Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Ryan's Tonsillectomy and the Aftermath So Far...

Ryan got her ear tubes out in February of this year. Since then she had 3 ear infections and scarlet fever twice. So, her primary care doctor referred us back to the ENT for possibly more tubes. After talking to the ENT doctor, he said that she still has the holes from the tubes in her ears, so they are still draining properly but he felt she would greatly benefit from a tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy. He said her tonsils are moderately large and since she snores at night he felt it needed to be done. Plus, she is allergic to the two main antibiotics used for ear infections and strep throat - so treatment had become more of a guessing game that was often ending in hives :(  I was NOT excited about this procedure and did not really want to do it, but knew it was what we really needed to do.

Nathan had to work, so at 5:30 a.m. Ryan and I took off for the hospital. We got all checked in and waited for her turn to go. There was lots of paperwork and then came the goofy juice! That was our first time with the goofy juice and it was quite entertaining! I was actually sad that no one was there to see how funny she was being - telling jokes, hiding under the covers from the nurses and jumping out to scare them, trying to bang her head on the wall and insisting I was tickling her the whole time - the giggles never stopped! Finally about 10:00 they came to get Ryan for surgery. Since Ryan was a minor, a parent had to stay in the room the entire time. Ryan fell in love with a monkey at the gift shop on our way in, so I had to call down and pay for it over the phone and have a volunteer bring it up to our room. The nurse had me food brought up from the cafeteria and the volunteer that brought it said "I'm sorry you have to try to eat this" :) He ended up bringing me back some cookies he made for the staff - which were really good!

After about an hour and a half Ryan was done with surgery and out of the recovery room. She was in no pain and acting fine other than being sleepy. She ate 4 popsicles and drank water and juice and was able to keep it all down after taking her medicine. So, at 3:30 we were finally released to go home. First stop was the pharmacy to get her prescriptions filled. We were so excited to finally be released we didn't realize that 3:30 was time for her next medicine. So, once we got to the pharmacy she began crying and screaming in pain. I didn't have any, so I had to take her into the pharmacy like that and get some ibuprofen while we waited on her medicine. The staff at Clarksville Family Pharmacy was SO awesome! One lady helped me find the medicine, another one rinsed the cup out and put it all together, while another one found me a cold air humidifier and they loaded it all up in my car for me! It was really above and beyond.

From there we went to get Noah. I had hoped to be done before he got out of school, but that didn't happen. So, thankfully my friend Laikken is a teacher at Noah's school and she got Noah after school and took him to my office so he could wait there for me to get back. So thankful for Laikken and Deborah (my coworker) to help me watch Noah when I had to be with Ryan. From there we went home to get settled in.

That night was a little rough - but Ryan was just tired and ready for bed and emotional. Once she was asleep I began giving her medicine every 3 hours around the clock and that pretty much hasn't stopped. The first 3 days were not too bad - lots of medicine and some soft foods but not as bad as I was expecting. Day 4 was the beginning of a few bad days. I assume her scabs are coming off and it gags her (so there is gagging and dry heaving occasionally) and now the medicine burns her throat, so she fights having to take it. She will have a great couple of hours and play and eat totally normal foods. Then have a rough couple of hours and all foods would hurt her throat. So many highs and lows, which is frustrating, but I am hoping we are on our way to being all good.

2 days after her surgery Noah told me his throat hurt when I picked him up from school. So, after a trip to the doctor he tested positive for strep! That was not what I needed to hear with Ryan not needing to be around contagious diseases for 2 weeks. So, we kept them apart until Noah had enough medicine to no longer be contagious. Thankfully, it is less likely to get strep once you don't have tonsils anymore, but not impossible.

Today is day 8 and she is back at daycare - only because the amazing lady that watches her agreed to all the restrictions she was having and I knew she would be able to take it easy there too. I am finally back to work, in my chair, digging my way out of being home for 10 days in a row. Thankfully I was able to work from home some so it wasn't too bad. She is going to still be taking it easy until her post-op follow-up next week - so no ballet or soccer this week either.

Even with all the tiredness, pain and bad in this week, there was so much good in there too. There was my mother-in-law who let Noah stay the night with her and got him to school on surgery day. There were amazing volunteers at the hospital helping me when I could not leave the room. There was the helpful staff at the pharmacy that really came through in a stressful moment. There was friends like Laikken and Deborah that I could just call on and they made sure Noah was taken care of. There was my mother who brought breakfast and milkshakes, got Ryan an gift for each day of the week to help make sitting at home a little brighter and taking care of Ryan while I ran Noah to the doctor. There was my husband who helped out whenever and however he could with his busy work schedule. There was the amazing police officer who stayed with me while I pumped gas alone at 10:00 p.m. in Rusellville after he saw me waiting for the "very sketchy" men to leave the pumps only to watch them drive over to the side of the station and wait. Not to mention all my friends who text me to check on Ryan and to check on me too. I do not ask for help much. I do not like having to have other people watch my kids or pick them up for me - it is my responsibility. But, this week I had to not only accept the offered help but ask for it also. So, while I still don't like it or plan to do it a lot - it is so nice to know that it is just that easy for me to be able to get help when I need  it.

Prayers are still appreciated that we can get back to our normal routine soon and that we have a much more healthy winter!

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