Friday, September 23, 2011

It never gets easier

You would think that, after all of the drama that we endured when Trystan was a baby, that something as mundane as Charlotte's outpatient tonsillectomy would be no big deal. It is a very common surgery, one that kids her age handle very well.

And yet, the moment she was out of my sight and in the care of the nurses and surgeon and anesthesiologist, I cried tears of helplessness and fear all over my husband’s shoulder. She would be fine. I had to trust that she would be fine. I said a silent prayer for her safety, and one for the doctor and nurses who would be taking care of her. But it didn’t make it any easier to have her behind a door where I couldn't hold her hand.

With Trystan's epic tome of medical considerations, I've always taken Charlotte's good health for granted. But she has gotten strep regularly a couple times a year since toddlerhood, and she snores like Darth Vadar with a faulty power supply. Her tonsils have been huge, resembling a pair of shelled walnuts closing off the back of her throat even when she wasn’t sick.

The referral to the pediatric otolaryngologist was a relief. "Have you seen these?" he asked me, looking down her throat. Oh yes, regularly for the past several years. He wasted no time deliberating whether or not she was a good candidate. He simply started reciting the risks and benefits of surgery like it was a done deal.

Wednesday’s surgery wasn't, in the grand scheme of things, a huge deal. Charlotte stayed home from school and hung out in her jammies. We watched a couple of movies. I had to remind her a couple of times that she couldn't have a snack until it was all over. We left around noon for the hospital. She was very, very brave the whole time.

The anesthesia was not kind to her. She woke up afterwards in a haze and confused, scared and clinging and not able to focus well. But as the last of the drugs wore down, she began dutifully swallowing white cherry and blue raspberry slushies. Before long, she was requesting food and enjoying jello and pudding and a bite of Suzy Q (which was probably contraband as it came from me and not from the nurses). We were home by 9pm.

She is sore, but in good spirits. She is hungry, but only eats a bite or two at a time. She is anxious to work on some of the homework her teacher sent, but maybe not the handwriting practice. She has a list of movies that she wants to re-watch. Her voice is different.

When I tiptoed into her room overnight to bring her pain meds, she was sleeping peacefully. Quietly. So quietly that I was worried for half a heartbeat before I realized that the surgery has already gotten rid of the snoring. Perhaps now she can catch up on years of sleep-debt caused by poor breathing.

So, the family will be enjoying jello and pumpkin pie and milkshakes and smoothies, and giving up chips and other scratchy things while our big girl heals. We have some home-schooling to do. We have a lot of snuggling to do. And we have prayers of thanksgiving to say for the continued good health of our Charlotte.

Thursday, September 08, 2011

This End Up

I've been griping about packing and moving lately, so now it's time to gripe about unpacking.

I feel like my brain is on overload trying to sort out the order in which order to tackle the unpacking. I want my bedroom put together, but many of our clothes are in drawers that belong in dressers that will now be located in other bedrooms. There is a pile of clothes in my son's room that belongs in one of those sets of drawers. The frame is in his room, but the drawers themselves are down on our floor. There is a stack of book boxes along one wall that belong in my office. There is a bookshelf blocking part of the door to the office that belongs in the kids' office/study room. I found boxes in Charlotte's room that belong down in my office. My dining room table is littered with knick-knacks that go in the china cabinet, which is full of pieces that belong in the buffet, which is still in the possession of the moving company pending a leg repair. Somewhere is the box with the table pad that will protect the table from being scratched by all those knick-knacks.

The whole unpacking problem is like one huge tangle of yarn, except I can't find an end to tug on. Every time I try, I end up jogging between six different rooms, then come back later to find that I've left bits and pieces out in each one of them, making the house look even messier. And every third box or so I find a whole bunch of stuff that I really want packed back up and moved to a far-back corner of the basement.


Tuesday, September 06, 2011

Moving Lessons

The Great Move of 2011 is Not Yet Complete.

Alas, I had hoped to claim victory by last night. But, as we have learned the hard way, our family has a lot of stuff. Much of it is junk that I am not sure we need or want. Much of it is Important. And Precious. And Labor Intensive.

We began moving shortly after we closed on our new house at the end of July. Our old garage is still quite full of garage-y things. Our basement is still brimming with basement-y things. And our old kitchen cupboards hold a variety of very hard to pack knick-knack-y-things.  In the new house, we have boxes everywhere. Our bedroom floor is littered with drawers of clothes (The actual dressers to which the drawers belong are in a different room. By design. Sort of).

Most of my shoes are in a large bag whose location I may or may not be able to guess. And the sideboard to my dining room set is somewhere in the metro area awaiting repair from moving damage (hint: Neither drag nor tork the legs on a sideboard-with-ball-and-claw-legs, even if you are a Big Burly Moving Man. Or perhaps, especially if you are  Big Burly Moving Man).

Everyone in the family has a bed. We have managed at least three successful meals that were actually prepared in our new kitchen (technically, the main dish of one of them was prepared outside by the front door in the smoker). We know the whereabouts of our safe (which holds nothing of value to anyone other than us and the IRS), the antique silverware (which has seen hard use, was never overly valuable, and is custom-engraved with the family's last initial), and the most beloved teddy bears (named Inky-Dinky and Polka Dot).

We are exhausted.

But, we are all adjusting well to our new home. Including Their Majesties the Royal Furballs. Ravenkall, pictured above, especially loves all of the high perches and balconies in the house. The first time he attempted the perch in the photo, he required a ladder-assisted escort back to the groun. The second time, he jumped (and all bones appear to have survived).

It is much easier to get oneself into trouble than out of it, but I suppose we shall all land on our feet eventually.