Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Wednesday, July 31st

Hello to All. Summer is quickly disappearing and school will start before we know it. Clay has had a busy summer so far. The week after school was dismissed he went to the Pakland Burn Camp. This is Clay's third burn camp and I am pretty sure he will refuse to every miss it. He loves being there and feels comfortable with all the folks and activities. I think he just likes being his own boss without Mom or Dad around to tell him what to do. Shortly after returning from camp he figured out a way to head to South Texas for a brief visit with Grandma and Pappy. 5 weeks later we finally talked him into coming home for a couple of days. I believe he was on the beach or the fishing pier everyday he was at the coast. We all went down over the 4th just to visit him but he did not come home with us. We finally encouraged him to spend a couple of days at our house before convention. We all went to Happy and the weather was so nice that Clay only had to use the cool room a couple of meetings and was able to sleep with his brothers in the barn. Another sign that he is growing up. He was scheduled for surgery on Monday July 22nd. We had this on the calender for a while and had made all the arrangements and plans that go with one of his procedures. We arrived in Dallas late on the night of the 21st and were at the hospital at 5:00 a.m. on the 22nd. As they wheeled Clay out to go to the O.R. we could tell he was nervous. About 45 minutes later they came to the waiting room and said Clay had an upset stomach and the anestheseoligst had canceled the procedure. The surgeon was not happy and neither were his parents. We have had this problem before and we know that Clay gets anxious. Upon release, due to his upset stomach, he ate three large pancakes, two over easy eggs, and some bacon. Good thing he was not too sick. The surgeon knew that we needed to get the procedure done before school started so Clay would have time to heal. He told us he would reschedule as soon as possible. True to his word they called on Tuesday and scheduled for Thursday the 25th. He ordered a pill for Clay to take upon arrival in Dallas. It worked well and the surgery went off with out a hitch. In surgery they took a piece of skin from the back of Clays neck and recovered his chin, this should help his bottom lip that was being pulled down. They also cut along the top of his throat in front and removed a fatty layer from the skin flap that covers his throat. This piece of skin was from his thigh and was loose or baggy on his neck. We went for a followup appointment Monday and everything looked good. When they unwrapped the bandages I told Clay I could see his new chin. He asked for a mirror and I think he approved of the new look. We do appreciate all the thoughts, prayers, and inquiries for and about Clay. We hope everyone is well, and we wish you good days. Take Care, The Fites

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Thursday March 07, 2013

Been a long time since the Fite's have posted.  Sorry if anyone feels deserted.  I am mainly adding information so we can keep up with procedures.  They will never become common place but we have not been very diligent in reporting.  Clay had a tissue expander in his scalp under his hair for the majority of last summer.  We had a plastic surgeon that was planning to move the hair and rebuild one of Clay's ears.  We received a call unexpectedly in the middle of the summer and the surgeon we had been dealing with was dismissed from staff and we were handed off to a new surgeon at Children's hospital in Dallas.  The new surgeon was very helpful and ultraconservative.  He stated that he would not have done the ear or the hair.  He offered to finish the hair project but told us he was not comfortable doing the ear and his heart was not really in doing the hair.  He encouraged Clay to consider a wig and artificial ears.  Clay was not willing to consider either one. (Surprise)  To bring this chapter to a quick close Clay went in for surgery the day after school started last year, August 28th, and they moved the hair back nearly to the crown of his head.  After the surgery the doctor told us Clay should be able to make his own decisions about future procedures.  He is 9 years old.  Do you think a 9 year old would ever choose to have another surgery after the first 45?  Chapter closed.  We did a follow up burn visit with our old friends at Parkland just to receive some other opinions and see what our options were.  Parkland has a new doctor on the burn staff that trained at Shriner's in Galveston and had spent the last several years at Brooks Army Medical in San Antonio.  You can imagine what he has seen and experienced over the last few years with soldiers from the wars.  He evaluated Clay and made several suggestions that were both intriguing and encouraging. On February 25, 2013 we returned to Parkland for the first time and the new burn doctor did extensive work on Clay's left hand.  The morning of the surgery he came in pre-op and told us everything he was planning to do to the hand.  He was very upbeat and said, "this is going to be fun."  Clay looked at him like he was crazy and said  uh-uh.  He straightened two of Clays fingers out and put deep pins in three to hold them in place. He deepened the web space between the fingers and released the burn scars that were contracting in the palm of his little hand.  He also released some skin around the thumb and extended it to the out side part of his hand, all with the intent of giving Clay more grasp and improving the function on his left hand.  Clay was able to go home from Parkland the same day as the procedure and has to keep the pins in for six weeks.  He was extremely disappointed that he had to sit out the last weekend of his little dribbler basketball games.  It was very painful for him for several days but in typical Clay fashion he has accepted it and not let it slow him down much.  He had a follow up appointment today and his class was going on a field trip he did not want to miss so his mom let him ride the bus to Ft. Worth for a visit to the Omni and then picked him up and rushed him to Dallas for an appointment at burn clinic.  All and all Clay is doing well and has all the energy and likes and dislikes of a typical third grader.  The new doctor at Parkland is going to assume care for Clay and we will probably consider another procedure sometime this summer.  Hope this note finds everyone well.  Thank you to all who have cared and or prayed for Clay through the years.