So, we showed up at the hospital at 8 AM this morning; checked in; signed all the consent forms; changed Davy into the hospital clothes; met one last time with the surgeon and anesthesiologist…
…aaaaaaand they decided they didn’t like the sound of Davy’s cough, and want to reschedule the surgery after it’s cleared up. Which, of course I didn’t argue: I fully understand how respiratory issues and anesthesia can be a very bad combination. That’s why I told the nurses about Davy’s cough during our pre-op appointment last Wednesday. I also told them that Davy almost always has a cough, which is true. Any cold or virus, no matter how mild, will leave Davy with a cough that lingers for six weeks. We’ve brought this issue up with our pediatrician, who told us that aside from keeping an eye on it, there’s nothing to be done: the only treatment is steroids, which you don’t want to give a kid unless they are struggling to breathe. Davy’s persistent coughs have never interfered with his breathing, so all we can do is be watchful.
But anyway. Because Davy’s hernia is not currently impacted, this isn’t an emergency surgery, and therefore the doctors would like to wait until his cough has cleared up. And I agree—I don’t want to take any risks that can be avoided. I just kind of wish they’d told us this on Wednesday.
So we’re back home now. Our instructions are to wait a week after his cough has cleared up, and then call to reschedule the surgery. Of course it’s entirely likely that Davy will have a new cough by the time the next surgery date rolls around, but I suppose we can try it and hope for the best. The kiddo’s in good spirits, at least.
Davy’s hernia repair surgery is scheduled for early tomorrow, so if you can send some supportive thoughts our way…I’d appreciate it. We’ve met with the surgeon and the anesthesiologist and they both seem great, and it’s a really a very routine surgery, but they do have to give Davy general anesthesia so I’m tense about that. Hopefully by this time tomorrow we’ll be back home with the kiddo.
We had an appointment yesterday where the hospital staff showed Davy pictures of the various rooms he’ll go through tomorrow, and had him practice breathing through the mask for the anesthesia, and generally did their best to put a friendly face on everything and make it less scary for him. He got to choose a scent to add to the gas (he chose bubblegum), and he’s allowed to bring a stuffed animal or small toy with him tomorrow. I really do appreciate these little gestures. “We don’t want this to be a traumatic experience for him,” a nurse told me. “We don’t want him to fear doctors or coming back to the hospital for follow-up care.” It makes a lot of sense.
Then she said, “Watching the child go to sleep in the induction room can sometimes be an emotional experience for the parents” and I just about started bawling right there. So while Davy has a good understanding of everything that’s going to happen tomorrow, and I think he’ll be fine, I might be a total wreck. I guess I’ll just try to be as brave as my four-year-old.
Robin and Davy have a friend whose baby sister had the foresight and sagacity to be born exactly one year ago, with the result that this year we were invited to a combo egg-hunt/birthday party: it was great fun for the kids and it was no work at all for me. So that was lovely.
See how nicely that baby arranged everything? I should see if she’s available to plan my next party.
Robin has given me permission to share his first work of fiction here. It’s called “Godzilla vs. King Kong 2.” It has been lightly edited for spelling, but otherwise is presented exactly as intended by the author. Warning: this story contains violent themes!
“Once upon a time there was a city people were nice.
THEN monsters came and guns were everywhere and one was damaged
AND people are screaming OF ROARS and King Kong. Bad was here.
THEN GODZILLA ROARS SCARIER THAN KING KONG
with 1,000,000,000 of ☺ died GODZILLA DIES but he comes back
Then monsters fight
Godzilla is uses his bite. King Kong uses his punch.
Godzilla will become so powerful times of atomic breath
King Kong will not be powerful.
THE END or is it”
In other creative-writing news, I’ve recently learned that a story of mine will be included in the upcoming Love Hurts anthology from Meerkat Press. It’s scheduled to be published in October, so I’ll post more about it as the book nears launch. I’m fairly stoked that the list of other authors includes Charlie Jane Anders, who is a distant friend and whose work I have been following with interest and pleasure. (We moved in some of the same circles when I lived in San Francisco, and I always liked her, though I actually knew her girlfriend Annalee better.) I was super stoked when she won a Hugo Award for her novelette Six Months, Three Days, and I feel warm and cozy about having our stories share a Table of Contents. It’s sort of like a writerly high-five.
Robin’s expression in this photo cracks me up (click for bigger version):
And Sol’s birthday is tomorrow! He’s still super happy, super sweet, and super destructive. The Wreckin’ Ball turns two…
Davy is soldiering on, though he’s been having a little bit of a rough time lately. It turns out he has a hernia that will need surgical repair—he had one very painful episode that took him to the emergency room, but it subsided and he’s doing okay now. The surgery is scheduled for April 17th. Apparently hernias in children are actually relatively common; I had no idea. Until the surgery’s done he can’t run or jump around, so that’s putting a big crimp in his style. I’m nervous about it because he’s going to need general anesthesia, and there’s always risks associated with that, but I’m told that this is a very routine procedure and he should be able to come home right afterwards.
Bonus pic of Robin and Davy:
And another photo of two kids! (Ha ha hah.) This one’s a bit older, as you can tell because it was taken before Robin got a haircut; I took it when we last went to Nevada to visit Nonna and Pappy.
Davy had a great time making Valentines for his preschool friends this year—that is, he had a great time making about five of them, and then he was done. So I made the other thirty-three. I was particularly pleased with the effect of random animal stickers paired with tiny hearts.
I am also very proud to say that Davy made the necklace at the top of the photo, and he made it for me. I know lots of people are grouchy about Valentine’s Day but I really like it: of all the things we have holidays for, “love and friendship” seems to me the most worth celebrating. Although it’s possible that I just like the puns. I choo-choo-choose you!
A couple weeks ago on Facebook I wrote: “Tonight I’m struck by the weird, irrational certainty that Sol has just transformed from a baby into a little boy. Like, today. He was a baby yesterday—a big one, but still a baby—and now he’s a little boy.” You can see that in this picture, I think. The last of my babies has vanished, and in his place is this little boy, rarin’ to go.
Here’s something Robin worked up recently–it’s meant to be a “top 10 facts about Godzilla” sort of thing, but as you read through, it takes on an almost spiritual quality:
TOP 10 GODZILLA IS NOT GOOD OR BAD
10. Godzilla is not good or bad
9. Godzilla is a good AND bad
8. Godzilla is Godzilla
7. Godzilla is the ki[ng]
The numbers 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, and 1 have been drawn but are blank. (5 was drawn backwards at first and then forwards, so it appears to be 25 at first glance.) Anyway, I feel this stands as an interesting alternative to the more widely-known Tablets of Moses.
Yesterday our Scout group participated in an MLK Day of Service event organized by the East Bay Regional Park District—the 23rd Oaklanders, along with lots of other volunteers, helped spread mulch and pick up trash at the Martin Luther King Jr. Shoreline Park here in Oakland. Here’s a pic I snapped of Robin and Davy attacking the mulch pile:
Two hours later we had that whole pile spread out, along with two others just like it, and the kids got to walk around a bit and enjoy the shoreline. Several of the Scouts were disappointed that there wasn’t enough trash for them to find!