Sunday, September 28, 2008

When it rains it pours...

Well, September has been a pretty rough month.  With Kelly cutting her hand and her aunt passing away suddenly, we have even more sad news.  Kelly's grandmother, Geraldine, who was loved so much by everyone who knew her, passed away today.  This is a pic of her with Tyler, needless to say it was taken a few years ago.  She was a kind and gentle woman and we will miss her so much.  Her health had been failing gradually over the past 4 years and had gotten exponentially worse in the past week.  I am glad I was able to go up and see her one last time, even though it for as sad an event as my aunt's funeral.  We are making plans to go up to the bay area again in a few days to attend her funeral service.  It kind of feels like I can't even catch my breath and relax before another sad thing happens.  Thanks for everyone's thoughts and prayer with everything.  

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

What we do best in the army...

Anyone know the answer?  Hurry up and WAIT.  Wait over there.  Fill out this form and wait.  Wait here, wait there...wait, wait, wait.  And the army strikes again.  I had my hand consult at Loma Linda University today.  I saw the hand specialist and he basically said what we all already know--I need surgery.  So the appointment took 5 minutes and now he has to send in the approval request to my army insurance and wait.  In about a week (hopefully) I will get a packet in the mail that shows they approved it and it will have all the pre-op and surgery info on it, including dates.  So, I'll be having surgery sometime.  Nothing surprising, but hopefully it will be soon.  This doctor (his name is Montri Wongworawat--no, I am not kidding) is very qualified and I feel comfortable with him doing the surgery.  I asked about what to expect afterward and he said there is no way to know until he opens up my hand and sees what is going on.  Apparently if the nerve has some tension on it (as in, he has to pull it together) then it will have to be totally splinted to prevent any movement or pressure.  However, if the nerve comes together easily then I may just need a big bandage like I originally had.  Once again, I will WAIT and see and let you all know when I find out anything new.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Happy and Sad

On our happy note, today is Eric's birthday.  He is turning 32 but doesn't look a day older than 31.  We had his birthday dinner last night because Tyler has soccer tonight.  We made his favorite--Texas sheet cake.  Tyler made him several cards.  So, happy birthday Eric!
On our sad note, my aunt Bonnie passed away on Sunday.  She was one of the kindest people I have ever known and was loved by everyone who knew her.  We will be going up to the bay area for her funeral on Friday.  We will all miss her.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

My Little Picasso

Everyone knows abstract art is "in".  Well, this is Jacob's latest creation.  When he drew it he kept saying he was drawing Thomas the Train.  He walked around with it for a while, always pointing to the blob and saying, "Thomas, Thomas the Train."  Well today, 3 days later, he found it on my desk.  I figured he wouldn't give it a second thought but he pointed to it and said, "Thomas the Train!"  I was pretty impressed that he even remembered what he had drawn.  I guess the little guy somehow sees a resemblance between this piece of artwork and his favorite little engine...

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Miracle of miracles

You guys will never believe my hand is still the same, but it is raining!  This is the first rain since I can't even remember when.  In fact, it is raining pretty hard and has been for about 5 minutes!  Crazy.  We almost went to the park this afternoon, but it was too hot.  Good thing!  Another miracle is that I actually got my referral to Loma Linda Medical Center for my hand approved and made my appointment for next Wednesday.  That is amazing because these referrals are notorious for taking FOREVER and mine only took 5 days.  It's got to be a record.  What a day.  Well, the rain is tapering off already.  Just a drizzle now.  At least this evening will be cooler!

Monday, September 15, 2008

When I got home from my mom's house I went in to see Tyler, who had just gone to bed.  He was half asleep but said, "Mommy, you're home!"  I told him I loved him and to go to sleep and he said, "I love you more than all the numbers...and the numbers never stop!"  It was really sweet.

