Lisa put lidocaine or some other numbing cream on Hank's upper eyelid, so she could remove the stitches without causing pain for Hank. While waiting for it to take effect, she went ahead and examined the incision and drain on his back. She told Hank that she could take the drain out for him. "Will it hurt?" he asked. "No, you'll just feel it tugging," Lisa replied. She cut the stitches holding the tube in place and gently pulled out the tube. Just like that, the hated "pipe" was removed! Jeff and I breathed a sigh of relief. Lisa was funny and I could see that Hank took an instant liking to her. He joked around with her and I was surprised that he was talking to her like she were one of his pals. Where did the boy who is usually very reserved in doctor's offices go? Has this experience changed him? I wonder...
She then deftly removed the stitches in the upper eyelid of Hank's left eye. Quick and easy...that's how I describe it. She was done before Hank even had time to complain. And then Lisa took the time to trim the popcorn sutures that were bothering him, and clip the suture ends that were poking him in the neck. She cleaned up the stitches and even cleaned out the blood that was still in his ear. I couldn't believe how much better he looked!
As the rain cleared, we finished up at the zoo, seeing a red panda, sea lions, polar bears, rainforest birds and (shudder) reptiles and bats. Hank loved it and was the perfect little tour guide.
We stopped and looked at the map of Central Park and saw there is a "Chess and Checkers" house. After playing checkers and chess with Jeff yesterday, Hank is now obsessed with checkers. And so, we of course started in the direction of the Chess and Checkers house. While walking along, Hank spotted a balloon vendor. He admired the way she twisted the balloons into different shapes. The woman looked at Hank..."You look like you've had a tough time, sweetheart. I think you need a sword." She quickly made him a sword. "Oh, and you need a belt to carry your sword. It'll keep your hands free for ice cream." And she tied and orange balloon belt around his waist. I put a dollar into the bucket, thanking the woman and Hank skipped after Jeff to show him his new weapon.
We saw beautiful scenery as we walked along. We found the memorial to "Balto" the sled dog and Hank climbed on top for a photo. (which HE asked for...) We found the "Mall" which has a beautiful tree covered walkway and statues of poets and authors.
We continued our walk through Central Park, in search of "Sheep Meadow Cafe". We walked by the huge fields called, "Sheep Meadow" because up until 1934, sheep grazed there. But as usual we got lost, and found ourselves at a really nice restaurant. We walked around to the front...."Tavern on the Green." Whoops! A little too fancy for us at the moment. Hank said he was tired, so we let him hail us a cab and headed back down to the apartment to get something to eat and just relax.
There were flowers, balloons and stuffed animals waiting for him. Deliveries from home. Hank was thrilled. His face lit up as he looked at the cards... Grandma and his aunts, uncles and cousins. What a special treat! We tied the balloons to his bed, and he is able to admire them even when he lays down.
I am grateful for today. Although Jeff's allergies are bothering him, he seemed to be better. I am
I have always thought Hank was cute. But now I see him in a new light. I am amazed by how courageous and fearless he is. As I watched him endure the glances and the whispers as he walked by, I saw Hank not as the cute mild-mannered little child I always thought him to be, but rather the beautiful boy with the heart of a lion, that he has become.