It feels like somebody hit the pause button at our house. Lila's surgery was 6 days ago and, of course, there hasn't been any progress made toward walking or any of the other things I'm normally concerned about. I would imagine she's probably taken a few steps back in some areas. She's still in so much pain and now has a horrible cold on top of everything else. Poor little thing, I feel so bad for her. To think about the fact that we knowingly and willingly have put her through this is bugging me a little bit. Everyone keeps telling me that this will be worth it in the long run. I'm holding on to that, hoping and praying that everyone is right. This too shall pass.
Before Lila's surgery a friend of mine posted on Facebook about a 3 year old little girl that died during routine dental surgery. Her father is in the military and was on his way back to Afghanistan- he had been home for his mother's funeral. The little girl's mother had to go and pick her other kids up from school and tell them that their baby sister was dead. What grief. What agony. The utter helplessness she must have felt (and still feels) weighed so heavy on my heart as I read the story. My friend's husband was tasked with locating the father of the little girl and re-routing him to his home. Once again, coming home for the funeral of someone so dear to his heart. I know I've said this before but since Lila's birth I am just so raw. As I read the story of this poor little girl whose heart just gave out during a routine dental surgery I just cried and cried.
I read that story 3 days before Lila's surgery. It seems so selfish but I couldn't help thinking, "What if that happens to Lila?" The day before Lila's surgery I took her to the pediatrician for her pre-op appointment. We ended up seeing the nurse practitioner. As she took Lila's pulse and then listened to Lila's heart she got a puzzled look on her face "I hear just the slightest heart murmur. Didn't you have her PDA coiled?" I shook my head yes. Inside I'm thinking of that little girl. She listened again. This time she said it wasn't there. "Maybe I just thought I heard it. Sorry about that. I'm not hearing it now. Maybe it was just when she was taking a breath." Hmmmm.......
The day of the surgery I was a nervous wreck. It's true, I just kept thinking of that little girl. Of course I'm the one that filled out the pre-op paperwork where they list pretty much everything that could go wrong during the surgery. A person in my frame of mind might have thought to ask her husband to sign that paperwork but I guess it never occurred to me. We were both allowed to go back with Lila to change her clothes and check her vitals but only one of us was allowed to walk her back into the procedure room and stay until she was asleep. My husband asked if I'd like to go back with her and I said yes. I laid her down on the table and sang to her until she was sleeping. I kissed her goodbye and almost lost it. I walked down the hallway, fighting back tears. I was so lost in thought that I almost walked into the door. I realized that it was one of those doors that had to be activated a few feet back so I turned around to press the button and almost knocked over the nurse that was with me. Wait..... there was a nurse with me? Guess I didn't realize that. I reached out for her, she reached out for me and we both started laughing. "Sorry", I said, "I didn't know you were behind me." "I know", she said, "You were having a mommy moment." Indeed I was.
We are one of the fortunate families. Where the doctor comes out into the waiting room and says, "She did great. Everything went according to plan." Some people don't get that. Yes, the pause button has been pressed. Lila's not moving forward developmentally at this time. But she's still here. And I'm thankful. I pray every night for the family of "that little girl" because I never knew her name. Their angel is gone forever and that breaks my heart for them.