7:00 am. Jax and I were sitting on the couch eating breakfast and I squinted a little, straining to see what it was that my mind thought I saw on the other side of the blinds. Snow? Surely not, it was just some light reflecting off something and I was just seeing...nope. It was snow. My mind started to race, it kicked into to go mode. What about surgery, how would we get there, should we leave tonight, we had to wait until 12:00 to hear from the hospital what time surgery would be, what if that was too late and we were already stuck in Russellville? I took a deep breath. God knew it was going to snow and he knew how all the details of surgery day would work out. Even if they didn't, he knew that too.
7:00 pm. Jax, Kyle and I sat in hotel room in Little Rock and played on the floor. My parents drove us to Little Rock in their Tahoe, braving all the black ice. Kyle's parents ended up coming too, we all spent the night, just so we'd be there no matter what the roads looked like the next day. Jax enjoyed the hotel and slept all night in the pack 'n' play (which is an answer to prayer). I try to sleep but my mind I think, was still in go mode all night long. It's hard to unwind and turn off your brain with such a big event happening the next day.
6:00 am. Jax is up, having his last drink of juice and getting his superman jammies on for surgery. We packed up the room and grabbed breakfast to go and drove cautiously over to Children's. The roads were bad, but we had no trouble getting there. (another answer to prayer)
8:00 am After checking, we let Jax down to play until they called us back for pre-op. We were surprised and thrilled that he was in such a good mood, having to skip breakfast. (another answer to pray) By nine, one of the nurses had heard Jax give a wet cough and was concerened. She called in the anesthesiologist to listen to his chest and let him decided wether to proceed or not. I was nervous, my heart was pounding, my eyes were on the verge of welling up in tears. What if we had come all this way and done all this, only to be sent home? I immediately texted my mom in the waiting room, to get them to pray and several other people. Jax gave one big cough right before Dr. Sadihki came in to listen to him. Jax made instant friends with him and want to sit in his lap. He listened to his chest and said he thought he was clear. We had a green light for surgery. (yet another answer to prayer)
10:00 The handoff is the hardest part. We all get to walk down the hall together but at the end, you know that you have to hand your sweet unaware boy to the nurse and watch them disappear through the surgery doors. But our favorite nurse, Emily, who is just a God-send, (aka: jax's girlfriend) is so sweet. Jax just adores her, and reaches for her when she walks in the room. She had brought him a valentine bear (Jax's official first valentine! Ha!) and held him and played with him before it was time for the handoff. Last time Jax had surgery, I cried. But this time, we hugged him, kissed him and told him we'd seen him soon. And I felt peace. I felt trust in the Lord and I felt no anxiousness. (I know alot of people prayed for peace. God answered in a huge way!)
1:30 Jax was finally out of surgery. It took longer than we thought but they kept giving us updates that everything was fine, and he was doing well. When we finally spoke to Dr. Buckmiller she told us that everything had gone really well and they had gotten the palate all the way up to right behind his teeth, so now he only has that small gap in his gum line. And that it was a nice long palate, which is a good thing. She was pleased with how everything went and said Jax had done really well. The recovery room is a long process as they come out of anesthesia. We also had to wait as they gave a room assignment. Jax was puffy and swollen. He was bloody and in alot of pain. He was on alot of drugs and just wanted to be held, and we didn't mind! That's all we wanted to do was hold him.
The rest of that day is blur. I don't know what time we got to the room or what time our families went home. I don't know what time I went to sleep, because it didn't last long. Between nurses in and out every two hours and Jax waking up from pain in between, I don't know much. Jax did sleep from 4-6. So I know that I got two solid hours. Beyond that, it's sketchy.
The next morning, my mind was foggy. I hadn't slept and now Jax was up against the task of learning to eat again.
And skipping ahead to Saturday; it's still a struggle. Jax has to learn how to breathe and swallow all over again with a a mouth composition that it totally foreign to him...not to mention swollen and painful. Jax used to have a much more room in his mouth for his tongue and he had developed his own way of eating with out suction. And now he can't have anything in his mouth, he has "no-no's" on and he can't do anything himself. He can only have liquids ( but those are hard to swallow).He also got new tubes, so his ears hurt, which makes swallowing hurt. But no one said it would be easy. And there are easier days ahead and we praise God for he makes all things new.
It is a wonderful thought to be able to tell Jax when's he's older that a whole army of people have prayed him through, every step of the way. It's also a great feeling to see the details that God blesses us with in the midst of struggles. A few details that I don't want to leave out are:
-my mom and dad being there making sure I ate, went to the bathroom and slept.
-our Indian night nurse that was so sweet to us (Sugu)
-being on 98.5 in a short interview with Dr. Buckmiller. (I cried and don't really remember what exactly I said but it is one of my favorite moments of Wed.)
-three nights of not having to worry about dinner. thanks to our SS class who is so compassionate and caring.
-my wonderful friend Haley showing up at the hospital. she even brought Jax a plush frog since he can't play with hard toys for a while. so thoughtful!
I'm sure there are many more details to share. There are definately more lessons that I'd love to share...but it's called a blog, not a novel. Since I have several more weeks of at-home recovery...maybe I'll post more later.