Yesterday was one of my most active days yet, which felt wonderful, but had me completely hammered by the end of the day. In the morning I went to the viewing for Tom Dee, a great philanthropist and wonderful man. I was grateful to have the opportunity to meet up with many of my dear friends at the viewing. Joey Hansen, my former boss and mentor, saw me in the parking lot and that started the round of reunions. I visited with Tim Dee (Tom's son) who is one of the kindest, most humble, amazing men I have ever known. I also saw old friends from the McKay-Dee Foundation Board and my cherished friend, Noellee Shaw. I still cannot get over how much my emotions take over whenever I see my friends and family members. Everything and everyone means more now. Every experience is elevated for me...like seeing things through the eyes of a child, all of life is new and wonderful.
Yesterday afternoon I had another follow-up doctor's visit in Salt Lake. Today my "chauffer" was our good friend, Holly Bailey. She is such a joy to be with and I thoroughly enjoyed our car visit. :) Tolan's knee is doing better (though he keeps overdoing it, too!), so he drove to work, left early and met me at the doctor's office. Dr. Shelton saw me in the hall and immediately exclaimed, "Jodi! You look a million times better than the last time I saw you!" This was the start of another good appointment. Dr. Shelton said my hearing has improved a bit and if it continues to improve, I may qualify for a hearing aid, to help me hear out of my right ear again!
Dr. Shelton also said that what my ear is going through now is normal, as my body adjusts with the changing conditions of my ear. I go from feeling plugged to hearing an echo in my ear (really annoying) to feeling like I am listening through a seashell all in a given day. Disconcerting as it may be, he said it is normal and will eventually settle down.
He also told us that my balance issues are not just the result of my bad eye, but also my bad ear, as the inner ear helps control balance. I knew this, but hadn't thought about it, just assuming my problems were because I couldn't see. So, the good news is, in time, my body will learn to compensate and the left ear will take over control of my balance. But, for now, I still have to learn how to deal with my ear/eye/balance issues on my own, until my body can adjust.
Dr. Shelton said the facial nerves repair themselves from the bottom up (meaning the bottom of the face). This is why my mouth has improved so much, but my eye and forehead have seen no improvement. They will be the last to get better. Good info to have.
At the office we also ran into Dr. Orlandi, who performed the surgery to seal my ehustation tube. He also mentioned how much better I looked than in the hospital, which is a good thing, since I looked half dead by the end of my 34 day stay! It was a good report and it helped brighten my spirits. I still have daily things to deal with, but so far, all my doctors are sure things will continue to get better! Plus, Tolan and I had some wonderful "alone time" in the car on the ride home. I am so grateful for him and his support and it was great just to sit and visit together!
Yesterday I also got to visit on the phone with my 2nd mom and dear friend, Carol Liptrot. She is always a "pick me up" and helps me get through my trials. In the evening I visited with some family members, Martin Merx (Tolan's cousin) and Celia Brown (Tolan's aunt) and her family. I love these impromptu gatherings and they remind me how important family is!
My little Casen, the 4-year old, also had a surprise for me. He begged me to walk over to the neighbor's house and watch him jump on the tramp. So, I went over and was shocked to see him do a back flip on the trampoline!! WOW! And, my little Daven learned how to climb out of his crib by himself! Trenden earned an advancement in Cub Scouts and Lindi sewed (by herself) a project for Grandma Orgill. Clearly my kids are growing up right before my eyes...I am grateful I am here to see it!
Thanks again for all the prayers and positive vibes after my hard day earlier this week. Much love and thanks to Belinda...again! You are an angel, saint and dear friend.
Tonight my mom leaves for Orem, then will travel back to Hawaii in the coming days. Trying not to think about it yet... can't explain how much she will be missed.
We continue to be appreciative of all the help for me, Tolan and the family. We are all getting better and learning to adjust. Love to all.