You know I’m a planner. Especially at this time of year with holiday parties and family gatherings and Breadan’s December 24th birthday, which needs to be celebrated both at school and at a party all while keeping it separate from Christmas. Add to that the fact that our house might be ready to move into a mere week before Christmas and I am really really wishing I was able to plan.

But plan, I cannot.

Austin’s ultrasound has been moved from the 10th to the 15th, due to the radiologist’s schedule, which could truly screw us for the holidays. If this mass is indeed growing, I imagine we would check in that afternoon for a surgery the next day. That gives us nine quick days for recovery, eight if we want to be home on Christmas Eve. Now remember, back in April we expected to be in for ten to fourteen days and Austin was home jumping down the stairs in just three.  But when he had his right kidney removed in September 2007, he had a ten-day ileus, prolonging what was already the worst time in our lives. The ileus, for those of you new to our story, is a common post-operative intestinal blockage that is not dangerous but is truly miserable.  It renders the poor patient unable to eat or drink anything by mouth, not even an ice chip or sip of water.  They usually last for three to five days, but Austin (with his tendency to ignore such rules and parameters) has had one ileus that lasted for eight and another for ten.  Not to mention, he would need to get established on dialysis and I have no idea what that entails. So, we would only be able to hope beyond hope that we would spend Christmas together under one roof.

Well, no, I think we would spend Christmas together under one roof; just not under either of the roofs we had hoped for. If we’re actually still in the hospital for Christmas, I hope we would all be able to sleep there together on a variety of cots and couches.  Braedan’s never stayed the night before but it certainly seems the right thing to do. Oh, but I know there are restrictions on sibling visits during flu season. Any of you nurses reading, let me know if there are exceptions made for the holidays.

Now of course, the other thing we must hope beyond hope for is that the mass isn’t growing at all and that we get to wait a few more weeks before taking any action. Or that maybe, just maybe, it has disappeared. I have no idea what that would mean and am not even sure if such a mystery would make us feel better, but it would at least buy us some time. And with two little boys who are most excited to discover Santa’s deliveries on Christmas morning, time is all we need.

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