Like A Tank

Back in October 2007 I bought a new truck…a 2004 Dodge Ram 1500 4×4. 

It was big and roomy.  It could haul the whole family and a load of firewood at the same time.  It was as good on the highway as it was in the mud.  It could gently pull in the driveway to keep from waking Ace, or it could let ‘er rip and pull a stump out of Grandpa’s yard.

Most importantly, it was safe.  One of the main reasons we decided on this truck was to protect Ace in the case of an accident.  I’m not the only dad that thinks this way either.  Check out BusyDad’s Dada Truck.

Unfortunately I was involved in an accident not too long ago (Thank goodness Ace was not riding with me).  I am not going to go into details about how it happened, because everything is not settled yet, but I will say that there was an accident.  There was damage to the front end of the other car, which happened to be a Honda Civic,  and the rear end of my truck.

I did not get a picture of the other vehicle, but I found a picture online that looks very similar to the Civic that I was involved in an accident with.

Wrecked Honda Civic

WOW!  Right?  The damage was extensive!  I would guess that it was totalled.

So what did the Dodge look like?

Dodge Ram Rear End Damage

That is an actual picture of my truck.  Would you guess that it was in the same accident as the Civic?  Me neither.

While I am sad that my truck was damaged in this accident, I am happy that it performed so well. 

People laugh at me all the time about how much gas I go through, about how big my truck is, about how uncomfortable it must be to drive it long distances…but it’s all worth it to me.  I walked away unscathed.   Anyone else who could have been inside would have too.  What else can you ask for?

Now Ya See Me, Now Ya See Me With Only One Eye

Ace is rough.  He does not play nice…sometimes.  He does not think twice about smacking the shit out of you, or kicking you in the nads when you are holding him, or pulling your hair (if you have any), or….poking your eye out!

You heard me right…poking your eye out!

Momma and Ace were playing on the floor and Momma took a fingernail to the eyeball.  She said it hurt like hell, but we both kinda hoped that it would be better in the morning.

Actually it got worse.  I came home from work at lunch to find Momma with an eye that was nearly swollen shut and bloodshot like she had been in one hell of a bar fight the night before.

I drove her and the eye poking two year old to the eye doctor where Momma was given some eye drops and told to keep her eyes closed as much as possible.

She spent the rest of the day resting lying on the couch with gauze taped to her orbit.

But while it is easy to get upset with Ace when he gets rough like this, you just can’t stay that way very long.

I mean, how can you feel anything negative at a face like this?

Cute Face

A Sink, A Crib, And (Thank God) A TV With Nickelodeon

I mentioned recently that Ace would have to go in for surgery.

He had an umbilical hernia.  Basically the opening in his belly where his umbilical cord went into his body had never closed.  When he would strain, even just a little bit, his belly button would pop out.  Actually it was his insides (intestines) pushing out through his belly button.

While not an immediate threat, there would always be the possibility that some of his intestines would pop out this umbilical hernia and get stuck, cutting off blood supply, and causing some major issues.

The docors told us it was not a necessary thing to fix, but was a good idea to have done…and we agreed.

The night before surgery Ace was not allowed to have anything to eat after midnight.  He could drink water and apple juice until 6:30 in the morning.  I was not worried about the no food after midnight deal, but was concerned about how Ace would do with nothing to drink after 6:30.  A glass of juice or milk has been a morning ritual since he was born…

Ace is like his Momma…a night owl…stays up late and gets up late.   Ace usually doesn’t go to bed until 11PM or after, and gets up around 9 or 10 in the morning.  However the morning of his surgery was an exception…

I got Ace (and Momma) up at 6AM so that he could have a drink before his 6:30 no drink deadline…but, he didn’t drink a drop.  We made our way to the Children’s Hospital by 8:20.

During registration they put the hospital bracelets on Momma and I’s arms, and Ace’s leg.  You would have thought the world had come to an end.  Ace did not like the bracelets on us, and he sure as hell did not like the ankle bracelet on him.  I just knew from his reaction it was going to be a fun filled day ahead…  😀

Off to a hospital room where they had a crib that reminded me more of a cage.  I immediately pictured Ace sitting in the crib ringing his sippy cup across the bars as prisoners do in jail… 😀

The nurse came in attempting to get a set of vital signs.  Blood pressure cuffs and oxygen/pulse monitors are Ace’s mortal enemies.  For being only 25 lbs the little guy put up one hell of a fight…and won.  Eventually the nurse gave up.  She never did get a reading.  😀

Then comes the nurse practitioner, anesthesiologist, and the surgeon to introduce themselves and take a look at Ace.

After two hours of trying to keep Ace occupied in a room with only a sink, a crib, and (thank God) a TV with Nickelodeon, they came to take Ace away to surgery.

I figured this would be the hard part.  Seeing him get wheeled away down a hallway crying and reaching out for us saying (if he could talk), “Please do not let them take me!”  But Ace took it well.  He hopped in the crib and the nurse took off, rolling the crib down the hall.  It was like a new ride for Ace, I think.  And we all know how much Ace likes to go for rides…  😀

About an hour passed and the surgeon came out and told us everything went great and he will have a perfect little innie belly button after it had healed. Ace was in recovery and we would be able to see him soon.

