Rex is better

I can see clearly now…the rain, you know, it’s gone.

We had our post op appointment with Rex and all has gone well.  He should be in far less pain now.  The smile is back on his face. These pictures were taken the morning of his surgery and Vivien offered him different toys to see which one would bring him comfort.

Of course, nervous mom forgot all of them.  But, we were there as soon as he woke up from surgery, so I think it was okay.

To celebrate I took him to the park so he could run around.

“Go, Rex go. You’ve been cooped up long enough”.

I really couldn’t think about anything else for this past week unless it was really simple.  Bagel or cereal, cream or half and half.  More than that was a struggle.  And I found it very hard to be funny.  I’m emceeing Digital Content Newfront in NYC next week, a day long affair that brings online content and would be advertisers together.  I was working a funny video with Digitas to run at the event and just couldn’t wrap my head around it.  I finally called a comic friend and just talked about it and then the engine fired up. But, I needed a jump start. I also just needed to talk about something else.

This only reinforces the respect I have for parents who have chronic illnesses, or serious problems.  Geez, it’s all consuming and I’m exhausted. But, so relieved.

Played out

This week has been one of the more challenging ones in memory. Rex is having a hard time recovering from surgery. He will be okay, but hurts. I knew this would be a tough week so I taped a few things in advance and I thought I’d pick one that represents what I like to do when the going gets tough…watch trash TV.  Haven’t had much chance this week, but I did get a few snippets to clean the brain.

What do you think is played out?

God, do I look tired.

Post Op

I was doing the back counting to figure out when was the last time I could nurse Rex before his surgery.  2:45am.  I was trying to sleep, but really hoping he would wake up before then so I could hold him close.  It briefly went through my mind to get him up so I could nurse him.  But, I quickly realized I would be a crazy loon if I did that – who made it all about my needs and insecurities? At around 1am he woke up and was fussy big time.  My cue!  I really enjoyed the time together.  Then Mark was only to happy to follow with a bottle to get him good and down and have his own special time with him.  Rex might have been thinking, “Enough people I want to go to sleep.”

But, he didn’t know what he was in for.  We did.  7:45 was the cut off for clear liquids.  When I head Rex stirring at 6am I didn’t do my normal pillow over head till 6:45 so he can learn mom doesn’t come in that early.  This morning was different so I bounded out of bed and brought him to the kitchen.  I was worried how he would handle no nursing wake up.  But, when I gave him a bottle of apple juice he was pretty happy.  Thinking, “You never give me juice”.  Drink up pal, it’s like you are a condemned man.  I warned Mark we had to keep an extra eye on him this morning.  Any other day if he picked up some old, stale bagel and munched on it I would let it pass, but not okay, pre-surgery.  I did grab some lotion from him.  He was starting to have it as his breakfast.

Mother-in-law shuttled Vivien to school and we got to the hospital on time.

And waited.  Rex fell asleep on dad’s shoulder, but when he woke up we were still waiting.  We finally found out they were running late so we put him in the stroller and went around the area as he was fussing and I couldn’t nurse him to soothe him. Which was getting hard on both of us.

When we did get back the nice staff was ready for us and handed me a pink vile of “baby downer.”  In short, a light tranquilizer to help with anxiety.  As I spoke to the surgeon and anesthesiologist about the procedure Rex fussed.  Then after a few minutes, he was smiling and swaying in my arms.

I know this look.  I went to college.  I pictured a little Jimi Hendrix playing in his head.

We changed him into his little mini hospital scrubs (which I wanted to keep, but they say they launder and reuse, darn it) and walked him to the last threshold for the non pro.  The surgical nurse put a blanket over her shoulder and extended her arms.  I handed over my son.  Even in his purple haze he looked distressed.  We watched him be walked down a hallway.  He looked at us the whole way, like, “WTF?”

I sat down and cried.  Mark tried to comfort me.  “I just want to feel sad right now while I can.”

But, like the Brogdon I am the other part of me took over.  The part that wanted lunch.  It would be a while so we left.  I didn’t want to stay there.

After lunch we came back and waited a while.  Then the surgeon came out and said it had all gone well.  When we walked back we saw Rex sleeping.  Three nurses were cooing over him.

