Welcome to Anne's blog!

If you are new to the blog, you probably want to start at the beginning of the whole sad story. To get there, use the "Blog Archive" tool in the right column of the blog and click on "2009," and then "January 25." From there you can continue to click on each week to see the weekly entries.

I would love to hear from you! If you would like to leave a message, you can reach me at aheetderks@wcsmiami.org!

Friday, October 8, 2010

Howdy, friends! Dad and I went to see Dr. Hutson yesterday and EVERYTHING LOOKED GREAT! Thank goodness. He saw no sign of any kind of infection and said that he would be very surprised if we encountered any infection in the future. Love those words.

So, for the next week I have been assigned to continue to keep my leg in the knee immobilizer, do my regular leg exercises, take my medications, and keep my leg elevated as much as possible. Since the incision site is not completely healed yet, we don't want to stretch out that area with any kind of swelling (if you want to see it--click the Great Fall pics link). Therefore, he doesn't want me to ever stand with my leg hanging down for a period longer than 30 minutes. Ah shucks--that sounds like I won't be able to make any meals for my family in the kitchen. What a sacrifice.

I shouldn't joke that there would be any NEED for me to cook because so many people have been bringing us food!! What a precious precious thing it is to have good meals brought to your house. And then let's talk about the desserts! All of my silly students at school know that I love frosting so they have been sure to get plenty of frosting-covered whatevers (I don't care what they are because I just eat the frosting and then throw the rest away) to our house. I may just be 600 pounds by the time I am ready for my prosthetic.

While at the doctor's office, we discussed a few interesting things to think about. First, he stressed the importance that I NOT fall on my stump. I managed to take a shower for the first time in preparation for my appointment yesterday (the world rejoiced) but it felt a little like I was on the verge of disaster. I was fine getting in, but it got a little dicey when getting out. We may have to figure out how to install some shower grab bars or maybe remodel our bathroom a bit (oh joy). Second, we talked about driving. I have been driving with my left foot for some time now and can hardly imagine driving with my right anymore. Technically, it is not illegal for me to drive left-footed, but if some yo-yo crashed into me and our accident ended up going to court . . . I am sure someone would take issue with the fact that I wasn't driving with society's foot of preference. So, I need to figure out how to get some official "OK" to drive either with my left foot, or with some sort of modification to my car. Anyone know anything about this?

My X-ray looked awesome. How nice to see an X-ray up on the light board that doesn't have smashed bone, dead cartilage, massive screws, or gelatinous tissue. There was my pretty new stump with a perfect bone bridge put in between the tibia and fibula. Looked so nice.

When I get a prosthetic, the weight being put on the bridge will cause more bone to develop around the end (Wolff's Law of Bone Growth - the more pressure that is exerted on a bone, the larger and more dense it will become). Therefore, the end will become more rounded and strong. So cool.

Last night was a bit miserable because I was experiencing new kinds of nerve pain. It felt like I was stepping down on a bed of nails just to the point that the nails would start to pierce the skin (such a pretty mental picture). I was also itching to death. My leg felt like it had been bit by an angry mob of fire ants. Last but not least, I also got a bad charley horse-type pain so I hauled out the mirror and watched the image of my foot stretching out the charley horse. Amazingly enough--the pain went away! But then when I put the mirror away, the pain came back.
My friend suggested that I start wearing mirrored pants. Yes--I can just see how those are going to sell like hotcakes in the amputee community. Bathroom remodel here we come! :)

Needless to say, I spent most of the night listening to Doug snore and patting my leg from the outside of the bandage hoping that my leg would stop itching.

Do I sound like I am complaining? NO! All is well. It is such a relief to know that if I stay up all night fighting ants, walking on nails, and sewing a permanent mirror onto my knee immobilizer--I can still catch up on my sleep by sleeping all day. Which is exactly what I did today. Hard, hard sleep from 7am to 5:30pm. Guess my body needs it.

Our life has not been without its stresses this last week. We are all in a bit of a funk figuring out our new routines and responsibilities. I think it has been a little hard at times to adjust to the limitations of life with a "one-legged mom" (heard that once this week)--but we will sort all that out. We just need to be honest with our fears, quiet resentments, and hopes--and know that we just might be nearing the end of this particular journey (could it be, Lord?). Seems a little scary to hope for--but it would be nice for us to move forward to a life with full mobility.

Whatever--we will roll with it and know that (if I hear this one more time I will hurt someone) that we will be stronger and have built up a heck of a lot of character by the time we are done.

Again--can't tell you enough how much the cards, meals, flowers, rides, and the cans of frosting have helped us through the last week.

Finally--My brother and sister-in-law, Matt and Vera, found out late last week that Vera's Mom has liver cancer. Carolyn is the coolest Mom and it grieves me that their family is having to go through this scary time. It would be such a blessing if you could raise Carolyn and the rest of the Douma family to the Lord in prayer.

We love all of you so much!


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