Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Surgery

**the pictures in this post were taken on my phone; sorry for the poor quality**

Last Tuesday I spent the day scouring the house. It was FILTHY. Jason being home {since the accident}, I've been completely out of my schedule. Everything was getting put off. But with his surgery being the next day, I wanted to clean as much as I could so I wouldn't have to worry about it while he was recovering {i.e., I was playing nurse}.

Wednesday morning I got up ridiculously early to get ready and get everything packed up. We dropped the kids off with my visiting teacher {she's the BEST} and headed to Laramie, WY. {That is where the orthopedic surgeons outpatient facility is}.

Laramie is about a 3 hour drive from here {at least when I'm driving with my lead foot, it is}. :) Between here and Laramie there is...nadda. Seriously. One tiny little town called Rawlins, population about 8,500. Oh, and a few random little patches of trailers. No trees, not mountains, nothing. It was a terribly boring drive.

Although, as we got close to Laramie there was one small mountain range covered in black trees. It was beautiful!! And we saw a few herds of deer and antelope alongside the rode. And I saw a little coyote running around in the snow. It was the cutest! Those were the highlights of the drive.

The surgeons were running behind that day, so they finally took Jason back two hours late. It was a boring two hour wait. I was exhausted from getting up so early and I just wanted to take a nap! They finally took Jason back around 4. They told me they'd come get me in about an hour and a half.

Jason all prepped for surgery. Pretty dress and bonnet, huh? :)


I grabbed some food and then went out to the car to try to take a nap while he was in surgery. We were planning on trying to make it home that night. We figured we could make it home by about 9 or 10. {That was before they started surgery late}. I couldn't sleep at all waiting in the car. So I went inside and read a magazine until the surgeon came out.

We had heard from family members who had broken their collar bones before that surgery was a very unusual option. Most of the time doctor's choose to allow the bone to heal on it's own because 1) it usually does just fine, and 2) the risk of affecting nerves in the shoulder, arm, back, and chest are pretty high. So when Dr. Auckerman suggested surgery almost immediately, we got a second opinion. Dr. Auckerman was very supportive of that decision and said that if we wanted to skip surgery and just see how the bone healed on its own he wouldn't be opposed to that.

The second opinion was also to have surgery. They were worried that because of the way the bones were sitting Jason might lose mobility/range of motion in his shoulder blade. And the second opinion doctor knew Dr. Auckerman. He told us that Dr. Auckerman was not at all knife happy and that he would trust his suggestions (this was after he had already given his own opinion). So we chose to go ahead with the surgery.

After the surgery, Dr. Auckerman brought out pictures {x-rays} of the plate and screws. He said the bones aligned so perfectly you couldn't even see the break in the picture anymore. He also said that he was extremely glad that we had chosen to go through the surgery. We hadn't known at the time what it was, but Jason had been in a little more pain the few days before the surgery. We brushed it off. Dr. Auckerman told me that the bone had actually already torn through the muscle and tissue in Jason shoulder and was actually already making it's way through the thin layers of skin {thus the increased pain}. Gross. But anyway, everything had gone great and as soon as Jason was awake they would take me back.

The metal plate and six metal screws they placed in Jason's shoulder to hold his clavicle in place.

That took a lot more time than expected. They had told me before the surgery that from the time they took Jason back for surgery until the time they came to get me would be about 1 1/2 hours. And then the average recovery time was about an hour, at which point we would be discharged and could head home. Jason had an incredibly difficult time waking up from the anesthesia. They finally took me back to see him around 7 {an hour and a half later} and he still wasn't fully awake. His color was awful and he was having trouble with his oxygen saturation.

The nurses gave me his care instructions and discharge paperwork to go through while we waited. I ran to the local pharmacy to fill his pain meds before they closed so that we would have enough to get him through the night. At that point I knew I was too beat to drive all the way home. I called the babysitter and arranged for the kids to stay the night. {Thanks you, Steph, times a million!! You are seriously my super hero!!} When I got back to the facility, Jason was doing much better. He was awake and his color was back. He was eating and drinking and was off oxygen.

By about 8:30 he was dressed and discharged. We stayed at a hotel across the street. The ortho facility has a deal with them and they split the cost of the hotel with us. The hotel also had special medical recliners, so Jason could sleep more comfortably. The hotel was pretty nice, and I would have slept like a log...had Jason not been waking me up for pain meds and to help him get comfortable all night long.

Thursday morning we loaded up, grabbed some free breakfast in the lobby, and headed home. Jason was drowsy and in a lot of pain on the drive home. I got him home and settled into bed and then ran to get the kids. They were tired and glad to be home.

The first few days were pretty tough. Jason was in quite a bit of pain, I was stressed, we were all tired, nobody was sleeping. We were finally able to change Jason's bandages on Sunday. I don't have a weak stomach at all, but for some reason I was so nauseous changing his bandages!! I kept worrying that I was going to hurt him or tear the wound back open or something. It was so weird! I've dealt with tons of blood and wounds and such before and never had a problem. Don't know why it bothered me so much physically this time.

Anyway, Jason is feeling MUCH better as of today. He's no longer taking the prescription pain meds during the day, just before bed to help him sleep without pain, and very little Motrin during the day.

He ices his shoulder pretty frequently with this handy gadget:


Now if only Payson would stop coming into my bed in the middle of the night, I think I could get some serious sleep!!

