Saturday, December 28, 2013

~*Ana's Surgery: The Long Version*~

Consider my mind blown! What a rapid and crazy two weeks this has been...and yet, at certain points it just drug by.

The short version was bit by bit on Facebook but I wanted to put everything together we can go back and look at it again. 

We had so many {mercy sightings} it was KRAZY!

Our morning started at 3 a.m. but I slept from 9-11pm and was UP and could not go back to sleep. That was a near fatal mistake...whoa, was I feeling it later! We showed up at 6:30 and went back to Pre-Op. We hung out there for awhile until I went back to the O.R. with her. 

Why do we always get those resident Anesthesiologists that have NO experience with children? He held the mask on her face and she started SCREAMING bloody murder! The attending Doc. threw the mask off the table (across the room really) and yelled at the resident "We are NOT doing it like this! We are not going to do it this way today!"  The room went silent as Analina simply breathed in the gas that was held near her mouth for her to breath in. The wonderful attending Doc. whispered lovely things to my Ana as I left the room. Every person in there was looking at the resident, who held his head in shame. I hope he learns that gentleness is the key with children.

We waited in the main part of the hospital, made friends with the most amazing receptionist who kept us updated, whenever we wanted, on her surgery. Our wonderful Pastor met us at 8 a.m. and stayed the entire time with us. He prayed over us and our sweet girl and waited with us all those long hours. We did not get back to see her until after 3pm.

She did great during surgery and while she did throw up post surgery she recovered quickly from that and was eating/drinking within hours. She was feeling mighty good...too good...I'll explain that in a moment. She was in PICU (Pediatric Intensive Care Unit) and was the stablest child there and she was there as a precaution. She had amazing staff in the PICU and made many friends, including a sweet Doctor who was adopted from Korea many years ago. She called Analina her "Asian Sista"....Ana, honestly, was the talk of the unit! 
Trying to stick out her tongue and keep her popsicle from coming back up.

small smile before the real pain kicks in.

Our view from the PICU. A beautiful park heavily used even in the winter.

Ana was mad as a hornet at not being able to get up. She had to lie flat for 48 hours and it was tough! They require this to guard against cerebral spinal fluid leaking, also, it could cause severe headaches. She now has one spinal cord but two hemicords.  She was on pain meds every two hours and neuro checks every hour so she had very very little sleep. 
Analina's name banner.

Trying to keep her occupied while flat on her back for 48 hours.

She took a turn and began developing a fever, was increasingly uncomfortable and was very nauseous. After much consulting it was determined that the implanted pain control ran out earlier than expected. She had the benefit of a spinal block and an implanted pain control which gave her and all her caretakers a false sense of what her true pain level would be when it wore off....I had no idea about the implanted pain control or I would have been all over the Neurosurgeons learning about it. The morphine was upped in duration and that began to help her be more comfortable. She was released from PICU to the regular floor.
View of the cemetery...

Our view from the regular floor.

When we reached the regular floor we did not mesh very well with the nurse. We had another moment of mercy and she went home and the new nurse was a great fit! The new nurse was on top of the pain meds and only came every 4 hours for Neuro checks and vitals. We got some much needed sleep!
Seeing santa walk in the door.

Listening to santa tell about her bear.


Sweet donor who enjoys giving back by bringing gifts to the kiddos.

No more pictures mom.

Love this girl in blue/maize!

Analina hates...despises...cannot stand the student Neurosurgeon. Whenever he came into the room she broke down into tears...he belittled her level of pain and belittled her. He said the morphine was to stop that day. The amazing nurses told us they would give her morphine whenever she needed until literally the stroke of midnight!

When Analina was ready we got her up and in the wheelchair. She took an hour long nap on my lap in the rocking chair and it felt so wonderful to hold my girl! She explored our floor and the playroom from her wheelchair. Daddy stayed on Wed. and I went home to our 6 other blessings. 
Lots of pain and lots of nausea.

When I left she had gotten the catheter out but was unable to urinate on her own. One of the most concerning possibilities of her spinal cord repair was that she could lose her ability to control her bowels and bladder. An ultrasound revealed a very full bladder and under threat of re-cathing she was finally able to urinate.
Painting in the Child Life room.

My spunky monkey!

Love my girl

On Thursday her pain was controlled enough to consider letting her go home but she was still not up and walking. They were not sure if it was simply residual swelling and weakness due to surgery or if it is a true deficit that will need to be addressed with therapy or something permanent, time will tell. 

We were discharged on Thursday but getting her pain meds filled was a near disaster. We literally had to have the Neurosurgeon call Devin's cellphone to talk to the Pharmacist!  Craziest thing ever and we are so humbled by the kindness of her Physician's and Nurses! They were on the ball and would, literally, do anything for her and us. The staff at Mott Children's Hospital (U of M) are truly world class!

Matthew 11:28
Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.