We made it to Verona safe and sound. It took a long time to get here (3 planes, 2 buses, 1 train and a taxi) but everything went smoothly and Amelia did amazing of course.
Our apartment is very nice and we made ourselves at home right away. The weather here is very cold (~30 F during day, 15 F at night) and it has snowed 2 times already (not normal for the area apparently). We bundled Amelia up in the stroller and checked out the town. We are on the outskirts of Verona within walking distance to the hospital. We found the market and were able to get 2 Italian cell phones (with a sales person who didn't speak any English - thanks DJ). Did I mention that our apartment is on top of a ristorante/pizzeria? (again, thank you DJ) We haven't been able to try it yet but I'm sure we will get a chance after Amelia is out of the hospital.
We checked Amelia in to the hospital on Thurs morning. Now that was an adventure! Definitely different than what we are used to. There was no main check-in desk at the hospital (at least we couldn't find one) and we didn't know where to go so we had to ask around for Dr Colletti. We made it to the correct floor and were told to sit at the table down the hallway and wait for Dr Carner (head of ABI team) to arrive. We were there for at least an hour, surrounded by people chattering in Italian with bandages on various parts of their heads, thinking "what are we doing here?". None of the staff had even asked for our names yet. We kept reminding ourselves of the other families we met who have already been through this experience and that helped give us a little courage. We finally were admitted to a room and settled in.
There are 3 other families with children who will also be getting ABIs on Mon and Tues. They are from Canada, Singapore, and Ireland (originally Poland). They all speak English which is great because most of the hospital staff does not so we are all trying to figure this out together.
Only one of us is allowed to stay overnight at the hospital. DJ usually goes back to the apartment in the evening to do homework while I stay the night in the hospital with Amelia. He comes back the next morning and I go back to the apartment for a few hours in the afternoon to take a little break and catch up on emails. We haven't been able to get wi-fi access in the hospital yet...no one seems to want to share the login/password. Tonight DJ is going to try to find the superbowl on the TV or internet.
Amelia is doing well in the hospital. We brought lots of toys to keep her busy and take a daily walk to the cafe downstairs for chocolate milk for her and a cappuccino for me. The worst part about the hospital stay is the huge shot of antibiotics she has to get in her little butt every night. It breaks my heart everytime but I know it is very important that she does not get any type of infection.
I have lots more to say but I am running out of time so that will be it for now. Amelia's surgery is still scheduled for Tues but I don't know a time yet.