We walk into Children's Hospital holding hands. You are terrified. You have already endured numerous operations, but at age eight, this is the first one you have faced with some idea of what is happening.
You are trembling.
Minutes seem like hours. They test your oxygen level, take your blood
pressure, ask a million questions. I have kept as much of this as
possible from you, but you sense my distress. I have told you that you
will have an operation. I will not lie to you, but you intuit that I
haven't given you the entire story.
You cling to me.
smell is all pervasive. It is an antiseptic smell, an indefinable "no
smell": cleaning fluids, anesthetic, rubbing alcohol, all mixed into
one. It almost hurts to breathe it in, like too clean air invading my
lungs, leaving them empty. I know you will remember it. In future,
something will trigger the memory of it, and you will relive the terror
They take us to pre-op. Here the smell is more definable: sharp, astringent -- like sandpaper as it rakes past my nostrils.
You look at me and your eyes well with unshed tears. You know that
this is one of the "biggies." They will take a large portion of bone
from your tiny hip and replace the missing bone in you upper gum line:
the alveolar ridge. You sense that it will hurt.
You are afraid.
The smell is starting to make me ill. Or is it fear? Once again I will
be turning you, my baby, my little love, over to strangers.
They will cut.
The anesthesiologist arrives and takes your hand. You look at me with
glistening, tear filled eyes, and smile. Your back straightens. Your
chin lifts and just as those big, double doors swing shut, you raise
your hand and sign, "I love you."
Excerpt from Son of My Soul - The Adoption of Christopher ISBN: 1894936930 Debra Shiveley Welch, Saga Books http://goo.gl/MWKYrB
©2007Debra Shiveley Welch
Warning: All poems/articles/works by the author are protected by
copyright laws against the risk of plagiarism. To safeguard the author, a
regular search of the Internet is provided to ensure this law has not
been broken! Any Website/Blog/Forum which displays Debra's work MUST
have received her permission to do so. (Permission to adopt statement
given by its creator, Debbie Stevens.)