Note: This entire post is written on my iPhone. Let’s see how it goes:
Oh how we love vacations! I make this special time a year official by taking off my watch and not wearing it again until the day we leave. If all went as planned, I would be wearing my watch and sitting at the airport right now watching our kids chase each other.
I am starting this post on Tuesday and the time is 8:32p. I have been at the hospital with my son since Sunday at 3:00p. Lets back up.
We all were so excited to fly out of the gray, Kurt Cobain-
inspired January weather Seattle offers. No roshambo needed, my daughter would take the window seat on the flight to Palm Springs and our son gets it on the way back. Easy!
I won’t bore you with the details of the flight and first few days of the vacation. The weather was fine (sunny, warm…70s) and we were able to enjoy the sun, pool and each other.
We were having such fun…our great friends flew in on Sunday and our kids were looking forward to spending time with their buddies. About an hour and a half into the rendezvous, our dear son took a bad spill off a hammock. We knew it was bad when you could see what look like his elbow sticking out on the front/side of his arm….yikes! Another guest at the resort was quick to assure us that she was a gymnastic coach and a doctor would be able to easily put it back into place. Oh, was she wrong.
The X-rays at the local hospital confirmed it was a severely broken humerus bone and that he would need to be transported to Loma Linda Children’s Hospital a little over 60 miles away. When I asked for directions, the medical staff gave me that crazed eye look and one said, “Oh dear, he will need to go by ambulance as this requires emergency surgery.” My response of, “Really?” was met with them tell me it was serious and if not treated quickly could result in loss of limb! Dang hammock!
An ambulance arrived about 30min later and I rode in the back with little man for the hour or so ride.
We arrived at Loma Linda around 9:00pm and waited…..for a long time. Teams of doctors and specialists kept coming to look at his elbow and X-rays. The initial plan was to reset/structure the bone and hold with pins. Their concern was since they could not detect a pulse in his fingers, they feared arterial damage which would require a vascular team to assist during the surgery. Meanwhile little man did his best to hang in there.
I met with the surgical team just after 6:00am Monday morning and was told they were going to move forward with the surgery at 7:30a and was a 50/50 chance they would not have to “open up his” arm and would hoping to just reset and pin. It was a difference of a 25 min procedure vs a 3 hour (and a scar from his elbow to his wrist)!
Nothing left for me to do but to send updated texts to my wife who was spending the morning packing up the condo and getting ready to make the trip to where we were.
A little after 8:00am, I was paged to come meet the surgeon. He told me they were able to reset his arm and placed four pins to hold it together. He said the pulse is still undetectable in his fingers, but blood was flowing to them and the coloring looked good. He also said the pulse just below the fracture was strong so he was not concerned!
Recovery was going as good as it could be. My little buddy was pretty upset…especially since he didn’t get to spend time with his friends. He was, however, very excited to get a “Get Well” gift basket (with treats) delivered to his room later that evening.
All of the doctors and surgeons were pleased at how things looked following the operation, but said they did not want us to fly back on Tuesday ( (original return date). I spent most of Monday rescheduling flights, rental car returns, lodging close to the hospital, etc. My wife and daughter made it to the hospital and the reunion was sweet!
I left with my wife and daughter to get them settled and returned back to the hospital to spend another night with J.
Fast forward to present…
J was released Tuesday afternoon and sad to leave since he said he liked being treated like a king. Apparently he though it was cool to ask for juice, soda, pudding….and get it, was living like royalty. Handed the kiddos a couple of toys and we were out.
It is now late afternoon on Thursday and my watch is back on. I have never been so glad to be home from a vacation.
Are we ready for another getaway anytime soon? Yep… My sweet little daughter just threw up again. Did I forget to mention she threw up on the plane?? Oh well, what would life be like without us taking care of each other.