Thursday, July 16, 2009

Dear Isaac

It's been a rough summer for you so far. Strep throat twice, and a week-long bout of tonsillitis. And that was just June. Last Friday the day finally came for you to have your tonsils taken out. You've been dreading this day for the last six weeks, despite our attempts to play up the ice cream factor. The doctor gave you a comic book to help you know what to expect. You kept it in your bed for weeks and memorized it. Every few days you asked me "how many more days until...?" And the day finally arrived.

I know tonsillectomies are quite routine and safe as far as surgeries go, but nothing is ever routine when it's your own child. We worried and prayed for you, of course. Some brethren from the ward came over Thursday night to help give you a blessing. On Friday morning, Daddy drove you to the hospital. You had to be there at 6:15, but you were surprisingly cheerful considering the hour and what was to come. I met you there an hour later. You were already back in pre-op, dressed in Bugs Bunny, Tweety Bird and Sylvester. The nurse (you had the best nurse - she was obviously born to work with kids) was checking your vital signs when I walked in. She said your heart rate sped up when you saw me. How sweet! You cradled blankie and kitty tightly and watched cartoons that we don't get on our channels at home. You were really excited to see Transformers, and didn't seem to care what was going on as long as no one got between you and the TV.

After meeting briefly with the surgeon and the anesthesiologist, and waiting some more, it was finally time for them to take you to the operating room. The nurse asked if you wanted to ride on the gurney or let her carry you. You said "I want my daddy to carry me." Sadly, that was not allowed. You looked up at us with that frightened Do I have to? look, but you bravely lay down on the gurney. You didn't cry or protest as they wheeled you out of the room and down the hall where Daddy and I couldn't follow. That was the hardest part for us - watching you go alone.

The surgery was very quick, and we were only in the waiting room for 25 minutes before the nurse came to tell us you were done. She had warned us beforehand that you might not be happy waking up from the anesthesia. "There are two kinds of kids," she said. "Some wake up like they're waking from a nap. Others wake up really, really mad." (We laughed - you're so gentle and easygoing, it was hard to picture you mad!)

Nevertheless, you turned out to be the latter kind. You were NOT happy at all, and we had to wait a short while before they would allow us to be with you in recovery. When we finally got to come back, the nurse was holding you and you were crying. She handed you to me, and made us comfortable in a reclining chair. You were pretty hysterical for a while. I don't think you knew where you were or what was going on. You just kept crying that your throat hurt and you didn't feel good. We sure hated to see you in so much pain.

Eventually we convinced you to take some pain medicine, and you spent the next hour and a half sleeping in our arms. Then we took you home - you were very glad to get out of there! You slept all the way home in the car, and for the rest of the day too. By evening you felt a little better, although you cried remembering how scared you had been and how it had hurt when they took your IV out. I cried with you. You cheered up some when you finally got your ice cream. :)

You've been living on pudding, bananas, and ice cream for the last week. (And not complaining about it, I might add.) We even went out Saturday evening for snowcones - a special treat. You've had rough moments, of course, but overall your recovery is much better than expected. It is wonderful to see you running around outside and playing. And you've said more than once how glad you are that it's over. "I'll never have surgery again!" you exclaim.

Isaac, I'm so sorry that you had to go through all this. It's a lot for a five-year-old little boy to endure. I am so very proud of you. You have been unbelievably brave throughout the last several months - doctor's appointments (sometimes three a week), various antibiotics, weeks of being too sick to do anything but watch movies.... Hopefully now you can get back to summer the way it should be. I love you!



Leah Marie said...

That made me cry. Bless his little heart. I hope he's doing better now!

Lara said...

Issac, I hope your feeling better!!!
Handing your child over to surgins is one the hardest things a parent can do. I've done it with Ash FIVE times and it doesn't get any eaiser. I think it gets harder. I'm glad that this experience is over for you.

chantal said...

My poor boo! I teared up when he said, "I want my daddy to carry me." I'm so glad he's doing better. The comic book was a great move on the doctor's part. My parents gave us books (usually Berenstein Bears) about scary things we had to do. It always made it better.

brettnkatherine said...

Wow - that post brought back memories! Sadie had her tonsils/adnoids out at 4yrs old and Cody had his out at 3! Sadie actually wanted steak for dinner the night we got home from the hospital! Sounds like Isaac was a trooper! Katherine

Wu said...

I had no idea all of this was going on! I am so sorry for little Boo! I hope he is doing better. I also was tearing up at the whole thing.