So ‘mom ears’ are definitely a thing. I didn’t wake up to Andrew’s alarm clock yesterday morning, didn’t even realize it had gone off. I didn’t wake up to him getting out of bed. I did instead wake up to a tiny click of a door handle, and thinking it was Cameron, I was ready to jump out of bed to make sure he didn’t get into any food or water before his surgery. Then I heard shower starting noises and saw that Andrew wasn’t in bed next to me.

We woke Cameron up about 6am. I was expecting it to be a struggle but he got up cheerfully asking, “Now?” And then, “Next stop: pee stop!” as he made us wait to take off his pull-up. We only had to get him up to put shoes and socks on and get in the car so I told him he could go back to sleep in the car. He said he would, but instead pointed out different kinds of lights and told us how he thought things work for most of the drive to Bellevue, while I soaked up the Cameron-ness of it all.

I am continually amazed at this kid… he’s so excited about new people and new experiences. He wanted to head straight for the play area but we had to check in first. At the ER putting a hospital bracelet on him was another fight so I warned him about that part ahead of time. He said he only wanted to wear one – I’m not sure why there would be more than one in the first place – but putting only one on him was no problem.

Then he got to play, both in the play area and with the Wii U that was in the waiting room, until it was time. He stood on the pictures of the feet to check his height and weight, and got on the table to have his blood pressure taken. It wasn’t until the mask came out that things got scary.

The anesthesiologist asked me if I had ever seen a child going under before (no) and warned me that it can be freaky. There wasn’t really time to get Cameron used to the idea (although it’s probably not something he’d ever be ready for on his own without forcing it a bit anyway) before they put the mask on his face while I helped hold his hands. Holding a mask over a crying child’s face until they fall asleep feels like something right out of a horror movie, and it seemed to me like he was crying the whole time, even after he was out. I laid him down, tucked his mouse under his arm, and kissed his hands.

We were led to the consultation room to wait, and then allowed to grab Starbucks from the first floor. The surgery was only supposed to take about 45 minutes so we were over-prepared with things to pass the time while not actually wanting to do anything thought-intensive so we just set up a couple Pokemon lures while drinking our drinks.

The doctor came back to tell us everything had gone well and exactly as expected. I thought we were going to be with Cameron when he woke up but that’s not how it actually went. A bit later we were told to pick up his prescriptions (various painkillers) and then go to see him. A nurse was holding the crying Cameron who transferred to my arms. He was crying and shaking but this was actually easier for me now to be able to mother as a verb. The nurse kept telling me this was all normal for coming out of anesthesia and I said he doesn’t even wake up from naps well…

We had left him in pajamas but they had put him in a little hospital gown. We helped him get dressed and he sounded like our Cameron again when he corrected the nurse, though still crying, that they’re not PJ’s, they’re jammies. (Or was it pajamas? Definitely not PJs though.) He had been given some kind of spinal block so he wouldn’t be in pain for a while but not able to walk on his own either. I carried him to the car and rode in the back seat at his request.

At home he wanted to be put at his table, then migrated to my lap on the floor, and finally to the couch to start his binge on Doc McStuffins. At one point he asked me for his red popsicle (I knew well enough to take home his hospital snacks and drinks that he refused at the time because he would be asking for them later) and got up to get it. That’s when both of us likely realized that he could walk normally again.

From that point on you’d never guess he had been cut open hours earlier. He even asked to go to the playground in the afternoon. We vetoed day-of-surgery playground but instead he scootered to Safeway and back. Our big concern is that he’s overdoing it and going to be in pain later, but he slept through the night and woke up this morning without complaint.

If anything it’s making it difficult to allow the weekend in front of the TV we planned to allow him when he doesn’t act like he needs to be spending the day on the couch.

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