Friday, February 25, 2011

Hospitalization Experience?

Yesterday, Joy and I took a pre-op tour of Gillette Children's Hospital in St. Paul, where she will be having orthopedic surgery on March 8. We've been a Gillette family for ten years now and Joy has been a frequent visitor since the time she came home. But this will be our fist inpatient stay, guestimated to be 6-7 days. I will be staying with her.

Some of you are veterans of many hospitalizations. What advice do you have for me, a newbie? What is helpful for me to know or do ahead of time? I would be grateful to learn from your experiences!

She'll be coming home in a spica cast for another five weeks (a body cast stretching from below her shoulder blades down to her toes) if anyone has advice that.

Thank you!


Julie said...

Here are tips from the trenches...
Gillette does not have the best selection of food on site. I always try to pack as much as I can from home...fresh fruit, nuts, etc..
They have a great coffee/hot chocolate machine that makes all kind of specialty coffees free for families to us if they have a child in the hospital. It keeps me entertained..trying new combinations of flavors of hot beverages!
They have internet access..that will be your lifeline to the outside world.
Remember that no matter what is happening, after a few days, you may just feel like crying..and then a few days later, you may just feel mad at everyone...and then you will get over it...I feel like I go through the stages of grief every time I go through a long hospital stay.
The spica cast really worried me before we experienced wasn't as bad as I thought..
There are lots of fun programming for the shows, crafts, etc..even right after surgery, they encourage you to take advantage of these opportunities. They really make the time go by fast and they are fun!
Take advantage of the volunteers if they come around and offer to spend some time with your daughter...just go for a walk around the floor or get outside and breath some fresh air...pace yourself and take a break when you can.
Visitors always make the time fly by...I will plan on stopping by!

Julie said...

Who is her surgeon? What is the surgery she will be having?

Carrie said...

Julie, thank you! That's exactly the kind of advice I was hoping to hear :). Surgeons are: Quanbeck, Walker & Ward. We only know Quanbeck and Ward. Surgery: derotational osteotomies on both femurs with soft tissue work on her adductors (and phenol which we've done before).