Friday, October 31, 2008

Friday 10/31/08

Jessica's doing better from her tonsillectomy, which is a huge relief. She's not able to eat much of anything yet, and has lost 10 pounds, and still has some pain, so not completely recovered, but so much better! And she worked with my dad on Algebra for a good part of the afternoon.

We had a fun family night tonight - family game night and a movie - what seems to be becoming our Halloween-alternative tradition. Jessica was in tears from laughter at dinner. (I'll spare you the details.) And then we played Pictionary Jr, which also had us rolling with laughter at Steve's depiction of the "Big Bad Wolf." (What was that "chicken man" supposed to be anyway?) And then our weekly movie which tonight was "Another Cinderella Story." It was a cute movie. Matthew was rolling his eyes at Jessica's pick of a movie, but after it was over, he even liked it. All in all, it was a fun evening that we all needed.

I was given a personal sermon this morning on laughter, and relaxing because life is so short. It's easier when they are not living it. But, then again, laughter is always good!

Jessica's tired, but hung in there.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Thursday 10/30/08

Jessica said she feels "pretty normal" today, but then to clarify she said that is "my normal." In other words, she's getting over the tonsillectomy. Her pain seems to be better today, but I can also tell that she's some tired today. I'm thinking this is a CFS tired instead of a surgery or pain medicine tired though.

But the good news is that she got up off the couch and out of the house for the first time in almost 2 weeks. We sat outside on the front porch (it was a beautiful day!), and then I took her to see her horse. She knows her limits though, and we didn't stay but for a short visit.

A much better day!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Tuesday 10/28/08

A better day. Jessica's been able to eat some, been drinking, and sitting up watching tv and mostly playing on the laptop. She's still got some throat and ear pain, and has been on pain medicine still today and using the heat and cold compresses, but she's better! What a relief!

Hopefully we can even get school back in session again - maybe tomorrow.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Tonsillectomy Day 8 - 10/27/08

I've been sleeping on the cot next to Jessica for the past week since her tonsillectomy. Last night we were up several times - midnight, 12:30, 3:00 (Steve took over for a while), 5:30, etc... Jessica has been in so much pain. In tears. Feeling like there are knives in her ears. The doctor had us come back in for another IV with fluids and a steroid. He said her ears look good. The pain in her ears is referred pain. He says she has to drink. Force herself to drink even though it hurts. If she doesn't think she can drink (and I'm not sure if she can drink, at least not enough), he said he can put her in the hospital. But as we got back toward the house, she said she was hungry and wanted chicken nuggets. And she actually ate them. That's the first real food that she's had in a week! I hope this IV gets her over the hump.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Tonsillectomy Day 7 - 10/26/08

The morning started out rough, the same as yesterday - an extreme amount of pain, close to tears. Her ears seem to be hurting worse, but her throat's starting to hurt a little less. She slept or rested on the couch until late this afternoon, when she finally asked for some alphabet vegetable soup (or "can-o-happiness" as Matthew called it) to eat. Of course she didn't eat much, but she ate something. She's sitting up, and on the laptop right now. And I've seen a smile or two this evening. The little things are big these days. We need to find the good in whatever hand we've been dealt and learn to accept, adapt, and make the best of it. This past year has been a huge lifestyle change for us. Today Jessica said she was "wishing she could go somewhere besides her house." Most of this year has been spent inside our house, not getting out much. But we're adapting. When all she can do is go out in the backyard, the dogs and the sunshine are a great spirit lifter. When all she can do is lay on the couch inside, the bunny rabbit does the same and is a great companion. We accept and make the best of what we have. When life gives you lemons, make lemonade! Or a can-o-happiness.

We heard the best sound in the world tonight - Jessica's laughter! One of the highlights of our day was when Jessica rang her bell (to call me in when she needs something) to show me that she'd found the letters and spelled out her name in her alphabet soup!

Appreciate the little things...

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Tonsillectomy Day 5 & 6 - 10/24-25/08

Friday Jessica slept most of the morning and her ears were hurting - the nurse had told us that she would have referred pain in her ears. But in the afternoon, she wasn't too bad. She actually ate! Some vegetable soup and a few sips of milkshake. So that's good news! And she got off the couch! She wanted to go be with Matthew in his room while he played Playstation. (I am very lucky in that my kids get along so well and actually like being together.) So, not as bad of a day. But, as usual, by 5:00p.m. the pain's worse and she feels worse, but held out without pain medicine until bedtime.

