It’s been a heck of a two weeks, friends. In many ways, having a young child with a serious injury is a flashback to those [seemingly] endless days of early infancy as a new parent. The first night in the E.R./hospital gave us a head start on the exhaustion, which just builds with each middle-of-the-night pain med wake up. There was inconsolable crying, the feeling of not knowing what the heck we were doing (as I mentioned the discharge instructions could have been clearer), general lack of predictability, and little-to-no time for self-care. I spent the entire first week in a deep mental fog.
Thankfully, except for a few blips (when we tried to ditch the oxycodone too soon), G hasn’t been waking at night except when we wake him for the scheduled pain meds (and most of the time he barely wakes then). The alarm on my phone goes off at 3a.m. every morning, and I drag myself out of bed and into the kitchen to get the drugs. For the first week, I was tired enough that I got back to sleep pretty quickly. This week, that ability seems to have disappeared, and I often spend those remaining hours tossing and turning. (In another flashback to G’s infancy, I decided that if I’m getting up, I need a middle of the night snack, even though this time around, it isn’t fueling breastfeeding.)
Last Saturday, one week after the surgery, G finally saw the light of day when we took a stroll to our neighborhood’s new Little Free Library. Getting out was good for him, and we followed up on Sunday with the first car outing. Holding 40-pounds of anxious child in just the right position to avoid pain while wrangling him into the middle-positioned car seat in a small car is quite the feat. Still, we not only made it work, we repeated it again on Monday (when Matthew took off work to help care for G at his mom’s house, giving me a MUCH-needed break) and then again on Tuesday for G’s first post-op doctor appointment.
Other than the tech positioning G’s leg for the x-ray, which was quite painful, based on his screams, the visit went smoothly. We got our first peek at the new hardware (it was also the first time I saw the break).
Hip joint visible at the top, knee bone at the bottom, and some big ol’ titanium nails. Matthew and I were both surprised to see how off-set the bone is still. The doc said that was completely normal (and that it would have been more off-set if we’d done casting instead of the nails). The surgical incisions also looked good (a relief, given my surgical site infection fears!), and with that, we were told to come back in three weeks.
This week, we managed to get him off the couch, and by Wednesday, he was spending most of the time sitting on the floor (or in his booster seat on the floor) playing. He has not attempted to crawl yet (despite a bit of gentle prodding), but he his bearing some weight on the leg, scooting around on the floor from the sitting position — as he’s gotten more comfortable with it, it kind-of looks like a crab-walk.
We started to cut back the oxycodone for the second time (after our first, too-soon attempt). It seems that ibuprofen or acetaminophen are sufficient for pain control now, but he did have what we suspect were some opioid withdrawal symptoms (agitation and inconsolable crying for no reason), so we’re trying to dial it back slowly.
My mental fog seems to have lifted this week, though in the logistics of getting G loaded into the car on Thursday afternoon, I left our front door wide open while we were gone for almost three hours. Thankfully, we do at least have a storm door that was closed. Also, this was another flashback to G’s infancy — one morning in those early months, I went down our front stairs, only to discover that we’d left our front door open all night long. Oops!
Yesterday marked our first post-break bike ride. Big Blue has been a bit neglected since we got the tag-a-long in May, but she’s just what we need now. I removed one side of the Hooptie to make it easier to get G into his seat, which he said felt just fine. Getting him onto the bike is much easier than getting him into the car (though the logistics of getting me, our stuff, and then him, in my arms, out of our second-floor apartment are tricky with any mode of transportation — walking is the easiest).
The trickiest part here was strapping the stroller (necessary once we reached our destination) onto the bike. A couple of bungees worked well enough for our short trip to the library and Target.
If all goes well (knock on wood), Matthew and I will be getting a much-needed break this week when G goes to Tennessee with my MIL. For the past two weeks, we’ve been back-and-forth on whether or not that trip (which has been planned since June) would happen or not, but as of now they’re a “go” to leave on Monday. I need to reconnect to my mindfulness practice, and a few nights without that darned 3a.m. alarm will be most welcome!