So, guys, it happened again.
The man I love has endured, yet another surgery.
This will be number four, if you’re counting.
Here’s the story:
On Tuesday of this week I noticed some clear drainage coming from Chris’ incision. Not a lot, by any means, but enough to make me call the doctors office.
They made him an apt to be seen the next day, but the drainage had stopped and his wound looked great so we didn’t go. (Hindsight says that this was actually a good thing)
Thursday rolls around and he gets out of the shower and his incision has popped open in one place. No drainage or redness. Just a popped stitch. I, again, called the doctor and made an apt for the next day.
Friday he gets out of the shower and there it was. Green pus. (I know it’s gross, but it’s what happened) So, we go to his appointment as scheduled at 0930 and they wouldn’t even touch him. They looked at him and then looked at me like I had brought in a dead raccoon or something. Like they just couldn’t believe it. They called Dr. Friedman’s primary nurse and she came, as well.
Y’all, she looked at me like I had stuck a knife in his head and turned it. She asked me if I had been giving him his antibiotics. Yes. She asked me if I had been cleaning it. Yes. With what, she says? Peroxide and warm water, just as instructed. Well obviously you haven’t been doing that or he wouldn’t have a reinfection. EXCUSE ME?! Um, uh what? I’ve done everything that I was told to do, the way it’s been told to me and I even check on the man while he sleeps. I literally set my alarm to check on him three times a night. Just to make sure he’s ok. So, no, bitch. I’m pretty sure this isn’t my fault. Have you been putting the Bacetracin on him? No. he does that when he gets out of the shower. Well, that’s your problem. Some Medic you are…..
Just like that.
I was so shocked that I didn’t know what to say and I just told her that it’s not possible that something of this magnitude could be happening from me not putting on an ointment.
She took us directly to Dr. Friedman’s office. He was in a meeting, but called us directly in, much to the chagrin of the doctors he was meeting with.
He looked at Chris. He looked at me. He looked at that nurse. “Obviously, the bone flap’s infected and has to come out. No amount of antibiotics is going to get rid of this infection when the bone flap has no blood supply. I’m going to have to take him back into surgery and remove it permanently. He will stay here at least on night and the infectious disease doctors will come see him, too. See you in the OR.”
And the nurse led us down to the pre op area, again, to do his admission. By this time she won’t look at me and Chris is in pain, so I told her to go ahead and take him back and I would sign all the papers and see him back there. She did.
I sign and sign and sign and hope he’s getting comfortable. Then I go sit in the waiting room while they situate him with IV’s and so forth. I sit alone.
Then and angel appears. Our friend Niki takes me back to see him. He’s still in pain. He’s not comfortable! The dr says he can’t sign the consent, so he can’t give him drugs. I’ll sign, I say! So, I did. And just like that, he’s comfortable. His eyes stop tearing and he smiles at me.
The doctors tell me the procedure and I have to explain it to Chris. He didn’t understand from before that they were taking his skull bone. Forever. He just didn’t get it. All he heard was surgery and he stopped listening.
So, I explained to my love that they were going to open him up, clean him out and then take the bone away. For good? Yes, love, for good, but in a few months you’ll get an Iron Man plate and be the coolest daddy ever!! But for now you might have to wear a helmet. A helmet? Yes, love, but we will decorate it and you can put so many stickers on it, it’ll be the coolest helmet anybody’s ever seen!! Ok, he says. Just ok.
Then, he’s gone again. With a swift kiss and I half hug, he’s gone.
Surgery wasn’t long. Maybe an hour and a half. The buzzer beeps!! It’s time to go to the little room and talk to Dr. Friedman…..again. His mom is with me. She’s crying. I’m not and I don’t know why. Maybe I was out of tears at this point.
Dr. Friedman walks in and immediately tells Lisa to stop crying. He says “This is bad, but it’s not those kind of tears, bad. He’s going to be ok.” He explained what they did and that the infection was, in fact, in that bone flap and that leaving it in wasn’t an option anymore. So, they took it out, cut his skin and muscle and stretched to cover the hole. He may have some pain from this surgery. More than before, but he’s going to be ok now.
So, that was that. We return to the waiting room and wait for the buzzer to go see him. What felt like a hundred hours and a meeting with the nurse anesthetist later, it buzzed! I powerwalked like an old lady. Not a full run, but a walk with purpose.
They told me it was time to go see him. Lisa hadn’t come with me because the nurse anesthetist had said he was asking for me (and said his brother’s name:)) But I asked the receptionist if he’d just asked for me this time. She said no. He hadn’t been specific. So, I yelled for Lisa and had her come with me. The light in her eyes made it worth it!
The man we met in recovery was a very, VERY happy man. Ketamine will do that to you. But, he could talk. Same as before, but no set backs this time!! He knew where he was and why he was there. No explanations and rounds of tears this time!!
He got a room upstairs and I had to go home to the kids. The doodles were worried and Chris had his Mama. My babies needed theirs. So, with another kiss and a nice long hug, I left. I was so tired that I had to call my parents on the way home to stay alert, but I did. I got home, ordered chinese food and laid on my empty, but comfy bed. I had the kids come in and I explained to them all that happened the best way I knew how. I haven’t seen Chris’ head yet, so I don’t know how to tell them what to expect, but I told them what I knew.
He called me one time before I went to sleep and I got so excited when the phone rang that I almost hung up on him! It’s him! It’s him! He’s calling ME!! All he said was that he was in pain, but settled into a room and he would call me when he could. But he called me, y’all!!
My man is strong. My man is hurting, but healing. My man will be home soon and I can’t wait to wrap my arms around him and see his smile.
Helmet or not, that man will be the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen in my life.