Operation #8 Removing the Hickman Line

I can’t believe we are coming to the end of our first week post-Hickman line.

It’s felt longer than a week – in a good way. Clara’s technically almost been off PN two weeks now. Those sterile procedures feel a long way away.

The procedure itself was simple – so simple they tried to take the line out on the ward with Clara simply in her bed space. A bit of numbing cream on, and 45 minutes later they’d slowly managed to wiggle the line to just below the surface of the skin. However, there it stuck on what we think might have been a few embedded stitches.

So off to theatre she went.

Knowing it would be my last time to the anaesthetic room didn’t make it any easier. I sat with her on my lap as they asked me the usual questions – name, date of birth, and can I tell them my understanding of why we are there. They warned me it would be quick – there’s no time for a coffee the lead anaesthetist said. What?!

Turns out there was plenty of time for a coffee, but in reality I don’t know how much time passed by.

I heard Clara crying down the corridor – no, screaming – she was hungry. She’d been starved all morning, and now she was fed up. Oblivious to what had actually just passed!

I walked to meet them and within minutes Clara was in my arms. I placed her down, and she quickly drank 70ml of milk and dozed off in her cot. I was too nervous to pick her up, I wasn’t sure how sore she’d be feeling.

But after an hour she woke up feeling sorry for herself. I picked her up, and instantly she relaxed into me. That’s the mum effect. We had a wander around the ward, Clara quickly back to her usual self mesmerised by all the colours and the moving tv screens. We made it back to her bay, and there she napped on me for another two hours.

When she woke up, we were told we could go home!

But it wasn’t home we were off to – we were out to celebrate! A bit of late night shopping and some dinner out – there’s nothing like starting your new reality with a bit of old normality.

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