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Patient Patience

23 Sep

To say that I’m exhausted from pain is an understatement.  Let me just give you a quick rundown of what’s going on….(and if technical, lady-business words make you uncomfortable – skip this one!)  I posted this ten days ago but updated it today 10/3/16.

April 2013 – intense pain and cramping during periods, had an ablation to help with pain

October 2015 – pain starts back up and surgery is scheduled, due to endometriosis

December 2015 – hysterectomy performed (partial, kept ovaries)

June 2016 – pain is back, but only in left side…checked for cyst – negative….GYN thinks due to endometriosis.  Suggests removing ovaries will kill estrogen and therefore stop feeding endometriosis.

June 2016 – Ovaries removed. No hormones prescribed so as to remove as much estrogen as possible.  Pain continues.  While performing surgery, notices there is significant endometriosis on colon.

July 2016 – Pain continues. Visits to primary care physician, GYN and general surgeon to discuss options.  Surgeon orders colonoscopy and EGD to check for any blockages or other issues.

August 2016 – Colonoscopy performed.  No blockages.  Colon is “floppy” but not showing any signs internally that endo has damaged.  Surgeon not convinced that endo is source of pain.  GYN is sure endo is.

September 9, 2016 – Follow up with general surgeon and he now wonders if pain could be from femoral hernia.  He checks and feels “something”.  He performs ultrasound and sees “something”.  Orders CT Scan.

September 20, 2016 – CT Scan performed and awaiting results.  Still waiting.  Not patiently.

I’m so hoping this pain can be a distant memory soon.  Until it is, I am just taking one day at a time….sometimes an hour at a time.  The pain is on my left side, is worse when I’m standing and appears for most of the time when I am standing/walking/sitting and if I am laying down it is more than likely THERE but maybe not as “sharp”.

September 26, 2016 – Follow up with general surgeon to discuss CT Scan.  He started to say the words that I dreaded hearing…”The scan did not 100% confirm….” and I have to be honest, I didn’t hear much else.  I broke down in tears and just stopped listening.  When he was finished I confessed that I wasn’t listening and he started over with “I still think you have a femoral hernia…” and that was enough to make me feel better.  He thinks maybe the scan didn’t show because I was lying down and the hernia could correct itself while I’m lying down – so he wanted to proceed with surgery.  While discussing the surgery details, he let me know that he wanted to perform the surgery using robotic assistance so that slimmed down the time slots and hospitals.  It would be at Rex’s Raleigh campus and the day was up for grabs (depending on who could proctor and when the robot rep was available to be on call).  He wanted to use this means in order to explore my abdomen/intestines/colon to check on the endometriosis.  OH YES…..I was so happy.  We scheduled the surgery….and then rescheduled (based on all of the above) for just 4 days later, Friday, September 30th.  I was so happy it was going to be on Friday instead of Thursday since Mike was in Boston but due back late Thursday night!  (To be honest, I would have still had the surgery, but I was glad I didn’t have to without him!)

September 30, 2016 – Surgery day!  Woke up at 3:30 to leave the house by 4:30 am.  Traffic was very light!  LOL  Getting the IV in……not easy.  This is just one of my arms and the other was as bad…I think they stuck me around 6 times.  When they finally get one, they broke my heart by saying, “Since your surgery is robotic, you have to have two IV’s.”  They quickly followed that up by telling me they would do the second one after I was asleep. (Thank you Jesus!)

20160930_205319

My Mom and Mike were there (my Daddy and in-laws were on MJ duty at a school program) and by my side until they took me back.  FAST FORWARD —

When I woke up from surgery, I remember being so scared!  I remember worrying right then that I’d still have the pain that has been my enemy!  I panicked and they gave me more oxygen as it had fallen to 91%.  After that, I was okay…got more pain meds…drank Ginger Ale, ate my graham crackers and got out of there!  I was so ready to be home and in my own bed.  I don’t remember much about the ride home at all!  Just that Mike checked on me and held my hand most of the way!

October 3, 2016 – It’s been a few days now and I have to tell you I’m really surprised at how much these incisions hurt!  They are bigger than my previous surgeries (and I mean my poor belly button has had three surgeries now in just 10 months) and feel more tender.  Getting up and down out of a chair or the bed feels a bit like someone is ripping muscle in my abdomen….but no big deal…ha!  I do feel better every day so that’s a positive.  The leg pain that had started as a result (we believe) of the hernia is GONE – praise God!!

