The Surgery ~March 13, 2011 ~Colorado Springs Cancer Photographer

Carter and Daddy right before surgery. (Taken on my iPhone.) I seriously adore this picture.

Last Sunday Carter had to have surgery.  Because his road to recovery is going to be such a long one filled with so many "pokes", with Leukemia, they put a port in your chest.  (I know they do this with other kinds of cancers as well.)  A port is basically a circle about the size of a 1/2 dollar and about a 1/4 inch  or so thick with an IV tube running out one side.  They put it under Carter's skin in his chest and ran the IV to his heart.  From that point forward they will always run his Chemo, his transfusions, his meds through this port.  It's MUCH easier.  They don't have to poke him nearly as much and while we are here in the hospital they just have it permanently accessed so there is NO MORE POKING!!!  YEAH!!!

Carter showing us his cancer port

While they had him under the knife they did a spinal tap to see if there was cancer in his spine.  (There wasn't.  Phew!)  I wish I could say that was going to be his only spinal over the next 3 years but... When I asked the oncologist how many spinal taps he would received she sighed and said "I can't begin to count..."  Bummer.  But normally it will be in the clinic and he'll just be drugged and not all the way under.  They also did a bone marrow biopsy.  As they suspected, nearly everything in the bone marrow was cancer infested.  That should change.  Frankly, it's probably already changed.  The doctor said if we looked again today the bone marrow would be pretty much empty.  Strange, huh?  The doctors that did his surgery were AWESOME.  They joked with him and teased him while prepping him.  He kept telling the anesthesiologist that he wasn't going to fall asleep.   When they went back to the actual surgery and the doctor told him to count down from 10 and then he would fall asleep.  He said, "No I won't!  10,9,8,7,6,5,4,3,2,1! (as fast as he could)  See?  I'm not asleep!"  So the doctor said, "Well, Carter, you can't count that fast.  Try counting down from 100."  Carter: "100?!  That's gunna take forever!  I'm not going to fall asleep!"  And then he passed out.  One thing I was very happy about is that they let Bryan go back with him until he fell asleep.  One thing Carter was happy about is that he got to ride down the hallway and in an elevator in his bed.  He seriously thought it was the coolest thing ever.  The surgery went off without a hitch and it was short and sweet.  And Carter took it like a champ.