Dr. H said the hole in Bel's ear drum was nearly 4mm, at the upper limit of his chosen repair method (the fat graft myringoplasty, for you medical types). But he seemed happy with the results, sent us home with ear drops and instructions to keep it dry and see him in a couple of weeks.
Bel was an excellent little patient. She was thrilled with her pink, berry-scented mask and switched willingly into her gown. It helped to have nice nurses (of course!). The two who took her back to surgery were especially smiley and promised to give her a tour and show her all sorts of cool stuff on her way to the op room and Dr. H. She took her Duck along, and someone wrapped Duck's arm the same way hers was wrapped. It was the first thing she smiled at when she started waking up.
She was pretty sleepy for awhile in recovery. Of course one of the first things she tried to do was pull out her IV, and then she stripped off her sock and tugged at the oximeter on her toe. They had her well-taped, though, so she gave up and leaned back against her pillow to drink some juice.
Two cups of juice, a dose of motrin, and a grape popsicle later, we were free to go. A volunteer gave her a wheelchair ride to the back door, I met them with the car, and we headed home. We spent the afternoon resting and watching Pride & Prejudice (her pick, I swear) after having some homemade mac and cheese and applesauce for lunch. She ate well, which is always good to see after a kid's been under anesthesia. And she was a little tired but otherwise OK the rest of the day.
It was my 4th time through that outpatient center with the kids - 2 times each. So the routine was familiar, and I knew where I was headed for both prep and recovery rooms. Our recovery room nurse was, I think, filling in for someone else since the nurse in charge spent some extra time with her at the computer station and kept an extra eye on Bel's progress. I helped myself to the juice and the ice machine to refill Bel's cup while they were busy and felt kind of at home. Better, I suppose, than being nervous.
I'm glad it's done, and despite their efficient kindness I'm hoping none of us has to go back for a long long time.