Sawyer’s Surgery

May 25, 2012 § 5 Comments

The night before his surgery was great. He was in a good mood, he had just received a bunch of new toys from my moms co workers ( thank you!!) and he loved all of them. That made the nerves settle down a little bit. I think Brian and I got about 3 hours of sleep. 3:30am is flippin early. 

We loaded my 50 bags into the car ( Hey, you never know what you’ll need.. and it was really only 4…) and then put Sawyer in his car seat, thankfully he fell back to sleep on the way down. 

We arrived at Shriners a little early, so we sat down in the main lobby and watched some Youtube videos with Sawyer. Then up to the 4th floor we went. They took his vitals, asked us some questions, read their 4 pages of rules, picked out his cast color and then back to the waiting room. 

At about 6:30 they took us over to Pre-Op, where he was a total Ham of course.


Around 7 he started getting cranky, and I think he knew something was going on. They gave him a drug to calm him down and that’s when things got funny. He was officially… drunk. Laughing hysterically at pretty much everything and then we would start laughing. At one point I had to stop laughing because I was close to becoming hysterical. Haha. 

….30 minutes later he was wheeled away and I lost it. I knew it was for the best and he would be “gassed” out before they poked him with any needles. I felt better after a few hugs and we found that as soon as the anxiety passed we were starving. We all headed down to the cafeteria. 

I have to say that those 3 and half hours were some of the longest but also very short at the same time.  I had a banner of words going around in my head the whole time, “I hope everything is going okay.” After hour 3 had passed we all started to get anxious again. Wishing the doctor to walk around the corner and tell us everything went great, and that’s just what he did. He told us that they were able to save the whole leg. They took a tiny wedge out of the bow ( which was at a 130 degree angle, whoa) and then straightened it up, in simple terms. Removed the front part of his foot and attached the calcaneus,aka the heel bone, to his tibia. His leg is a little shorter than the other but it’s nothing a prosthetic foot can’t fix. 

Seeing him in recovery was a little hard at first. His eyes were very glassy and he couldn’t focus. He was on the pale side and very hoarse from being intubated but he was telling me all about it and trying to point. 

His right hand was completely covered in tape and gauze to keep the IV in. He was pissed about it. Banging his arm against anything he could. Rubbing it on his face, has a few lovely scratches on his face from that. I sat down with him in a rocking chair and he fell back to sleep for a little bit. After Brian was allowed back he woke up again for a little bit. They wheeled me down to the 3rd floor because Sawyer wouldn’t let me put him down..Hey, I was tired.. I didn’t mind not walking. 

For the rest of the day he was pretty upset. Feeling weird from the anesthesia, in a lot of pain from his leg because the nerve block wore off a lot sooner than they hoped and he couldn’t use his good hand. They pumped him full of morphine and he was in and out for the rest of the day. He slept for a good 6-7 hours that night, waking up every 30-45 minutes, either from pain or from being itchy, a lovely side affect of anesthesia. 


Thursday was much better. He woke up in a pretty good mood, still very very tired. He didn’t have his hand free so it was pretty impossible for him to do anything but flip pages in his books. His surgeons came in around 7am, they told us that if he does well on just oral meds until about 2pm then he can go home. We looked out the window for a while and then went for a ride in a wagon. The rest of the day was spent walking around the halls or rocking him in the chair while he slept. 



After we got home, he was immediately happier. Playing with toys and reading books. Around 8pm he started getting a fever, 100.9. Then at about 11pm when it was time for pain meds it went up to 101.7. I called Shriners because they didn’t want it to get up passed 101.5. The doctor told me to keep an eye on him. Last time I checked it was back down to 100.8 and by the time he wakes up hopefully it’s down a lot more. 

It’s currently 10am and he’s still passed out… sideways, on our bed. The crib was a no go last night. 

Anyway. Thank you so everyone for your positive thoughts and prayers for Saw on Wednesday. It really means a lot. 

We are finally on the road to recovery. He gets his cast off on July 2nd. Surgery to remove the pin that’s holding the bones together while they heel will be at about 8-12 weeks after surgery and then he will be fitted for his prosthetic!! 

We are still working on getting him to smile. Hopefully we accomplish that today. 

Here is a look at his cast 



….And him being goofy.. 




§ 5 Responses to Sawyer’s Surgery

  • Elizabeth Salmon says:

    He is such a tough little guy that he will be back to himself before you know it.

  • Hi Kaitlyn,

    Shannon linked to your blog and I’ve just read the whole story and I wanted to say hello and commend you and your husband on being so brave and strong for your little guy! It sounds like its been quite an adventure already in his young life and you three are taking it all as it comes. Good for you!

    Also, I work for a company that does prosthetics in San Francisco and I can tell you it really is such an amazing industry to be a part of. So much advancement combined with such technique and skill. I think you will find Sawyer’s life as an amputee to be a great one. I see patients every day who walk again for the first time, or who have just completed a marathon, to ones who are needing some adjustments done before a soccer game or bike ride. There really are no limits anymore as an amputee and Sawyer starting at such a young age will mean he will know nothing else and will hopefully thrive throughout his life!

    I’m sure you have received tons of information about prosthetics but if you need any more or would like some other information or support, I’d be happy to help you all in any way I can.

    Here’s to a speedy recovery and stay strong!

    Emily Lund

  • Lea Ann says:

    Thank you for sharing all the details so eloquently for us all. Grandma loves Sawyer.

  • Laura Marlar says:

    What a beautiful child. A “trooper” at such a young age. Good luck to you and your family–young and old! Leon and Tweedy Marlar (Lizzie’s Auntie & a Shannon worshiper….).

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