Monday, August 31, 2009

Cleft Lip Surgery/Tubes in ears

The day had finally come for us to prepare for Emma's surgery... Her surgery took place on Wednesday 08/26/2009.

We actually had to meet with Dr. Cuadros for a pre-op appt on the 25th to prepare us for what to expect. We are expected to have a lack of sleep, Emma to eat less, a fussy baby, the possibility of staying 2 nights in the hospital,etc... Dr. Cuadros even took a picture of her for his profile-It will be amazing to see the before and after. I have seen some of the other babies he has worked on and I was pretty impressed.

We reserved rooms at the Radisson and that was pretty cool. They are actually turning it into a water park and hotel. We did our bookings through and I was amazed- We put in our own price and got the room for $40.00 when actually they charge $130 or so. Jason, my dad, Ashli and Tiffany came up later Tuesday evening- after work. We had time to spare so we decided to get in the pool and relax. Their indoor pool was pretty cool, they made it look like it was outdoor. Brady and Emma didn't care too much for the pool; It was kind of cold at first, but you just have to warm up to it. My mom got them all dried off and I kept on swimming. Brady loved to watch me! Next to the spa was an outline of rocks and Brady thought it would be fun to throw the rocks into it. I had to got deep sea diving-It was a little rough with the heat. Before we went to bed, Jason and my dad gave Emma and I a blessing of comfort for the surgery tomorrow. I am so lucky to have the priesthood in my life. Thanks babe! I had set my alarm clock for 2:30am so that we could feed Emma one more time before she has to fast. Luckily enough I had frozen breast milk to give her at 2:30am or else she would have had to start fasting at 2am because of the formula, but(Emma has started sleeping through the night-YAY!) she was so sound asleep that I really didn't want to wake her and then her crying wake Brady, etc... so I went back to sleep. I woke up at 5am to get dressed and ready to be at Presbyterian hospital by 6am. Emma is scheduled to be one of the first to have surgery done. Emma woke up about 5:30am and for a little bit she was doing good and then as the time passed, well, you know what happened... She was getting really fussy for being hungry. You know, I have noticed a big difference between Brady and Emma as babies. Jason is so much more patient to take care of Emma. To be honest, I can't really rememeber a time when Jason fed Brady and then put him to bed. Anywho, Emma was fussy and Jason tried everything he could to calm her down.
Emma loves to stand-She really doesn't care to sit. This is her in the surgery preparation area, waiting on the nurse to give us instructions. Can you tell she was not happy?!?!

At about 6:30am, we got called back to the surgery preparation area. Poor Emma was so hungry. We had to pacify her with her pacifier.

Isn't she sooo cute in her hospital gown?
We weighed Emma before surgery and she weighs: 10lbs 9oz! It seemed kind of fishy because earlier in the month of August at her 4 month check up she weighed 10lbs 8oz and 3 1/2 weeks later she only gained an ounce.... Weird! Finally about 7:30am I was able to get Emma to fall asleep. That just happened to be about the time when Dr. Cuadros and the rest of the team came to get her and go have surgery. Dr. Cuadros said it would take about 2 1/2-3hrs for the whole procedure. I thought waiting was going to take a really long time, I mean, it always does when you are waiting for something... We sat in the waiting room, I was just about to fall asleep on Jason's shoulder when Dr. Cuadros found us and told us that the surgery went well and Emma was awake. In the beginning, they told us that they were going hurry and get us when she is starting to wake up so that we are the first thing she sees. That didn't quite happen. Dr. Cuadros did mention that when he is in surgery he would like to take a look at her palate to make sure everything is ok. He put this video tube down her troat and found out that she has a soft palate. He is not too concerned about it right now, we will just have to wait and see what happens. When we got to where she was at, the nurses were holding her trying to calm her down. It just broke my heart. Emma woke up pretty hungry and after having surgery she was pretty limited on how she would be getting her food. We could not give her a bottle. We could only feed her with a syringe or a bottle that had a tube hooked to it and we squeezed it in for her. I honestly felt like I was holding a newborn all over again. I felt if I held her one way, she would cry or break and it was becoming too much. And, she has to wear arm restraints to keep her from touching her lip. I finally calmed myself down and as I was holding her, listening to her cry and watch the nurses try to feed her I couldn't help but start crying. I tried to be tough for her, for everyone that was there to support Emma, but who was I kidding? My daughter was in pain and there was nothing that I could do for her. (I appologize that there are no pictures- my camera has been acting up since the hospital and I have to yet, to find out what is wrong with it. I do have the pictures of afterwards on my phone-These will be posted and seen as you continue to read.)
We finally got Emma to calm down. I actually was holding her up against my chest and singing to her "I Am A Child of God." I couldn't help but tear/choke up when I got to the first verse where it says, "...Has given me and earthly home, with Parents kind and dear..." Heavenly Father had placed our dear Emma in our home and what a special place she has in our hearts. Heavenly Father has given her a cleft lip and even though it may have been a little bump to get over, I couldn't help but know that I am her mommy and I will do everything that I can to love her unconditionally. We were able to take her to the Pediactrics floor-level 6 where everyone was finally able to see her. A few family members had a hard time seeing her in pain.
She finally calmed down and actually enjoyed just laying there. I think it was the medicine!
From the time that we got to our room at around 10am to 5pm Emma really would not sleep. One little move or sound would wake her up and she would start crying as if she was in pain. We would get her to calm down and she would fall asleep again for 10-15min and then cry again. As time was passing I thought this recovery was going to be really hectic on me. It was just so hard to see her in pain and I really couldn't do anything.

