Tubes - the epic

Just when we were set to get back to normal, wouldn’t you know an ice storm hits? Caroline’s day care actually had a two hour delay this morning, so we went to my office for about 90 minutes to wait it out before attempting to shuffle her through the rain and ice to school. What a change in the year since winter weather or a fever brought her to my office! She was amusing herself playing with a broken office phone, coloring in her coloring books, enjoying snacks that did not come from my body, and flirting with every single senior brave enough to drive in.

When we pulled up to school she started shouting “Sara!” “Sonny!” “Nickle!” She cruised right on into her classroom and as soon as her coat was hung she was involved in a brutal pulling match with Julianna over a doll stroller. No yelling, no hitting, no “MY STROLLER” even, just a pulling back and forth and a perplexed look. It took me nearly an hour to do the round trip with the weather out there, but I cannot fathom getting any real work completed with her here AND I also cannot imagine paying for yet another day that she won’t be there. Our nice little family holiday time cost us approximate 300 bucks.

Let’s talk about those tubes shall we???

We arrived in MA on Monday night around 9:30. We had traveled with her in her pjs and scooped our sleeping beauty right into her bed at Kiki and Papa’s. We were out of the house and en route around 6:30 and arrived at ambulatory services before our assigned 7:35 arrival time. Kiki had offered to come with us and we were happy to have the company. Caroline was a champ in every sense of the word. She allowed the bracelet placement, the blood pressure monitor, the heart rate monitor on her thumb, and even a wardrobe change into the cutest pair of scrub pants which thanks to Keeks we have at home in our pj drawer. I elected to be the parent to go into the OR with her and I was really glad they had prepped me ahead of time.

I should say here just how pleased I am that we opted to drive all the way to Boston for this. From start to finish the ENT team was wonderful and though I did have some "what kind of a crazy mom am I to drive her up here for silly tubes" thoughts leading up to the occasion, all that melted away as soon as we arrived. From the toys in the waiting room (we'll overlook the TERRIBLE Television that barely came in) to the baskets of books and amusements in surgical triage I reminded myself that there had been a reason we had chosen so long ago to seek out care at Children's. Sure, there was the not so nice lady at the last appointment and there was a miscommunication about whether or not Caroline had in fact had a dose of Tylenol pre-op, but all of that matters little when I can contentedly reflect on her overall experience and how pleasant and easy it all was for her. Maybe I am just a hospital snob (I totally am), but I really feel that we made the right choice for Caroline.

So - prepped and ready. I now know what a husband feels like donning scrubs and a silly hat to head into a c-section. That is to say - you do not notice the outfit at all.

We chose Strawberry flavored anesthesia on Caroline’s behalf and after just a couple tries and some being given to her Curious George she accepted its placement over her nose and mouth. Within 30 seconds she was limp in my arms, her legs extending, and breathing low and labored. Kissing her goodbye was tough, but I felt secure that she was in good hands and would be back in mine soon enough.

The procedure went well and I would guess that we were in with her about 30 minutes later. Our recovery nurse asked if she was always this good-natured before sharing that after a brief wake up Caroline had rolled over onto her belly, stuck her tush into the air, found her thumb and went back to sleep. That’s Caroline.

Recovery went well, she snuggled with me under some blankets and drank an entire cup and a half of juice before we got her dressed in comfy pjs and got the ok to go home. She was doing great until she vomited all over herself at the Route 20 exit in Waltham. We pulled over and I hopped in back. She was sick twice more and I had completely run out of blankets and towels to catch it in by the time we got back to Kiki’s house. (we had to learn how to clean the carseat at some point right?!) She is her mother’s daughter, “don’t talk to me, just hold my hand.” We distracted her with the horse farms on the way home to try to keep her awake, but even horsies were not impressive enough to make her smile. But then, just like that she was better. She requested “more cookies,” ate a light lunch, and was running around asking Kiki where the tree went in no time. She slept most of the way home and when we pulled into the driveway it was as if we were arriving home from a regular weekend away. She ate a good dinner, watched a couple movies, and she hit the hay pretty much on time.

We are so proud of how she handled the procedure and how easy the recovery seems to be, except of course for the dreaded ear drops which I have decided must be made of acid given her reaction. No amount of pretending to put them in mommy and daddy’s ears seems to help.

We are ever so grateful for Kiki. She always asks the right questions we don’t think to ask, preps us for what to expect, and provides comfort to our little girl. What a blessing in our life. With her help we were able to get her into nice dry pjs and clean up the vomit covered blankets and clothing AND car seat underpad before heading home. Thanks for being there!!!


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