Friday, September 12, 2008


Well, what a mess.  I had my surgery consult visit yesterday, and plans were made to have surgery on Tuesday.  I was feeling pretty good, all things considered.  The surgeon said he knew what he was doing, he talked to my OB and they decided I could have something stronger than Tylenol after surgery (which was a big concern for the surgeon).  So after meeting with the surgeon, I went to admin, got myself ready to be admitted Tuesday.  Then I headed over to med-surg to talk with the anesthesiologist...this is where thing got screwed up.  He said he didn't feel comfortable doing it because there was a risk, albeit small, of preterm labor.  The hospital at Fort Irwin is not equipped to handle a preterm baby, so if that happened, the baby would be in danger and would have to be life-flighted on a helicopter, without me, to Loma Linda, which is 2 hours away by car.  Obviously this is a major concern for everyone involved.  But things were still a go.  Later that day, as I was getting ready to leave for my Mom's for the weekend, the surgeon called and wanted to meet with me.  We discussed the issues about anesthesiology and together decided it would be in everyone's best interest to wait a few weeks.  He said according to recent literature, digital sensory nerves have a high success rate for surgery up to 6 weeks without any significant decrease in prognosis.  We faced a hard decision, but with the fear of regret if something should happen to the baby, we decided to postpone surgery.   He is referring me to Loma Linda University because they have an NICU there and a hand specialist.  The difficulty now is waiting for the approval, and then trying to get in to see the doctor before it is too late.  Among my many concerns, one of the greatest is that I won't be able to use my hand at all for 6 weeks after surgery.  This will overlap into the time when my baby is born, so I won't be able to pick her up, put her in a car seat, get her dressed or change her diapers, etc.  The minor inconveniences include I can't open a sippy cup, can't take a shower, can't push a stoller, take care of an active two year get the idea.  Too bad this accident didn't happen in the future when I could afford to hire a full time personal assistant!  Any volunteers???  So at this point it's a wait and see, and we will of course keep everyone posted.   Whatever is decided, it most certainly will be a really rough time these next few months.  I appreciate all of your concern and prayers. 

Sunday, September 7, 2008

A Fun Sunday at the ER

I have come to the conclusion that living at Fort Irwin is bad for my health.  Never in my life have I had to have stitches or broken any bones or anything.  Most of you know about the first incident when I tore my scalp open while shutting the back hatch on my car.  Eric took me into the clinic and I needed several stitches for it.  Well, today we came home from stake conference and I started to make some guacamole.  I was being stupid and while trying to get the pit out of the avocado the knife slipped and went straight through the avocado and stabbed into my hand.  I instantly grabbed it and told Eric, "It's bad. it's bad...I can't feel my middle two fingers."  I thought it may have gone all the way through, but it didn't.  We hurried with the boys to the ER and they took me right in because of the bleeding.  The pain was extremely intense, to the point where all I could do was just breathe deep and rock back and forth on the bed.  It wouldn't stop bleeding--finally after over 3.5 hours of sitting there squeezing it the bleeding stopped enough to look at the puncture.  Apparently it did almost go through my hand and I severed an artery (which is why it took so long  to stop bleeding) but the worst part is I severed the nerve.  The ortho surgeon is going to perform surgery on my hand to try to reconnect it so I can have feeling, at least most of it back.  This is the hardest part for me because I love to play piano and am extremely worried about how this will affect my playing.  I go back for a consult on Thursday (4.5 days from now) too see about the surgery.  The surgeon wants to put me under general anesthesia because that gives him unlimited time to find the nerves, make repairs, etc.  BUT, I am 30 weeks pregnant so now we are in a pickle.  I have to wait until Thursday to see what course of action we will take.   I just really hope I can still play piano.  Plus, until my consult, my hand is wrapped up in a big boxing glove type bandage (refer to the pic--it's not great because Tyler took it).  I can't take it off, get it wet or really use it for anything for 4 days!  I don't know how I am going to cook, take care of the boys, shower, etc.  What a mess.  At this rate I sure hope I survive another 3 years here.  I guess that's all, my hand is tired since I am having to type this with all one hand!  Wish me luck with a full recovery...

Monday, September 1, 2008

Happiest Kid on the Block

The first pic is to show the shirt that Tyler's Aunt Carrie gave him--we thought Grandpa Swenson would appreciate that.  The other pic is of Tyler's new shoes.  I don't think I have ever seen a kid so happy about a new pair of shoes than Tyler was today.  We went to the Sketchers outlet to find him some new shoes and he LOVED these--they are called "Z-straps" because of the way the shoes strap on.  He put them on and wouldn't take them off so he got to wear them right out of the store.  For the entire rest of the shopping trip he was happy as a clam, running back and forth whispering, "Z-strap!  Z-strap race!" to himself.  He was in 7th heaven.  I wouldn't be surprised if we wore them to bed tonight.  I don't remember caring about what I wore until I was a few years older...good thing we live near some good outlets!  Go Z-strap!