Project 52 – A portrait of my child once a week, every week in 2014.
Week 9: playing doctor
5.5 months old
On Sunday morning we were surprised to hear that if Lucy had no problems that day we would be discharged on Monday morning, not even 5 days after surgery! With all our experience in hospitals, we were expecting to be there for at least a week, maybe more! They had told us recovery time in hospital was a week and in the past we’ve learned to expect that it takes longer than what they say, but in this case I guess she was right on track! Apparently recovery from this surgery is surprisingly easy because there is no muscle to cut through. She was sent home on tylenol as needed (well, along with a barrage of other medication that is heart related, but she will only be on that for a week or so).
We were trained how to clean her incision and watch for signs of infection, as well as watching for signs of problems with the heart itself. Lucy never seems to mind having her dressings changed and incision cleaned because it means laying on her change table, which is her happy place.
The feeding issue has become more and more of a burden/disappointment/frustration. We were told that immediately following the surgery she’s likely have a day of great eating (because she had been fasting the day before surgery) but she would probably go back to her old ways within a few days. We really hoped that they’d be wrong…but…alas. Part of the problem initially (we think) is that being intubated really irritated her throat. She would cry whenever she swallowed and her voice was very hoarse. She wouldn’t even let us put a soother in her mouth.
Starting Monday we are making an attempt to wean her from the tube. The doctors and nurses and occupational therapists all agree that she hasn’t ever really had the chance to feel hungry, since from day one she’s been on a very regimented schedule. We don’t really know what to expect, and honestly I’m not very hopeful that anything is going to work but we have to try something. I refuse to celebrate her 1st birthday with a tube in her nose. I don’t even want to celebrate her 6 month birthday with a tube in her nose (that’s in 2 weeks, by the way…) At least now that the surgery is out of the way we don’t have to worry about calories as much.