June 5th, 2020 was a big day for our Grayson. Hes almost 4 (on the 21st of june).
Background::: He has been having breathing issues for as far back as I can remember. Hes a mouth breather most of the time, even when he sleeps. He snores, and is very restless while he sleeps. Some mornings even when it seems he slept through the night he wakes up irritable like he didnt get much sleep. It always seems like he is congested. And after talking with every pediatrician we have had none suggested looking at his tonsil & adenoids. But our dentist did. They specialize in airway and I have a dear friend who has been doing alot of the research behind airway and kids. So they took a scan of his airway and sure enough his tonsil and adenoids were super enlarged.
(He looked like this 75% of the time he slept. Mouth open and head tilted back.)
We talked alot about the options and after much thought we decided to make an appointment to see an ENT to look at our options and see if getting them out would be beneficial. And sure enough, he looked at his tonsils and said they were grade 3 (out of 4). We also discussed having his tongue tie released if it was an issue when she was in there. So we scheduled the appointment for the surgery the next couple weeks.
How do you prep a 4 year old for a surgery you have never been through? How do you prep them without scaring them? We talked ALOT about being brave. And how he was so brave. We talked about him going into the doctors to get his adenoids and tonsil out so he could breathe better and how he was going to be so brave. We talked alittle about the process but frankly we didnt know much about how it would go down either. My biggest fear was having to watch him go back to the OR without us. And honestly that wasnt even the worst part, because he went back like a champ.
The hardest part came after. The part that I didnt read in any blog post. I wasnt prepared for this. Im going to be real and raw here on what went down so you dont feel blinded or clueless.
(Pre-surgery. Lots of snuggles.)
Day of surgery::: Leading up to this day we did as much “prepping” as we could. So on surgery day we had to be at the surgery center at 8:15am, we got there at 8am. Got all checked in and then we waited. For way too long. Grayson couldnt eat or drink anything after midnight the night before so he was getting hangry. The doctor was running an hour behind. So instead of starting his surgery at 9am, they didnt take him back until 10:15am. By they time he was alittle irritable because he was hungry. He didnt want to put the gowned on or the socks or ride in the wagon. So I held him until I couldnt hold him any more, which was the OR doors. He saw all the nurses waving to him in the room and he got excited, got down and waved goodbye to us.
Im thankful this went so well but it was still hard to see him happy going into the room and not being able to be there to see how it all went down. Giving up that control of your child to “strangers” is hard! So the surgery took about 45ish minutes to take out both tonsils and adenoids. The doctor did come in right after surgery and told us everything went perfect. His adenoids & tonsils were very enlarged and he also had the tongue tie so she released that. And that they had him back in recovery around 11am and we would see them soon.
But we didnt see him until almost 11:30am. This was the HARDEST part. We could hear him crying and in pain and we were just stuck in our room because they hadnt brought him to us yet. This process could of been better I feel like looking back. I was under the assumption that we would be in the recovery room when they brought him out of the OR but we werent. And that wait of uncertainty & hearing his little voice in pain was hard.
After they brought him to us, he was sad, cried, snuggled, coughed. He didnt want anything to drink for like 45 minutes after the surgery. But finally once we got some ibuprofen in him, he felt alittle better and downed an applesauce, a superfood smoothie pouch, a popsicle and a small apple juice. We finally were able to go home around 1:30pm.
TIPS for surgery day:::
- Bring any of their comfort items. Gray had his giraffe stuffed animal & blanket. Along with a brave bear my mom brought him. That I actually hugged while he was in surgery.
- Have him wear comfy clothes incase they wont wear the gowned.
- Bring snacks for you while you wait. We didnt bring that many and man we were HUNGRY.
- Bring things for them to do while you wait. Again we didnt do this because we didnt think the wait would be that long!
- Ask questions. You can never ask too many. I wish I would of asked more about the procedure and exactly the process for that morning.
- Its okay to have all the mixed feelings! I was nervous, scared, sad, but I was also excited for this to hopefully help him start to breathe better!
- Bring something for YOU to do while you wait to take your mind of just waiting.
- Pray. Pray. Pray. I wish I would of had headphones to just listen to our favorite song over and over again. (Waymaker is our fav song!)
Post surgery. It was alot harder on Nick. He hated that he couldnt fix his pain or do anything to help. So he just snuggled.
We survived that surgery part. Now its time to work through the recovery at home. New blog coming for that! Stay tuned for our surgery 24 hours AT HOME & our first night!
I would love to hear from you. Have your kids had this surgery? How did they recover?