Today though, her pain up to her ears is hurting so bad (along with a headache) that she can't open her mouth. She's hungry, and asked for a milkshake, but can't seem to open her mouth to drink it. We'll try again later.

I know the doctor said it would be the worst sore throat that you'd ever had... for 10 days. But I guess we didn't realize it would be this bad. She said she's "hoping this junk will hurry up and be over with." I am too Babydoll! We all are!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Tonsillectomy Day 4 - 10/23/08

Jessica is smiling! And... talking!! :) No more white board! And she's asking for McDonald's sweet tea. She says she's so-so and she's still laying down and sleeping, but I think we're turning the corner on this.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Tonsillectomy Day 3 - 10/22/08

Jessica's had a lot of pain and not drinking like she needs to because she can't seem to do it. She also is finding it hard to breathe and swallow, which evidently is from the normal healing process. She slept most all day yesterday except to wake up to take a sip of water or suck on a piece of ice.

I went to work this morning while Steve stayed home. When I got home he said she wasn't doing well. She hadn't drank much of anything at all. She wasn't drinking like they said she has to. So we called the doctor's office. The doctor himself even called us back. And they had us come back in for an IV of fluids. They said she was getting dehydrated but not too much yet. After the IV, we got her to drink some, and she's drank a little milkshake since we got back home. If she can't keep drinking, they said she'd have to go to the hospital, but we want to avoid that.

She does look better than she did before the IV. She's still hurting and not opening her mouth, but is more awake and has more color.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Tonsillectomy - The First Night

By 6:00p.m. the day of surgery, Jessica's throat was hurting severely, to the point that she didn't want to open her mouth or swallow her own spit. There were tears, and it's so hard to see her in so much pain! She wouldn't try to talk, but wrote us notes on her white board instead. It hurt extremely bad to even sip water, and the doctors have stressed that she must keep fluids going to keep her throat moist, or she could be making another trip back to the operating room and starting over. It was a long hard night for her and we didn't get much sleep. And it seems that we may have several more days of this.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Tonsillectomy 10/20/08

Well, it went well. And all the staff at the surgery center were very nice. They answered all my questions, even when I asked more than once! And relieved my fears about surgery in her situation. We had her magnesium and potassium levels checked at the end of last week before the surgery. Her potassium was normal at 4.4 with a normal range of 3.4-4.71, but her magnesium was still slightly low (even though she's taking 400 mgs a day) at 1.6 with a normal range of 1.7-2.4. So they had assured me that she would be ok.

The doctor said her tonsils were badly infected, and took out her adnoids also. I was pleasantly surprised at how well Jessica came out of the anesthesia. And no nausea. When we got back to recovery, she was sitting up in her bed talking and drinking, and it wasn't long until they said she could get dressed. So, with a surgery time of after 8:30, we were home by 11:00! She's on the couch resting now. Kind of tired and her throat hurting, but better than I'd thought she'd be!

Praise God! And also for the fact that my weekend long migraine subsided in time.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

The Weekend 10/18 - 10/19/08

The weekend's been pretty good. Jessica's preparing to be down for a while after tomorrow's surgery, so she wanted to get some horseback riding in. She rode yesterday morning, and has gone to see Mia again tonight, since she knows she won't see her for several days. Jessica's a little tired today, but holding up ok.

She went to the school last night to cheer on her friends at the dance team competition. She was the one dancing, instead of sitting in the stands, last year. She just stayed for an hour - long enough to see them perform.

Tomorrow is her tonsillectomy. Please pray with us that all goes well and she has minimal down time afterwards.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Wednesday 10/15/08

Jessica remained in bed all morning. Breakfast in bed. Lunch in bed. And not for the luxury of it! She wasn't feeling well today. Really tired. Maybe this is due to the excitement over the weekend. She sat in bed this morning and we worked on her online history class. By mid-afternoon she moved from the bed to the couch. The homebound teacher came for her 2 hours allotted for the week, and they're working on getting through a little bit more of it, but it's slow going.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Tuesday 10/14/08

Jessica's been tired the last few days (with headaches), but pushing on on her schoolwork. My dad's been over helping her with Algebra for an average of 5 hours a day the last 3 days. I think she's sick of Algebra! Besides being so behind in schoolwork, she has another Algebra interim test coming up this Friday that she hasn't been given any instruction on. She hasn't been in class in a month, and has just barely started her online classes. And on top of that, the online class isn't teaching what the test will be on, so my dad's been helping her cram for the test. He said she's having trouble remembering what they've gone over, which I'm sure is because she's so worn out. And, today she is - worn out.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Saturday 10/11/08

