Wednesday, September 3, 2008

The Pre-Op Bop

Hello from CHLA pre-op room #21.

Pablo is totally chill about the surgery. He is laying in bed watching Nick (ugh—commercials!). Legs crossed, hands behind his head. Homie ain't worried about a thing!

Drs Stein and Austin came by to run through the procedural details with us. I signed the consent last night, so all the legal stuff is in the can. Stein is gonna look around inside P's body (why not check under the hood, right?) for any fishy lookin' nodes or any other odd bits. We are not expecting any surprises, by the way.

Dr Drummond the anesthetist is here. She is sweet and authoritative, and is presenting us with pain management options (epidural vs On Cue). We opted for the epidural. It has some downside (he may have trouble feeling the need to pee), but the upside is huge: it works; they will install it when he's under; and, did I mention, it works? This is the third time Dr Drummond has worked with Pablo, so she is speaking about what might work for him and how they will work with his body from firsthand experience. She knows what he ate yesterday cos she looked at his chart before talking to us. Of all the things we never thought about prior to 113 days ago, Pablo becoming a ubiquitous character around here was one of them. The sense of comfort and security this brings us is immeasurable.

On that note: many of the nurses said Hello to Pablo by name as we whizzed down the long hallways of Surgery and Pre-Op. Each time he would smile shyly and look into his lap. Or at the ceiling when I was popping wheelies in the wheelchair.

All this familiarity and warmth MUST have a profound, positive effect on P's emotional and psychological state.

We are lucky to be nestled in the arms of CHLA.

Looks like we're minutes away from rolling up to that candy cane line at the top of the surgery hallway. The one where we've said goodbye to our little boy three times in the past 16 days.

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