Thursday, September 15, 2016

Come back to Boston

The boy was born blind.

He had cloudy eyes that turned a beautiful dark blue. But they would not see if nothing was done. He was born with pediatric glaucoma. It was no fault of his own. It was nobody's fault. He was just unlucky.

September 13, 2007. The boy had just had his first surgery two days ago. A small tube was placed in his right eye to help control movement of fluid from his eye. We brought him to the follow up appointment the day after surgery and everything looked fine, save for the bruising and swollen eye. I went back home to Albany to work, and my wife stayed in Boston to follow up once more with the doctor the next day before coming home with our duaghter.

The call came in while I was at work. "Come back to Boston."

My family would not be coming home that day. There was a problem. Turns out the tube that was placed was working. But it initially drained too much fluid out of the boy's eye, and the structure collapsed. He required another surgery to reform the anterior chamber of his eye. Essentially, Dr. Walton needed to bolster up his eye a bit. My wife explained that this procedure was a lot less risky - in and out in no time. Still anesthesia and surgery, but not as much fuss and cutting.

Surgery would be tomorrow.

I cancelled my Friday at work and finished up my day. I went home, got things together, and drove to Boston once again. Road food. Gas up on the Mass Pike. Hotel to meet my wife, her parents, and our kids. Dinner and then prepare to take the boy to surgery at Mass Eye and Ear the next day.

We had just done this procedure two days ago, but it had not yet become procedural to us. It would in time, but the hubbub of getting up early and carrying the boy to surgery was still novel to us.

Once again, we went to bed in the junior suite at the hotel, room 1201, and prepared to take the boy with the tube in his eye to surgery the next day.

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