The first two pictures that you see are just to not freak anyone out. I wanted to show the progression of her post-op improvement, but not make anyone sick! The second picture is one that Kelley took of me and Ryan. :)
What a crazy week last week.
So, we ended up having to do the liquified hematoma drain AGAIN on Thursday. It started to fill back up. Papa Gene to the rescue once again. This time, however, the draw was only 6 cc's (a little over a teaspoon). Once again she was really brave. No tears, only questions about the blood pressure cuff in the room with us. Papa Gene took Kelley's blood pressure while I fed Ryan after the procedure. She thought that was really cool - she had her own BP taken, then Papa's, then mine. Thankfully, we haven't seen the hematoma blood return.
So, Friday saw us at the end of the rope with the bandage and the ear cup. It kept slipping off, the adhesive on the ear cup was coming apart from the cup itself (but, of course, staying tightly glued to her head & hair) and everytime I came near her to try to fix it, she freaked. So, we got a hold of Dr. Reinisch, who said that she could be bandage free, and we set about taking all that junk off. What a trauma. The adhesive from the ear cup was REALLY stuck to her head, and she was really scared. We tried baby oil to loosen it - not much help. We tried a little spirit gum remover - bad idea. It stung. Finally, after an hour and a half of crying and screaming, the hair was washed, dried, and the bandage was off.
We were instructed to use hydrogen peroxide daily on the ear, and that the left over dried blood and stitches would start to dissolve. She wasn't a fan of the peroxide at first, but she's gotten used to it now. She has even started participating in clean up. I think she kind of likes the bubbly thing.
We had our first little OH! scare moment on Monday - apparently she got bumped pretty hard at school. It was an accident, but it sounds like it hurt and it probably scared her a bunch. She recovered ok, and now when we comb her hair in the morning she is telling me that she likes her ear, that she wants to wear her hair in a ponytail, and that she wants to wear earrings like Mommy. She's very open about it, too - she'll show your her "surgery ear" if you ask.
So, the pictures are of the Friday hairwashing/bandage removal,(1,3) then Sunday evening hairwashing, (4 & 5) and now today. (6) You can see that she actually has an abrasion/owie from where the ear cup adhesive was. I can't tell you how much it stunk trying to get that off. I actually had a little crisis of "Was this the right thing to do for her?" John talked me down, like he usually does.
We're amazed at how good it already looks. Tuesday was 3 weeks post-op. So, life is slowly returning to normal around here. It's interesting - this has been something that we've been anticipating for her entire life, and although we aren't completely finished with this, we're working our way forward, and looking to the future of her life without this looming. It's kind of a strange feeling, actually.
I stumbled on a quote the other day that I love - it's been a little bit tough on occasion looking at the scars and incision marks on Kelley's head & tummy. (And leg from her canalplasty skin graft last summer) I can still picture her ear area before any cut was made. It's been bothering me a little bit, like I mentioned before, and then the other day I came across this quote that I want to share:
"See how the flesh grows back across a wound, with a great vehemence, more strong than the simple, untested surface before." ~Jane Hirshfield
Thanks for reading!