Today we are tired.
Tired, but thankful.
|Waiting to be taken to the operating room (6:30 am)|
1. He is older than when he had his last surgery almost a year ago and therefore more aware of how is feeling. He always handled anesthesia fairly well in the past and just needed some pedialyte and a good nap to get back to feeling normal. This time he didn't follow suit.
2. He would need to re-learn how to breathe once they closed up his cleft. He is used to having all this empty space between his palate and nose, and when they closed everything I'm sure it felt like he couldn't breathe.
So, when Aiden woke up he was struggling to breathe which we were assured was normal. He had a lot of mucousy blood in his mouth and his lungs that seeped down during surgery. He was too weak to cough everything up so we was wheezing and required some albuterol. They also gave him around 5 doses to fentanyl to calm him down. Every time he awoke he was screaming, crying and thrashing around. He wasn't giving his body a chance to recover. The problem was that the fentanyl wore off within like 10 minutes. So after around 4 hours his doctors decided to put him on a continuous, but mild, sedative so that he could sleep and get the rest he needs.
|Aiden's tongue stitch (used to keep his tongue away from his palate for the first day post-surgery, pulse-oximeter used to measure the level of oxygen in his blood, and IV delivering fluids and medicine to his blood stream.|
|Yay! We're going home!|
|Aiden came home to a sweet bear from some dear friends of ours; playing with a ball; trying to sit on daddy's guitar; sleeping on his boppy pillow (the only way he can get comfy)|
Tomorrow is our first post-op appointment with Dr. Staffenberg, so we're hoping for some good news and maybe some restrictions lifted. The most important thing, though, is that the incision is healing properly and that no stitches have popped. I think we should get a good report because Aiden hasn't had any fevers or bleeding from his mouth. Fingers crossed.
Something exciting that I want to mention: the point of this surgery was to close Aiden's cleft in order to allow for normal speech development. At 17 months old, Aiden's speech is probably at about a 9 month level. He doesn't have many words or consonants for that matter, but he is vocal. His cleft team once explained to me that because of the structure of his palate, he simply isn't able to produce any consonants besides "m", "n", "h" and "w". As a result, when he tries to say the word banana, it comes out as "manana".
I'm proud to announce, that the other day when we were practicing our bananas, Aiden produced the "b" sound. While he has a lot of speech therapy ahead of him, we are definitely headed in the right direction. He's such a smart boy. And my mama heart melts every time he tries to speak.
Thank you all for your prayers and kind words as we prepared for and dealt with this surgery. They worked.