I’m sure that you’ve heard already – Namine’s echocardiogram (or is it two words – echo cardiogram?) is tomorrow. We’re plenty nervous, but we’ve had plenty of time to get our jitters out. We’re ready for the news, be it good or bad.
As Namine gets older, she draws ever closer to the Fontan. It is the third heart surgery of three, and it will stabilize her heart enough so that she won’t require any more heart surgeries. (This, of course, comes with an almost unspeakable caveat – if her heart does begin to falter, she will require a heart transplant. This typically doesn’t happen until around age ten or so, but still.) Of course, the downside is that it’s heart surgery. The recovery time is somewhere around two months. (And we thought a week in the hospital was bad. But nothing – nothing – would keep us away from our little girl.)
Of course, the echo itself, I think, will be no big deal. Namine has had scans and such before, and she proved earlier this week during her ultrasound that she could – and was willing to – stay still. When Namine was younger, too young to be reasoned with*, they would sedate her in order to take the echo. But now that she is older, we can explain to her what’s happening. She’ll understand, and she’ll obey. She is a reasonable child, and she knows we love her, that this is for her well-being.
Namine knows she’s different; she knows that her heart is sick. Of course we can’t yet explain the concept of a heart defect, but she knows that her medicine Enalapril is for her heart. (“Enpril,” she calls it, and she’ll take it herself if I draw it and hand the syringe to her.) We’ve told her that this echo is so that the doctors can see how her heart is doing, so she understands enough.
* Some would say, I am certain, that three years old is still too young to reason with. But those silly people haven’t met Namine.