Saturday, March 29, 2008
The Before Photo
On April 3rd, Annamarie is having surgery to graft bone into her upper jaw where her cleft palate ran through her gum. One of her adult teeth is actually in the roof of her mouth, and they will at some point move that tooth into the grafted site. Of course braces will come later this year after the graft heals, assuming it "takes." The bone cells will be taken from Annamarie's hip, and everything we've heard leads us to believe that it's the hip, and not the mouth, that will be painful afterward. Annamarie is a tough cookie and I have faith that she will get through it all as cheerfully as she handles everything else.
Her recovery will feature lots of soft foods, lots of good dental hygiene to keep the site clean, and lots of guarding her mouth from accidental injury. Please send prayers and good vibes to my scatterbrained family that will enable us to follow the care instructions to the letter.
Annamarie is both nervous and excited about the surgery. She is fascinated by medical procedures and equipment, so she is stoked to get to see them up close. She has a ton of questions about what the scalpel will look like, who will be in the operating room, whether her bed will have rails, what kind of controls will the bed have, and on and on. Her favorite TV show--really the only one she watches--is TLC's Baby Story, and she can quote entire episodes from memory. She's a little disappointed that she won't be having an epidural, but is cheered by the fact that she might have a catheter.
We hope that this is the last required surgery in her cleft repair process. If she chooses to have cosmetic surgery in the future to fine tune things, we will support her in that, but it will have to be her choice. We think she's perfectly beautiful as she is.