

    Cole has some catching up to do, but he’ll make it. I’m sorry it’s so frustrating for you all. But hang in there. It gets better. You’ll make it. And then you’ll have a whole new world of things to worry about and fight with him over.

  7. Speaking from experience here keep an eye on his hearing, I have hearing aids because of chronic ear infections as a child. I’m only 34. If my parents would have paid closer attention to my ears, I wouldn’t be so young and have to have audiological devices.


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