Today, we arrive for an appointment with an oral surgeon. For most, the removal of wisdom teeth is a simple procedure. For us, not so. Sarah and I have our traditions. She loves to stop on this bridge to watch the cars drive under her. Standing here allows me to look directly into the corner room where she stayed for several nights following the placement of her trach. I can still replay in slow motion, the exact moment they let me hold her for the first time after that surgery. It had only been a few days, but it seemed like an eternity. It is also the room where the nurse cut her face with a pair of scissors. The Clinic offered plastic surgery to help hide it. By that point, we had already learned that life itself is more important than superficial scars. So we declined. That scar is still quite evident all these years later. It is close to her ear so her hair usually hides it, but for me it is another visual reminder of the battles she has won.
As we get off the elevator on the 7th floor, I have that deja vu feeling. Welcome to the Head and Neck Institute the sign reads. For years, this is where we would come for follow up visits for the trach. I would get all excited thinking this would be the visit. The one where the doctor says it is time to close it up. Yet, each time he would say just a little while longer. After a few years, I gave up hope of ever getting it closed. Then after almost seven years, a new ENT came into town. A woman. She confidently suggested closing it. She was young. I don't think she had enough history yet, to have experienced all that could go wrong. She closed the trach. And it has remained closed all these years.
Today, the door opened. In walked the new Oral Surgeon. A woman. She confidently said, "Let's get these wisdom teeth out. I don't anticipate any problems." And I believe her, just as I did the new ENT several years ago. She was already familiar with Sarah's history. That's one advantage of having this done at the Clinic where her records are. She will need to be in a full surgical setting and will need to be intubated. That concerns me a bit, as we know anything down the airway could result in being retrached, but I'm hoping enough time has passed for the scar tissue to be less swollen.
We did discuss the time frame. It looks like early to mid January, unless the pain becomes more severe. As we were talking about the calendar, Sarah launched into a discussion about Disney. To the point, she was irritating me. "Yes, Sarah, I know you love Disney," I must have said three or four times.
After the appointment, we sat on the bridge for a while longer. Sarah turned to me and said, "That's the road we take to Disney on Ice." Lightbulb!!! Hello Joyce. Earth to Joyce. That's what she was trying to tell me in the exam room. Disney on Ice is in January. She did tell me that. I just wasn't listening. Of course she doesn't want to miss Disney on Ice. How irritating I must be to her. But she just takes it in stride. Never complains. I have so much to learn from this sweet girl of mine.