Sunday, June 10, 2012

Emery the Brave

What a week it has been!!  Let me start from the beginning...At about 13 months our sweet little Emery started the journey of complete mobility by walking.  She did what most kids do when they're learning; she hobbled, she bobbled, and she fell down...a lot.  At first we thought it was cute, but after a month she was still hobbling and bobbling; not getting any better at stabilizing or walking on her own.  Tyler and I grew concerned and called the pediatrician.  One of the nurses reassured us that "all kids wobble and fall down, that's just part of learning to walk."  We understood that, but in our gut we knew something was wrong.  In April we finally scheduled an appointment with an orthopedic specialist and had Emery checked out.  Sure enough, something was wrong.  Emery had what is called hip dysplasia, which basically means her right hip had been dislocated since birth without anyone catching it.  She would need surgery as soon as possible.
   After playing a big cat and mouse game with the surgeon's office to finally establish her surgery date, it was set for June 5 (just a couple days ago).  We had about a month and half to prepare her, and let's be honest, ourselves for her surgery.  We played outside a lot, went swimming, went for walks, and toured a couple of new playgrounds.  We wanted her to have a summer as much as she could before she'd be stuck recovering.
   June 5 arrived, and before we knew it we were arriving at Children's Hospital at 5:30 a.m to get the ball rolling.  Emery made LOTS of new friends while waiting to be taken back to the operating room.  Every nurse, doctor, and technician that entered the room would get a warm greeting from Emery, arms outstretched and a big grin on her face. They told us that wasn't common; most 16 month olds run from the scary people in scrubs.  :)  At about 7:30 they informed us that it was go time, and Emery would need to head back to the operating room.  I don't think anyone can fully prepare you for watching as your child is put under and you are whisked away.  She just looked so small on that big hospital bed, and confused as to what was going on.  The anesthesiologist placed a small mask over her face, which she fought, and then turned the gas on.  She swatted at the mask and started to cry...I think at this point I was a mess too, and even Tyler was shedding some tears.  Before we were taken out, the anesthesiologist whispered, "I just want you to know we've all fallen in love with your daughter.  We'll take good care of her."  That is exactly what this mother needed to hear.  Take care of my baby, because I am helpless and heartbroken for her.

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The surgery lasted a little over 4 hours, but everything went well.  They had to cut some tendon and ligaments, shorten her femur, and install a plate to take the pressure off of her hip socket.  Now is the hard part.  She is in a full body cast (armpits to ankles), with a bar in between her legs to stabilize the cast. 
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She's a bit awkward to hold, because of the cast, but I am just grateful we are still able to hold her and snuggle with her as best we can.  Her brothers like to throw stuff at her and hit her cast, but they can also be really sweet sometimes, patting her back, handing her toys, and sitting with her.  She will be in the cast for 3 months, so we have a long summer ahead of us.  However, with the help of my parents and other family, along with amazing friends, we'll get through this!  

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3 comments:

Tim and Ashley said...

Emery,
We hope you recover fast! Don't let your brothers pick on you too much! Purple is your color!
Love Auntie Ashley, Uncle Tim, and your cousin

gwen said...

What a heartbreaking thing for all of you to go through! She looks ok with it in that last picture! Good luck to all of you--our prayers and thoughts are with you!

Tamie said...

You two are so strong. And so blessed. She will do great and you'll have some great pictures and strange memories to share with the kids when they get older. :) Love you all!