Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Timeline Updates and Future Schedule
Wednesday May 8, 2013

On April 18, a couple of weeks ago, I wrote a blog entry showing a timeline of medical events we had gone through this year.  At that time, there were still some pending medical issues.  Most of those have now been resolved. 

Since that entry, I have returned to the urologist in Harlingen for the cystoscopy and the results were completely normal.  Yea!  Good news!  She asked me to return late this summer for a checkup.  Ron has been back to the lung specialist a couple of times for tests and once for results and all of his tests were totally normal.  More good news!  All his blood work numbers, 4 pages of results, were within the normal ranges.  Praise God!  He has a follow up in the fall with that doctor. 

In the meantime, Ron developed an ear problem.  Horrors!  We just can't have that!  He went to the doctor last week with no satisfactory results, and goes back in a couple of days.  He also will be referred to a specialist for that problem.  Specialist referrals seem to be the norm these days.  I go back to the G.P. May13 for a follow up. 

As for our Houston appointments, we will be going to Houston the day after Memorial Day, May 28, to pre-register at the hospital and to have lab work done.  We are going to add a trip to Dallas onto that appointment and see our youngest son, Stephen over the Memorial Day weekend and meet for the first time, a very special young lady in his life.

The surgery for the Cochlear Implant is scheduled for June 10 (I won't know what time of day until later).  It will be outpatient surgery and we will stay overnight in Houston following the surgery. Our plan is to head home on the 11th of June, going by Hobby Airport in Houston to pick up our daughter-in-law Vickey who will fly in that morning to come home with us for a week to be at the house with me as I recover.  Most of what I have read says the recovery should be easy, but since I won't be able to hear, it could present some challenges.  If I did have a medical need, I could not make a phone call for help.  I am planning to be off that week.  Several people have offered to help, but Vickey offered to come for a week and we decided that would be wise.  She and I will enjoy time together, but it will be hard, because during that time, I will no longer have any hearing in the ear that is to be operated on and we do love to talk!

Once the surgery is done, that ear will have no normal hearing left in it.  So from the time of the surgery, until the Cochlear Implant is activated in early July, I will be more deaf than I am now.  There is a tiny bit of hearing in the other ear, but I can't understand speech in that other ear. 

The risks with the Cochlear Implant surgery are minimal, but real.  Because the surgery is done around the facial nerves for that side, there is a slight chance of damage to those nerves.  Following surgery there can be swelling which could cause temporary problems for those facial nerves.  The same is true of the risk of dizziness.  The middle ear is disturbed and dizziness can result from that - normally if this happens, it is temporary.  There are a few other risks like loss of taste.  These are rare, and usually short term, but should be considered.   When I weigh the risks against the deafness of my world currently, I find it is worth the risk. 

July 2 I have a 2 1/2 hour morning appointment with the Houston Ear Research Foundation where they will activate and program the Cochlear implant.  That afternoon I have a followup appointment with the surgeon.  The following day, July 3, I have another 2 1/2 hour appointment on the programing and adjusting of the device.  We should be able to head home that afternoon. 

That should bring you up to date on our schedule in the weeks to come.  Someone asked if I was doing a count down yet.  To some degree I am, but I guess on the 10th of May, I will think more in terms of the countdown.  Also, there is the countdown to surgery, but that won't be when I start hearing; the hearing will begin July 2.  That means I still have almost 2 months of silence.

At the office a few minutes ago my husband came in and asked me to come talk to a customer.  It is a man named Lupe, who many years ago (over 35 years ago)was a janitor at our church.  Lupe has been deaf most of his life (if not all).  He was surprised to know that I am now in about the same situation, but told me he would be praying for my surgery.  He manages pretty well in his silent world.  He is actually the second deaf customer I have had this week.  I must admit that communication with Lupe and the other man came with some challenges.  I found myself trying to talk to the other man, but he seemed to not read lips or sign.  Lupe does some of both and wrote notes.

Earlier this afternoon , my husband said the lady who is working on my Quiet Quilt, called and said she was coming by to show me what she has done so far.  She brought the quilt, and she is doing an amazing job, as I knew she would.  She had some questions and she had asked me about 10 days ago for a couple of scriptures that she could "quilt" into the quilt.  I had selected one, but not the other until today.  The ones that I gave her to use on the quilt are Jeremiah 29:11, which has been sort of a family verse for many years and has been on my mind all throughout this time of silence.  It says, "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."  The second verse I selected goes with the scenes that I had chosen for the quilt.  As you may recall from an earlier post, I selected fabrics that depicted quiet settings in this beautiful world that God created.  I chose Psalm 19:1 "The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament shows His handiwork."  God is good! 


  1. When I talk about you to Lynn and Amy, Lynn says we are a perfect pair, two old ladies--one is blind and the other is deaf. Typical Aggie!

  2. Ha, ha, Tiny! So true. I will look for you and you listen for me. You know I always said in our Sunday school class, in each couple, one could hear and one couldn't. Someone would say something funny and half the class would turn to their spouse and say, "What did they say?" We all do need each other. I am looking forward to the time you can reschedule your trip down here. Hope at that time you will be seeing well enough for us to go take some bird photos!