Part 3: Surgery Day for our two daughters

We’re Justin and Cindy Reynolds, and we live in Athens, GA with our two girls. We’re sharing our story of how Ashford Clinic helped our family. In December 2017, Dr. Alex Ashford operated on both our 5-year-old and our 1-year-old… on the SAME day! This is part 3 of a 4 part series. All opinions and experiences are our own.

IMG_4957.jpgOn Thursday, December 14, 2017, we woke our girls up early, loaded them in the car, and went to the Ashford Clinic Surgery Center. Sadie, our one-year-old, was having tubes put in her ears, which was a good thing because she was up for hours the night before with a screaming ear infection. Nora, our five-year-old, was having her tonsils and adenoids out.

We arrived at 5:30 am, and Sadie’s surgery started at 6. We were thankful for the early start time, so the girls didn’t have to be awake for long without food, since you can’t eat for several hours prior to surgery. This detail was something that the Ashford Clinic staff was mindful of when scheduling our young daughters.

Sadie was in and out of the operating room in about 10 minutes. Dr. Ashford cleaned her ears, put in the tubes, and cleared off as much of the fluid behind her eardrums as he could. Sadie was back in my (Cindy’s) arms and starting to wake up.

Of course all kids are a little crazy coming off of anesthesia, but Sadie leveled out pretty quickly. She fussed for a few minutes, then I was able to walk her around and let her calm down.

While I was with Sadie in recovery, my husband was with Nora in pre-op, and they took her back for her procedure around 6:30 am. She was so brave for a 5-year-old, walking back with Heidi, the surgery center coordinator, and they said she did great in the operating room as well.

Nora and Sadie’s grandparents came to lend a hand. We knew that kids usually recover from ear tubes pretty quickly, so we decided that Sadie would go home with my mother-in-law before Nora came out of surgery.

Once Sadie was consistently calm and getting sleepy, my mother-in-law took her back to our house for a nap, so Justin and I could focus on Nora after her tonsillectomy.

Nora did great during surgery. Dr. Ashford said that her tonsils were huge, and what you could see looking in her throat was just the tip of the iceberg. Her adenoids were also quite large. He said they both definitely needed to come out, which reassured us that we had made the right decision.

During a tonsillectomy, it is normal for blood and fluids to go down the back of the throat, and this was true for Nora. When she woke up, she was upset with the anesthesia and also began to spit up.

Any parent who has ever been with a child coming down from anesthesia can tell you that it’s both frightening and funny – frightening because your child is inconsolable, and funny because they keep saying hilarious things. The nurses at Ashford Clinic prepared us well for this reaction and were on hand to offer assistance. They weren’t offended when Nora kept calling them “Nursey” and demanding that they remove her IV. They were sweet and compassionate in caring for her, and worked with us to help her feel well enough to go home.

After some water and a popsicle, we were cleared to leave the surgery center. The staff helped us gather our belongings and load Nora up in the car. As we drove home, we were glad that both girls had easily made it through surgery, and started to transition our thoughts to rest and recovery.

Our experience with the Ashford Clinic Surgery Center exceeded our expectations. Justin had to have surgery earlier in the year, and having a traditional surgery experience at a hospital fresh in our memories, we were amazed at how much better the Ashford Clinic experience was. Their staff is diligent and able to focus more on patient care because there are only a few patients there. They anticipate what you’re going to need, and guide you through every step.

As a parent, it was extremely helpful to have a caring nurse there to help me get my child through the initial recovery, and reassuring me that what she was experiencing was normal, yet there to intervene if anything went wrong. We were so grateful for their care and responsiveness.

Check out Part 4.