Friday was such a long day, there's nothing worse than waiting and waiting and wishing we could get an update.
My dad went into theatre at around 8:30am, and my mom got an update from the doctor at about 1pm, saying surgery was going according to plan and it'll take another two hours or so. He was wheeled into ICU at about 15:30. That's seven hours!
I didn't see him on Friday - my mom said he was very drowsy, emotional, in pain.
The doctor said the surgery was successful, the tumour was very big and very deep, but they removed it all.
I visited on Saturday morning - they're really strict in ICU regarding visitors - only at set hours, only two people at a time, and have to sterilise hands and wear a plastic apron. I was really shaken when I saw him, looking so fragile, and so many drainage pipes attached to him, and keeping eyes closed. Said he's in lots of pain. The cut at the back of his head was a lot bigger than I realised, a big square, about 7cm x 7cm. He chatted a little bit, asked what Mia's doing, but could see he was exhausted. I was very drained and emotional after that 20 minute visit!
Today's visit was a hundred times better. Some of the drainage pipes have been removed, so he looked more comfortable. He was looking around, chatting more, asking to sit more upright, drank some juice.
He's still in ICU tonight, but it's quite probable that he'll get moved to a normal ward tomorrow.
His right leg still has no sensation and he can't move his toes, I can see he is a bit concerned about that, but the doc said it could take some time, and he'll do physio rehabilitation soon.
I did some reading up about recovery after meningioma brain surgery, and found this blog post of 20 things to expect after brain surgery which was quite insightful and I liked that it was written out of personal experience and not just like the medical websites' information.
I think this recovery process is going to take longer than any of us realised... But, we must all take it one day at a time, encourage him, support him, keep him positive. Like my brother told me when I was going in for the first visit yesterday, "Tell him he looks good! Even if he doesn't look good, just tell him that he does!"
This really was major surgery, I can't imagine the 7-hour anaesthesia, all the bruising and swelling, the discomfort and pain. ICU is bright, noisy, beeping machines, non-stop activity - I think my dad is quite exhausted. Apparently he asked for a sleeping pill for tonight, I'm glad, so that he can get some proper rest, that's a big part of the healing process, and something one just can't quite do in a hospital!
This special pic was taken on Thursday night before the op, when we took Mia to visit:
All in all, we're so relieved the operation is over and done with, but we all need to stay strong to stand by him for the recovery process.
I am in awe of how many people he had praying for him, all the special messages being sent to our family, all the people who care, it's truly special. The power of prayer sure is amazing!