Saturday, July 23, 2011

Journal from the Surgery I

The Food Factor

On the morning of the surgery, Raphaela needed to be fasting, and I felt guilty eating or drinking in front of her, she is such a "foodie."  And so I fasted along with her, and don't know when I will get a normal meal again.  One of the reasons they allowed us to go home was because Raphaela, less than 24 hours after the surgery, was eating and drinking like there was no tomorrow, and her energy levels were even higher than usual, probably due to all that elevated (ie normal) oxygen saturation in her blood.  For this whole week, Raphaela is meant to eat cold liquid foods, and after one day at home, she is already begging for crunchy "real" food.  It represents a complete step backward when we have reverted to runny Gerber type food and bottles with formula.  I can only eat my grown-up non-surgical food when she is sleeping or not paying attention.  This is going to be a long week.

The Hand of G-d

Throughout this journey, I have seen the direct and almost immediate intervention of The Higher Power.  It occurred to me while sitting in the waiting room that the original sleep clinic appointment at Shaarei Zedek was supposed to be September 19th; and instead, we registered for the surgery itself on September 20th.  It was a blessing that someone canceled and gave the space to Dr. Weinberger for Raphaela.  It was sheer luck that the doctors' strike shut down the operating rooms right after they finished with my daughter's procedure.  I can hardly overstate the gift from G-d that Raphaela was able to breathe on her own immediately after the surgery, and did not need to be in Pediatric ICU for two days.

The human body is the most amazing and complicated machine that exists, and watching Raphaela rip out her IV and monitoring tubes and start running around the hospital ward, one day after her surgery.  She was extremely frustrated, because they had placed the IV on her left hand, and being a lefty it prevented her from using her dominant hand.  I could only think that the Universe has given her super-natural powers.  I have so much for which to be thankful, I don't even know where to begin.

Who are the People in your Neighborhood

Amazing, being in a hosptial in Jerusalem, and bumping into all these people you know, sometimes for the best reasons and often with less positive stories.  I saw Alice, the doctor who performed my IUI and fertility procedures, for the first time in three years.  She and her husband, both Arabs, work in Hadassah as specialists.    I bumped into my good friend A, whose husband has unfortunately been in a coma for the last week and a half.  One of Raphaela's nursery teachers came to see her mother, who works at Hadassah, and stopped in for a visit;  you could see the look of confusion on Raphaela's face, when her beloved care taker appeared quite out of context.  My friend's new wife apparently works in the Hemotology department, and she brought me some food while I sat in intesive care, waiting for Raphaela to wake up.

Of course, a huge thank you to Savta Shira, who entertained a fasting Raphaela in the morning, and who sat with me while I tried not to worry.  (No go, but I tried...)

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