Faith's platelets had been at 40. They needed to be at 100. That's a lot of platelets for tired bones to produce. I had to work Tuesday morning, so Chandler took her and I went to work, trying to focus on my job while trying to limit my text checks to 2 times per minute! I had a sinking feeling this wasn't going to work out. My phone finally whistled at me! Chandler! I closed my eyes, said a quick prayer and looked. 52. No! Crap. Deflated. I had been told on Thursday that her counts had to be un-transfused, so 52, in my eyes, was an instant reschedule to the Wednesday before Thanksgiving. As I was mentally rearranging things Chandler called to say that the plan was to transfuse platelets and to keep the surgery. Apparently, the docs were pretty confident we would still be a go, but we would do one more recheck first thing Weds morning to confirm. We were going forward. It looked like this was going to happen and now I couldn't breathe. Instantly, my chest and stomach got so tight. Painfully tight. If I hadn't experienced a panic attack before, I would have been tempted to call for help, but I knew it was nothing a couple of deep breaths and a glass of wine wouldn't cure, breathe now, wine later of course! Chandler and I had been hoping to have a group prayer at the house Tuesday night. We decided to continue with the plan.
I got home from work, the atmosphere was light-hearted, relaxed, almost fun. So much so that Grandma Shirley was rapping at the dinner table! Exhale. 7:30 approached and we moved out front. It was like a scene from a movie. People quietly pulling up in cars, walking down the sidewalk. They were coming! Hugs were exchanged, candles handed out. Every time we thought we could begin, another family would approach. I loved how we lit a few candles with a Bic, but had the rest lit from the flame of a neighbor, passing the flame down the line. It was time to begin and, as if by magic, the entire group fell silent and listened to the words of my neighbor's dad, a pastor, followed by Jay, Chandler's boss. Prayers for our daughter and prayers for us. I felt better, surprisingly, very at peace. It was exactly what we needed and just how I had hoped it would be! I will be forever grateful to all who came to stand for Faith and protect her with their prayers.
We headed home since the surgery wasn't until 3:30 and it was only 9:30. We knew it was going to be a long day with the surgery looming ahead and an empty belly and dry mouth, so we arranged to have Faith's homebound teacher, Mrs. Law come. That worked out perfectly! Faith kept her mind busy and even learned some Ancient Egypt facts she shared with us at the hospital.
Although she'll never admit it, when Mrs. Law left and I began gathering our things, her entire demeanor changed and the stall tactics began. Shoes went on slowly, another pet of the dogs head, "come on, Faith, we gotta go." "Hang ooooon, mom," she whined. I was scared, too. I didn't want to go, but we can't prolong the inevitable forever. I couldn't listen to that CD again. Thankfully, Faith didn't ask. So, we drove as fast as I usually drive, got there a smidge early, got checked in and up to our pre-op room. No turning back now.
The nurse came in to announce that we had visitors in the waiting room. Since we were the last surgery of the day, they were going to allow more than 2 people back with Faith. Uncle Scott, Aunt Kelly, and, surprise...Ken! Cool! Another knock on the door, more visitors, Grandma Shirley and Granddaddy. Lastly, Grandma Judy completed our circle. In true Moore fashion, we turned pre-op into a party! It was perfect. We made jokes, Faith taught us about Ancient Egypt, and we all tried hard not to think about what was going to happen next. The look on the doctors face when he came into this tiny room filled with people was priceless! We cleared the room after hugs and kisses and well-wishes. I was impressed that there were no visible tears. Dr. Seidel explained that the surgery would take between 2 to 4 hours and not to be concerned if it took a littler longer. Her nurse took my phone number and promised to call with updates and then told us it was time to go. Our brave little girl was still smiling, looking slightly annoyed as I snuck in a few more kisses and I love you's, and then was wheeled toward the operating room. Away from us. We could here her jabbering away at the nurse and the nurse laughing at whatever it was that she said. That's our girl!!!
Chandler put his arm around me as we walked away from the pre-op area and turned the corner to make the long walk down the hall. As soon we turned that corner, he put his arms fully around me and I lost it. Thankfully, my husband knows when to just hold me and not say a word. This was one of those times. I had a good, red-eye, runny-nose bawl, composed myself and walked into the waiting room. That's usually the worst part, sitting, waiting, fretting. But we had our party out there. Kelly brought snacks into the waiting room, completely disregarding the "no food" sign! She had some beverages for us in the car. I love that girl! We followed her out, had just a little nip and then made our way back. Time went by so quickly. My college girlfriends stopped by, followed by Freddy, then Jay. I hadn't eaten all day to be supportive of Faith and I was starving. When the nurse called me earlier with an update, she indicated that I wouldn't hear from her again until 6pm, so we headed downstairs to grab a bite to eat. Imagine our surprise when the phone call came in at 5:30 that the doctor would meet us shortly in the post-op consult room to review the surgery, which by the way, was a success. We had literally taken 3 bites of our food. We must of looked like a bunch of ding-dongs running down the hallway with our food half-packaged and half-eaten!
So, the surgery was a huge success, according to the doctor. We didn't get to see Faith until nearly 7pm that night. Her little swollen face was still smiling up at us after all that she had been through. Dr. Seidel reported that he only had to take 11cm of her bone. She would have lost 14 if we were to use an adjustable prosthetic. She will require future surgeries to add the plate to her pelvic bone, creating a metal on metal hip relationship and to add segments to keep up with the growth of her right leg. Chandler asked what the difference was between a hip replacement and what Faith had. The answer is that a hip replacement only involves the ball of the hip, not removing any of the femur. What Faith had done is considered the most extensive orthopedic procedure there is! Hell, I didn't know that. Probably a good thing!