My brother and I waited in the family area talking to the other mom (T) about her baby S. I just stepped out after about half an hour when I saw an OR nurse wheeling out the stroller in which they took KB inside. I asked him how much longer the surgery would take and he said it was already done and they are now putting the cast on him. I was very surprised and relieved to know it was over already. I had expected to wait for an hour and a half. But we had to wait another half an hour for them to allow us into the recovery room. B had to stay with KG in the family area while I went in to see KB. They had a little crib kind of bed made of steel, I guess to prevent kids from falling out etc. KB was still fast asleep under the effect of the anesthesia. The IV needles were still connected and he did not have his shirt on. Just a pillow on top of his chest. He still had his pants and shoes on him. My first instinct was that he would be cold and I asked the nurse about it. She said he wasn't cold since they keep the room temperature warm and he had a pillow on his chest. He looked suddenly so much more grown up in the kind of expression his sleeping face had. It is so hard to put into words.
I went out to the family area and let B in to see KB. While B was waiting there, the nurse tried to wake him up just so they could make sure he was able to recognize us, was able to speak clearly etc before transferring him to the main hospital (out of the surgery unit) for the night.
When KB woke up, he started crying immediately asking for "Mammma". So B told me to rush in and I came running to see KB. As soon as I held his fingers, he was calm. Half awake but clearly recognizing us all. I asked him if he wanted me to sing "Mudakaratha modakam" a song he has heard me sing nearly every day. He said yes. I sang softly into his ears. The nurse was passing by and I asked her how long before we get transferred to the hospital. KB even in his half asleep state was following my singing. He got upset that I was not continuing. So I quickly started singing again. He fell asleep again while I waited there. A few minutes later, he woke up again and looked up and said "Hey, anga paaru, sea horse!" (Look there, a sea horse), pointing a picture above him. After sometime the nurse told us which room we would be moving to at the hospital for an over night stay before being discharged. They wheeled KB as it is in the crib bed and we (myself, B, KG and my brother) followed the nurse to the next building.
The day before the surgery, at the doctor's office, they had asked KB what color cast he would like to get on his fractured elbow. He looked at the spectrum of colors on display and picked "red" instantly. B blames it on my influence. He says I don't even realize how much I gravitate towards red when it comes to clothes. When I saw KB in the recovery room, I was disappointed to see him in a blue cast because they had specifically asked KB what color he wanted but gave him the wrong color. To a child, these things matter. When KB was moved to a bed at the main hospital, he noticed his cast and immediately said, "hey, why didn't they give me red?!". I told him some random reason but KB did not buy it. It was close to 7.00 p.m. already, KG had to be fed. So they left and I was alone with KB. I told the nurse around 8.00 pm that KB had not peed since 2.00 pm. She said that I could give him juice and then if he tolerated it well, we could then coax him to pee. She said it he did not pee even after four more hours, they would then use a catheter. I was again afraid of one more procedure on him, so my immediate goal was to get him to pee after drinking his juice. Thankfully that all went OK and the nurse gave him stickers even for that! KB had a field day because I gave him juice when ever he asked for it. And different flavors each time! Because he hadn't eaten anything all day. We sat and watched some baby Einstein programme on TV and then I read some books and told him stories. He complained of the cast feeling too tight, so they had given him morphine. He was not sleepy at all and said that he would only sleep at home. I somehow convinced him that we could only go home the next morning. Finally around 11.40 pm, he fell asleep. I slept right next to him in his bed itself. I hardly got some two or three hours of sleep that night. But KB slept well for the most part except when he had to get up to go to the bathroom.
The next morning when the surgeon came on rounds, KB answered his questions about how he was feeling etc and immediately said to him, "WHY didn't you give me red?!". The surgeon was really sweet about it and said that he knew at the back of his mind that he had messed up. He then apologized and said one week later, when he put on another layer, he would give KB a red cast. I really appreciated the kindness with which the doctor talked to KB and really understood that these little things matter to the child.
BTW - I am writing all this so I don't forget about it all - I don't mean to bore you all with fine details. I am assuming people will skip over to read the gist if they do read this post! I want to write about the other two moms and the coincidental meeting with two other parents at Party city...but I am too sleepy now to continue. Hope to write about that in the next post.