Rod, Charlotte and I were admitted yesterday into the Care by Parent ward at the Sydney Children's Hospital, which is like a little hotel compared to what we have experienced with Charlotte. This ward is designed as a calm and comfortable place for pre-operation care (primarily by parents). She underwent anaesthetic the best she ever has – no screaming, fairly calm and holding the oxygen mask all on her own. It was a relatively short surgery by Charlotte’s standards and almost four hours later she was back in ICU. By the afternoon she was off ventilation, awake, talking and eating. In fact, the nurses thought she was going to vomit because she had such a large amount of food. By 7pm she had eaten five pieces of toast, half of my chicken and potato salad, six cookies, two large rice crackers and fish and chips! We had some family and friends visiting in pairs in the afternoon, as she was doing so well. This also included her medical team; everyone was delighted by Charlotte’s progress. She also kept the nurses on their toes, asking for explanations about the numerous cords, monitors and machines that she found herself attached to. Surgically, Dr Erica was able to resect the tumour on her frontal lobe, as well as some of the brain (frontal lobe) around the area so as not to disturb the tumour bed, along with a small nodule of tumour  that was not seen in the scans but found during surgery. Erica also removed the reservoir in the front of her head, which was not being used and was in the way of removing the tumour. Overall, the incision is quite small compared to her first surgery and she is doing “Charlie well”. The tumour has been sent off to pathology for assessment and to help determine a plan of attack for further treatment. A successful but exhausting  day all round.

Beck and Rod XO