“He is so cute. We said, don’t send the parents in yet, we want to pick him up!”  I rather enjoyed their compliments of my little man.

After about ten minutes he woke up and I nursed him. After a while he looked all red and blotchy.  He was having a reaction to one of the meds.  Not bad, but that had to be dealt with and he was much, much fussier than normal.  Stands to reason.

We finally got home and still had one more prescription to go get, my stepson did that thankfully.  Mark picked up Vivien and got some take out.  Rex went to sleep for an hour.  I inhaled a glass of wine and lay down for about twenty minutes.  I realized my whole body had finally gone into an at ease mode after tensing up for months in anticipation of the event.  In many respects that is the worst part.  But, this is just the beginning for Rex.  The next week is going to be very hard on him and it’s going to take months before he is fully recovered. This is a marathon, not a sprint.

Sorry baby.

Our Upside Down World

Imagine saying this… “Please don’t load the dishwasher; I’ll do it.”

At 5 a.m.: “No, don’t get up; I’ve got the baby, you sleep.”

These are the kind of things coming through my abnormally kind mouth the last 24 hours as Mark recuperates from his eye surgery. We went back to UCLA this morning at the doctor told him had he not had the surgery it would have been “catastrophic.” Yikes.

Happily Mark is not in any pain. It itches but not super bad. When the nurse took off the patch at the examination he said, “How does it look, honey?”

“You know that last scene in the original Rocky where he is screaming for Adrian? Like that.”

So he can’t leave the house for a week. He can move around, but no lifting, straining, bending over, gardening (there goes that herb garden I was looking forward to).

I was pretty freaked looking at his eye. Our vulnerability can hit us at times and make me shaky. Then you get over your fear and the other self takes over.

We had some nice, mellow moments at home today. Since he has to slow the pace down I said he better be careful ’cause without activity he could blimp up, and I’m not into being married to a big fattie.

He has been watching a lot of TV, and he did make some applesauce for Rex, which he loved. Ahhh.


Okay, is he better yet?

Yes, he did coach me on how to make a sauce for the petrale sole I was making, but I am so used to him not being here. We just had a fight about the appropriate way to reprimand Vivien, or not at all… which was my vote. And Nosy Nellie decided to update my software thus causing me to lose things I had open on my computer.

I felt like a teenager in a sense saying, “Leave my stuff alone!!” He thinks if the software update thing is bouncing it means immediate action.

Okay, watching “Top Chef: Masters” finale with him was fun. He was really intense. We were both glad that Rick Bayless won. His food is incredible, and we personally really like him.

“I wish I could email him and congratulate him” Mark said.

“You can.” I said without thinking

“But I can’t read.” Oh, right.

I can do it for you. Group hug.

I Married a Pirate

SO it’s a good thing Top Chef isn’t taping this month, ’cause my poor husband has some gnarly eye surgery awaiting him. He had a floater a few weeks ago. When he went to the doctor they said he had a retinal tear. They shot 600 laser blasts to contain it, but a blood vessel popped. The blood drips down into the jelly of the inside of the eyeball, and thus his left eye’s vision looks like a Jackson Pollack painting.

He has gone back to the doctor several times, had second opinions, and the upshot is the eye doctors at UCLA and USC agree he needs surgery. They are going to extract the jelly… suck it out as it were, then refill the eye ball… the vitreous with a substitute… some saline solution. You can see I didn’t go to medical school.

He has to be TOTALLY chill for 48 hours and for several weeks is not even suppose to be in a car unless it’s to go to the doctor. He can’t pick Vivien up at all and must be careful about lifting Rex. So obviously I am concerned about what he has to go through. He is being very brave. I’d be flipping out. And I’m bracing for being in charge of the whole shooting match. I’ll be the Kate Gosselin as it were… except instead of my husband being AWOL with a 22 year old, he’ll be sitting quietly with an eye patch. One that he has to wear for weeks. I’m clearing the decks next week so I can be a good nurse… I fear I’ll be like Kathy Bates in Misery.

Has anyone dealt with this kind of eye surgery before? It seems very scary to me, but Dr. Dean Edell (my mentor) said it’s pretty routine, though serious. Wondering what to expect in helping him and what I won’t get help with.

He has such nice shoulders. Maybe I should get him a parrot?