Monday, August 8, 2011

It's Surgery Day

Well this day has come. Back in March I thought this 4 month break would go by so slow. But boy was I ever wrong. This past 4 months has flown by so quick. I can't believe surgery is here already. But this means that we're that much closer to this Nevus Journey being put behind us.
We got "the call" on Friday night, actually, instead of last night saying that we were surgery #1 today so we needed to be at the hospital at 6am for our 7:30am surgery. Dustin took the call & was told: Brooke couldn't have anything to eat after midnight, only milk up until 3am, clear liquids until 5am, & to be at the hospital at 6am.

At 2:30am Brooke woke up so we gave her about 2 ounces of her bottle & put her back to sleep. We woke up bright & waaaay too early at 5am, got dressed, grabbed our bags, got a very sleepy Brooklyn, & headed for the hospital. We got there at 6:01am, went to the Ambulatory Surgery dept, & waited for everyone to come in & see us. Brooke was having a ball while we were waiting. She was dancing on the bed, running around, playing peek-a-boo, & posing for pictures. She was just a doll!

The first VIP to come in was Dr. Bauer. He told us the plan & was on his way. Then in walked the RN that was training to be a Nurse Anesthetist. She asked us a few questions & then asked when her last feeding was. We told her that at 2:30am she had whole milk. Blank stare. Uhhhh, apparently that wasn't the "right" answer cause she asked us again...& again. And then she left the room. Then the RN came in & asked us a third time when she ate last. AGAIN we told her that we were told she could have milk up until 3am so we gave her about 2 oz at 2:30am. And then that nurse left. A little while later the anesthesiologist came in & said that because it wasn't 6 hours (it had been 5) that she'd had something to drink, that we would have to wait an hour for the surgery. I'm not a huge fan of this anesthesiologist in the first place, but when she started rubbing it in that it was only 5 hours & not 6...and looking at me like I was an incompetant mother, that's when I got mad! I then explained FOR THE FOURTH time that we were told 3am!!!!! We were told that she couldn't have milk past 3am & clear liquids until 5am. But of course she didn't believe me. And here I was just taking the word of my husband...who was the one that took the call. So she was obviously annoyed that the very first surgery of the day would now be starting an hour later. UGH!

So while I sat there feeling pretty upset that I was the one that caused their entire day to be pushed back by a whole hour, I just held my little Brooklyn while she fell asleep in my arms. I felt horrible that Dr. Bauer was just in there & said "I'll see you soon", & then it was moved back an hour. I felt horrible cause I KNEW that the anesthesiologist was just saying all sorts of bad things about how horrible of a mother I was cause it was 5 hours & not 6 hours since she'd eaten last; and I HATE it when people talk bad about me! And I felt horrible cause I was just postponning the inevitable.

So we sat there for an hour, just waiting for time to pass. Thank goodness that Brooklyn fell asleep cause I don't know what I'd have done if she had started getting hungry & mad. At 8:10am the nurse came in & gave Brooklyn some pre-surgery calming medicine, as I like to call it. Then at 8:15am they came in & we walked to the holding area where you wait right before it's time for them to take you to surgery.

 Waiting with our cape on!!

A little giggly cause of the drugs!

Right at 8:30am, on the dot, they came & got her & took her back. We took our typical, sad, crying walk to the cafe, got a coffee & danish, then rushed back to the waiting room. Don't ask me why I always rush back to the waiting room, but I do. I know surgery is going to be a while, but I still feel like I need to be in that waiting room the entire time.

We got there, checked in, & then about 10 mins later (at 9am) we got a call that they were just beginning. So we sat...& waited...& sat...& checked the screen...& waited some more. Dustin went to the cafeteria & grabbed some milk for Brooke when she woke up & by the time he got back we only were sitting there about another 5 mins when Dr. Bauer came in. It was 9:50am! Holy quick surgery!!! He said that, of course, everything went well, Brooke was doing well, & there wasn't one problem at all. We went back to our seats in the waiting area & gathered up our stuff & then got the call that it was ok for us to go see her. Usually they only allow one person at a time. Even in March when it was just the 3 of us that went to Chicago, they still only allowed me to go back. But this time we both grabbed our stuff & started walking down the hall. I did say really quick to the waiting room volunteer "It's ok that he comes too, right?" & she said that it was so we didn't pass go or collect $200!!! We just went! This was Dustin's first time getting to go to the PACU so it was his first time putting on the painters outfit. LOL He wasn't liking it too much. ;o)

He wasn't mad in this picture, even tho it looks like he is. I just caught him off guard with the picture!

We got in & she was sleeping away. Compared to her 2 previous surgeries, she looked GREAT. I couldn't get over how fantastic she looked. Besides the dressing on her head, she honestly just looked like she was sleeping & it was any other morning.