We actually went to the state fair today. Jessica held up pretty well too! My parents were ready for a phone call in case they needed to come pick up Jessica and I so that Steve and Matthew could stay; Jessica thought about it several times, but held out. We had fun. The kids got to ride a few rides and play a few games - and we all played the shoot-the-water-gun-into-the-clown's-mouth game - Matthew won! And they tried to talk us into playing the game where you can win a real bunny rabbit - a friend for Pumpkin - but I think one rabbit in the house is enough! And we ate a ton of junk food - roasted turkey leg, cotton candy, caramel apple, funnel cake and lemonade shake-up - Isn't that what the fair's all about? Last week Jessica had said that she didn't want to go because of all of the walking, didn't think she could, but she really wanted to be able to go. The heat was a bit much, and we looked for shade and places to sit every now and then. And her legs were tired. But she stayed. And we were pleasantly surprised that she held up as well as she did.

She even came home and baked horse cookies (oats, carrots, apples, molasses...) and went to see Mia (our horse), and she got to ride. It's been a full day! A good day.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Friday 10/10/08

I was just counting my blessings the other day that I hadn't heard from Jessica in the middle of the night in quite a while! And then, last night at midnight she called - "I can't sleep." "A peanut butter and jelly sandwich sounds good." If it will help her get to sleep so she'll have a good day following, I was happy to make it - even though she was more awake than I was.

Jessica stayed in her robe until noon today. She may have been moving slow and have a sore throat, but she's not too bad.

We went to the school today for an Algebra interim test. These are school district required once a month tests that lead up to the end-of-course test that is required by the state. Her new online curriculum is going to be different, the pacing is different, so the future interim tests may be a challenge. She has another one next week.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Thursday 10/9/08

The week has been ok. Jessica went to Wal-Mart with me Monday - shuffling her feet from a lack of energy - but she went. That's the way the week went - mostly staying around the house with maybe one small outing a day.

This morning Jessica was not feeling well - really tired - and stayed in bed until 1:00 with meals being brought up to her. She's actually had several pretty good days lately before this though. As the afternoon went on, she seemed better, and needed to be, as we had an appointment at the school.

The school administrator wanted to meet Jessica and show her how to get around in the Apex online program. We finally got a user i.d. for the online classes. So, school's back in session! Jessica needs to work double time this next week because her tonsillectomy is scheduled for the next - on October 20th.

I don't know if it was that she wasn't feeling her best or that the online class isn't teaching well, but she didn't do well on the first quiz. And we found that there were some things on the quiz or study guide that isn't in the text. So, we'll have to watch this and see how it goes. She got a 100% on the second quiz though!

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Weekend - 10/4 - 10/5/08

It's been a pretty good weekend.

Jessica called a friend Saturday to see if she could go to the movies with her, and it turned out that Saturday night was the school homecoming dance. Jessica debated about going to the dance, not knowing if she'd feel up to it or if it would be too much for her. We were out shopping for a new oven anyway (ours quit a couple of days ago), so we bought a dress that she could leave the tags on until we knew for sure if she'd be able to join her friends. (With CFS we're learning to take things as they come and that plans have to be flexible.) She may have been tired, but she got to go. She looked beautiful!! The dance was from 8:00 to 11:00, and she called me at 9:00 and asked to be picked up. That's all she could do - just one hour. But she had fun, and everyone was thrilled to see her. She started to not feel well (cold symptoms, felt like she was going to pass out - it was hot with all the bodies in there, and her legs were weak and numb from standing). But she got to see a bunch of friends, people her own age, and people that she hadn't seen in months and months!

I was afraid she'd be crashed Sunday. She was tired, but was able to go with us to meet Steve's family for a birthday picnic for his sister. (Jessica just sat.) And then we stopped by to see our horse, and she rode for just a little.

If she crashes tomorrow, she still will have had a good weekend.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Friday 10/3/08

It's been a quiet week just hanging around the house. We're still waiting on the school to give her a user i.d. for the new online classes, so in the meantime, she's getting farther behind.

Jessica was in bed past noon today. She got ready later and planned to go see her horse tonight, but then decided that she wasn't up to it - and that's hard for her to do when it comes to her horse! So, we stayed in and watched movies instead.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Wednesday 10/1/08

Another bad sore throat, and just a so-so day. Jessica was still in her robe till early afternoon.