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Thursday, February 25, 2010

A Day to Remember

Today is a day to remember. Not so much because of what we did today, but because of the amazing response from our friends and family. We had to take Emily to the hospital this morning, EARLY this morning, to get a second set of ear tubes put in and to have her adenoids shaved back. Between Braedyn and Emily, this was the fifth surgery for ears/adenoids/tonsils we’ve been through. Although there is a familiarity with the process, it never gets easier seeing your child wheeled away for surgery. With leaving for our three-month trip to China in less than a week, I think it is relatively safe to say that stress was at an all-time high.

Our insurance recently changed, a result of which landed us at a different hospital this time. And let me tell you, the staff was fantastic. They were all so attentive and caring to Emily, who was holding her own, but to a trained mom’s eye could see she was a little unnerved by the whole process of getting checked in, getting her blood pressure taken, wearing a silly hospital gown, etc. She did great, actually, until the following exchange with one of the nurses:

Nurse: Emily, your mommy and daddy are going to spoil you today!
Emily: <dimply grin>
Nurse: <with much enthusiasm> Tell them, Emily, today is all about me. Say, today is all about ME!
Emily: <with some hesitation> Today is all about… her! <pointing to the nurse>

The laughter that burst from all of us at the adorable misstatement put Emily into tears. She is very sensitive to laughter and always, ALWAYS feel that it is directed AT her. After much cuddling from Mommy, she calmed down, just in time for another nurse to show up with the wagon, literally a child’s wagon, to wheel her to the operating room. She went in one direction, and we went in the other, toward the waiting room.

Simply stated, waiting SUCKS. Big time.

Once the surgery was successfully completed, Greg and I were brought back to the recovery area, where Emily was still out from the anesthesia. Only moments after our arrival, our little 28 pound princess turned into one helluva strong kick boxer. With unparalleled determination, she kept trying to rip out her IV, and any attempt to stop her resulted in her uttering a guttural growl, throwing a full-arm swing to your face, and angrily and powerfully kick at you. That shocking stage took about 20 agonizing minutes to get through. It’s surreal to watch your child in that state. Somewhere between sleep and alertness. Somewhere between sane and crazy.

After another hour and a half or so in the recovery room, we were sent home. Phew.

Upon our arrival home, we found out Braedyn had been the best big brother he could possibly be today. (So much so that even typing it is bringing tears of joy to my eyes. Proud Mama!) Every day at school that Braedyn is good and follows the class rules, he earns a “green card”. After earning 30 cards, he can turn them in for a prize. Today was the day for him to turn in 30 green cards, and let me tell you, the excitement from him about this is palpable. It is truly a treat for the kids to get to pick something out of the prize basket.

We left for the hospital this morning before Braedyn woke up, so we hadn’t yet seem him today. When we walked in, he was absolutely beaming and happy to see us. Then he handed Emily a present, a present that he used his 30 green cards to pick today. That’s right! He selflessly used his cards to get her a Strawberry Shortcake Frisbee. He made me and his Dad unbelievably proud today.

Another thoughtful friend dropped off a yummy coffee for me and coloring books and markers for Emily and Braedyn. Our loving friends and family have showered us with a deluge of good thoughts, whether on Facebook, the phone, or via email, and it has been so very appreciated. On a day like this, where your emotions are on overdrive and your energy is zapped, I was reminded of just how lucky we are.

EmMommy trying to comfort a distressed and unhappy Emily.

toeEmily’s toe glowing from the pulse oximeter.