Thursday, March 22, 2012

Why I Haven't Posted in a While

Daddy playing with his girls!!!

Seven months ago my hubby came home from work with some serious pain in his foot. He went to the ER after an x-ray they said that he had a bone spur. They suggested he see a foot specialist. He found a doctor and it was confirmed that he had a large bone spur that was hooking into his achilles tendon and shredding micro-tears out of it. His doctor tried several conservative methods on his foot with no success. He referred him to another doctor in his office that does a minimally invasive surgery called PRP. They basically use your own blood to heal your tendon. That doctor explained to us that there is really no risk associated with PRP because they are just injecting your own blood. The only risk is infection, since they are putting a foreign object into your body. After researching it we decided to go with the PRP. Results from using it have been good and there is little to no risk.

He had two injections, both showing decent improvement. Not as much as we had hoped but there was definitely improvement. On the 14th of February my husband had an appointment with his foot doctor that left us in a bit of a haze, the doctor sat us down and asked us if there were any other jobs at the railroad Chad could do. The underlying issue always has been Chad getting back into his work boots. He explained that even though proceeding with the third minimally invasive surgery would improve his condition, he didn't think it would restore his foot to pre-bone spur/achilles tendinitis function. We decided to go ahead with the third surgery. We knew the only other thing  that could be done was a surgery that was very invasive and from what Chad's foot doctor told us, had a very poor success rate. We prayerfully decided that it would be better for Chad to try the third round of PRP's rather than have the major surgery and for it to go badly and him to loose normal foot function.

Within a couple days of him having the third PRP we had a strong feeling  something was wrong. Chad couldn't flex his foot and he was in very intense pain. He had to stay heavily medicated around the clock. If the kids bumped his foot it would literally leave him in tears.We stayed in contact with the doctor's office and they told us everything was fine. The doctor told us there was just a different response because it was "at the epicenter" of the tendinitis/bone spur spot. He said it would take longer to heal and the large bump on the back of Chad's heel was just blood underneath the injection site and swelling from the injection. Chad hadn't experienced any of those issues before so we were very concerned because of the extreme pain he was in at the point of "the bump". We both asked at different points if it was possible that his tendon had ruptured as a result of the injection. The question was dismissed but we were still not so sure. I was concerned because he could let his foot dangle but not flex it up toward his shin. It seemed to me like something had happened to his achilles tendon that was causing to be unable to flex.

Thursday the 15th, four weeks after the third injection, with Chad still unable to walk, his doctor called us back into his office. The doctor said he was so sorry, he felt like he let our family down and that we didn't have the results he was hoping for. He said apparently the tendon was more torn than he originally thought. He explained that he spent several hours on the phone talking to various surgeons around the world. He said he researched everything non-surgical first but because of the haglunds on the back of the heel our only two options were to have cryosurgery to freeze the area and hopefully it would heal itself or have "the surgery". The same surgery which he had been telling us since the very first time we saw him "was not an option". One of the doctors told him that there is new technology. So he called the manufacturer of the company that makes the machine used during the surgery and had a meeting with them. They gave him some brochures he showed us and explained  how the new technology will make the whole process easier on Chad. He also told us that there is a collagen wrap that is now used to speed up the healing of the tendon.  He again apologized and said he was having sympathy pains for Chad. He said he hadn't charged the insurance and wouldn't charge us for the portion for the surgery that we had to pay for, which was $350. He also said he was going to do physical therapy in the office for no charge. His wife suggested that he make chad a "Chineese-y potion of alcohol and herbs to rub on the area. He made it and applied it to Chad's heel to show me how to do it. We left the appointment feeling a little baffled,  the only viable option he had for us was to chose a surgeon that was good at the surgery Chad now needs. The same surgery that he had told us just a week or two before "was not an option".

Since we knew from our own research that having the surgery was most likely the only option. This past Tuesday we met with an orthopedic surgeon. He explained that Chad's tendon needs to be lengthened. He will have to go in lengthen it, peel the tendon back from the bone spur near the back of the heel, grind the bone down, reattach the tendon and wrap a metal wire around his tendon to hook it into the bone.  He said he wouldn't be sure exactly how involved the surgery would  be until he sees Chad's MRI. He was seeing a cloudy area where the tendon is on the x-ray.

This is basically what the surgeon outlined for us to expect as of now. After the surgery Chad will stay in the hospital for a 23 hour observation. That way they can manage the pain. He will come home with a pain pump in the nerve in his thigh, that will stay in for a week (if I remember correctly). He will be non-weight bearing for 6-8 weeks if everything is perfect on the MRI, if not 8-10. If the tendon is ruptured, it could be longer than that. After that he will transition to a walking boot for several weeks, after that he will have several weeks of physical therapy, move to a tennis shoe and then hopefully his work boot. We wont know what his MRI says until Monday and at that point we will schedule his surgery. The surgeon says he is booked 2-3 weeks out, if he's more than 4 weeks out he will try to move his schedule around and fit him in sooner.

