So many of you have emailed me over the last year with requests for more info on Allie's endometriosis surgery and questions of her current state, that it seems appropriate today, one year later, to give you all an update.
If you don't know Allie's story, here is a link back to the post I did last year, shortly after her LAPEX procedure at the Center for Endometriosis Care. It is a detailed account of the procedure and what you can expect. From there, you will find more links back to previous posts I have done over the last few years regarding Allie's devastating disease, and even more information about the life-changing LAPEX procedure. You can also go over to the right sidebar on my blog and click on the word "endometriosis" in the word cloud for more links. And of course, you can always email me with questions :)
One year ago today, I sat, unsure of Allie's outcome, waiting for a doctor to tell me how bad it really was....yet not really wanting to know. That day, July 18th, 2011, was a day that truly changed our lives...
for the better.
While I tried to remain positive and hopeful that day, the future was still so uncertain....our paths nowhere near straight.
Looking back and knowing the outcome always gives us such great perspective. Reading through my old posts and wishing I could tell myself what I know now (and for that matter, tell Allie!) is tough. It wasn't easy, and there were so many days that we had our doubts.
Doubts that the surgery worked. Doubts that Allie would ever be pain-free. Doubts that she would have a normal life.
But it WORKED.
PRAISE God, it worked!!!!!!
And I can sit here today and tell you that, not only is Allie back to living life, but she is doing it much more comfortably! The life-altering, constant, agonizing pain caused by her stage 3-4 endometriosis is almost a memory.
That's not to say she doesn't have pain, but she can finally deal with the pain that she has been left with by relying only on ibuprofen (1000mg every 6hrs for several days during her cycle- still more than most of us need, but much better than the heavy prescription narcotics she relied on for years!). And some days are worse than others, but those bad days are so few in comparison to before the surgery, that they don't seem so tough.
The recovery was long, grueling really. It sometimes seemed that the scar tissue and healing was worse than the endo itself. There were months in the beginning that we were certain the doctor had missed ALL of the endo ;) But we hung in there, clung to hope, and came out on the other side. It's definitely a process. The healing can take a year or more, and we don't feel that Allie has reached her full healing at this point. And we have concerns about pains in her back that seem to have remained the same, but we continue to have faith that this too shall pass as we reflect on the miracles we have already experienced.
Currently, Allie is experiencing much more regular cycles (although they tend to get off when she is stressed), less pain, and, as a result, very few migraines. I am now convinced that the constant migraines were a result of the severe trauma her body was dealing with each time her endo flared. The pain was simply more than she could handle....hence the stress and migraines. She has also recognized that she needs to drink lots and lots of water, get plenty of good sleep at night, and eat well. Since her endo has calmed down, she has had a chance to relax and figure out what is working for her- quite a change from the constant turmoil just one year ago!!
While Allie has yet to find a job in this economy, she is finally at the point where she CAN have a job! Quite a change from before the surgery, when we were certain she would never have a job or be able to go to college due to the days and days spent suffering in bed each week....sometimes missing an entire week of school!
And to that fun-loving, precious child that was always so full of life before the days the endo took over her life, well....a smile has returned. She is able to join us on family adventures and talks with joy about her future and all the things she has planned. A smile has returned to her face, and it replaces the pain that furrowed her brow and brought me to tears each night. Blessed. Truly.
So, while it's still a process, and while we know we're not done, the surgery has been nothing short of a MIRACLE for us! We would do it again, even if we had to pay for it in full....
it's the difference between living life.....and giving up.
And I'm not convinced that this didn't save Allie's life....she was on the verge of being done.
And for that, I am truly thankful to God.
*Thank you Lord, for your constant guidance through this process. For giving us the answers and the will to do what You knew needed to be done. Thank you for Dr. Sinervo. Thank you for providing the means to get to Atlanta from Kansas and to have the surgery. Thank you for the strength to continue to hope. Thank you for healing my child and breathing new life into her. Thank you.
1 hour ago