I am so thankful for friends and family who have reached out, helped out and prayed diligently.  I may not have a large family but I have an amazing husband and kids, an awesome set of parents and in-laws and many cousins who have prayed and checked in on me.  I’m blessed.

I can’t believe all that has changed in three months.  I went from a workaholic to a stay at home Mom.  A relatively healthy 37 year old to a 37 year old hermit in chronic pain.  Making the decision to leave my stressful, travel-heavy job was a hard one but I am so grateful that my husband and family supported me in it so much.  There is absolutely no way I could commit to working at this point.  I’m thankful that I have always had a job, since I was 15 (shout out to Jimbo’s Grill and On Cue!!) and I have had amazing opportunities, met wonderful people and learned many things (shout out to pivot tables, vlookups and incentive programs).  The season I’m in now is one of waiting and being still and having faith.  It’s uncomfortable but I do believe that the Lord is with me and is guiding me through this.  He is giving me strength to do things that matter.  Homework with MJ, moving my oldest to college, getting ready for doctor appointments, cooking dinner for my sweet husband….the important things.  I am just learning every day to be a patient patient.  It’s not easy.

Date Night

19 Jan

Mike won a gift from the Marriott in downtown Raleigh while playing in a golf tourney last year. That’s what we are up to. We planned out this night to take advantage of a free night here…

Very cool view…ice skating rink on Fayetteville. We are on the 17th floor! We had dinner at 42nd street and it was delish as always.

My heart though, is with my Sanford family and friends. We lost a great man this afternoon in Mike Moody. He was a special man and fought a disease that all too often wins. I feel for his family…for my Daddy, his buddy…I just can’t imagine the feelings they are all experiencing tonight. If you’re reading this, whatever brought you here, would you please pray for them?

I’m off now to enjoy the rest of this night with my hubby. I’m so appreciative of this time together. Being married to my best friend for the last 6.5 years has been one of my largest blessings. Night!!

Busy Bee

6 Jan

I am so excited about the next three weekends.   I can’t even contain myself!!

This weekend, I venture a short ride away and meet up with Victoria – a long time friend – for shopping, gabbing, catching up, eating…I cannot wait.  LONG overdue and very much anticipated!!!

Next weekend, I venture to downtown Raleigh with my sweetheart to just getaway for the night.  Getting dressed up and going to a nice dinner and spending the night in a nice downtown hotel.  So excited to have some time for just US!

Weekend after that – VERY exciting…taking MJ, my mom, and my niece to Atlanta’s American Girl store for some shopping and fun!  We are staying in a Marriott that does it up right – with doll beds for the AG dolls, milk and cookie amenities…it will be some great fun!!

I have some work in the middle of these weekends but I am so ready for them all – I love having things to look forward to!!!

Working on Empty

2 Jan

Interesting that my blog prompt today was, “Which daily tasks take up the most of your energy?”  Interesting since today was my first day back to work in a few weeks.  Interesting in a really not funny way.  So, obviously, most days I spend MOST of my day/time/energy working.  I get to work from 7:30 to 7:45 and enjoy a few quiet moments before everyone arrives.  I usually start coffee for everyone while my laptop starts up and then I get started!  I am a Marketing Manager for a company that manufactures pool equipment.  What I actually DO has nothing and everything to do with that. I manage our incentive programs and that means a lot of approving, a lot of spreadsheets, tons of numbers and an annual event that takes the best part of a year to plan.  I have a team that is awesome and I work for an executive that is amazingly present even when traveling the greater majority of the year.  I have conference calls and meetings and process improvements and employee reviews and emails and voicemails and travel and budget review.  It take a lot of energy to keep up with the pace that our department runs.  We have no down time to speak of…we have a seasonal industry but we are global so we are constantly shifting from one market to another.  It’s the best of things and the worst of things.  No time to be bored but so fast that you can’t even decide which is your favorite part!  I love it though.  I don’t know how I would function in a place that wasn’t moving so quickly.  It’s certainly the way I operate and the way my colleagues seem to as well.  I think we have all adapted and am pretty glad that it’s the case.  I recharge each night with my family.  They keep me going, as I wrote about yesterday.  Each day is a new challenge, full of opportunities.  I only hope I take advantage of the right ones on a consistent basis!

 

Ideal Living…NaBloPoMo

3 Nov

So I thought I’d participate in NaBloPoMo….and I’m using some prompts to get me going!

If you could live anywhere, where would it be?

