I have been dreading this night. Not for too long fortunately as I have only known about tomorrow’s date for 3 weeks. As tomorrow has loomed closer it has crept into my mind more and more. I haven’t been able to sleep for weeks now, not because of tomorrow, just because you know, life. However I am sure that tonight I definitely won’t be able to get to sleep with any great ease.
Tomorrow is the big day. For my little girl really, but selfishly I am making it a big deal for me also. She has no idea what is coming her way. She is having an operation tomorrow. As operations go it is tiny. Like really minor. All being well she’ll be home the same day. I know all this and I am perfectly logical and reasonable about this. When I talk to anybody about it it is the first thing I say ‘it’s only minor’. It’s my coat of armour. I am not a mum on the edge and I have my shit (mostly) together. For now.
Minor as it is though, it requires a general anaesthetic and herein is where my foreboding lies. Earlier this year I accompanied Mr T during an operation and I remember the all day wait on no food before he was ‘taken down’. I remember the feeling whilst he was being operated on. It was a strange and unexpected feeling. I am normally rather stoical and hard feeling of nature. I was worried about and for him. I felt his vulnerability unconscious on the operating table. I felt really uneasy.
Now it is the turn of my tiny 3 year old. My little girl being wheeled off unconscious, in the hands of someone else. What is a minor operation to an adult isn’t to a 3 year old. The thought of her being ‘put to sleep’. Not being able to fully explain why she cannot eat, despite her hunger. Why she can’t even have some water. Not really understanding why she is at the hospital, why the doctors and nurses are around her, what they’re doing. What is happening. Not really knowing what the hell is going on. Let alone the pain she will feel afterward, the confusion and daze. I don’t even really know what to say to her. How to explain it. There is so much pressure not to fuck it up and make things worse for her and I don’t want to get it wrong.
I know she will be fine. I know it is without question worth it. I know she’ll never remember it and in a week it’ll be a thing of the past but for now, the night before I feel all the fear and all the sad. My little girl is being put in the hands of someone else, completely. Everything is out of my control and I can but sit, wait and watch, helplessly.
No matter how logical I am. How sensible my brain can be, tonight whilst I try to sleep I doubt I will. The illogical, irrational, hormone and love driven parent in me will be going bat shit worrying and wondering how the hell I am going to make tomorrow as easy and stress free as possible for my little girl…and not have a complete and utter unnecessary mum fail breakdown as they wheel her away to the operating room. All the emotion.
Has your young child had an operation before? How did you explain it them? How did you find it?If you have any tips I’d love to hear from you.