Friday, June 11, 2010

Unhappy Day

Today was a big day for TOT---endoscopy to confirm Celiac Disease. Type 1 diabetics get the star treatment at National Children's Hospital surgery center: first cases of the day. Seven-thirty procedure? Please report to check-in with ID, Insurance card and signed consent by 5:45 AM. yeah. Did us the big favor of dodging most of the commuter rush into DC---yay?

They know their stuff---had the diabetes management down for the morning, let her wear her diabetes bracelet, all that. We had a little time then in this kick-ass play room: Wii stations, books, movies, art and craft supplies; great stuff. And what else? Not one, but TWO full time nurses that are "child life specialists" whose job is to make sure the kid knows what is going down and is happy about it...and if not----hey--here's a free dolly for you! But seriously: while we waited for the team to be all ready, the child life specialist brought TOT some brand new, pointy crayons (to keep!). She also brought to TOT the face mask that they were going to use for the first phase of anesthesia induction---the idea being, have her sniff some happy gas and go to sleep then place all of the IV lines, leads, catheters, bite guards and get the procedure going. This mask, the critical piece in taking TOT from awake and a little worried to ready for a procedure that she'd have no knowledge or memory of, this they allowed her to decorate with stickers and paint with bubble-gum perfumed oil to make the (nasty smelling) gas smell GREAT! Not so much. It also kind of burns. And it kind of feels like you're suffocating.

So with the nurse anesthetist, the surgeon and the anesthesiologist, Rob and I walked Lindsay down the loooong corridor to the procedure room. Which was very cold and cramped and full of odd things. And you know---there is just something really scary about that bed (table) right smack in the middle surrounded by all those things to be used on you for purposes little understood. She balked. She backed as far against the wall as she could. I swept her up in cradled arms and lay her on the table with her favorite bunny and they put the mask over her face as she began to cry. And cry. And kind of scream. And finally, she flailed her arms and kicked at the face of one person standing by and before the kick was landed, it was caught at the moment she fell off to sleep.

I'm a cool cookie about things clinical but her fear, making her face it, that was not something I'd like to do again.

The surgeon walked us to the waiting area (note: no Wii or movies for the waiting Moms and Dads...helloooo? Where are MY new crayons? How about a little woozy gas?) and asked if I would be OK (he's a terrific doc). Thus assured, he went back to get the party started. It was ten, maybe fifteen, minutes until he came looking for us to report out on the procedure. He showed us pictures of her innards, which looked exactly like they should, healthy or no. Just as he said, "Ok, we'll call with results next week. The recovery room folks will call you back just as soon as the OR staff report out---likely before she's awake", the buzzer went off and he walked us back to find Lindsay sitting up in her bed, pink cheeked and smiling, watching Nickelodeon.

She swore she didn't remember anything but as the day has passed she has asked questions about why certain things happened--things she claimed to have no recollection of when asked previously. Why couldn't we stay in the procedure room, the gas smelled so bad, and: it seemed to her that she was asleep for a looong time.

I'm so glad its over. I almost don't care what the results are: we'll adjust. I would simply NOT like to have another kid breathing gas through a mask again. I've said it before, I'll say it many more times: I am ten years older now than I was in February.

Oh---and for those following this plot line, our meeting at school finally got what we are due: Section 504 accommodations for school, both health and academic in addition to an agreement to keep her with her class cohort. That saga, dear readers, is one ugly story with a great ending---for another day.

In case you've been one of the fortunate people who have not yet been forced to ooh and aah over my latest piece of work please see this:

Interested folks can find details on my Ravelry page . Its a lovely, super soft merino wool stole; about 20 inches wide and 72 inches long---perfect for wrapping up against the fall/winter chill.


jill said...

Oh, my dear - I so wish none of you had to go through this.

As it is, I am glad that you are such a knowledgeable, levelheaded mom and that your kids are so articulate and great.

(((KHM and family)))

KHM said...

I get by with a lot of help my friends, Jill. Hugs returned... with music, coffee and knitting joy.

Don said...

Like other things in being a parent, sometimes we have to do what we dislike because it is for their own good. It doesn't make it any easier, but we have to do it.

Glad she made it through it. Sucks that a kid has to endure things like this.