… but Little’s op seems to have been pretty darn successful. Well, at least that’s what the Doc said at her post-op check up 72 hours out of eye-slicing-mom-n-dad-freak-out territory. Looking at her a day after surgery you really wouldn’t think she’d been through anything outside of toddler everyday’ness… there were no bandages, no patches, no bruising or scabbing or nasty pussy stuff that one would think would accompany having ones ocular muscles snipped and stitched and fiddled with for 90 minutes under general aneasthetic. In fact, the only noticeable difference is that, with her glasses on, her eyes are straight. Like, really straight. Like, totally normal… Like, I may need to take a minute to get used to this.
For those who aren’t totally up to speed with our #littlelenses journey, Little had bilateral strabismus surgery* on 9 May at the ripe old age of 16 months.
So, is she fixed?
Yes and No. Yes, because the Doc is confident that the 25 degrees of her 45 degree squint that was infantile** has been corrected and no, because the remaining 20 degrees of her squint that is accommodative*** which means that with her glasses off she still has a 20 degree squint. The other ‘Yes’, a pretty major one, is that she is fusing which means that both eyes are working together and she has depth perception, proper 3D vision for the first time ever really. And that is pretty darn awesome.
Hubby: “So, is she going to be okay? Like have normal 3D vision?”
The Doc: “Well, let me put it this way… she’s not going to be a fighter pilot but she’ll be able to play hockey.”
And the surgery? Was it grab-me-a-champagne-bottle-and-a-straw hectic?
Unexpectedly the night before was more hectic that the day of. That whole nil by mouth thing after 11pm was pretty rough. Particularly as, at that stage, madam was waking up at 11pm on the dot for a 200ml bottle and a little lung-clearing scream session. Let’s just say that my attempt to feed her a meal replacement**** instead of her usual***** went down like genuine fur coat at a PETA rally. And the whole, ‘here, it’s 4am, last chance, I’m allowed to give you some apple juice’ thing… well, mushroom clouds are less dramatic.
…Fast forward to an hour-long drive to the Pretoria Eye Institute with a hangry spectacle-wearing grump-a-saurus and you’ve got a pretty good case for Irish coffee.
Expectedly, Dad was a nervous, worrying ‘they said she’d be out in 90-minutes, it’s been ninety one’ wreck. Arrival at 6am was easy. Paperwork at 7am not too painful. She was the youngest patient so she went in first, at 8am. The whole sitting with her in theater while they put her under was about an 8 out of 10 on the parental anxiety scale. The whole leaving her there once she was out, well, that was an 11 out of 10. There were tears in the changeroom as I removed my scrubs and washed away a good 70% of my mascara. There weren’t tears as hubby and I waited in the cafeteria… but there wasn’t much conversation either. Then came the part where it was time to go back up ‘cos ‘they must be nearly done.’ That part. That 15 minutes felt like 50. Then she was wheeled out and all was well… hubby checked that she was breathing every 30 seconds until she woke up…
… Hubby watched every every minute like a reality star watches their Instagram account.
And, she bounced back like a little legend… going from passed out in the ward in her cot for a couple of hours to sitting up wide awake, grabbing her bunny and gulping down an apple juice in a couple of seconds. It was an impressive display of “Surgery, what surgery?”
Little: “I’m hungry and still wearing my PJs at midday. Seriously. This is embarrassing. Can we go home now?”
So, what’s the next step? Another appointment with the Doc, scheduled for Wednesday 28 September to see if the ‘awesome’ results we saw a few days post-op are still as awesome or if there’s another ‘finetuning’ surgery on the cards… of course I’ll keep you posted. Don’t I always?
*a fancy shmance term for ‘she had squint correction surgery on both eyes’
** the ‘born with’ type that can be corrected with surgery
*** the type that develops after birth, hers as a result of her being farsighted
***** Nan 3