Monday, August 6, 2012

Can You Hear Me Now?

Bright and early the morning after Jax's fourth birthday, he had surgery. I know, what kind of mom schedules her son's surgery for the day after his birthday? Ironically, the surgery was originally scheduled for the day after MY birthday but the doctor had to reschedule.

The surgery was nothing major. Breathe now. Three years ago Jax had tubes put in his ears; a result of chronic ear infections. The tubes were great! In those three years he only had one ear infection, compare that to 11 in his first year of life. Generally, tubes come out within about two years, but every once in a while they don't and surgery becomes necessary to remove them. One of Jax's came out more than a year ago, but the other little bugger just wouldn't budge. Technically, the stubborn tube could have come out on its own, but if it doesn't, it can leave behind permanent damage. When a tube is left in too long, the eardrum begins to form scar tissue around that tube. When it does come out (naturally or by removal) it leaves a permanent hole which can lead to hearing loss and require additional surgeries. To avoid permanent damage we just went ahead with the surgery. In what is honestly a 15-minute procedure, the doctor removed the tube and then placed a paper patch over the hole, which would assist the ear drum in healing properly. To protect the paper patch, Jax's ear was filled with a gooey substance that hindered his hearing for about two months. Sometimes, he would call out, "Mom, where are you." I'd respond with, "In here" and he'd walk in the complete opposite direction of my voice, still calling for me. It was like our own little game of Marco Polo. Andy and I couldn't help but laugh. Fortunately, Jax didn't seem to realize he wasn't hearing as well, or atleast never made mention of it.

The day of the surgery, our brave little dude suited up. As with his last surgery, he got to choose a stuffed animal. Just his luck, a turtle was available and he snatched him up and immediately named him, "Turtley." Appropriate. Within a few minutes, the nurse came in and gave Jax his first dose of "sleepy medicine." She warned him he might start getting a little drowsy. He very sweetly informed her that he's pretty big and wouldn't be affected by the sleepy medicine she spoke of. Within a few minutes, his eyes were droopy and he started slurring his speech. As I write this post, I'm realizing just how much entertainment I've gotten out of Jax's surgery.

Post surgery, I had to wait out in the waiting room for him to wake up. During that time, the doctor came out and told me how the surgery went. I knew everything was fine when I saw he was wearing a UofA scrub cap. He said Jax also pointed that out before he went under. That's my boy. By the time I got back to the recovery room, our little charmer had already won the hearts of all the nurses back there. As a child is coming out of anesthesia, they tend to become physically violent, so a nurse holds them as they begin to wake up. Our little man was quite the opposite. He nicely asked the nurse to let go of him, when she explained she was holding him so he wouldn't fall, he thanked her. When she asked how he was feeling he said, "I just need to get undizzy and then I'll be okay." They all thought that was pretty cute. He asked where I was and if his tube was out. And he just kept repeating that he needed the "dizzies" to go away. When I finally got back there, they placed him in my lap and he enjoyed crackers and apple juice. The sweet nurses even gave him a package of Reese's Peanut Butter Cups to enjoy later, just for being "such a doll."

Within about 30 minutes we were discharged. Jax got to ride in a wheelchair to the car, which he really enjoyed, although he was pretty disappointed his nurse wouldn't pop wheelies. I guess that cute kid bit will only go so far.

To reward Jax for being so brave I took him out to breakfast. It was a special little Jax and Mama date, which we don't do nearly often enough. He said it was his favorite part of his surgery. Mine too.