Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Surgery Update

Just wanted to expand on Michelle's post from yesterday to tell you a little bit about what Jack's surgery day was like.

The surgery was scheduled for the morning, and we had to get to the hospital by 7:45am, so no breakfast for Jack! We basically woke him up and got him dressed for the trip to the hospital. We felt bad for the little guy because he was playing and having a grand old time in his car seat and had no idea what was going to happen shortly. We got to the hospital without any problems, checked in and played with some toys in the waiting room for a few minutes before being called back to a prep room.

The prep nurse had a great New England accent. I wanted to ask her to say "my car is parked at Harvard" (i.e.- "my CAH is PAH'ed at HAHVAD) but I let the urge pass because we were there for serious business. This nurse (as well as all of the hospital staff ) was great! She couldn't have been nicer to Jack or more understanding that his apprehension had nothing to do with her. Sometimes we meet up with medical professionals that seem put off when Jack cries, like he is able to control his fear of white lab coats or something. Anyway, in the prep room they took his vitals and we spoke to the anesthesiologist about what was going to happen before/during/after surgery. We decided that we would like to have Jack take a mild sedative even before he received the anesthesia because we wanted to make sure he was eased into the process. We didn't want to leave him when he was fully "with it" so he wouldn't be terrified when they came and got him for anesthesia. The sedative made him look drunk, and he had this goofy little grin on his face from that point on.

After the sedative had been given time to fully kick in, the nurses came and got Jack and we said our "goodbyes". Last night I told my family that there can't be too many things tougher to watch than seeing your child walked down the hall away from you toward an operating room. Both Michelle and I had lumps in our throats at this point, but the sedative was doing its job so Jack was kind of out of it and didn't realize we had stayed behind.

The surgery took about an hour or so, and then the Doctor came out and gave us the good news that everything had gone according to plan and that Jack's eyes were now straight. I know that this is a "routine" surgery, but when is surgery ever truly "routine"? When we heard the Doctor say that everything was okay, that was when we finally exhaled for the first time in an hour.

We went back to the recovery room and saw our tiny little Jack on a regular sized bed. He looked so small! His eyes were a little swollen, and he had an IV in his arm, but other than that he just looked like he was asleep. He woke up after about 20 minutes and we took him to a different recovery room to feed him some juice while he continued to get his IV fluids. We were told we could leave when the nurses were satisfied with his fluid intake, and so we set out for home. Jack fell asleep on the ride home, so there wasn't too much fussing there. Once we got home, he had some ice cream (don't tell Russia), and other than being a little drowsy looking, he seemed like his normal self. He took a long nap yesterday afternoon, but seemed to feel fine last night. We were giving him Baby Tylenol every four hours for the pain, and he has some antibiotic eye drops (he HATES these!).

Last night he was awake and crying from about 11pm to 1am. He actually fell asleep a few times during that span, but when we would go to put him in his crib, he would wake up and cry all over again. Eventually, we were able to get him down, and I slept on the floor in his room to try and maybe ease his fears a little. Maybe that worked because he slept from 1am until it was time to get him up for breakfast.

So far today he has been his normal self. We have already done his eye drops twice today (with two more times still ahead of us today). He is napping now, and hopefully we'll have an uneventful evening.

As far as the success of the surgery, his eyes are currently straight, but it will take about 6 weeks to see if his brain will "accept" the surgery and retrain itself to look straight. Hopefully this surgery will take and we won't have to do it over again. It's almost strange to see his eyes straight for our brains, so we know his brain must be having an adjustment. I know we got to the point where we pretty much didn't even notice his crossed eyes anymore, so now when we see him we almost do a double take.

We just wanted to thank everyone for their thoughts and prayers. We also wanted to thank so many of you who we heard from regarding Strabismus when we were contemplating accepting Jack's referral. We can't imagine our lives without Jack, and so many of you told us that Strabismus was such a correctable condition that we should definitely accept the referral for this little guy that had it (although we would have accepted the referral anyway). While he was in the OR yesterday, we couldn't help but think of those of you who convinced us that we would be able to correct his condition. THANK YOU for helping us accept the most beautiful little guy into our home with your words of advise on that topic!

In case we don't post between now and Christmas, we wish everyone a very Merry Christmas from the Curran family OF THREE!!!!


  1. So glad that everything went well with Jack's surgery and he is doing well.
    Have a wonderful Christmas as a family of 3!!!

  2. Great to hear surgery went well, and Jack is on the mend. Prayers that his brain will adjust and you can simply move forward! Merry Christmas!

  3. So beautifully written. Thank you so much for the updates. I felt like I was there with you -- in fact, I am still crying!!

    I am so happy for all 3 of you. Have a WONDERFUL Christmas together!!

  4. Merry Christmas to you three from Vladivostok! we are leaving today to come home from trip #1. Thanks for the updates - it is wonderful to follow your journey. When you get a chance can you email me? I don't have you email address...

  5. Guys, Sitting here with tears thinking about you guys watching him go to surgery. Glad it all turned out fine. Hope you had a great first Christmas together. Are you Skyping yet? We need to hook up and chat! Best always,


  6. Hi there! Glad to hear that Jack's surgery went well. How are things going now?

    You have not posted since the 23rd and was just wondering if everything is okay.
    Please let all of us blogging friends know how things are.