This last Wednesday Mae and I headed up to Sacramento to visit Shriners Children Hospital. We had just been there three months before and I didn't understand why we were returning so soon. During the last visit, I got the impression that all we needed to do was some occupational therapy to keep her current mobility. There wasn't anything they could do to further her arm and hand function.
We traveled along the long, boring route amidst constant rain. It was not a very enjoyable trip. Mae was absolutely perfect on the drive.
We arrived to our appointment early and went almost right in. The occupational therapist came first and started to play with Mae in order to asses her arm and hand movement. A few things were better from our initial visit and a few were worse. I assumed they would send us off with an encouragement to just keep stretching her tight spots. Imagine my surprise when the doctor walked in at the end.
Yep. We are headed back to the hospital on April 5th for Mae to have surgery on her arm. Her forearm turns out instead of towards her body. They want to reroute her bicep in order to keep her arm from contracting more. The goal is to keep her arm as it is for as long as possible. The doctor told me that her brachial plexus damage is actually quite severe. This surprised me because Mae uses her arm so much. The usage she has is the reason why the doctor considers doing this surgery. The want to keep her using it.
I took it all in stride. It's hard to get too worked up about it when I had just recently spent some time at the hospital with a friend who's daughter had one leg amputated and the other reconstructed. That was intense. Mae's surgery is so minor compared. Don't get me wrong. Any surgery is a big deal. Mae will be under anesthesia for at least an hour. They will be cutting into her arm and muscle. It's just that I know we will make it to the other side. God loves my little one immensely and will see her through. Prayers will be spoken for my little one by friends and family at home. She is in good hands.
What will be the outcome?
After the surgery, Mae will be in a cast for seven weeks. (I'm sure she will pick pink!) I completely blanked on asking about the incision. I have no idea where that will be or how long. I may call next week to find that out. However, it doesn't make much difference. Once the cast is off we will not see much difference. She will not have more mobility. It probably won't even look different. However, it will keep her arm from twisting up on her causing her to lose what she has. For this I am thankful.
So, keep my sweet Mae in your prayers. Pray that her mama will stay calm while waiting for the surgery to end. (Jon will be in LA that day and the next.) Pray for the pain management. Pray for Dr. Bauer as she navigates muscle, tendons, and nerves. Pray for the seven weeks after that the cast will not frustrate her.
That's my girl: tenacious, persistent, sweet, loving, beautiful, and bright. I know that no lack of mobility will ever slow her down. She's ready to take on the world!