Surgery Adventures, Part Deux

The first series of articles I wrote that attracted any attention were the Dylan Surgery Adventures back in the fall of 2008. I captured real time impressions of my son's time in the Stollery and Glenrose hospitals in Edmonton as he bravely dealt with a significant operation on his right leg. They severed and realigned his femur, lengthened his calf muscle, snipped this, snipped that, and reconstructed his foot.

The first hours and days post surgery were the hardest, as they are like to be with anyone who undergoes an invasive procedure on their body. He convalesced at the Glenrose Rehabilitation Hospital, as he regained his strength and ability to walk. For 95 days the hospital was his home, the nurses, doctors and patients, his friends.

Today, the doctors confirmed what Dylan and I both suspected, that it's time to fix the other leg. So, some time this fall, he will return to the Stollery, be given some gas, and over the course of six hours or so the surgeon will replicate the work that was done two years earlier, this time on the left leg.

Dylan is almost 11 and has a form of cerebral palsy that affects how the brain communicates with the muscles in his legs. Soon he will reach that age when boys shoot up into men, seemingly over night. For the doctors it's a race against puberty, as they try to align the bones, correct the position of the feet, and try to get his body able to stand up tall before he literally grows up.

While I worry about how many laps I'm able to do on the track, or how fast I can run on the treadmill, my son has to endure a painful surgery and months of rehab just to give himself a chance to be able to walk through the entirety of his adult life. The battle of the bulge pales in comparison to Dylan's battles, challenges that he embraces with a clarity and simplicity of vision that takes my breath away.

January 13, 2010 - 203.4 pound, 28.8% body fat


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