Sunday, January 23, 2011

My daughter is a pain in the back (side)

I need a pass. A pass for not updating my blog in..what? Three weeks? I really haven't written anywhere in that span of time. You see, when your daughter has back surgery, it kind of puts a crimp on all plans, and definitely slows down your best intentions to put fingers to keyboard. In the scheme of pain pills, logrolling and personal servanting, it just doesn't compare. But, I am back, and will try to be a better blogger. The surgery went well, and with my JBug's permission, I am sharing some of her story here. You may recall that she has scoliosis. We didn't find the curve until February of last year. In that time, it progressed fairly quickly, and when we went in for a recheck in May, it was at 63 degrees. They do surgery for anything over 30, so you can see what the options were. After a second opinion, it was clear she was headed for surgery. We chose to have the surgery done before Christmas, because we were trying to make sure she was recovered enough to attend the trip to Kenya our church was hosting. After the surgery was scheduled, the church cancelled the trip for this year. But the wheels were set in motion, and we decided to move forward. She had her surgery at CHOC, in Orange. They were wonderful, calming

her fears with a hospital tour, answering any questions that we had. The big day arrived, and with the addition of a new pink and black fleur-de-lis blanket (which she really appreciated!) she was in pre-op and we were ready to go. The surgery itself took about six hours, and it really flew by. I was surprised. The family waiting room had wi-fi and I had my iPad. I occupied myself watching Netflix, which was a pretty cool thing. Gotta love technology! In recovery, the first words she spoke were, "I'm tired. I can't possibly be tired, I just slept for six hours." That's my girl. She spent the first night in PICU, for observation. There, we had a wonderful gift. The first nurse was the daughter of JBug's bible study leaders, and really took a personal interest in her recovery. I do not say lightly that she was my angel. I was able to sleep on the futon there, which, for all practical purposes, was pretty comfortable. I awoke to find her, the day after surgery, with the bed propped up and she was eating ice! Yay, for recovery. That afternoon, she sat on the edge of her bed, and even stood. By evening, she was in a regular private room, and doing well. At CHOC, you can wear your own pajamas, and decorate your room to make it feel more comfortable. We had a small Christmas tree from her friends, but I don't have a picture of it. They have "child life specialists" who work to make your child more comfortable. They bring movies and games and check in on them, as well. There is even a troupe of therapy dogs that visit! All of this contributed to her recovery.

In fact, she continued to do well, with only one setback of nausea from pain medicine on an empty stomach. We learned quickly that she had to eat at least a bit before she took her medication. The meds did the trick, and she had very little pain. By day five, she was ready to come home. She spent Christmas, at home, on the couch, and in her bed. Recovery has gone well, she has even ventured out for a movie and to visit family. She has now resumed her classes, and is such a superstar. She has good and bad days, where there is some achiness, and she is saddened that she will miss marching band due to recovery, but overall, this has been a good experience. She gained 2 INCHES in height, and just wait until you see the difference!
T., who is very, very relieved that it is mostly over

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Where have I been?

Christmas tree at the Cruz house

before and after x-ray of my daughter's scoliosis surgery

dog learns to play fetch

new Christmas bicycle for JBean

well-deserved hazelnut-caramel latte

birthday deely-boppers for Poppy, who turned ONE. Doesn't she look happy in them?? Should I hide my shoes?
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