Well, that’s a bit of an exaggeration. He had a heart procedure. But surgery sounds so much more dramatic doesn’t it? And a surgeon performed it. In a hospital OR. So yes, it might be an exaggeration. But it isn’t really a lie.
He had something called supraventricular tachycardia, which basically means he had an extra passageway from his heart’s upper chamber to its lower chamber that was causing him some occasional problems while running. It would make his heart beat too fast. (Like 250 BPM. Literally.) It wasn’t life threatening. (Whew!) But it’s still not something you want to have. Especially if you are a runner.
The procedure was simple and was done laparoscopically, so he wasn’t cut open. There were just tiny little tubes inserted into his groin area and pushed up to his heart. Then the doctor burned closed that pesky little hole. It was an outpatient procedure. It was done on a Monday and he was back in school on Wednesday. He should be running again this week.
The procedure was a success and he is 100% cured. This isn’t something that comes back. It’s like a paper cut. It’s super annoying, but once it heals it’s like it was never there.
No big deal right?
My son was in the hospital for an outpatient procedure. On his heart.
And I’d be a liar if I said it didn’t scare the shit out of me. But I held it together like moms do. I didn’t want him to know how nervous I was. I think he did the same for me too by acting pretty calm as well. He said the thing he was most nervous about was getting the IV. (He had a hernia operation a couple of years ago and did not like getting that IV inserted one little bit.)
But his surgeon was fantastic. (Or was he simply a cardiological procedurist that day? Since it was a procedure. And not a surgery. Hmmm, I somehow do not think he would like that.) He explained everything to us before and after. The procedure was a success. The only recovery really was the healing of the insertion points of the catheters.
Of course my boy is clever. He milked it a bit last week. “But Mom, I just had heart surgery,” was his go-to response whenever something was asked of him. I would remind him that it was just a procedure. But still. I let him milk it. I enjoyed babying him just a little.
I stayed home from work the day after the procedure just to be with him. I drove him the half mile to school all week. I eased up on his chores. I made his favorite dinners last week and bought him his favorite ice cream.
I’m just so glad to have this little thing (that I would often worry was a big thing) over with.
As I said before, “Whew!”