Fifteen minutes later they asked us to go back to his room.  On the way down the hall the nurse warned us…”Ace is a little upset and we are hoping that you two could get him calmed down!”  I could hear Ace screaming before we ever got to his room, and when we walked in his room I was shocked at what I saw…

There was a nurse holding Ace doing her damnedest to get him calmed down, but it wasn’t working.  One look at Ace  and we knew that this was probably the most upset he had ever been…ever.  He had tears rolling every which way which literally soaked the neck of his shirt.

The color of his skin was down right shocking!  He was soooo red that if he had been smiling I might had confused him with the Kool-Aid man.

After Momma and I took turns rocking him (and a shot of morphine…for him not us) Ace finally calmed down.  I don’t know if he was hurting, scared, or pissed off…but I’m guessing it was a little of all three.

I don’t know why a little guy like him who has never done anything wrong to anyone and brought sheer joy to so many people in his life, would ever have to endure something like that.  I think I would rather have my insides ripped out and stomped on before seeing him like that again.

After his heart rate came down they let us take him to a more comfortable room, where Ace slept on my lap.  The new nurse was a little concerned with his color.  We over heard her talking on the phone and she described his color as that of a tomato, and she was right on the money.

We stripped Ace down to his diaper, and let him cool off.  All of the fighting and crying really got his temperature up, and between that and the anesthesia the redness was pretty shocking to all.

Eventually his temperature came down, his heart rate stabilized, and his color was better, so they let us go home where Ace slept the majority of the rest of the day and night. (I think the Tylenol 3 with Codine had something to do with that).  😀

Well, it has been two days since his surgery now and Ace is acting much better.  I will give another update later this week….maybe with some pictures of his new belly button.  😀

Stay tuned…

Going Under The Knife

Not me, not Momma, but Ace.  You heard me right…my little boy will be going in for surgery in a few weeks.

Now calm down, it is nothing life threatening, but it is still scary for me.  Just the though of him being given some anesthetic and being knocked out with hoses and stuff shoved down his throat make my stomach feel funny.

The thought of some doctor, cutting him open with a scalpel sends shivers down my spine.  I can just picture him lying there on a table, with all of the wires from the monitors, the beeping from the heart monitor,  and him just lying there lifeless.  The little boy that is never lifeless…even when he sleeps. 😀

Again, calm down…I am probably over reacting…

Ace has an umbilical hernia…AKA an outie.  😀   Basically the hole in his belly where his umbilical cord was…never closed, and his insides push out when he strains.

A good picture of it is from a post I wrote last summer where Ace was playing in the waves…

Big Waves

Big Waves

Ace’s doctor said it should have healed by the time he was 18 months.  He is almost two now and it is not getting better, so we were thrust upon making a decision…surgery, or leaving it alone.  We chose surgery.  One reason is cosmetic, and the other is to prevent any complications with it in the future.

Now, it is only going to be a small incision with 10 internal stitches, but it still concerns me.  But hopefully it will be all worth it and everyone will come out healthy with only some slight bruising  …including me and Momma.  😀

(Non) Sleep Study

I went last night and did the sleep study that my doc recommended, but I didn’t get a whole lot of sleep.  😀  Maybe it had something to do with the 30 wires, sensors, and probes that joined me for my slumber…

Sleep Study Plug-N-Play

Sleep Study Plug-N-Play

 It took about a half an hour to get connected, then I could do whatever I wanted and go to sleep whenever I wanted.  So, I got out my laptop like any good blogger would do and realized there was not an outlet to plug into and also no available wireless connection.  Shucks!

So, I got out my web cam and took these photographs before my battery ran out of juice. (Check out my fancy $15 PJs that will never get worn again.)

All Connected For My Sleep Study

All Connected For My Sleep Study

All Connected For My Sleep Study (Side View)

All Connected For My Sleep Study (Side View)

My other alternative was watch TV with the other lab rats, read a Readers Digest from 1997, or go to sleep.  I opted for a little shut eye.  😀

This room was dark…haunted house dark!  Where was the TV and the glow from the street lights that I have grown accustomed to?  The only light was from an Infrared Flood light above the door.  It was a very faint red glow that I could barely see, but would allow the sleep technicians to watch my every move using an infrared camera.  Ever wake up feeling like someone is watching you sleep?  Try waking up knowing someone is watching you sleep.  😀

What bad habits do I have at night when I am sleeping?  What do I scratch?  What bodily functions do I lose control of? (They did have a microphone in the room too. )

Maybe all of these thoughts running through my head, plus the wires, plus the fact that I could not get comfortable, plus the fact that I can not remember the last time I had worn more than my underwear to bed…is why I did not sleep well.

So, morning came after what seemed like 12 hours of lying in a dark room.  The technician said that I might have a mild to moderate sleep breathing disorder (I guess I actually did sleep some)…but the doctor will make that call and let me know next week.

Until then I am going to sleep in my own bed, with no wires/sensors/probes, with the TV on, scratching whatever I want whenever I want, and doing it all stark naked if I feel like it.  😀