Please keep Chad in your prayers as this is a CRAZY time for him!!!! Also keep me in your prayers. Chad pulls a lot of the weight around here, the last few weeks have really been a struggle for me. I feel like I am spinning in constant circles doing everything I can just to stay afloat. Which clearly, if you have been to my house you can see that hasn't been working out so well!!!! Lol!!! 

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Capture The Flag Nerf War!!!

The gym where our kids take their homeschool gymnastics class had a capture the flag nerf war tonight. Tristin has been waiting the last couple of weeks for this day to come! He woke up early this morning because he was so excited.

My cousin watched all four of my little kids. When the older kids found out we were dropping the little kids off at her house, they said that Grace had mentioned she wanted to come. So, she came along for some nerf fun too!

They had a great time! I think my poor son might have sprained his ankle but he played through it, with little complaint. They were hot, sweaty and tired when they were done, but they had a great time! I am sure they will want to participate every time they offer a "Nerf Night"!

They played probably close to 10 rounds of capture the flag.
 I think their team won every time but one! :)
This is their coach, showing the other team that they captured their flag!

Friday, March 2, 2012


Sometimes to get kids moving you have to give them a little motivation. I have a certain eight year old boy whose room I could no longer walk through. He was completely overwhelmed by cleaning a mess that felt to him beyond his ability. My boys share a room so, it's mostly not his fault. At least that's what he tells me. I had to admit that it would probably be kind of hard sharing a room with a one man wrecking crew. I told him the best way to get an overwhelming job done was to enlist the help of a friend or two, or in his case a sibling or two. He told me that there is no way anyone would want to help with that mess, no matter how much they love him! It was cute, and probably true. So I told him he just had to make it fun. He said there is no way to make cleaning that mess fun. I suggested he throw a cleaning party!

So we decided to buy some candy and.... 

Some little cans of root beer!

I told him if he turned on some music it would feel like a party. He thought that was a great plan. He proposed the plan and the girls were happy to help!

After just a little while the boys room went from being a hazard to this:

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Sorrow and Joy

Yesterday was a pretty overwhelming day. I woke up and checked facebook and saw that two kids in Kaitlynne's youth group were in a roll over car accident, one of them had to be air lifted downtown. I spent a great deal of the morning talking to Kait about that. Around 8:00 last night a garage exploded behind our house, three teenaged kids were inside. One boy died, his brother is in critical care and his girlfriend was badly burnt. My cousins and I walked down to see what was going on. The garage was fully engulfed in flames. It was so sad to watch, although at the time we had no clue anyone was in the garage. We walked back home but had a pretty clear view from my back door and checked every little bit. All of our kids saw the fire from their bedroom windows. They were bothered but not as much as I would have expected, so I was thankful for that.  While I was checking the news online to see if the bit about the fire was on there I saw an article about a boy in Wyandotte who was dragged by a train. He is only 14, I couldn't stand the thoughts of what he and his parents now have to live through. However, it especially broke my heart since it was co-workers of my husband who were operating the train. I can't imagine what they had to see and are now having to process. All I knew to do all day was pray.

I woke up this morning with yesterday's events still heavy on my heart. I decided to lay low and just enjoy my kiddo's company. We whipped through our school work and were finished by lunch time. The kids ate and scampered off to pretend they were spy kids. They watched Spy Kids 4 last night and somehow watching any Spy Kids movie brings out the spy in each one of them!  About a month ago my sweet son decided that the sod between my shed and our fence was overrated and literally dug up the 8X4 patch of grass between the two. Initially I was irratated, but then I decided to embrace it. I realized how much nature they could take in and learn about while digging and exploring. Since it rained most of the morning the dirt pile turned into a mud pit! I suggested they put on their play clothes and go dig in the mud. After they got changed they headed out the door. They played out there for quite a few hours. I was making dinner and watching them run around and crack up, there was mud flying all over the place. At some point they came and told me they found a bone. I went out to check it out and assured them it was just the root from the neighbors tree. A few minutes later they came to the back door and were pointing and smiling and showing me a big bone they had pulled up. The same bone I was calling a tree root. :) That became their greatest trophy of the day! They were so proud of themselves!! They tried to research on the internet to find out what kind of a bone it was. They weren't quite able to figure it out. There has been a lot of speculation as to what it is. Tristin is sure it's a dinosaur bone, Kait thinks it is a human bone that connects the leg to the knee. I am not sure where it came from, my guess is it's a bone we bought for a crazy chocolate lab we had about nine years ago! The kids decided that it really doesn't matter where it came from, it is just cool! I'm so thankful that homescooling gives us the opportunity to spend what would be "normal school hours" learning in a way that intrests our family!

Prized Trophy!

Trying to decide where the bone might fit...

Is it a rib?

A bone in your foot?

My personal it a um...bottom bone?