Sunday, August 24, 2014

Post-Op Day 1

So, the first night was a really rough one. We had a hard time getting Max's pain under control until about 1am. Mimi and Pal stayed until bedtime and then Max, Tyler and I all got ready for our sleepover. The problem was that Max and I couldn't sleep. Tyler slept on the pull out couch, but I couldn't get comfortable and my mind was racing. Max didn't recover well from the anesthesia and because his pain control was still not adequate, he didn't sleep at all. He would close his eyes and about every 20 minutes he would cry out looking for Tyler and me. Then when the nurses came in to give meds or take vital signs, he got really scared and would cry. It turned out to be easier on all of us if I just sat beside him in the chair so every time he opened his eyes he would see me. That seemed to help keep him calm. 

The morning after surgery

Max and Nurse Heather

I do have to say that we had the most amazing nurse, Heather, for 2 days in a row, and Max ended up getting to the point where he trusted her. The cover on his arm just protects his IV. When the nurses came in to flush his IV or to give him medicine, they would make sure to always tell him, "No owies; I'm just going to give your arm a drink because it's thirsty." When they would take his blood pressure, they would say, "No owies; I'm just going to give your arm a hug." They always made a point to let him know that they weren't going to hurt him every time they came in. This was really helpful because he kept saying he didn't want to get another pacemaker. They would always reassure him and let him know that there would be no more surgery. That part was over and now he just gets to get better. I think this is part of the reason he wouldn't sleep either. He was told in pre-op that he would go to sleep after breathing through the mask and then when he woke up the surgery would be over. I think this is why he was scared to go to sleep that first night. He would open his eyes and say that he didn't want to get another pacemaker. 

Sweet Daddy tried to get Max to eat some breakfast, but he just wasn't interested. He hardly ate anything the whole time we were in the hospital. I can't blame him. He had so much manipulation in surgery with his chest and abdomen that I'm sure everything was sore so he didn't feel like eating. 

He was also terrified to move at all, so he kept wanting us to adjust him in the bed because his back was getting stiff and sore. All he wanted to do was snuggle his stuffed animals and watch movies in bed. He was definitely grumpy just wanted to be left alone to lay there. 

 Pal came to spend the day with him on his day off work. We knew we had to get him up and moving, so we decided to take him on a wagon ride. Max was really mad about this, but it was good for him overall. It helped show him that he could move a little and it wouldn't hurt too much. 

Sweet Pal trying to soothe Max when he didn't feel so good

After our stroll around the hospital, we opened the gift box that Mimi's staff gave Max. It was amazing and incredibly thoughtful! There were all kinds of snacks, toys, books, puzzles and fun things for Max to play with. Honestly, the highlight of his day was opening that box. He hadn't smiled or been happy all day until Daddy helped him open the box. The box even had a Superman shirt and a flashlight. I think the flashlight was his favorite because he liked shining it in the nurses eyes every time they came in the room. 

First smile of the day from our little patient
Daddy is really good about getting him to smile, laugh, and make light of any situation.

Reading "Brown Bear, Brown Bear" with Daddy

Max still wasn't hungry, so Pal tried to get him to eat his favorite food, Gigi's chocolate cupcakes. We thought that would work for sure, but it didn't. The little guy just wasn't hungry. 

Time to take a rest with the bear he affectionately named Bozo Bear. Thank you to our friends, Paul and Beth Frankenburg, who let Max borrow this special bear for his heart surgery. The bear was given to Paul by his parents when Paul had his first heart surgery in the 1970's. Since then, they let people borrow the bear when they have heart surgery to help them be brave and feel comforted. Max absolutely loved this bear and loved the idea that Bozo bear has a pacemaker too. Poor Uncle Eric came to visit, but Max was so tired that he slept the whole time he was there. He was due for a good nap though! Later that afternoon Aunt Chelsea came by for a visit too. She brought him the most thoughtful gift - a doctor costume so he could pretend he is a doctor. Of course he wasn't crazy about it when she gave it to him because he was still mad at the doctors for giving him a new pacemaker. He told her, "I don't want that!" We all just laughed, but of course now he thinks it's so cool. 

Just relaxing!

All tucked in and time for bed.

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