Chapter Fourteen: Baby steps forward. It’s just a chapter in the past. But don’t close the book, just turn the page.
Once again we started the routine of settling in to the hospital room that we would be staying in for a couple days. I felt more prepared with what I had packed for me and Alivia. The anticipation of waiting to hear what was wrong, was killing me and Muffin. The clock was moving slowly, suddenly the sound of rolling wheels down the hallway caught my attention. Alivia! (I know it sounds crazy, but it felt like I knew it was her coming without even seeing her.) We knew what to expect this time, she again looked so frail and tired, I couldn’t help but tear up. The hospital asked us to bring our car seat and base this time to keep Alivia elevated to help with the drainage. It was so hard to take her in and out of it, she seemed very uncomfortable and the car seat would constantly hook up onto her monitors, setting them off. But she had to be elevated to help with healing so the fluid wouldn’t go down the same path around the shunt. This time she was on formula and it made feeds much easier as I didn’t have to rotate her to her hurt side. The first day after surgery is always the worst for them and us. Wendy was at the hospital too with her daughter so it was nice to get a couple visits from her. Alivia was having her crazy “nothing will soothe me” cries, and super fussy! The Dr. Mehta and Wendy came to see us to let us know how everything went. They had to change the shunt and the line that ran to her abdomen. I was hoping they didn’t have to do that, as I have been told, out of the whole procedure, older kids mentioned more discomfort in the abdomen then the head. Alivia had some blockage at the belly, so that could explain why it wasn’t draining properly. Her head was wrapped like a mummy; she looked so precious as she napped quietly safe and sound.
We rotated Advil and Tylenol religiously so she wouldn’t feel too much pain. The nurses would feed and change her throughout the night; I am so appreciative for the extra Z’s it made a world of difference for my sanity. When I woke up the next morning Alivia was not there, I started to panic! I walked out of room to find her relaxing with all the nurses. (mmmmm pink lemonade)
She was smiling and in such good spirits, all the nurses loved her and decided to bring her out to play a little. I had such a warm feeling hearing all the compliments of what a sweet baby she was, and I know all parents say this about their babies, but Alivia really is a ray of sunshine. She is so strong and amazing. I thought we were her teachers, molding her and helping her grow, but she has taught us so many lessons in life already.
We would spend our days walking around exploring the hospital, visiting with family and friends that came, eating, watching cartoons, and napping. The hospital stay seemed not as gloomy as when we went through it the first time, there were moments where we could relax and laugh. Funny memory: on the 2nd day that we were at the hospital Alivia still had not gone to the washroom, and I was starting to get worried that the medication was constipating her…
Well let me tell you, 2 nurses and me, new sheets on the car seat, new heartbeat monitors, disinfection of the belly wound, new sheets on the hospital crib, and a cute new onesie in the garbage to be burned. When she finally went to the washroom it was something out of a horror movie, a massacre! She was the talk of the ward, no one could believe that mess came out of little sweet Alivia. On a positive note she was doing well and we could leave the next day with no concerns or worries. Deep breath, Exhale thank you God!