The 29th of December 2008...a date I will never ever forget as long as I live...the day Dounya had her repair through open heart surgery.
How come that normally the hours just seem to pass in a blink of an eye but all of sudden started to go by in slow motion???
Sunday evening I had a talk with the surgeon, Mr. Gladstone, in which he explained what he was planning to do and what could go wrong..how I wished he could have skipped that part!! I know he needs to but I freaked out when he told me the mortality rate is 5-10%. Kept my face straight at that moment but inside m there was alot going on I can assure you!I signed the consent forms and when he left I really was in need of some fresh air. I stayed up with Dounya 'till late in the evening, just did not want to leave her. After deciding it would be wise to get some sleep to be ready for the next day I went up to my accommodation. And I spent the night with my eyes wide open, all kind of thoughts going through my mind!Just plain fear for what would happen in the day that was about to begin. So without sleep I was back on the ward early, to spend with my brave little girl..the guilt I felt when I looked at her smiling and being in such good form! In just a few hours she would endure a major surgery and she did not have a clue. Thank god!
I was not crying but when the ambulance crew came to take us from the children's hospital to the main one my heart was in my throat and in silence I wrapped hr in a blanket and followed them to the ambulance. The walk to the theatre was terrible, Dounya looking at me with so much trust in her eyes...and then we arrived in the area where she would get sedated. I held her on my lap while they put the mask over her face and then I really could not stop my tears. Inside me I was crying out: NO No NOOOO not my Dounya!!!But I had to hand her over and leave her..That was so hard. The nurse who came along with us tried to comfort me which wasn't a easy thing to do when I was towering over her...she was just a small lady!
we walked back together to the children's hosp.Got myself a coffee and sat outside in total fear but trusting my daughter she will show them!! I have often seen her fighting spirit in her eyes and I was and needed to be sure she would get through this. I went to walk, hoovered my room, lay on the bed, but decided I just wanted to be as close as possible to Dounya, so I just paced back and fort near the main hospital.
My brother in law came to support me thank god, so I had some distraction which was really helpful.Dounya went down at 8.00 am and came out at 14.15 PM. the longest 6 hours of my life.
I just heard: It went well....And I kept saying in my head THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU.
I was prepared beforehand of the sight it would be when she was on Cardiac Intensive Care Unit (CICU) but no one can prepare for the shock when it is your own child. A ventilator through her nose which was breathing for her, 3 drains coming out of her chest, 1 tube going in her neck, another in her groin, catheter, and machine beeping and buzzing all around..I saw her and needed to sit down. The toll of not eating, sleeping and being so so worried constantly was that I felt I would crash there and then!And that is not what Dounya would need when she was ready to wake up...so I went to my room for some much needed sleep. after 2 hours I was back on CICU next to her.
The next morning she wa taken of the vent at 8 am and she managed to breath on her own!! SHE DID IT!!!
They put an Oxygen box around her head to give her extra oxygen and throughout the day gradually tubes and wires came out and machines stopped.She opened her eyes but was really high on morphine...the look in her eyes was not the bright curious one I know and when she made sounds it sounded more like a little kitten.. I will never forget that.But overall she did well.
She could have gone to the ward the day after surgery already but when the surgeon gave the go ahead it was a bit late in the afternoon to arrange the transfer so she got back on the ward on Wednesday morning.
And from there on things just went upwards..every day she improved more and on Friday you couldn't see by the look at her that she had had an OHS 4 days ago!! Her heart rate was bit low when a sleep but they were not too worried about that and she resolved that quite good in the next days. She also was not to keen on her bottles at first but since Saturday that has improved very well. She takes now up to 100 ml 3hourly, WITHOUT EFFORT!!! after all those months of seeing her fighting to breath and drink it is a joy!
And the icing on the cake: TODAY SHE CAME HOME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I am so so happy and so very grateful that she has done so well, but most of all:
I AM THE PROUDEST MUMMY!!
From now on 29 december will be the day things changed, and we will celebrate it every year as her heart day!!