Please Forgive Our Absence!

It has been a very long time since we’ve been able to share about what has been happening in our lives. Although some of you have followed along with my updates to my Facebook or maybe Terry’s emails, I have been unable to use our blog since my (Donna’s), computer died many months ago – (I believe around August of last year). For whatever reason that happened and other setbacks & struggles of the past year, we have seen God move in miraculous ways.

It would be very hard to go back in detail to share all the ways God has blessed us, so I am going to focus in this post about my health situation that I had shared about in previous letters.

One of the last things we shared about in the blog, was the room remodel we were doing for me to move in downstairs and not have to climb the stairs anymore to our upstairs bedroom. I have stayed downstairs for close to a year already. It has been a very strange living arrangement for us, to be honest. Also, around this same time, I no longer went to work at the base, as it was just too hard for me. I was struggling just to walk anymore, so I felt pretty worthless in many ways. This was also a lonely time, not to mention the difficulties just doing normal activities, like cooking, laundry, housekeeping and the simple enjoyment I get from walking and caring for my dogs. Terry had to step into all these areas – cooking for me, and caring for the dogs & chickens. We have a wonderful maid who did a lot extra too to help me out, while I tried to keep up with most of the laundry. I experienced many levels of emotion during this time, and pleaded with God for something to change. It was such an encouragement to me to begin seeing money coming in, donations from friends to help! We were also able to sell our Hyundai jeep to help pay for the surgery.

Following is the history of my back & hip problems:

2011-2012 ~ Low back pain and hip pain worsened.
April 2012 ~ Made Apmt with Orthopedic Dr. – findings: chronic                     back/leg pain affecting my walking

June 2013 ~ 1st Apmt with Orthopedic Dr with the “Caja” (C.R. social               medicine)
July 2013 ~ Dr sent for MRI – findings: degeneration in 4th + 5th                  vertebra ~ urged back surgery

April 2014 ~ Friends donated easy chair, we remodeled downstairs                   room, I stayed at home
May 20, ’14 ~ 2nd Apmt – Caja … decision to be made about back                   surgery.
May 29, ’14 ~ Clinica Biblica Apmt. for 2nd opinion
July 8th, ’14 ~ Laser surgery w/Dr. Delgado, Clinica Biblica, ~ burned                     nerves between vertebras
July 22, ’14 ~ at checkup, Dr found I still had debilitation due to hip,                     ordered hip X-rays & Dr gave a steroid shot into joint,                        ~ helped with pain for almost a month.
Aug. 28, ’14 ~ X-ray on hip joint taken to Dr. Delgado – he said he                could do nothing more due to severity of damage in hip joint.                   Only option, complete hip replacement.

WHEELCHAIR: I could no longer walk or stand for any length of time,               even sitting was painful
Sept. 2014 ~ another assessment at Caja – further X-rays taken for hip             problem, had to change Dr’s
Nov. 2014 ~ I created a “GoFundMe” account to raise funds for needed               hip surgery

Feb 3rd, ’15 ~ 1st appointment w/hip Dr. (5 mths later), no checkup,               told to lose 15 lbs, no news of possible surgery date                                       ~ Major disappointment!
Jan-Feb. ’15 ~ Union Church made plea with Clinica Biblica to help us                financially, (as missionaries), cost lowered>>>                                         from $14,000 to $9,200
March 9, ’15 ~ Complete & successful hip surgery with Dr. Blandon               of Clinica Biblica – findings: deformity in hip (congenital),                           badly damaged hip joint, but great bone density.
March 24, ’15 ~ Removal of stitches and assessment of surgery.

As you can see, this has been a long process for me. I haven’t been able to travel with Terry, or go the beach, or any long drives for well over a year. But, at present time, I am doing much better. My hip soreness is from the surgery and muscle stiffness. I have to learn how to use my leg muscles properly again. I’m having therapy in our home 3x a week since I came home from surgery. It has been amazing to see the progress and I feel hopeful again. I will soon be into a time of strengthening, besides just range of movement. I can’t wait till I have the go-ahead to begin water therapy, as they say that is one of the best.

Again I want to thank each and every one of you who helped give toward my surgery, or even remembered me in prayer! I value each of you and pray God bless you and keep you all healthy and safe!

In His love always,
Terry & Donna