We brought J to Columbia first thing Thursday morning for the repeat surgery on his right eye. The surgical unit nurses all know James, so as usual it had the feeling of a bit of a homecoming, with everyone kindly falling over themselves to make sure we were all comfortable.
The procedure went really well, and his eye surgeon also confirmed that the left eye looked as good as he thought it did earlier in the week (for obvious reasons, it’s a little tough to properly examine a baby’s eye when he’s awake). At our first follow up appointment yesterday, his right eye is already looking better than it did Wednesday.
We feel good. We have been those annoying parents who pepper the doctors with a zillion well-researched questions (I once quoted a peer reviewed study to a doctor, and he just chuckled and shook his head at me). But for some reason both ICU Dad and I almost blindly (heh. heh.) trust James’ eye surgeon. There is something about this guy — I have faith that he will save J’s sight.
Despite the positive developments, ICU Dad and I were both feeling pretty down Thursday night. Somehow over the last 6 months, it has almost become routine for us to just hand J over to surgeons. We see the distraught parents in the family waiting room, the majority of whom are experiencing this for the first time, and rather than join them we confirm the nurses have our mobile number and grab a burrito around the corner while we wait.
I know, rationally, that neither ICU Dad or I could survive this process and also be here for our kids if we came unhinged every time J needed a surgery — falling apart actually requires a huge amount of energy that we just don’t have right now. But we need to get back to some kind of ordinary life, where surgery under general anesthetic is a major event in a child’s life, instead of just another Thursday.