My daughter Sasha finally had her enourmous tonsils removed yesterday, and she handled it like a champ. She is the type of girl that will have a panic attack when she scrapes her knee (we have to force her down just to wash the cut), so I was a bit worried that she would bite and scratch her way out of the hospital before surgery.
We took a tour of the hospital the night before the surgery, and that really helped her relax. I waited until the last minute out of laziness, but scheduling the tour on the eve of the surgery turned out to be extremely helpful. She had a chance to see the place, to play with the equipment, to pick out her flavor of sleepy gas (grape), and to get comfortable with the surroundings. It also helped that the nursing staff was extremely friendly and helpful.
After the tour to the hospital, she read Franklin Goes To The Hospital, a library book we picked out based on good Amazon reviews. I recommend it.
Sasha was all smiles and happiness the morning of the surgery. The guilt of deceiving her was starting to catch up to me. I felt like I was betraying her by not warning of the pain she would feel upon waking up. Watching her drift off to sleep under anaesthesia was really hard for me and my wife to handle… seeing her so vulnerable and innocent with the knowledge that 20 minutes later she would be in agony.
They brought us back to see her and it was worse than I imagined. She was shaking and convulsing in the nurse’s arms, choking on her sobs, grabbing at her throat, and worst of all, her face looked swollen and red, far from the peaceful dreamer I had left moments ago. It ripped our hearts out.
It wasn’t long before she was in her Mommy’s arms falling back asleep (see pic above). When she woke, she ate an entire popsicle. After a while, we went home, and she had another popsicle and a banana. For lunch, she ate a burrito and another popsicle. She was whiny and pitiful all day, but better than we had feared. Our other daughter had a runny-nosed cold, though, so we split them up at bedtime and let Sasha sleep with us.
It was a long night. The surgery meds were starting to wear off and Sasha was becoming aware of the pain again. She woke up this morning still miserable, and it’s been a struggle all day to get her to stay hydrated and medicated. Her throat is locked up, and the only thing that motivates her is being able to watch a Barbie DVD (good thing TV’s side-effects are neutral).
On the skeptic front, and you know I have to be skeptical of something, one of the doctor’s orders, via the nurse, was that she should avoid milk products because they will encourage the production of mucus. This is not true, and I questioned the nurse about it. She said, “Well, those are the instructions that the doctor would like me to give.”
This surgeon was very arrogant during my consultations with him, so I was happy when the nurse rolled her eyes a bit after that last quote – a minor victory for the skeptic dad.