So here's a rundown of the day: He couldn't eat or drink for 6 hours before surgery time, so I had to set my alarm for 4 a.m. so I could make sure to stop nursing him then, as the little bugger pretty much nurses all night long. Naturally, that meant we were up from 4 a.m. on. He did surprisingly well over the morning without being fed. I expected him to be a crying wreck by the time we arrived at the hospital at 8, but he stayed in a pretty good mood actually.
The surgeon? Let me just say that the man who came into pre-op today to talk to us was the nicest, most compassionate guy in the world, only he somehow looked exactly like the asshole we met with a couple months ago, and strangely enough, shared the exact same name. Seriously, it was like night and day. When we met with him back in January, the only thing we were impressed with was how absolutely horrible his bedside manner was, and honestly, I've been really torn about entrusing my baby to him all this time. But I've heard from a number of people that he's an excellent surgeon, and since he seems to be the last pedi-uro in Orange County, we didn't feel like we had a whole lot of choice. So when he came into pre-op today, I was already on the defensive because of what a complete prick he had been at his office in January, but he walked right up to me, touched me on the back and said, "Everything okay, Mom? Nervous?" He was so unbelievably kind, it was really difficult to believe it was the same guy. So I felt much more at ease suddenly.
Anyhoo, the hardest part, of course, was when the nurse took Finn from me and walked with him down the hall to the OR. Of course I'm standing there blubbering like a big baby :( You just feel like you're sending your kid off to slaughter, or something - and it's almost worse, because they're none the wiser. They have no idea that they're going to go to sleep and wake up feeling like a train wreck.
The surgery took almost twice as long as originally estimated. Afterwards, the doc came out and showed us photographs of Finn's insides :( and explained the whole procedure and what he found to us. Finn's testes were lodged waayyyy up by his kidneys; they're about 50% smaller than normal (and the doc explained it as a chicken vs. egg situation: are they small because they were lodged up there, or were they lodged up there because they were small and didn't form exactly right? It's a mystery.). The vein that supplies blood to each teste is also shorter than normal, so although he was able to move both testes down into the scrotum (I can't believe I'm writing so dispassionately about my son's male parts; please forgive me, Finn), they are both high in the scrotum rather than low :( He just couldn't get them down any farther. This presents possible problems in that they will be more exposed to possible injury than if they were hanging down like they should be. However, the doc said that as he grows, hopefully his testes will also grow and the veins will stretch and they will descend farther down.
He started explaining to us the dangers of leaving testicles up in the abdominal cavity. As soon as he mentioned temperature, I said to him, "But Finn has Down syndrome. He'll be sterile anyway." He looked at me and said, "That is likely. However, why not give him every chance possible? Who knows? I do not treat him as a child who has Down syndrome, but as a child." I wanted to hug him for saying that.
Anyway, seeing Finn in recovery was rough. He was (is) puffy from all the IV fluids. He cried and cried and that was hard. It was hard to get him to settle down to nurse a little. They gave him some morphine in the recovery room and sent us home with a Rx for Tylenol/Codeine. He has 4 incisions: one in his belly button and one on each side of his abdomen from the laparoscopic surgery, and one on his scrotum where the doc went in and "anchored" his testes. Ahhhhh, my poor baby. He's sleeping now. I expect the next couple of days to be a little rough. We'll see.
Oh, and two things: there was a mom there with two boys, both having outpatient surgery, and the youngest, I'm guessing around 2 years old, had Ds! I wish I would have said something to her, and I wanted to so badly, but I couldn't think of what to say. The other thing is, while Finn was in surgery, Michael went to his oncologist's office to have his chemo pump disconnected (yayyy, a 4-week break!), and his oncologist closed the door and said to Michael, "I understand that my nurse and you and I share a special bond. I have a 20-year old son with Down syndrome." (Remember, M just found out last week that one of the nurses there has a 7 year old son with Ds. Tricia, it's true - they're everywhere!) Michael texted that to me and I started crying. It's so weird . . . lately, I am suddenly feeling just . . . I don't know . . . good, I guess. Okay, about Finn and Down syndrome. And when I see other kids, people with Ds, I feel this connection to them that I never felt before, and it makes me feel all warm inside.
Anyway, enough of the sappy crap. On to the pictures:
On the way to the hospital
Playing with Daddy in pre-op
New toys to play with! And look how well I'm sitting :)