Wednesday 8th August: We were up at 5.30am feeling very nervous and apprehensive. Despite our anxieties, we know the procedure and what is in store for Freddie and ourselves...
We made good time; pretty much no traffic on London roads whatsoever... and we arrived at Great Ormond Street Hospital at 6.30am. The weather was lovely at least...
|Arriving at GOSH 8.8.12|
We came so early in the hope that arriving first, would ensure Freddie went to theatre earlier than 11am. As Freddie is still a baby he would be on a priority list as he has not eaten for 12 hours and has been on nil-by-mouth overnight. Despite our previous experience, we were wrong. The reception didn't open until 7.30am, so we had to sit and wait for 1 hour, entertaining an already increasingly hungry boy...
Once inside, we registered and it was clear that Freddie was not the smallest anymore. It was quite a milestone since we last were here for the operation in September 2011 for his 1st hernia. n/b we have postponed this operation 3 times dues to colds and fever...
|Shame, he doesn't know what is going to happen...|
All coffee shops were still closed and Daddy managed not to get too grumpy! By 7.45am the Dinosaur Ward was already busy with anxious parents, armed with sick babies and their small children. In-fact I am wrong, there was a young lad who must have been 14 or 15 going in for an operation.
|On the floor of the Dinosaur Ward|
About an hour after we arrive, a nurse came in to weigh Freddie and take a mouth and nasal swab. He now weighs in at 8.4kgs. 18.6lbs. Not as much as we had thought, but he is putting on weight steadily and that is
all that we can hope for.
|Using distraction techniques...|
Following this, Freddie's temperature and heart rate were measured. All normal, bar a high heart-rate which was probably down to him being pushed and prodded.
|Wrist band added... Ready to go!|
After 30 minutes or so, the Anesthetist arrived. He would be the first person that we would meet in theatre and be responsible for putting Freddie to sleep by gas. It is important that Freddie's weight is measured correctly and that all his medical history is taken into account so that his job can be completed safely. This is NO easy thing pinning the arms and legs of your son tight together as he fights to breathe. It's quite distressing...
We signed all the necessary consent forms and were informed of the risks, side-effects and scenarios. The procedure was also discussed and we confirmed that Freddie had no allergies.
A very long wait and a frustrated Freddie followed... .... ...
|Freddie cuddling his favourite rabbit...|
By 8.30am, Freddie was very grumpy and rightly so. He was starving and in unfamiliar surroundings. We were informed that the operation would be at 9.30am and that we were second in theatre. Nothing transpired until the back of 10am.
Thank you to Bliss Charity, Tommy's Baby and Great Ormond Street Hospital (Twitter) for all you messages of support... Thank you to all our friends on Facebook too.
Finally we were called to theatre and within no time - after a very long walk - I was holding Freddie in my arms and gripped him tightly until he fell asleep. Mummy was in tears and I worked hard to keep them back. We both kissed him on his forehead and as I left I look back, I thought he looked beautiful. I recall his beautiful blonde hair...
It's amazing how much trust you put in doctors and rely on your faith of science, biology and medical knowledge. By 10.20am, Freddie was under and the operation was expected to take 1 hour. We retreated to the local park square for a small bite to eat.
Mummy was feeling very nervous so we returned to Freddie's ward (Southwood) and sat by his bedside. About 1.5 hours later we were called at 11.45am and made our way downstairs to the recovery ward. We then waited nervously for a further 10mins in reception. Fingers crossed!
|Freddie's favourite rabbit.|
1pm: We finally took Freddie back to his bedside in the ward for him to recover, sleep and rest. He was on oxygen support which was a surprise to us and was very upset and was very teary...
|Taking Freddie back to the ward.|
Sometime later, Freddie's surgeon, Dr. K. Cross visited him in bed. She said, "it was definitely the right thing to do and operate. We should have done it sooner. She was slightly worried as their was bruising on his bowel which was attached to the hernia". This was a shock to us and unforeseen news. Our doctor, who performed Freddie's first hernia operation recommended that he stayed in overnight for observation. Fair enough, but we were shocked and frustrated as we had expected to go home.
It was essential Freddie was observed overnight to ensure he was stable, comfortable and eating. This would ensure all internal organs were functioning as normal, otherwise another small operation would be required to remove part of the bowel. We were very surprised to hear this!
|Freddie 30 minutes after waking up....|
|Cannula in the left hand...|
|Milk and oxygen mask...|
|A probe on Freddie's big toe!|
|The wound which flared up (red) the next day...|
Two hours later, Freddie was jumping around on the floor...
At 6pm we were transferred to our new room for the overnight stay. Only one of us was allowed to stay overnight, so Mummy duty called and Daddy headed home exhausted at 9pm...
|Night time playing...|
|Peppa Pig on the iPad|
Overnight, Freddie woke up at 12am and from 2.30-4.30am. Mummy was exhausted and had started to play with Freddie on the ward corridors from 5.30am. The nurses fell in love with him...
Thursday 9th August:
Daddy was back at hospital by 8am. Again, a long wait was in order and plenty of Freddie entertainment was needed. The nurses were all very complimentary about Freddie's good behaviour and handsome looks. It was all very reassuring.
|Showing signs of cracking up!|
|Another nap at 9am...|
|I'm going crazy! Let me go home...|
Finally the doctors rounds were at 11am and Dr Cross came to discuss the details with us. It was - as ever - very professional and informative. We left after 30 minutes and ran home to relax. Below is a final picture of Freddie desperate to get home. He must have known what the doctors said.
|I'm going home!|