Bionic Baby Boy

Lucas's right ear was successfully implanted yesterday at CHOP. It was a long day, but it went really well and we're glad it's over! We left the house at4:15 AM and made it there in 1 hour and 22 minutes, impressive. We were actually so early that they wouldn't let us into the elevators! Better to be early than late though. Everything went smoothly, and they took him back for surgery around 7:30. They gave him "giggle juice" before surgery to decrease his separation anxiety (which has definitely increased over the past few months). It made him pretty loopy and giggly, but he didn't mind being taken from me (I think it was worse for Mommy). He had to wear a purple "boy dress"... I think I need to invent something better for the hospital... They also stamped his right ear for surgery, to make sure they implanted the correct ear!!!

Surgery started around 8, Nate and I went to surgery waiting, then I pumped and went to Au Bon Pain for breakfast, and returned in time for our first update. It's sooooo nice - they have nurses who go around to the operaring rooms hourly to give parents updates. I guess she wasn't allowed into Lucas's OR though because of the highlly sterile nature of the implant. But she called in and everything was going fine.

Shortly thereafter, the CI program social worker came to chat with us. Then the CI audiologist brought us the stuffed Cochlear koala (with a toy CI) and news that the surgeon had gotten a full electrode insertion and the implant was working well from his perspective. It's nice that they always test the implant before finishing up. We also chose a silver processor with a beige coil for him.

It will look like this, except that the very top round part will be beige, to blend in with his hair. Soon after the audi left, Lucas's surgeon came to tell us everything went well. About 15 minutes later, we got to go see him. He was sleeping and cranky, and I held him for about 2 hours while he slept on and off.

Lucas was discharged around noon and we were back in Lancaster by 2 or so. It was a pretty long night... Lucas and I slept on the couch together, because he wouldn't let me put him down. He also threw up twice from the anesthesia, surgery to the head, or a combination of both. We've kept him comfortable with pain medications and he has slept a lot in the past 24 hours. He's actually sleeping in my arms as I type right now. He really rallied today around noon, when my parents came to visit, playing on the floor. We got a little smile last night from Tickle Me Elmo, and a big smile later this morning when he saw one of our fluffy cats.

I took a picture of him with Kaci the koala, who also has a bandage on its head, just like Lucas!

We took the bandage off around noon. Surprisingly, he hadn't tried to pull it off before then. The nurses seemed to think it would be off before we left the hospital yesterday. There are no sutures, but rather dermabond holding the incision closed, which is nice, so that he doesn't pick at it, and no bacteria can get into it. He'll be on an oral antibiotic for the next 10 days to help prevent infection. Here's what the incision looks like. (And really messy hair, poor guy!)

It really has been a good experience, much better than anticipated. The hospital is top notch and took very good care of him, I am very pleased. I also think that he'll be back to himself tomorrow. Yay for a pretty quick recovery! Good news too - activation is 2 weeks earlier than expected... January 9. We are now combining our equipment orientation with the activation on the same day. Thanks Faith!!!!!!! Here's to our bionic baby boy. There's no looking back!