Thursday, May 24, 2012

Recent pics...as promised!

Some time ago (don't ask when...I've lost all sense of time and space) I promised you some pictures of our recent adventures. There are a number of them below. I'll try and give you a detailed update later tonight but with at least one child crying pretty much all the time these days, my promises are worth about as much as a warm bucket of hamster vomit. So...yeah.
Anyway, enjoy and we'll talk later.

Trying to get through an emotional thank you at SCF's "Girls for our Girl."
Like I said...MASSIVE.
Fighting my way to a 35th place finish...out of 38. Sigh. 
Some of my favorite ladies...Emily, Daniel Hand basketball players Maggie
Fitzgerald, Hannah Johnson, Graceann Kraemer, Paige, Mommy and Gram. 
Paige, keeping everyone loose while waiting for Emily to get out of surgery.
Shortly after waking up and already smiling.  
Already up and about just 24 hours after surgery.
A look at Emily's new hardware from the inside.
The fixator is our friend! A friend that constantly causes us pain.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

That's a strong finish!

I was going to talk about how nice it was to just sit at "home" today with my family.
I was going to talk about how unpleasant pin site cleanings are.
I was going to try and be funny.
I thought this was better.
video
Have a great night everyone. I know we will.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Day three...I think.

Yeah, it's safe to say I've lost track of time and day at this point. Kate took Paige back to the condo last night for a night in an actual bed while I took the hospital chair/bed and watched Ratatouille on repeat with Emily. During the night, we had a parade of nurses come in and out to remove the epidural, catheter, draw blood, take vitals, etc. It does not make for restful sleep. Nevertheless, she's still in dreamland at 10 AM while I get some quiet time with the laptop.
Yesterday certainly had its ups and downs. We got her out of bed and in a wheelchair so we could wheel her down to the playroom. She was apprehensive at best, not wanting to move or get out of bed or stand or sit. There were tears and a lot of "I don't think I can!" Fortunately, she moved past it all rather quickly as she focused on her Disney princess figures, paint and a constant barrage of bubbles.
As day turned to night, she began to complain of pain and we could only guess her epidural had shifted/been pulled and therefore wasn't delivering that sweet, sweet medication that makes this part almost tolerable. It's next to impossible to gauge the pain levels of a three year old, especially this one. I've seen her take some really hard falls and get up laughing. I've also seen our bulldog brush up against her and she cried like he clamped down on her arm. Still, with the help of some movies and the now ever-present stream of bubbles, she kept it together long enough to eventually fall asleep.
It should be noted that while she was dealing with her painful episodes, Paige thought that would be a fine time to meltdown in an overtired fit. This room is about 10 x12 and on the third floor. Going out the window became a viable option after a while. Ah, but we live on to fight another day!
The physical therapist stopped by to drop off a walker. Apparently we're going to try and stand today. Should be...interesting.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Done for the night.

So, the e-mail/picture situation never sorted itself out and, frankly, I find myself channeling Lt. Col. Nathan Jessup when I say, "I don't give a damn what you think you are entitled to!" I'm kidding, of course. I love my readers. Both of you.
But the truth is, I'm sufficiently fried and I'm pretty sure Kate is getting beat up by both Emily and Paige right now while I sit in the coffee shop downstairs with the free wi-fi. So you'll pardon the tone and lack of originality.
What can I say? Emily Conquest Tredwell is a champ. Tougher than everyone you know. We finally got the band back together about 4:00 and, when we first saw her, she was talking away like she hadn't just been unconscious for several hours while stainless steel pins were drilled into her leg. She is now in her room, demanding gatorade, movies and giggling every time she presses the button for more pain meds.
Everyone's exhausted and certainly thankful to have cleared this hurdle. Unfortunately, this was the easy part. NOW we get to start four months of daily PT. And, yes, it will suck.
Keep those positive vibes coming. I'll keep you posted as best I can. And someday...pictures. Promise.

Go long!

I feel like I've been here before....
Yes, I know. "Tim, you WERE here before! Remember, last year when they took that screw out of Emily's hip? Or the year before when you were down for her Superhip? Oh! What about..." I got it. I GOT IT. Thank you. The point is, Emily is on the operating table right now, I haven't slept enough, the waiting room is crowded, I don't have a good intro and, if not for my headphones blocking out Al Roker's discussion about prom season, there might be an incident requiring police involvement. But other than that, I'm perfect!
Before we get into this, let's do a quick recap...
Remember that fundraiser Shoreline Crossfit put together for Emily? Well, big doesn't even begin to do it justice. It was MASSIVE. One of the most amazing and emotional days I've ever been a part of and that is not an overstatement. Daddy even competed against the big dogs and achieved his goal of not finishing last. Something tells me you won't see that on a Nike t-shirt anytime soon.
It wasn't long after we wrapped that event up that it was time to head south. Yesterday we spent a good portion of the day taking care of Emily's pre-op appointments. She had a brief moment of apprehension when they wanted to draw her blood (completely fair) but held it together like a champ. The promise of cotton candy AND a little time at the beach seemed to lighten the mood.
Then it was off to the waiting room to wait for a brief evaluation of her X-rays. My man Servando came in and gave us the rundown. The discrepancy is currently 10.5 cm and the goal for this lengthening will be six to eight cm. (Ok, can I have a moment here? I'll admit it. Last August when we found out her growth plates are still open, there was a small part of me that really thought this discrepancy wasn't going to get bigger. It was approximately eight cm, it had been approximately eight cm and now we're going to go for this first lengthening, knock out eight cm and be done with this whole damn thing. That is not the case, nor was it ever the case. But I made the mistake of allowing ignorance and optimism cloud my better judgement. The lesson as always, I'm an idiot.)
Anyway, the nuts and bolts of this process remain the same. Three to four days in the hospital as she recovers from the implantation of the fixator. PT to start almost immediately and will eventually move to three sessions per day. Pin turns four times a day (this is how the bone is lengthened.) Pin site cleanings once a day and 10 days before we can throw her in the ocean (salt water is good for the pin sites.)
And, as of this moment, she is on the operating table and Paley is working his magic. Candace, Paley's patient advocate, is coming out to give us updates and we're hearing things are going well.
I'd love to tell you which part of this is going to be unpleasant and which part won't be as bad, but if you're still reading you know that we've already established how smart I am. So I, uh, won't. Just know that every kid reacts differently to the lengthenings, the PT, the pin site cleanings...everything. It's a process. And we'll do the best we can.
Wi-fi is a bit spotty in here so none of the pictures I wanted to post are included. Hopefully, I'll be able to put up a separate post a little later chock full of big, bright, colorful pictures. In the meantime, check my facebook page if you want real-time updates. If I'm lucky, I'll be able to wrap this up later today.
Thanks to everyone for staying with us. We need all the help we can get.