Ava had another laser treatment on Monday. She is very aware now of what happens when she goes to get a laser treatment and has been asking when she would go get purple again for a while. She had informed me prior to going that she planned to scream. She also told me she wanted strawberry smell in her mask.
In order for the rest of this to make sense, you need to know the normal routine of a laser treatment.
We wake her up in the morning and put her in the car in her pajamas, drop Rhys off somewhere (Siblings aren't supposed to go though it seemed like everybody else had siblings there this week. Either way, generally easier without him there.)and drive to Children's outpatient center. We get there and check in and she plays for about 5 minutes. We get called back and begin all of her pre-op paperwork. She gets her gown on, her wrist band, weighed and all vitals taken. The doctor and resident come in to talk to us. The anesthesiologist and resident each come in to us and discuss history and all that. The eye doctor comes in and talks to us. All this time we are in a hospital room with sliding glass doors and all that, like most ER's. They do have toys out in the hall that she can go play with and TV's set on channel 11. She usually doesn't want to do much of anything but sit there being annoyed. Then they come and get her and wheel the table away, at which point she usually flips out that she is leaving. I used to go with her but it doesn't really change the situation so I stopped. They then go into the OR and they put a flavor sent in the anesthesia mask, usually her choice of what smell she wants. They then hold the mask over her face, usually while she cries, until she falls asleep. She wakes up in recovery with the nurses, and they come and get us. We usually get called back when she is in recovery because she won't stop crying. When she calms down we go back into our original room where she is observed eating and drinking and waking all the way up. Usually she is really mad if you talk to her and pretty irrational, so we have learned to just ignore her and say as little as possible. It is kind of like not making direct eye contact with a gorilla. We then get her dressed and go home.
So this time she decided every time a doctor came in she would lay down and pretend to be sleeping. We talked about it after they left and I suggested that she pretend to sleep when they put the mask on instead of crying, and then she would just get to go right to sleep for real. We played around and she was laughing and having fun when they came to get her. She immediately went into pretend sleep mode, and was trying not to laugh. The doctors played along with it and wheeled her out. She gave me one panic look and I gave her a thumbs up and she smiled and went back to pretend sleep. This time when they came to get us, she was sitting up in her bed against the pillows drinking some juice. She was definitely still out of it, but actually nodding yes or no to things and she wasn't crying. The anesthesia resident came in to check on her and said that she didn't cry at all when they brought her back. Later on when she was still zoned out, she said, "Mommy, I didn't scream." She seriously made it through the whole morning without crying once. Turns out she had strep throat and was already sick, but I doubt that had anything to do with it. I think she just knows what is going to happen and is fine with it. She picked her smell, she knew what would happen, she decided to pretend to sleep. She was in control.