Wednesday, November 17, 2010

It has been too long ....

Yes, it has been too long since my last post. And, I don't really understand why. Especially as this has been a very busy few months with great things happening.

I'll summarize the most monumental things that have occurred in our lives since my last post:

* Manda is a SENIOR!!!!!

That is right! In August Amanda returned to school as a high school senior. Hard to believe that my baby girl is a senior and will graduate in May 2011. It truly seems like yesterday she started kindergarten at Crestmont Elementary; and in a blink of my eyes she will be an alumni of Oakmont High School.

I am very proud of my young lady. She is a remarkable person. I could tell you a million reasons why I am proud of her, but I will just keep it to the point: she is herself. And, she is wonderful!

* my gall bladder decided to make itself known.

Oh my goodness! If you have never experienced gall bladder pain, I pray that you never do. It was horrible. Shortly after Manda started her senior year I ended up in the emergency room and after several hours of lab work, x-rays, an ultra-sound and what seemed like endless waiting, I was given morphine for the pain, told to make an appointment with my primary care and released.

My diet took a radical change. I only eat what "grows" and nothing processed. No fats, carbs, excessive sodium, limited dairy products, etc. I am determined to NEVER feel that type of pain again.

My primary care referred me to general surgery, and after consulting with the surgeon it was determined that my gall bladder needed to be removed.

On October 21, using a laproscopic procedure my gall bladder was removed. And, trust me, the pain from surgery was pleasant compared to the pain from a gall bladder attack. Over all, I feel better than I have in a long time. Makes me wonder how long my gall bladder had been protesting.

* Amanda's appendix ruptured!

Far worse than my gall bladder, far more scary and far, far, far more emotional was what my poor sweet daughter endured.

Less than 7 days after my gall bladder surgery Manda started feeling ill. She was crampy, nauseated, and running a slight temperature. Trying not to get me sick, Manda kept her distance on Wednesday evening (Oct. 28) and went to bed early.

By 3:30 am on Thursday (Oct. 29) Amanda was in the restroom vomiting. Classic flu symptoms. She attempted to go back to bed but was feeling too uncomfortable to rest. Her abdomen was really sensitive. With our recent experience with my gall bladder we decided that her pain must not be normal and we called the advice nurse.

The advice nurse assured us that the flu can be very uncomfortable (I expressed that this was worse than normal pain) and she still felt that we should wait 24 hours to see if the pain becomes worse or not. (I will never ignore my instincts again.)

By 12 noon on Friday the 30th --- we knew there was a problem. A BIG problem. Manda called her doctor's office and was able to get an appointment for 3pm. Her doctor was out of town, but one of the other doctors was able to see her.

I took my sweet girl to the doctor's office where she was seen immediately and sent immediately to the emergency room at Mercy San Juan Medical Center. The doctor could not even touch Manda without her flinching with pain. Her fever was above 100* and she was obviously miserable.

By 3:15 we were in the ER and by 3:25 she had been in triage, and was having lab work done. Then began the wait .... for a CT scan. She had her CT scan about 6:30 that evening. The CT scan revealed that Amanda's appendix had ruptured and she would need surgery.

IV fluids, IV antibiotics and IV pain meds were administered. Before surgery could be done, Manda's fever had to be reduced, and treatment had to be started for the severe infection.

Paperwork was produced for my signature and authority and the doctors began to inform us of the best, and worst possible out-come that may or may not be expected. UGH!

I cried. I felt like a horrible, horrible mom! Had I listened to my instinct, maybe Amanda's appendix would not have ruptured. Maybe my girl would not have been in the severe pain she was in. Maybe she would not be full of a massive infection that could possibly take her life, or compromise her life if the surgery became more complicated and if worst case possible situations became reality.

I prayed. I prayed so hard.... I know God has plans for this child of mine .... and they don't include compromising her health.

At 3:00 am (now Saturday morning!) Manda was wheeled into surgery to have the ruptured appendix removed, and her abdomen cleaned to remove as much infection as possible. At about 4:05 am Dr. Misty Humphries came out of surgery with a big smile .... SUCCESS!!!!

The surgeon was able to use a laproscopic procedure and none of the worst case possibilities happened. Amanda was still one very ill young lady, and the surgeon cautioned that she would be in the hospital for 7 - 10 days while IV antibiotics were administered around the clock to cure the rest of the infection.

Manda did spend several days in the hospital with Sunday, October 31 being the worst. Her fever spiked, her heart rate was elevated, her oxygen saturation was too low and her pain was rampant.

But with a touch of His hand, God turned Amanda's health around. He allowed her to begin to heal and she was released on Wednesday, November the 3rd

It has been 2 full weeks since my girl has been home. Each day is better. She is more and more herself each and every day. She returned to school on the 9th and is looking forward to resuming full activity by the end of this month.

Today, November 17, 2010 marks a VERY SPECIAL day ......

* AMANDA is 18 today!!!!!!!

That is right! Today is Manda's eighteenth birthday!!!!!

I can not even begin to tell you how special my girl is .... but if you want just a small idea --- peruse through my blog. Most of my posts are about my girl.

Happy Birthday sweet Amanda Christine!

Words are not enough to begin to tell you how much dad and I love, respect and admire you. You are an amazing woman! We are blessed that God tucked you into my womb and allowed you to be our miracle child!

I really should have put this section on the top of this post .... but for just a moment I needed to deny that my baby is now technically an adult. A teenaged adult, but legally able to make decisions and sign contracts.

These 18 years have flown. I wouldn't change a moment of it. I love being Russell's wife, and Manda's mom. They make me a better person.

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