Last Wednesday I went to bed with every intention of getting a good night sleep since Bo and I were scheduled to check in at outpatient surgery at 6 a.m. Except all I could think of as I lay there in the dark was him having an allergic reaction to the gas and going without oxygen for some span of time sufficient to render him debilitated for life.
Which is ridiculous, I know, considering that 15-year-olds suck nitrous from whipped cream cans, they're mostly functional, and we can assume the effects will wear off before they reach adulthood.
But a mother's brain is what it is and a procedure as minor as slicing through a tiny mostly useless piece of tissue looms large when it'll be an infant on the operating table. At least, that was my experience lying awake until midnight when Bo stirred, woke, and demanded the nursing session that would have to suffice until at least 7:30ish the next day.
I finally fell asleep for a few hours until Bo woke up at 3 a.m. and then stayed up because he was hungry or thirsty again and no solids or liquids means no solids or liquids, and that includes mama's milk. He was angry and cried on and off, first for the mister and then for me, while I bounced him around the kitchen listening to whatever is on the radio in the long, quiet, exhausting hours before dawn.
At 4 a.m. I put him in his car seat and we drove through downtown, passing early morning joggers and dog walkers and people doing who knows what there in the light of the street lamps, and then up along the coast where I could watch the darkness turn to dimness over the water. Somewhere around five, he fell asleep.
I left him in his car seat in the driveway in the dark with the windows open and the radio playing for company in case he woke up while I tended to my morning preparations and downs cup after cup of coffee. Is it weird that I put on makeup and braided my hair? Probably not.
Bo slept until we got to the hospital, right on time. I put him, still sleepy and mightily confused by now, into the carrier. He sucked discontentedly on his pacifier until we finally got checked in and moved to pre-op, where his usual sunny disposition suddenly returned.
I was so worried that his empty belly would make him so so sad, but no. He thought the hospital crib was fascinating and that the nurses were charming and our walk around the pre-op area was generally delightful. It was obvious that he knew something was off about our morning but he wasn't letting it phase him in the least.
I tried to follow his lead as I suited up in a giant blue jumpsuit and booties and a hairnet to take him back to the OR where I held him wrapped in a freshly warmed blanket as the anesthesiologist administered the gas. The most traumatic part of pre-op for Bo - possibly the most traumatic part of the whole procedure - was having the gas mask pressed against his face.
Then he went slack and it was time for a kiss goodbye before I was hustled out to the waiting room...
...where I had exactly enough time to take one selfie before the doctor came out to tell me everything had gone as expected, which is to say quickly and smoothly. No stitches were required. A little bit after that a nurse came to fetch me back to post-op where I encountered a big group of pediatric nurses gathered around a cubicle. Bo's cubicle, where I saw...what else... a smiling, giggling, bouncing baby charming the scrubs off everyone around him.
He woke up without any fuss. He was happy to see me. We nursed just the same as always, he ate Cheerios, and then he had what was I think his very first taste of ice cold juice from a sippy. And then we went home.
It was a happy homecoming until the drugs wore off and so I put him back in the carrier and walked him in laps around the house until a new dose of Tylenol could take the edge off.
In the end, Bo took a longer than usual midday nap and then woke to nurse as usual. Now and then he'd open his mouth wide and I could see the angry red loose flapping ends of his formerly too tight lingual frenulum. He was extra clingy; I tried to be extra accommodating, holding him and hugging him and letting him climb up and down my arms until he was ready to get down and play.
Which, unsurprisingly, was sooner than you might think.
Did any of your kids have to have tongue tie surgery? How did it go?