Carolyn’s been eating a lot of ice cream and watching a lot of videos the past few days, and we’re sort of concerned that she’s going to get entirely too used to both.
This is all happening because on Thursday, she had her tonsils and adenoids surgically removed. I imagine that it’s never easy for a parent to have a child go into an operating room, but it seems like there’s something extra difficult when it’s a little girl who’s not yet three. I know that much younger children go into operating rooms every day; my sister underwent her first operation at the age of six months. As I grew up, visiting hospitals became a regular feature of my life, and I have little fear of hospitals or doctors to this day. Needles, yes. Those terrify me. But not hospitals.
It’s just as well, because last Tuesday, I ended up in the emergency room with a broken big toe. This was the result of an unfortunate interaction between my foot and the island in our kitchen, and at first I didn’t even think it was serious. There wasn’t much pain, no swelling or discoloration, and I could still move my toe just fine. One of the lessons I learned as a child is, “If you can move it, then it must not be broken”. Turns out that’s wildly incorrect. It’s entirely possible to move a broken appendage and not even have it hurt that much. At first. Eventually, though, the toe stiffens up and it starts to hurt like there’s no tomorrow.
So I went on crutches two days before my daughter went in for surgery, less than a week after Kat came off crutches, which she’d been issued after breaking an ankle a few weeks back. She’s still wearing an Aircast most of the time. It’s been a laugh a minute in our house, let me tell you. (Though I must admit I’m jealous of her Aircast. It totally looks like a jet-boot from Star Trek, right down to having what look like little reaction boosters on the back.)
So now Kat and I are hobbling around, whereas Carolyn is just about back to normal. In fact, she was running around laughing, singing, and playing pool within a few hours of the surgery. We figured we’d have to go back to signing with her while her throat healed, but nope, no need. The original plan was to keep her in the hospital overnight for observation, but about six hours after surgery, the doctor told us to go home. They’d never seen anything like it, they said, and especially not in a child so young. Sometimes I think she just might be a superhero-in-waiting, kind of like the invincible teenager on Heroes, most of which I watched on the emergency room’s TV while waiting to have my foot examined.
I suppose most every parent thinks their kid is super, but seriously, she’s an ironclad trooper. In a weird way, I’m inordinately proud of her, which is kind of like being proud of her for having brown hair, but there it is anyway. I fervently hope she rebounds just as powerfully and positively from all life’s injuries.
Anyway, given that she’s technically in recovery and we’d already planned for cold soft foods and lots of videos, we just went with the plan. Now we’re all caught up on recent episodes of The Backyardigans and have been through most of her Signing Time videos (her choice!), and are starting to think about how to wean her back to one show every third day or so. We’re currently hoping that going back to pre-school does the trick. Wish us luck.