Lizzie’s surgery went very well yesterday. We already see (or hear) improvements in her speech. It is so much more clear now, and doesn’t seem to be as strained. So we know it was the pressure from the swollen right ventricle that was causing her neuro set-backs. Right now she is still in a great deal of pain, but has just been given a “happy button”… so she’s got a fentanyl pump to manage the pain.
We had a very long day in the waiting room yesterday. Lizzie went into pre-op at 11:00 am, and put on her lovely hospital gown, made by Shalon by the way.
She went in for a CT scan at 1:00, and then was taken into the OR holding area at about 2:30. We thought that she was going to have the surgery then, but Dr. Kim came out at 3:30 to tell us she was finally going into surgery, and the surgery would take about 3 hours. So we expected to hear from him again by 6:30. Well, the OR called the desk at 4:30 to say that Dr. Kim called to say that he was starting the surgery then. HaHa...when the surgeons say how long a surgery will take, they are only talking about how long THEY will be working in her brain. They kind of forget that the hour-long prep still feels like surgery time to us parents who are waiting patiently in the waiting room.
Then, at 6:45, the surgical center waiting room desk clerk came to tell us that the waiting area closes at 7:00 pm, as does the parking lot, so we had to shlep all of our stuff over to the the main hospital surgical waiting area, as well as move our car to the main hospital parking lot. And then we waited and waited in the little, itty-bitty waiting room. Dr. Kim came in at about 7:30 to tell us about everything that he and Dr. Patel had done, and that the surgery went very well. He said he needed to go back in to close her up, but that would only take 15 minutes or so. So after waiting about 1-1/4 hours to hear from the recovery room I finally walked up to the neuro floor nurses’ station, where Lizzie’s room would be. They called down to the recovery and the nurse there said she had just arrived from the OR. Again, surgeon time…he would be in there for 15 minutes, but the rest of the team would be there for another hour removing her “halo”, monitoring her vitals, etc.
Knowing that Lizzie is a “slow to wake up in recovery” kind of girl, Don an I left to go out to dinner. Yummmmm, pancakes and eggs at Kerby Lane. Breakfast for dinner doesn’t get any better than that. While we were there, the recovery nurse called to say that Lizzie would probably be in recovery for another hour or so before going up to her room. And gave us Lizzie’s room number.
We finished dinner (kind of shoveled down so we could get back to the hospital) and went up to Lizzie’s room to wait for her. Finally, at about 10:30 she came wheeling down the hall to her room, awake and pretty alert. We spent a while talking with her, getting her Facebook login info (because of course she wanted to update her status right then, and it reads: “Lizzie is in the hospital and in PAIN!!! Owww!!!”,) and letting her know which of us would be-in-when today. We left the hospital at about 11:00, feeling extremely pleased that Lizzie was doing so well, and got home about 11:30. Whew! Long Day.
Since the time Don got in to see her at about 9:00 am, Lizzie has only slept about 20 minutes. Amazing! Right now she is reading and sending emails on her iPod Touch. And bugging me to get this update to y’all and to post a picture of her in the cute gown and cap she had on (briefly) yesterday.
Thanks for all of your prayers and good thoughts. It is wonderful to have such a wonderful support community of people who understand what she and we are going through.
(Update: she just fell asleep…it’s 5:00 pm.)
Hugs and Kisses,