Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Pediatric surgeon appointment

We went to see the pediatric surgeon here in Greenville yesterday (next week we're going to see the peds surgeon in Charleston). 
Sidenote: a quick little tidbit o' geography for you.  This here is a map of South Carolina.  We live in the northwest-ish part of the state in Greenville.  Charleston, where we plan to deliver, is down there on the coast.  It takes about 3 1/2 hours to get from A to B.

So.  Even though we don't plan to deliver here, they set us up with the local pediatric surgeon as a "just in case."  We waited in the waiting room for over an hour, which I guess is sort of to be expected when you're the last patient of the day, but the unfortunate thing was that Jonathan had to leave before we even got to see the doctor so that he could go pick up Henry from daycare. 

Seeing the surgeon was interesting because he's the first person I've talked to who has actual experience on the baby side of things (versus the pregnant side).  He told me about a recent CDH repair he did where the baby went home after only ten days.  I thought that was pretty incredible, since the average NICU stay is something like 2-3 *months*.

I told him that I would really love for somebody to talk me into delivering in Greenville. Logistically it would be about a thousand times easier.  We wouldn't have to worry about a place to stay, I wouldn't have to worry about what to do with Henry and how he'll do when he's all out of his routine, and it's a lot closer for our extended family.  He told me we could definitely deliver here and after a little hesitation told me (because I asked) that if it was his baby he'd deliver here.  He gave me a few statistics on the likelihood that Bee will need ECMO (25% for CDH babies).  If she did need ECMO and we were in Greenville, they'd have to transport her, which he kinda made sound like no big deal.  (Or, really, I think he was saying that if she needs ECMO, things are pretty dire in the first place, and a transport doesn't add that much extra risk--relatively.)

I left that appointment thinking that maybe we should rethink this whole delivering in Charleston thing and try delivering here in Greenville....but then I got home and talked to Jonathan and came back to reality.  He pointed out that it would be much less stressful to deliver in Charleston and not need ECMO than it would be to deliver in Greenville and have to scramble to get to Charleston because Bee wasn't doing well and needed ECMO.  Good point, husband.  So then I had a minor breakdown because for about five minutes the stress of the prospect of living out of town for potentially several months had been lifted...and then the cool voice of reason (Jonathan's) brought it alllll back.

So that's the pediatric surgeon update.  Didn't get a ton of new information, but did get to have a little angst added to my afternoon.  It kind of made me wonder if I'm in some variety of denial about this whole thing, since I haven't had many freak out moments since finding out about Bee's CDH.  My self-analysis is that I've been told so many times that there's no way to know how babies with CDH will do until they're born.  We are praying and believing that Bee is going to do great, but even if she doesn't, there's no point in worrying about it ahead of time.  There's that verse in Matthew 6 about not worrying about tomorrow, because there's enough to worry about *today*.  (Like the fact that my previously great-sleeping toddler has decided that he can't fall asleep without screaming bloody murder for 5-45 minutes.  It's been fun.)

I had an appointment this morning with the perinatologist, which went well.  I'll have to write that one up tomorrow so I can include some pictures.  She continues to be super cute.  Of course.

(And welcome to the world, Molly--my new niece who was born last week!)

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