Wednesday, January 18, 2012

And we're done!

Well Tera came through with flying colors today.  She charmed every nurse, doctor, and resident that came to see her and even some that were just walking by while we were in the pre-op area this morning.  She clapped and smiled for the nurses and was a perfect little girl sitting and waiting for the surgery to start.  This was especially impressive considering she hadn't eaten anything since 7:00 pm Tuesday night and it was 8:30 am when she was scheduled. The procedure took about 40 minutes and her doctor came out and told us everything had gone well and that they had only found some little white spots on one of the scopes.  He explained that all it meant was that it was indicative of a chronic cough, which she has, and some aspiration, which I suspected.  He also explained there was no need for treatment of it and that everything else looked good.  They did warn us that she would be cranky after coming out of the anesthesia, but all things considered she did pretty well. 

I'm so excited to see in the coming days if we notice any differences in her.  Even if the changes aren't that noticeable though, just knowing she can hear just makes me feel so much better. 

One of the things I have to admit I thought about today was how incredibly lucky we are.  Ten months ago I don't think I would have thought that, but as I sat at Children's Memorial Hospital today, knowing what so many other children are going through while there, the fact that we were just there for tubes really put things in perspective.  One of the things that made me think about this was when we were sitting in the post-op room with Tera waiting for her to keep down her liquids and be discharged.  After talking with the nurse a little about Gigi's Playhouse and how she had participated in the Gigi's Walk/Fun Run, she asked us if Tera was getting open heart surgery.  See, the interesting thing about the Down Syndrome community is when you meet a child and their family, one of the questions is usually not whether the child has a heart defect, but instead, what the defect is.  We told the nurse that despite the fact that she was born with two holes, she was only being monitored and she's never been in danger of needing surgery on her heart.  She then gave us the hospital bracelet from Tera's ankle and told us to hold onto it because it may be the only one she ever needs.  At that point, while I doubt she'll never need one again, I realized how lucky we are that open heart surgery hasn't been something we've had to worry about.  I realized how incredibly common it is in this new community we belong to for open heart surgery to be a part of a family and their experience.  So we left the hospital, with our little girl and her new holes in her ears, thankful once again for what we have.

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