Letters to Holly

Friday, January 13

Doin' the Tubes

It was an early morning yesterday. We left the house at 5:30 to make the Asheville appointment at 6:30 at the Mission outpatient surgery center. We kept the deputy in his pajamas and sleep sack. He was surprisingly tranquil considering he hadn't eaten for 11 hours. We had a short wait in the lobby before going back into what looked like a standard emergency room section. The nurse checked his heartbeat and oxygenation rate before giving him "giggle juice," a relaxant. We changed him into a smock and socks, and we were offered a playground wagon. He rode in it in laps around the nurse station while the medicine kicked in.

After about 20 minutes, we went into a pre-op room. A doctor asked about his last meal and his sniffles. We chalked that up to allergies, and he listened to his lungs. We postponed the surgery two weeks ago because of chest congestion, and we got nervous that we'd have to do so again at this very late stage. The doctor said the congestion cleared quickly after coughing and gave the OK. The ENT came out to walks us through it, and the anesthesiologist gave us a similar rundown. My Mom made me promise to ask about the possibility of the deputy having her porphyria, and we were told that if I didn't have it, he didn't. Also the drugs they use would no longer trigger the kind of reactions she was anxious about. They pulled him into the operating room with him still in the wagon, and we waited in the lobby, eating breakfast quickly.

Your Sister hadn't really been in a hospital before. Maybe some ER visits. I told her what I remembered of my surgeries, and within 20 minutes the ENT came out to recap the procedure. Lots of ear gunk was removed, and they checked his esophagus again. He'll need to return to his original Prevacid prescription (we scaled it back to avoid conflict with the antibiotics). We waited another 20 minutes so they could watch him. After we were summoned, we found him crying in a nurse's arms. We huddled with him in a small recovery cubicle and gave him juice. I signed discharge papers, and we took him home another 20 minutes later.

He was cranky and sleepy the rest of the day. He had some nasty drainage during a nap but no more has emerged since. He took the bath and shower fine and slept through the night. He hasn't responded differently to sounds or his own voice, but I didn't expect a drastic difference. We go back in a month to see how the ears are doing, and hopefully he won't be on antibiotics again for months.

Picture of the Day
And now for a celebratory lean.

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