Welcome to my little corner of the world. I am so honored by your visit today. My name is Kristi and I am married to my college sweetheart(I refer to him here as "Mr. Incredible"), momma to my 2 beautiful girls who are growing much too quickly, a high school computer teacher, photographer, and a gardener (at times~right now I'm growing weeds). I love to laugh, drink strong Starbucks coffee, take pictures, and be anywhere my family is. Jesus is my Savior and I try so hard to be the wife and momma that He has called me to be. I often fail but He lovingly picks me up, dusts me off, and encourages me that with Him all things are possible. Feel free to join me on this journey of faith, stop in and say hello, look around, and leave a comment~I love comments. Why "Kiki's Corner?" My nephews call me Aunt Kiki and I love that too.

Reflections on Rachel's Surgery Part 3

I watched the clock anxiously while greatly anticipating seeing Rachel again! Would she be awake? Would she be swollen? Would she be able to speak? While we waited, Dr. Roberts, the pediatric neurosurgeon came to the waiting room to give us the great news of her surgery.

He was all smiles as he told us how well Rachel did during surgery. I remember him saying that there was minimal blood loss-really no blood loss to speak of, and that it was a, "hum-drum, text book surgery." (I would never have thought that the words hum-drum could even be used when referring to brain surgery! God is amazing!) He did carve out the back of her c-1 vertebrae and he thinned Rachel's dura enough that he could see through the dura and look at her brain tonsils (the ones that were growing into her spinal cord). He said there is a definite pressure change in her brain. In fact, he said, "there was one unexpected thing that happened during surgery."

And my heart sunk! He must have noticed because he quickly explained, "It was a good unexpected thing." All of us leaned in closer so that we could hear him more clearly. Dr. Roberts continued, "After we removed part of the posterior fossa bone, it popped up! This was clear confirmation that brain decompression surgery needed to be done. Her brain was under tremendous pressure." He explained further that in all of the decompression surgeries that he has performed, having it pop up was a first.

It took all of us a little while to wrap our minds around what he had just said. I remember questions were asked as we tried to take in all that God had done. We wondered if her brain popped up, her brain tonsils, or was it the skull that popped up? (It wasn't until the next day, the day after surgery that I asked him to explain that again so that Rachel and all of us could hear it once more. He smiled and told Rachel the story...and we all listened intently. He smiled as he told her about the 1 1/2cm tall by 4cm wide portion of her posterior fossa that he removed and after removing that portion, how her skull popped up 2mm. He seemed pleasantly surprised by this as he had not seen that happen before. He tenderly conveyed to Rachel that the popping up was confirmation of the tremendous pressure her brain had been under and that there was a definite pressure change). Oh, God is so good!!!!!

After what seemed like years, the nurse called to let me know that we could meet Rachel at the "purple squares" just down the hall and go with her to her private room. I remember asking if she meant ICU and she responded by saying that Rachel was doing so well and that ICU would not be necessary. Glory! We were told in the beginning to expect ICU and a 2-3 day hospital stay after ICU. I was more than prepared to sleep in a chair in her ICU room if they would let me. We were overjoyed to know that ICU would not be necessary.

Finally, seven hours after I had kissed my precious daughter on the cheek, I was able to see her again. I'll never forget that moment! The air was thick with anticipation, my heart was racing, my mind was reeling with what to expect, and then the doors opened! Rachel was awake. She looked right at me and said, "Hi, Momma! I love you!" {I'm nearly a puddle on the floor as I type those words again} It was a glorious reunion!!!

The nurses explained that Mr. Incredible and I could go with Rachel to her room and they directed our family members to another elevator. They told them to meet us in room....room...um, room? Then, Rachel's precious little voice said, "Room 4211." Not only was she awake but she was completely coherent. We all had a spring in our step as we made our way to her room.

She was very sleepy but she was doing so well...and we marveled at all that God had done. I remember thinking to myself, I know what our eyes have seen today, but I know there is so much more to the story....one day our Heavenly Father will share it with us....and my heart was absolutely overcome with thankfulness to the One who did it all!

Rachel slept a little, woke up for a quick drink of water and to see all of us, and then slept some more. Her little head was sore from the surgery and her lip was swollen from being intubated for so long (we didn't know it at the time but she was biting on her lip the entire time that she was in surgery-the doctor felt so bad about that....but we were fine with it...biting on her little lip was the least of our worries-our daughter was doing so well). I was so thankful that God had prompted my heart to purchase a Chiari pillow. It has a portion removed in the middle, so that her incision would not be resting on the pillow but her head would still be cradled by a very soft pillow. She loved it.

All of us slept much better that night. Every two hours Jennifer, a very compassionate and wonderful nurse, would come in to take her vitals and to give her medication for pain when she needed it and of course we would help Rachel with going to the bathroom and taking her meds. The doctor told us that this night would be much easier than the next day because she would still be under the effects of anesthesia but that the day after surgery to expect a rough, painful day. And that was okay, we had our daughter and we were so grateful.

Oh, there is more rejoicing to come. I'll try to post Part 4 tomorrow complete with pictures. May you have a most blessed Lord's day today!

1 comment:

Cathy said...

That is such a wonderful report. Our God is an awesome God! I am so happy for you. I have an award for you at my blog.