That tacky little ticker up there says we have surgery in 2 weeks.
Gratitude with a pinch of anxiety is what I’m feeling these days. I’m still in awe of the fact that our insurance is going to cover Ethan’s surgery. Rich and I were preparing to do battle and were caught completely off guard with the news. They won’t cover any visits (ENT, audiology) that have to do with Ethan’s deafness because it’s a pre-existing condition. (This could be fodder for a weeks worth of posts) But they cover the surgery because the implant is viewed as a prosthetic device.
I think I’m distracting myself from Ethan’s impending surgery by focusing on his other issues. I’ve been delving deeply into the sensory stuff and apraxia-land. And he doesn’t even have an official apraxia diagnosis! But buddy when that comes down the pike (and my gut knows it will), I’ll be on the ready with my recipes for a gluten-free and casein free diet, as well as all the supplements I’ve been researching. I’ve got books on their way here right now! And don’t even ask me how many hours I’ve spent reading messages on my mailing lists, devouring every morsel of experience and advice I can find. It’s ridiculous!
The actual surgery is one thing. Granted, it’s a pretty big thing, but it’s actually only the beginning. I’m a bit worried, as any normal parent would be, but not overly freaked out by any means. Having been through it once before does make it easier. I know he’ll be fine.
There will be loads of follow-up appointments, probably more this time around than after his first implant. We’ve been told that our implant center likes to do more follow-ups with bilaterals since there isn’t much formal research out there on children yet.
There will also be several mapping sessions with the audiologist. During the first year of having a Ci the sessions are very frequent, every 2-4 weeks for a while, then 6 or 7 months later it backs down to every 2 or 3 months.
These appointments are a 3-hour drive (in each direction) for us. We usually stay with my dear friend Audrey and her husband Mike (and their new cutie Blake), but we will still be doing a lot of back and forth.
It’s a lot to add to an already busy therapy schedule. I drive Ethan 1.5 hours each way to his weekly speech therapy and 1 hour each way to his PT/OT sessions – which are every other week now. He also has 2 aural rehab sessions per week here in Athens.
It’s all just a little bit overwhelming.
I’m reminded of the days following Ethan’s first Ci activation, nearly one year ago. I was filled with anxiety about maintaining the equipment and keeping it all on Ethan’s head. Everything was fine though and looking back I realize that I got pretty worked up for no reason.
The same thing happened when he got glasses last year. When his doctor told me we needed to go into the next room and look at frames I nearly fell to the floor in the fetal position. I couldn’t imagine putting any more gear on E-boy’s head and I worried that it would be next to impossible to keep it all intact and in place. Well that turned out to be not such a big deal either.
So to this new dread and anxiety I feel creeping in I say, “Beat it! I’ve got better things to do.”