Daddy's Little Girl
Emma was getting Tylenol with Codeine(Sp?) every 4hrs and morphine through her IV every 2hrs. An hour would go by and she cried like she needed more pain medicine. She just could not get comfortable. The nurse finally had to make a call in to Dr. Cuadros to get permission to double her dosage. Dr. Cuadros had never seen a baby go through medicine so fast. Emma had a hard time with the pain medication because her body was metabolizing the meds faster than they were helping her. We found out from Dr. Cuadros that during the operation they had to stop the procedure and give her more medication because she was waking up from the pain and the meds wearing off before they were even done.

Tia Ang holding Emma while the nurse giving her more tylenol

Emma was finally able to get a good nap from 5-7pm. I was almost wishing it was 9pm so that we both could just sleep. At about that time, Jason, my dad and Tiffany had to get back to reality and go to work the next day. I was really bummed, but what else can you do? I hoped and Prayed that the night would go well and you know what... It did! The only time I woke up was actually every 4hrs when the nurse came in to do Emma's vitals. I think she woke Emma up each time.

She doesn't look very comfortable, huh?

Emma then woke up at 6am, which is about normal for any other day... I didn't hear her, but I did hear the nurse. She said that she was walking down the hall when she heard her with a faint cry so I came to check on her. The nurses for Emma were wonderful. I had thought about going back to bed after the nurse left but she told me that Dr. Cuadros likes to make his rounds first thing in the morning and if she is not mistaken he will be in before 7am. Sure enough, he came in at 6:40am. Dr. Cuadros told me as long as Emma can handle just the tylenol with Codeine she will be able to go home and also with the bottle. At around 10:30am the nurse came in and gave Emma more tylenol. I then decided to feed Emma some more pedialyte through the syringe and noticed that when I put the syringe down my pants would get wet, no big deal, I thought maybe it was just dripping. Before you knew it, my pants were soaking. I called the nurse into the room and found out that the tube to the IV was leaking. How? I don't know. The nurses tried to fix it but accidentally pulled the IV out of Emma's vein. Dr. Cuadros told me that if the IV gets pulled out, they usually don't put it back in unless it is mandatory; and it is not a pretty site. The nurse was able to get the IV back in, but they just decided to take it out. I thought it was a good thing because Emma was blowing up like a baloon. She was getting so swollen; within an hour, she was back to her normal self. Even her eyes were starting to swell shut.After about an hour or so, Emma was getting fussy and I tried to calm her down but she wouldn't stop. So, I walked out to the nurses station to see if the nurse could give her more tylenol. The nurse informed that because the IV was out she could not give her morphine; if it was in, then of course, she could and the tylenol can't be given until 12:30pm. I tried everything to keep her calm. Finally 12:30pm rolled around and my mom, sister-Ashli and Brady showed up. The nurse gave Emma more tylenol and realized the amount of pedialyte and formula/breastmilk was given. Of course with the syringe it only measures in ML so it was not very much. I had asked if it was ok to try out the bottle. I wanted Emma to be comfortable with the Bottle before we left so that we didn't have any problems on the way home. Emma drank 4oz in like 5 seconds. Poor thing was not crying because she was hurting, she was crying because she was hungry. The best part.... It didn't hurt her.

Because Emma reacted so well to the bottle we were able to be discharged from the Hospital that afternoon. Yay! Only one night! I would say within an hour or so of drinking 4oz, she actually drank 2 more oz after that! With being so hungry, and exhausted it totally wore her out and now, she has been sleeping so soundly.
More updates to come!


  1. I'm glad everything went well. By the way, I can't believe how much her and Brady look alike lol, they should be twins!

  2. Awww you are such an amazing woman and mom! this blog had me crying at work! Please let me know if there is anything I can do to help! She seems like quite the trooper and blessings sure do work