Gracie is going in for her scope tomorrow. The technical term for the procedure is flexible sigmoidoscopy—not quite as involved as a colonoscopy but pretty much the same idea. I don’t know if it will yield any results as to why Grace had such terrible diarrhea for no reason. If it’s like all of the other diagnostic tests she’s had, there will be an abnormal result but not the one the doctor expected and one that creates more questions but gives no answers.
This will be her sixth or seventh time going under anesthesia, and it still hasn’t gotten any easier. She’s gotten through just fine each time, and she generally does great with the anesthesia and is back to her normal self within hours after waking up. But the thought of the risks of anesthesia is so scary. What if, what if, what if. It’s been especially bad this time because Gracie is afraid of the procedure. Poor girl.
I am not sure why Gracie’s so afraid this time. Perhaps it’s because the last time she was under anesthesia she woke up with half a finger missing. I have been trying to quell her fears; I am probably not the best person for the task. One night, I explained to her, “You’ll go to sleep, and they will take this little camera on a string and stick it down your throat* and take some pictures, then you’ll wake up and feel fine.” Alarmed, she cried, “But will they take the camera out??” Oops. Sometimes it’s easy to forget that she’s still a little kid. I forgot an important detail in that description.
We talked again about the procedure a couple days ago. Again, I told her that the camera on a string would go down her throat* and take some pictures. This time I remembered to say that they would take the camera out. She asked, “Will they have to sew me back together?” I said no, there would be no cutting or sewing. She didn’t understand. “But how will they get the camera in me?” I laughed. “You know how when you eat food it gets into your tummy? It’s going to be kind of like that.*” She wondered then how they would get the camera out, so I explained it was on a string and they would just pull it back out. She seemed less worried after that discussion.
*I thought it best not to explain how the camera will REALLY get in her. That is a whole level of worry I don’t want her to consider. I feel a twinge of guilt about lying to her, but I feel it was in her best interest. She doesn’t need to think about having things shoved up her butt at her young age. Honesty may not always be the best policy, especially with a five-year-old.
This scope is a routine procedure, one that doctors do every day. Even though Gracie will have to be anesthetized, there are very few risks to the procedure itself outside of the anesthesia. And with the anesthesia, she’s been through it so many times before and she’s always been fine. My mother’s heart can’t help but worry, though, so I came up with a little prayer.
Give me strength and courage to face whatever comes.
Give me trust that the doctors will do their jobs well.
Give me faith to remember that God loves us and wants the best for us—all of us.
Give me hope that the outcome will be better than expected.
I will try to remember it.