Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Thoughts About Stuff

It has been a while since I've updated about my ankle and my stomach issues.

I saw my new orthopedic surgeon in November, after 2 months of physical therapy. He was pleased with my progress, and said my range of motion is within 5-10% of normal. This is very good news! He recommends that I have surgery next spring to remove the implants (a metal plate w/ 7 screws and 2 metal wires) in my ankle. Because I am so young, he thinks it will help my range of motion even more and will help with the discomfort I feel because of the implants (the end of the metal plate sits right on my ankle bone, and I can feel it under the thin skin). I am aiming to have the surgery in early March since we will return from the US on February 27 and then are going to Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia on April 17. The recovery time should be short and crutches are not needed (this will be my 10th surgery, so surgery doesn't scare or bother me, and a "normal" recovery time sounds great to me...unlike being on crutches for 3 months!).

My stomach is a whole other story. I was doing really well in May through July, and my doctor actually released me and said he'd see me in 6 months. Less than two months later I was back in his office, and the prior treatments we've used are not working anymore. Last time I saw him he said, "I feel sorry for you" because I am sick so often.

I asked him today if he thought a change in my diet would help (a couple of friends have suggested going gluten free...something I've been very reluctant to do because it is hard to maintain). He said because my problems are so erratic (I don't get sick every time I eat gluten, for instance) that it does not seem to be connected to any one thing I am eating, and the problems I'm having vacillate between two separate manifestations of IBS (I'm saving you the gross details of my life these days!).

We're starting a new treatment today, hoping that by the time we leave for the US on January 28, I will be feeling much better. I've really tried not to complain about this stuff lately because I'm working very hard on contentment, and since my prayers to be released from this have not been answered yet, I am pressing on. But, honestly? I'm miserable most of the time. It kinda stinks.

But, hey, I've got these precious kids to keep me entertained! :-)

And here is what I will look like if I ever get to have lasik eye surgery! :-) People always ask where my kids get their long eyelashes. (No one can see mine because of my glasses, but Justin's are really long, too.)

I am so excited to {hopefully} meet my newest niece in February (if she decides to make an appearance before her due date and our return to Singapore! Please, Amelia, Aunt Jennifer will be really happy if you come even just a few days early!!). It's hard being so far away and missing out on life with our families, so being able to spend time with them and help my sister out with her kids will be so special. And...BONUS...we get to escape the heat!! 18 months and counting since we've been in hot/humid conditions.

Celebrating Christmas when the temps are in the 90s and all the plants are still in full bloom is still strange. But, as my friend, Leone, from Australia says, "It's not supposed to be cold at Christmastime!" It's all about perspective, I guess...if you've always celebrated Christmas in the Southern Hemisphere (or close to the Equator like us) then Christmas is not a winter holiday. :-)

I'm still not convinced. :-) I'll take some cold weather, a nice warm sweater, some Christmas music, and a cup of my mom's spiced tea any day!

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Aggiema (Michelle) said...

You have probably heard this but I thought I would share anyway. I read a news article that talked about coconut macaroons helping people with IBS. You might try googling it and see if the article comes up. I would imagine most remedies are much worse than eating a couple of cookies everyday,,,,,so it might be worth a try.

Kimberly said...

I hope Amelia comes a little early to meet you too (just not too early). If the contractions I'm already having at 28 weeks are any indication, I'd say she is about right on track with her sisters.

Stacey at Living by Faith said...

I am sorry that you are in so much pain. I will pray for you. Thank you for ministering to me even through the miserableness. I needed to hear how you are working hard on contentment. I have been struggling with that as I have been dealing with back and nerve pain.

As I looked at the pics of your boys, I thought, "Oh, my those eyes!" Then you showed us yours! That is a great picture of you...beautiful!

Hol said...

Jenn, I'm sorry to hear that you're having such pain. :( I pray that it lessens each day and will allow your visit in the states to be enjoyable. I also pray that God will help you and your doctor find something that is a more permanent solution to your discomfort. Will you guys be in our area at all during your visit? I love the pictures of you and the boys! xo

Dave and Lisa said...

Thank you so much for this update, Jenn. It is always a blessing to know how you are doing. I'm sorry your stomach has been so uncooperative these days! I agree with the others who commented before me and pray that the problems will significantly improve soon so you can enjoy your trip to the States. And YIPPEE that you get to come "home" and visit family and all the rest of the perks of visiting America! I pray the trip will be smooth and easy, at least as much as a l-o-n-g set of plane rides can be. ;-)

Dave and Lisa said...

P.S. You are so BEAUTIFUL! I love that picture of you. :-)

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