So, if I could have all my family with me…my current job…all my fave things…and pick them all up and plop them down somewhere?  I’d have a hard time choosing between some of the most awesome places on Earth that I’ve visited…from Charleston, SC…to Augusta, GA…to Monterey, CA…Newport Beach, CA..Cabo San Lucas, Mexico…Kauai, Hawaii…Guanacaste, Costa Rica..Nassau….Miami, FL…Orlando, FL..Long Beach, CA…Cinncinati, OH…St Louis, MO…Lexington, KY…Asheville, NC…Boone, NC…Dallas, TX…Pebble Beach, CA…Carolina Beach, NC…OBX, NC…Virginia Beach, VA…Washington, DC…

I think I’d probably be very content with living just outside of Charleston, SC.  Maybe Folly Beach or Johns Island or Kiawah.  I absolutely adore Charleston.  The charm, the history, the scenery, the food, the people…the feeling I get when I’m there is one of total LOVE for this place.  I don’t want to leave it when I’m there…I get SO excited about my next visit and as soon as I leave it I am planning the next time back.  If only all my family would go with me…and my job…and my entire life….I’d just never come back!!!

Just Beachy

22 Oct

Our time at the beach was short but it was FUN.  I’ll write in detail about it later I’m sure…as I’m exhausted and am going to listen to my body and rest.  For now, here is my reminder and your tease…in list form:

  1. Daddy’s driving
  2. Our Beach Residence
  3. Value of FaceTime
  4. Hamburger Joe’s
  5. Wonder Works
  6. HomeGoods and my chevron finds
  7. Skywheel at MB
  8. Krispy Kreme
  9. Teenage Boys
  10. Post-Mono Vacations

Quick Beach Trip

3 Sep

We decided to have one last fling at the beach for the day on Saturday.  Our family of five + sun + fun + lots of driving + donuts + sand.  We left around 9 and headed out!  We decided to drive the “old way”, HWY 421 all the way there.  It.was.long.  But, it was nostalgic.  Growing up, this was really the only way we ever went and it was neat weird nice to see how it all had changed so much.  I just realized I didn’t take a pic of my hubby driving!  Wow!  A first!  😦

As we came into Wilmington/Carolina Beach, we stopped at Buffalo Wild Wings.  Give the boys chicken and an abundance of televisions and they are happy.  (Mike is included in that, btw.)

The boys, waiting on yummy food.
MJ snuggles her Daddy every time she has a chance.

We ate, watched the beginning of the UNC – Elon game and then headed off to the Boardwalk at Carolina Beach.  Traffic was crazy!  (Yes, I know, it was Labor Day.)  However, the Boardwalk was not crazy.  There was a steady flow of people passing through but it was kinda sad to me how very deserted it looked.  Of course, this place wasn’t deserted….

Then we walked on the beach for a short time.  A VERY short time.  The sand was burning my soles…I mean BURNING!  I guess this is why we go in the fall or winter.  However, my baby girl picked up seashells and that made her day!

Then, we rode.  We talked.  We laughed.  We slept.  It was nice to have all the kids captive and be able to talk…and listen.  I was afraid they were bored….they assured me they weren’t.  They are all like Mike and myself.  The love to ride.  It’s not even about where we are going.  Just being together, soaking up the moments that we are able to spend together.  Not working, not worrying about school or anything else.  Just being with each other.  Mike told the kids about how right after we got married we surely logged hundreds of miles going to lighthouses, different islands of the OBX and checking things out.  It wasn’t really about any certain destination…it was just about hanging out with one another.  I’m so glad that my children are completely satisfied with just hanging out with us.  Oh.  And we sang.  Okay, me and MJ did.  We rocked out Taylor Swift and Carrie Underwood.  Sorry, boys.  🙂

Going to Hawaii? Don’t forget the volcanoes – and the kisses!!

9 Aug

So, I didn’t even visit a volcano when I went to Kauai in 2009.  I did go to a canyon and a Roy’s restaurant and other trendy Hawaii-ish things.  But what no one told me?  You can ONLY buy Hershey’s kisses with macadamia nuts THERE.  I mean, I found them online after, but they ended up being around ten bucks for a bag that way and well, that’s just silly.  I am not going anytime soon, but I wanted to be sure that if YOU do, you get some!!  My colleague just went and I gave HIM a heads up……so I thought I’d offer anyone else the same advice!  If you buy just a bag and get home and open them up – you will be booking another flight out there pronto!!  🙂

You’re welcome!
~ Just Jamie Jones
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