Wednesday, October 15, 2008

surgery for emma.


this little miss has been so sweet lately i can hardly stand it! she went through a rather rough, ornery, mean, tormenting her sister stage not to long ago. i hope it's over.

anywho. i didn't mean to startle anyone about the mention of surgeries. here's the story....

three months ago, emma was really sick---for over a month. 105.6 fever for days, blisters in her throat, laryngitis...the works. remember? well, ever since then, her voice has been raspy or non-existant. a call to the pediatrician and i was told to give it a month. so we waited. month later, and i called again. wait another 2 weeks said the doctor. so we waited. called again and i was referred to an Ear, Nose, Throat specialist to get it checked out.

so, last week emma and i treked over to the specialist to have a little chat with the doctor about her throat. i go in there thinking that she's got a little problem with her vocal cords. nothing a little medicine or quiet talking might solve. right?


first thing he does is peek at her ears. i thought....hmmmm. he must know something i don't know, cause i haven't even complained about her ears. it's her throat, there, doc. he then procedes to drill me on her vocal usage and her responses when being talked to and whatnot. all of this, while he is looking in her ears for what seems like an eternity. "don't have Q-tips in your house." he warned me sternly. oh heavens. he surely doesn't realize a crafter with a little shadow can't live without Q-tips. someone send the memo.....puh-lease! LOL. just kidding. really, our kids never stick Q-tips in their ears. just in my ink and chalk and paint. thankyouverymuch. "oh, don't worry doc no Q-tips." seriously. what else was i supposed to say? i'm a responsible parent.

so, back to the looking in the ears. he had some very hi-tech ear-looking thingamabob that had a tube dangling from it. next thing i know, he's got the tube in his mouth and is blowing air rapidly and repetatively into her ear. first thing this germaphobe thought, was ewwww, gross.

uh, oh. he's got that serious look. go ahead doc. drop the bomb. and he procedes to say "i'm rather concerned about her eardrum in her left ear, it doesn't seem to be functioning at all. and she has a lot of fluid in there. you say she doesn't have a problem hearing you at home." to which i reply. "well, doc, truth is, i really can't say for sure. yes, there are many times where i talk right to her and ask her to do something or not to do something and she doesn't seem to listen. but gosh darnit, she's three. and three year olds are just plain stubborn sometimes." to which he chuckled.

he then went on with his exam......"so tell me a little about her breathing. does she snore? does she always breathe through her mouth? how many sinus infections has she had in the past year? oh yeah? and how's about ear infections?" well let's see........"she's had 3 sinus infections in the past year, and 6 ear infections in the past 2 years. trust me. we've asked for a referral about her ears sooner than this. but, really. this time her ears aren't infected. let's talk about her voice."

so then the bomb dropped. he asked if she's had her hearing checked before and said we really needed to have that done. also she needs 2 surgeries to resolve the underlying problems going on. but, if we could get the hearing test done before the surgeries and it comes out fine, then we can forego the surgeries--but he laughed commenting that he'd be blown away if there wasn't a deficit.

WHAT!??!!! it was all i could do to choke back the tears. here i have one daughter who has a mass growing under her skin and we're on week 2 with no results and now i'm being told that emma needs to have not one, but 2 surgeries. i was quickly ushered to the nurse's desk to gather all the information about what would take place, what medicines she can and cannot have, recovery expectations, and anesthesia information. oh, and by the way, he only does surgery on tuesday, so we'll see you there on the 2st. like, yeah, just 10 days from now. suddenly everything around me started spinning, and echoing, like i was in a long dark tunnel. i never in a million years thought i'd be leaving this office with surgery on the schedule. i let the whatifs of ashlyn's biopsy results consume me.

"oh wait, ma'am, let's schedule that hearing test. can you come back tomorrow?" um, seriously. "no. i know she needs it done. but can we do it today? because i honestly cannot afford to pay you another $30 copay tomorrow." i was ushered to the waiting room to wait for them to squeeze me in. might be 20 minutes, might be 3 hours, i was told. the long and short of it is, that we waited to be squeezed in that day with the audiologist. thankfully, it was just 20 minutes.

what did it show? by golly she has hearing loss in both ears, the left is worse than the right. her left eardrum is producing no movement at all when sound moves across it and she has some nerve damage to the left ear. so after that test, we were back in to touch base with the doctor again to see if his plan of attack remains. sure enough. it does.

he explained..."her raspy, sometimes non-exsistent voice is due to her talking loudly all the time (so she can hear herself) and because she's a chronic mouth breather because she can't breathe through her nose---most likely because her adenoids are enlarged and blocking her nasal passages. i won't be able to tell that until they are removed, but the symptoms warrant it."

all the way home, the only thought i could form was....okay, God, this isn't funny. i can't handle anymore. this is the part where i say "MERCY" and you need to listen. you hear me God?

so, tuesday (oct 21), she'll have surgery to put tubes in her ears and have her adenoids removed. she'll undergo anesthesia for surgery and they'll do both procedures while she's under. she'll have improved hearing immediately after surgery, but the adenoid recovery is difficult for the first 2-3 days. she'll be feeling pretty rough. the full recovery is 7-10 days and she can't go to school, or highly populated areas during that time due to risk of infection.

so, i'll be home.....all week snuggling my girl. :o) (ps. i'm sorry if i bored you to death reading all of this, but someday, i'll be able to look back and see how God has carried me through this last month.....ya know, hindsight, is always 20/20.)



  1. Man girl! When it rains, it pours, huh? I'll be praying for her surgeries, and also for you and Doug as you pace the waiting room!!!

  2. Oh, Tania! You and those poor sweet girls. It's so hard to understand the "why." I don't that I ever will. She's lucky to have a Mom that understands pain and can help her through the healing process. I hope that she comes through like a champ and feels much, much better!

  3. Tania, I wish I could magically make everything better or at least be there to give you a big hug!!! You and Emma and your entire family will be in my thoughts and prayers this week!!


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