Thursday, August 30, 2012

Surgery update

Surgery went without a hitch. My surgery time got changed to 10am, instead of 7:30am, which was nice because we didn't have to wake up super early. Cayden stayed the night at Bryce and Julie's house the night before surgery, so we just came up by ourselves on Thursday morning. We checked in to the hospital around 9:00am and they pretty much took me right back to get prepped. Donning my beautiful hospital gown, I sat around for a while while they put in my IV port and my Scottish nurse named Val kept me entertained with her stories about being a traveling hippie in the 70s. Bryan was there waiting with me, and eventually my mom showed up too. Surgery was running a little late, but I think they got me in around 10:30 or 11am. Once they started pumping me with drugs, I don't remember much. 
I woke up around 3:00pm in the recovery room with a bunch of other groggy people. I felt pretty terrible, but that was just the anesthesia wearing off. They eventually wheeled my bed to another building, into the pediatric unit (because apparently that's where they store the recovery patients now) and into a room decorated with giraffes. Bryan and his dad were waiting there for me. I felt pretty good by this time, but not great. The nurses kept taking my temperature and asking my pain level. When I woke up, I think I was at a 2....so not too shabby! 
Dr. Donovan (my surgeon) was going home at 6pm, so before he left, he came to see if I was ok to go home! I was surprised because everyone (including the surgeon) had always told me that I would definitely have to stay the night to monitor my calcium levels. I guess that I was looking healthy enough and Dr. Donovan was confident in the fact that he knew he for sure left 2 of my 3 parathyroid glands in me, because he said I was cleared to go home, if I wanted! What a blessing! I don't really mind staying at the hospital, but I do mind the extra $$$ it takes to stay overnight! We never even ate a meal there....just lots of apple juice! 
They wouldn't let me eat any solid foods for 24 hours, and I was so hungry! When we got to Bryce and Julie's house (where Cayden was), I ate some Jamba Juice and chicken noodle soup and felt better.
The surgeon said everything went well, and according to the pathology report I got last week, my thyroid was not cancerous (I didn't really even know that was a possibility), and Dr. Donovan managed to save 3 of my 4 parathyroid glands. They made me take calcium supplements the whole week after my surgery, just in case, but I'm off those now, and only have to take one tiny, tasteless pill every morning. No more nasty pills three times a day, no more calcium supplements, no more thyroid!
Here's how the scar is looking today at 2 weeks out. It's quite a bit lower than I thought it would be (which is a good thing), it's actually right along the neckline of my t-shirt (in the pic above, I pulled my t shirt down a bit so you could see the scar. There was only one stitch on the outside (right in the middle) and Dr. Donovan removed that and the surgical tape last week. The tape was super itchy, so I was glad to have that removed. I am thankful for the tape, though because it meant less stitches and less scarring! I'm pretty impressed with Dr. Donovan's work. My voice is almost back to normal. It was just a little scratchy when I first woke up. I tried not to talk much, but it was hard to do because it didn't hurt to talk. I still can't sing very well, but that doesn't really matter. I sometimes have nice voice cracks, and can't yell too loud, but other than that, everything is pretty normal in that arena. Swallowing was probably the most uncomfortable thing right after surgery....oh, and yawning was painful for about a week and a half. I couldn't turn my head to check my blind spot until about 5 days after surgery. At two weeks out, swallowing is not uncomfortable, just feels a little weird, yawning is fine and I can turn my head like normal. The scar is itchy...that's probably the most annoying factor. 
Cayden still points at my scar every day and says "owie!" but she did pretty well through the whole thing, besides getting mad and punching me in the throat with her flailing arms once. My doctor said I have no restrictions.  
In other news, our Korean kids came back to us this past week! Cayden was so excited to have Lauren arrive on Tuesday. 
We helped Lauren move into her dorm at Corban on Friday. 

Here is her and her new roommate, Nikki. 
Sunday night we got a call from Bryan's mom that Lauren was on her way to the ER in Salem. Lauren said she didn't want us to come, and we had people at our house, so Bryan and I stayed put until we found out the damage. She had been out boating with her CORE group from Corban and some people had flipped off the tube thing and hit her in the collarbone. She was in pain, but not too bad, and there was a small bump, so they decided to take her in. 

The ER took X-rays and confirmed a VERY broken collarbone! Poor Lauren. She spent the night at Bryce and Julie's and we came up to see her the next morning. With collarbones, they don't really do much except give you a sling, but we are going to the Orthopedist tomorrow, so we will see what he says. Hopefully no surgery! Lauren started school on Wednesday, and she's coping alright, but a little stressed about all the homework she already has.
Cayden and I went to pick up Joe this morning from PDX. 
 He has moved into Lauren's old room, and is very happy with all the space!

Cayden keeps following him around the house, calling him "Chew-ah."   
We are a bustling household again!  

1 comment:

Julie A said...

I am so glad that your surgery went well!! I have been thinking about you. .
Your daughter is really adorable.