Saturday, August 25, 2012

Post-op Day 1

When we walked into the unit on our way to see Harlie this morning, we met one of her surgeons who was leaving.  He said that she was feisty.  Her face might change, but her personality doesn't!  He also said that there was less swelling than he expected and that she was moving her lips really well.  So, he was happy with how she looks so far.

I think her eye looks really good!
And she certainly is feisty!  No matter what you're doing - even if you're not touching her - she is blocking and shaking her head, "no!"  And she's already lifting her leg.  Granted, she's trying to kick you with it, but still.

When she woke up last night she slowly lifted one hand and really studied what the heck was going on.  Then she lifted the other hand (both hands have IVs) and studied that one as well.  Then she lifted her leg and studied that.  I'd give anything to know what was going through her mind.

I do think she looks really good, all things considered.  Of course, I will take photos each day so you can see her progress, too.

Her mouth looks horrific.  And she flat out refuses to let us suction it, or clean it or touch it, or even look at it.  But, I'm sorry, I know she'll feel so much better without a mouth full of blood!  So, I have to suction it anyway.  She shakes her head back and forth and she's only going to make us hurt her.  If she would only stay still!  I keep waiting for the day when she realizes that it won't hurt (or will hurt a lot less) if she doesn't fight us.  When oh when will that day come???  I totally get that she's scared and is trying to protect herself.  But it kills me to have to hold her down for something that shouldn't really hurt.

She looks so much better when she's sleeping.  When she struggles to open her eyes, you can really see how swollen she is.  And she just looks so pitiful.  The other micro surgeon came in to see her this morning and he said that she looks like she went 15 rounds.  I love honesty and a good sense of humor!

They took her Foley out today, which is good (infection risk).  But is bad because now she has to go potty.  With so many lines (still has an arterial line, two IVs and drainage tubes in her face and leg) that will be a challenge.

She's needed a lot of suctioning today.  I love this hospital (it's very parent-friendly) but the nurses have been a little different when it comes to suctioning.  I learned (almost six years ago if you can believe that!) to suction on the way down and on the way up.  If you don't suction on the way down, you just push the secretions further down.  I've told every nurse - but they only suction on the way up.  So, that's frustrating.  I guess the problem is that the way you learn is the way you do it and it's hard to break the habit.  But, I am surprised that they even do it that way to begin with.  You can see immediately that not suctioning on the way down is a lot more uncomfortable for her. Ugh.

The team discussed moving her to the floor at some point.  I had to put the brakes on doing that any time soon.  They are crazy if they think she can go to the floor (she still has an arterial line!).  I voiced my concerns (at this point it had not even been 24 hours since surgery - slightly premature if you ask me!) and they agreed.  I know getting to the floor means "progress" but um, no.  Not yet, anyway.  I just hope they don't push her too hard.

The micro surgeon said that he hopes we can go home next Friday.  So, that's hopeful.  And he said we'll have to come back for a follow-up four to six weeks later.  They will do some more imaging (CT scan) to see if the bone adhered.

An ENT resident came to look at her BAHA surgical site.  The surgeons looked at it in the OR yesterday and agreed that it was really red and looked like it might be infected.  She's on several antibiotics now, so we're covered either way.  But, they asked ENT to come take a peek.  Except that the ENT resident has NEVER seen one post-op.  So, that was helpful.  Not.  Although when we looked at it, I could clearly see that it wasn't as red as it was the other day.  He said it didn't look infected to him.  So, I guess we'll drop it and leave it alone for a while.  He asked when we'll see our ENT at home again and I said I don't know.  Then I thought about having to take her and how much she'll fight at every single doctor's appointment from here on out for a while.  It's like we're starting over again.  :-(

I think that's it for today.  Thank you for all your wonderful support!  I'll post again tomorrow.
~Christy xo


carla said...

wishing you continued progress and rest and healing. love to all!

Sandy said...

Day 1 is over - thank the lord!!
Thanks for keeping us informed. We are thinking of you guys constantly. She really looks good - considering. Love you!

Em said...

Thank you for all the information. I have to say she looks awesome for Day 1....and her eye looks great! I bet she is feisty....I would be too....but I know she knows you are all doing this for her out of love! She will thank you one day....I promise! Big hugs!

Jennifer said...

Wow, her eye looks great and I think she looks great overall. Hope you all get to come home soon! It feels so strange that she is so far away. I mean at least in DC I can come see her. It seems like you are in good hands there.

B-Mama said...

Great report for Day 1 and I agree with everyone--she looks really good!! Not too bad for a champion prizefighter! ;) You all sound great--mama's fiesty just like her daughter. Love it! Keep up the good work and thanks for keeping us in the loop. xix

Susan said...

It looks to me like her eye is going to look great. The jaw is hard to see, but I have a feeling it's going to look good too. I would guess that she understands a lot of what you say to her about what is going on, even if she can't tell you.

I sure hope the BAHA site is okay. Poor Harlie, man-oh-man another infection would suck especially while she's healing from this surgery.

It's great you're getting through this big one. I hope there's a little breathing room for a bit afterward. XOXO.

Veronica said...

She looks really good. Praying hard in Texas for her healing!

Janis said...

She's a fighter alright! She wouldn't be Harlie otherwise.

Sounds like they really covered a lot. I know for Austin Day 3 was the worst swelling after his jaw surgery. But then it really started to look a whole lot better.