The Long and Winding Road

My heart exploded for my little family today.

I watched my 4-month-old baby get wheeled off to an operating room to have her Achilles tendons snipped on both feet. Before anyone thinks I’m too melodramatic, I know that so many families deal with so much worse. But I’m sorry… there is nothing normal about your infant having a tube shoved down her throat and being put under. We were at a children’s hospital with staff taking very gentle care of her, but still… it felt unnatural. It was also the very first time I’ve ever let her out of my or my husband’s care without a loving grandparent there to watch her.

Before she was wheeled off to surgery, she reached for my husband for the first time ever. I watched his eyes flood with tears, and my heart just about burst. I am so very happy that we got to share that moment during such a tense time. He loves these little girls with every fiber of his being, and I adore him even more for this fact.

Everything went okay. She did wake up absolutely hysterical, convincing us and her nurse that something was wrong. The nurse phoned her surgeon, who came in personally to see her. The doctor gave us the option of admitting her. But after a dose of, she seemed better. We ended up driving home, and she’s sleeping comfortably in her crib right now. I think she is exhausted.

She was totally parched when she woke up and drank 8 oz of glucose solution before they brought her to us. I could tell that she was very, very hungry, so I insisted on giving her a bottle (a brave move on my part considering she was perched on my lap) regardless of the fact that she could throw up. That child has always had an ironclad stomach (completely opposite of her sister). She only ate about an ounce before falling asleep. She kept waking periodically and crying hard, so that’s when the staff became worried. Her reaction basically never occurs during this procedure, but yet she’s been through a lot already, and usually clubfoot treatment occurs earlier and doesn’t involve brittle bones.

Anyway, the surgery went well. The doctor had to make two incisions in her right foot because it was more severe than the other, and he wasn’t happy with the correction that occurred from one incision. He said both feet practically corrected themselves from the snipping. She’ll wear the casts for two weeks, then have them changed out, then wear them for 1-2 more weeks. Then we put braces on her feet pretty much 24/7 for three months before proceeding with wearing them only at naptime or nighttime. That will continue for a longtime–until approximately age three or four. Ugh.

After we arrived at our car in the afternoon, we picked up Layla. She had such a huge smile on her face. She stayed with my dad all day and charmed the heck out of him. My heart warmed watching her smile and grab her feet and just generally act adorable. She has the art of cuteness down to a fine science.

I love my family!

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