Monday, October 28, 2013

Welcome to the Other Side of the River

"Welcome to the other side of the river!" That's what Johnny's nurse told us when we got to his room here at Children's in Minneapolis.  That statement was preceded by us telling her that we had only been at Children's in St. Paul before.

Johnny's surgery went well and he is currently sleeping off his anesthetic. And we are making ourselves at home in his room, where we will be for the rest of this week. But I should back up to this morning.

Our morning began when my alarm went off at 6:30.  We didn't need to leave for the hospital until 10:30, but 6:30 was the last time I would be able to nurse Johnny before his surgery.  I woke him up and he did a good long nursing and even though I was tired I was contently enjoying and savoring this time to nurse him, knowing that it would be many hours before I would get to do it again. The prospect of not being able to feed Johnny was not a pleasant one. We've had to do that before and it's easiest if Johnny can just sleep through it. Thankfully he went back to sleep after nursing and slept until 8:30.

We spent the morning getting ready and packing up. For not being able to eat Johnny was a very good little boy. He sat serenely with Alex while we had breakfast, like he knew something was going on. I was doing fine until I sat down to pump.  It's not what I'm used to doing and it's not what I wanted to be doing. Around this time Johnny started to get fussy and it broke my heart not being able to give what he wanted and needed. 

We arrived at the hospital at 11:00 and got checked in in the surgery center, then were shown to a pre-op room. Johnny had a little mini check-up, during which he was very chatty and smiley with his nurse, and then got put into his little baby scrubs. And then we just waited until his OR was ready.  We spoke with his surgeon and the anesthesiologist and then it was time to go. I imagined that they would put him on the hospital bed and wheel him off, but the nurse just held out her arms to carry him. It was hard to hand Johnny over, we kissed him, then kissed him again.  Then they walked off down the hall and the last thing I saw was Johnny smiling at the nurse. That little baby is just so full of joy. I love him. 

There were many things that felt like the first time Johnny went into surgery, but while being familiar, everything was also different.  We were sad to see him go, and shed a few tears, but it wasn't the heart wrenching agony of seeing him go the first time.  I was pumping throughout the day, but it wasn't like pumping in the NICU when I had never nursed Johnny.  I knew this was just temporary, and that later that day I would get to nurse him again. When surgery was done Johnny was sleepy, but stirring and opening his eyes, not like last time when it took him almost 20 hours to come out of the anesthesia.  We got up to our room and it looked a lot like our NICU room, only way bigger.  Same fold out couch, but a TV and a private bathroom!

When we were in the St. Paul, NICU we were just down the hill from the Cathedral.  We could look out our window and see the dome and steeple and it was such a comfort to know that Christ was there watching over us.  When we got to our 6th floor room here in Minneapolis I looked our window, it faces east and off in the distance we can see the St. Paul skyline, and there's the Cathedral, much father away, but we can still see it. 

Johnny has been awake on and off.  He seems to be in a little bit of pain, but they haven't needed to give him anything stronger than Advil so far. He's nursing again with no problem, and it is so great to be nursing him. In this procedure they created a rectal opening, closed off the fistula between in colon and urethra and connected his colon to the rectal opening. His recovery should be quick, but we will be in the hospital until at least Thursday because he needs a catheter until the urethra has healed from surgery. So call me if you want to come visit!!

Post-op and sleeping soundly.  Thanks for praying everyone!

1 comment:

  1. I have tears rolling down my face as I read this - your struggles coupled with your faith and love move me deeply and you inspire me because of the wonderful and courageous parents you are. I pray that the Lord will bless you with stamina and Johnny with speedy and full healing. May I come to see you at home this Saturday and bring some yummy dinner?


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