My baby girl (Z3) is set to have surgery to repair a hernia. Z2 had a hernia as well but it was in a different location and most likely would (and did) resolve on it's own. I sat down with the doctor yesterday and he took his time to explain to me in great detail exactly what a hernia is and how to fix it. The placement of Z3's hernia makes self-resolution very unlikely and it's the doctor's recommendation that we take care of it sooner than later. I was keeping my fingers crossed that we would not need surgery.
I've been dealing with insomnia on top of allergies on top of just the normal waking up 3-4 times at night to nurse. This is something extra to keep me awake. I'm really tired. And really worried. I mean, in the grand scheme of things, it is a very minor surgery and I know there are parents dealing with much scarier medical issues. But even minor surgery carries risks.
What I spent the night thinking about were three things:
- The surgery risks: the two main ones being local infection and anesthesia
- Antibiotics: the broad antibiotic that she will be given pre-surgery will knock out all her gut flora. I'm trying to do the research now to see what would be the best protocol for restoring her gut symbiosis. Breastfeeding alone will go far but something like 80% of our immune system is in our gut. For my children, gut health is pivotal as I am relying 100% on their immune system to fight off disease and keep them healthy.
- No food: she cannot nurse for 5 hours prior to the surgery. Baby girl is on a once an hour nursing schedule right now. It's going to be heartbreaking denying her milk for 5 hours.
Some fortunate things:
- Surgeries for babies are scheduled very early (7:30 AM) so she will not be starving all day.
- The surgery will be laproscopic which means that it will be less invasive and the healing time will shortened.
- There is very little chance of reoccurrence.
- The surgery, if all goes well with anesthesia, is a one day deal. We will be in and out on the same day.
- Baby girl is very healthy and robust.
I'm still pretty worried though and it was very hard to get to sleep last night. I've got a dull headache this morning. I'm encouraging myself though because, in the big picture, this surgery is just a blip on the radar. And I'm making a conscious effort to focus on the outcome I want and not on my fears. I think that is supremely important.
And I am also staying in a state of gratitude for all I have and for this situation. I'm not totally clear about what my calling is in life but I do know that I am sent to be a resource. And this experience will certainly give me the tools to do just that. This challenge adds a layer of complexity and beauty to the tapestry of my life and gives me a testimony that may at some point encourage and teach someone else. So I am going to give thanks.