Her vitals were great so shortly after we got in there they took the oxygen off to see what her level would stay at. It was at 98-99% so that was great. Brookie just slept, & slept.....& slept.....& slept some more! This was by far the most she'd slept after surgery. She didn't even stir a bit! Since she was sleeping so soundly we just kept her in the crib. So Dustin & I just sat there in the chairs right next to her. If she'd move her big toe we'd both pop up out of our chairs & stand next to her! But then she'd not move again so we'd sit back down. Then she'd take a really big deep breath & again we'd jump out of our seats to see how she was, but again, she wasn't waking up. After an hour or so the nurses kept telling us that she needed to wake up, so we started tickling her foot, rubbing her face, taking the blanket off of her...but it didn't help! She must have been one tired little monkey.

After a while she decided to stir a little & that's when the nurses decided that she was ok to go to a room. I sat in a wheelchair & carried her while they pushed us to our room. We got there & I wanted to keep holding her, so I sat in the chair in a corner & just held her, waiting for her to wake up.

She finally started to open her eyes & I thought she was hungry. The nurse didn't want her to have milk yet, but was happy to give her some Pedialyte, which she drank in about 2.3 seconds. The nurse then said it was fine that she had her bottle. She would doze in & out while drinking her bottle, but she never cried.

Drinking her Pedialyte with her arm restraints & BP cuff on...poor girl! She was SUCH a trooper!!

She did fuss about 2 times, but as soon as I would re-position her, she'd be fine. And then back to sleep she went. Literally hours passed & she wasn't moving a bit. She was perfectly fine, but she just didn't want to wake up. By this time, my mom, Cali, & brothers came by to see how everything was going. (My dad had a baptism so he had flown back to MT & was coming back to Chicago during the surgery.) I needed to go to the bathroom & Dustin was down getting more milk from the cafeteria so I, very quietly & carefully, handed Brooke to my mom. Well that awoke the sleeping giant! Brooke did NOT like it that someone else had her, even though it was Oma. She screamed, & cried, & screamed some more until I'd taken off my painters suit, went to the bathroom, & came back out. As soon as I grabbed her again, back to sleep she went!

Things were pretty uneventful so my mom, Cali, & brothers left. They went swimming & then had to go to the airport to pick my dad up. I needed to get up & move so I laid Brooke back in her bed to sleep. She was so peaceful laying there with her arms out to the side...Straight out to the side because of the arm restraints that were on. She slept for a long time. The nurse said we could go as soon as she was up & acting ok, so around 2:30pm Dustin & I decided to start trying to wake her up. We had been watching movies on the TV & playing games on our phones until they both died & were charging up again!

So we started waking her up slowly. I'll never forget this as long as I live.... I was standing more towards the head of the crib & Dustin was sitting in the chair. Brooklyn started stirring a little bit & Dustin says to her "Hiiiii Broook-ieeeee". She laid there with her eyes completely closed, raised up her right arm straight in the air, waved with her fingers, & laid it back on the bed! It was hilarious. That's when we knew she was awake & just being a tired, lazy girl! She finally opened her eyes & gave us a nice little smile & then started trying to sit up. She pretty much sat up all by her self...& then just sat there, looking around as if to say to herself "Where the heck am I & why is my head heavy again?".

Daddy & Brooke talking

Very soon after she sat up she was wanting those darn arm restraints off. I hate those things anyways cause she's pretty much a houdini & can touch her head with them on. So I took them off & just stayed right there with her making sure she didin't touch her head. I don't know if she just knows not to touch it or what, but she didn't even think about touching her head or her dressing at all. It was nice for a change!! The nurses came in cause it was change of shift & they said that she needed to eat something & then she could go home. They gave us a menu & said to order anything we needed for ourselves & for her. So we got her some mac & cheese, chicken strips, & yogurt (cause we knew she'd have to be in the mood for at least one of those things), & then got me a burger (Dustin wasn't hungry). About 10 mins later we got 2 meal trays - both were chicken sandwiches, one with fries, the other with mashed potatoes, & both with a pop (See next blog post about that one!!!!!) and Brooke's food was there too. Totally not what we ordered, but it was just fine.

They forgot the milk so Dustin made his 3rd trip down to the cafeteria for more milk while I started feeding Brooklyn some food. Boy was she ever hungry! She downed a good half of the mac & cheese, almost 1 whole chicken strip, & TWO things of yogurt. For my little itty bitty Brooklyn....that was a LOT! The nurses came in & got a kick out of how messy she was when she was eating...but hey, at least she was eating!

All cleaned up - topping it off with some milk

They decided that she was doing so fantastic that she could go so they got our discharge paperwork, we packed up, & left!!! We went to Walgreen's, filled up her 3 scripts, & headed back for the hotel exactly 12 hours after we left for the hospital.

We made it back to the hotel about an hour before my family came back from getting my dad. And by that time Brooke was up & walking all around again! I tell you what...she's simply amazing. Her drains were draining a lot so we changed them every 4 hours, along with giving her the antibiotic 3 times a day. At 7pm she fussed for about 10 seconds & I'd realized that she hadn't had any pain medicine all day, so I gave her Tylenol & she was fine after that!!!

All-in-all, if we had to have surgery today (which we did) it was the absolute best case scenerio that we could have asked for. Brooke did amazing, Dustin & I did amazing, the nurses (as always) did amazing, & of course good ole Dr. Bauer did AMAZING!

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