After 10 days, the Cheese is doing great. The above picture was taken about 3 days after the surgery. (The “Get Well” cookie basket was from Godmommy Christie–such a special surprise.) It’s hard to tell much of a difference in this picture. His eye is still pretty swollen, but is no longer bruised like it is in the picture.
At the post-op appointment, the doctor was very happy with the outcome and said that he was healing very nicely. He says that it will take a while for us to see the full effects–having to wait for all of the swelling to disappear, etc. but we can already tell a difference.
The trick with congenital ptosis is that it is very difficult to correct. We’ve known this since the beginning, so for us any little improvement that will help his eye sight and make him feel better about himself is huge. The Cheese has said that he can see better out of his right eye which is awesome to hear. This won’t be his last surgery–he’ll probably have to have a couple more in his life as his face grows and changes. The good thing is that it won’t have to be any time soon.
The surgery day itself was…well…okay. He was fine until he started to wake up from the surgery. He was pissed! His eye was swollen shut and he thought that it was covered with a patch or something. He hates wearing a patch (something that he’s had to do since he was a baby). It was the only thing that he was worried about during the whole surgery. “I won’t have to wear a patch will I?” So when he woke up and couldn’t see, he thought he was wearing a patch and started to reach up and grab his newly stitched up eye lid.
And trying to explain the I.V. in his arm wasn’t easy either. To top it all off, he was in a lot of pain. He was screaming, crying, trying to rip everything off of him and there wasn’t a damn thing I could do about it but continue to say, “It’s okay, baby. You’re okay. You’re okay.”
Yeah, uh huh. That didn’t really help.
But then, once I was able to pick him up out of the bed and hold him, things started to get better. Only a Mama can make it better sometimes. “I don’t like this place,” he told me. The nurses laughed and said that it was okay for us to go home. He was pretty pitiful the rest of the day, but he was willing to keep his ice pack on and stay on the couch to be catered to. By the next day, he was up doing all of his normal 6-year-old things.
But let me back up. The day before the surgery, before heading to Disneyland, the Cheese had his pre-op appointment. Pretty standard, no big deal. Did we have any questions? Here’s when you show up, here’s what will happen. Blah, blah, blah. The Cheese just sat there, the only question being, “Will I have to wear a patch?” No, no you won’t have to wear a patch. They didn’t scare him with things; just kept it light, which we really appreciated.
And then the nurse said that they had a surprise for the Cheese. I figured that it would be a sucker or a sticker, you know, your standard doctor visit treat. But instead they gave him the cutest little teddy bear dressed in doctor’s scrubs. “This is what Dr. Goldberg will look like tomorrow,” she said. The Cheese just smiled and hugged him tight. Now, my oldest isn’t a big stuffed animal fan, but in that moment, hugging that new bear, I could see his whole body relax–teddy bears are comforting for a reason.
The program is called Make Surgery Bearable through the Jules Stein Eye Institute (where the Cheese had his surgery.) People can donate to give pediatric patients a new teddy bear prior to having eye surgery. Each bear is only $10, which isn’t very much to give a child some comfort before going into surgery. In the spirit of the season of giving and making a difference in the lives of others, here is the link for the sponsorship form to donate a teddy bear. All you have to do is print it off and mail it in with your donation. It’s such an easy way to make a difference and show a small child a little love (and their parents too.)