Oh! You know how I said I scoured the house before we left for Laramie? Well, I got everything cleaned...except the kitchen. I was dreading it, since things had piled up {and my lack of dishwasher didn't help}. I left it for last and fell asleep Tuesday night before getting to it. So when I got home Thursday, I still had nasty dishes to clean. Ugh. But I found THIS:


on sale at the store the other day!! YAY!! It's a counter top dishwasher. Someone said to me, "But it takes up so much of your counter space!" And I don't have a very big kitchen, so that might have been a big deal...except that I had a big dish rack there anyway for my dishes to dry on, so really, it isn't taking up any additional space. That's helped significantly with getting the dish situation under control. :)

So things are slowly getting back to some semblance of normal. The house is mostly clean. Jason is feeling mostly better.

Now I just need to get back to eating healthy and working out!! Those are the two things that have slipped most these last couple of crazy weeks. We did a lot of eating out. Not healthy. And I was too tired and too busy to work out. Not healthy. And it's driving me nuts!! I don't feel as great as I did just two weeks ago. Not the same energy. And I've gained back a few of those pounds I worked so hard to lose. Ugh. Oh well. If I lost them once, I can lose them again, right?

Tomorrow morning the elliptical and I have a date, bright and early!! I'm really looking forward to it. You know, she doesn't talk, she doesn't ask me to do anything for her, she doesn't judge me. She does nothing but work me hard and make me feel great! She's a best friend, really, and I've missed her!! Although, I'm not looking forward to the aches I know I'll be experiencing Thursday morning. :(

Anyway, thank you to everyone for you thoughts and prayers! The last couple of weeks have been rough for me and your sweet comments here and there were so uplifting!! You are all just the greatest cyber friends a girl could ask for!! Love and gratitude to you all!! :)

23 comments:

Nicole said...

I am so glad to hear Jason's surgery went well. The countertop dishwasher is TOTALLY the COOLEST thing EVER!! I never knew they existed!! I wish you the best with his recovery and your new role of Nurse. :)

Mandi said...

Glad he's doing better and so are you. Just hang in there! GLAD you got a dishwasher!! that will be helpful.

r said...

I'm glad things are looking up! You're always so positive, I love reading your blog!! Congrats on the surgery going well and the new dish washer!

The Brandt Clan Fam! said...

Yay for sucessful surgeries! We have been anxious to hear how Jason's doing, and we are so happy to hear he's doing well! Oh, and HAPPY DAY for getting a dishwasher! You are amazing and we miss you guys so much! Tell Jason and the kids "hi" for us and we love you all!!!

Sue said...

Love hearing good news, and love you!

Erin and Family said...

you didn't tell me about your dishwasher! that's sweet! happy recovery & sleepy! love you guys!

Burgon Fam said...

So glad to hear everything went well! and we pray that he will be back to normal soon!

womanoforangerinds8 said...

I only had time to skim the pictures. Oh my gosh! Where did you find the dishwasher thing?!!! I've got to get one in order to maintain some semblance of my sanity. Tell me...I ORDER you!

Jobi Niu said...

MCKENNA! I'm really happy things are getting back to normal around there.. I'm glad Jason's surgery went well. You're such a sweet wife taking such good care of him. Your awesome visiting teacher! SO NICE OF HER! I miss ya. Love ya. hang in there! :]

KHathaway said...

Yay! What a happy story! I'm really, really glad that everything turned out well in the end and that nothing went wrong with the surgery. Hope he gets better soon!!

Hannah and Benjamin Aeby said...

Hey! I am glad to hear that the surgery went well! I saw the picture of him icing his shoulder and had to call my husband in. He got the same exact thing when he had his sholder surgery. They are actually nice little contraptions (so long as you can get used to sleeping with the noise it makes) I have to say I know what you are going through playing nurse to a husband with shoulder injury, it is no easy task. It's amazing how much we need that shoulder! I will keep you in my prayers! If there is anything we can do let us know!

Davis, Linda, and Gavin said...

Glad the surgery went well!

Tabitha said...

I'm so glad that he is doing better. I'm glad that you're getting a chance at normalcy again. We love y'all and are keeping you in our prayers.

Brenda, Bryan, and Chelsey said...

I hope everything continues to go good with your husband. Stay strong.

The Larson Family said...

Wow, what an ordeal! I'm glad he's feeling better and things are getting back to normal now. What a great visiting teacher too! I don't blame you at all for getting the counter top dishwasher. That's pretty cool. I'm sure it looks much nicer than a huge stack of dirty dishes on the counter too!

womanoforangerinds8 said...

Yeesh! Sounds like a lot of fun. Wow...I thought I had problems. I'm glad everything went well with the surgery and hope Jason continues to recover. I'm glad you found something to help with the dish-washing process. I hate doing dishes...a lot. Take care.

Are you pregant, maybe? Tee hee. :)

Kristin said...

I really hope that all the healing continues to go well. I am so happy that you got a dishwasher! My dishwasher and I are such good friends! (They make such a huge difference!)

Addicted Fisherman, SlingShotGirl, and Ms. Drool-bug said...

Wow! What a journey with Jason's injury! I'm happy everything worked out. I just wish I could have been there to clean your house while you were gone. I so wish I could have been there to help you.

I'm happy for you that you got a dishwasher. It's a woman's best friend. :)

The Larson Family said...

I just wanted to say thank you for your nice comment. I love enthusiastic people like you. It really brightens my day!

The McKell Family said...

i am glad everything went good with the surgery. . That is a crazy story. . I am glad he is ok!!! Ya you can come in when your in town and we can hook you up!

Annie said...

I am glad the surgery went well! and i agree with the other comment on maybe you are prego that will explain why you were a little queezie!

Kristin said...

I am glad you are all alright, wellkinda ok. Tell Jason I think he looks like a pioneer in a cute little bonnet. Very fitting considering where you live

Alli Forsyth said...

I'm glad that he surgery went well. I know that road so well to Laramie. I am from about an hour south of there in Fort Collins. Much prettier than Laramie. I hope he continues to recover well. When are we going to see you guys?