Alli's Place

Where Alli shares her thoughts and feelings…

Having slept on it life is not so bad

So after feeling rather depressed last night and quite tearful about everything this morning I have decided to move on, leave my worries in Gods hands and the decision to the experts and just carry on.

Let’s look at the positives…
They will do something, it might not be pleasant but hopefully I will end up better than I am now…
Whatever happens they will help with control the pain I am left with…
I am not on my own and have lots of lovely caring friends and my family are there for me too…
I have the most adorable God Daughter who not only give the best hugs in the world but melts my heart when she gives my back kisses to make it better. I love her so much 😀 …
Last time I had back surgery I felt a real sense of God’s presence with me and I know he is there now too…
The surgery , if that is what they decide is much less drastic than last time…
I got through it all before so I know I can do it again…
And the best one of all I still get to park in the visitor spaces at work rather than do the where shall I abandon my car today thing till it is sorted 😉

Today’s resolve it to decide I can get through this and I am not going to let the pain win… Now where is that Tramadol packet it is time for more…

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And the Back Saga Continues

Today I had my neuro appointment with someone called Lucy. To be honest looking at the MRI it doesn’t look like much to me, as I am comparing it to the schwannoma, so I feel a rather pathetic that it is causing me more trouble than that ever did! Back to the point though, the outcome of that is that she is going to take it to their meeting next Thursday to discuss it as she said it is borderline whether surgery is the best plan or not. So it will be surgery or epidural and I have said that I will do whatever they decide then. She said that when they decide she will put me straight on the appropriate waiting list and write and tell me what they have gone for. Right now I don’t really care as long as something happens and I can get out of the doing nothing limbo I feel like I am stuck in.

As for how I am now, nothing has changed, still getting pain in my back and down my leg. Still tingling down both legs and still getting horrible pain in my foot and toe. No new symptoms though which is good. I still haven’t managed a full day at work in the office, if I stay later than 2pm it means a rather painful drive home and rough night. My attempt to stay till 4pm last Friday resulted in hardly any sleep and wrote off my weekend and I have just about got things back under control now. I am starting to worry about how long my manager will put up with me disappearing to work from home every afternoon. I feel worse now than I did before the Schwannoma was removed, at least then I managed to do full days in the office right up till the day before I went off for the operation.

To be honest I am now thoroughly fed up. I want to do a full day in the office (sad I know but I like my job). I want to be able to do a Tesco shop. I want to not have to worry about how close to somewhere I can park because walking makes things worse. I want to be able to drive down to Portsmouth and see my friends. I don’t want to be worried about it going again. I want to not wake up when the painkillers wear off at about 3am. I want to get back to swimming, doing nice long walks and take my Guides camping. ☹.

Sorry I needed to have a moan and get it off my chest.

On the bright side at least one way or another something will happen and that will feel like a step in the right directionm!

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Brilliant Day!

Today was our Women’s Day at church.  The theme was “Keeping Hope Alive”. We had about 230 women from all over the area there.  I was heading up the refreshments team with Lesley which was great fun as well as full on.  It feels like we have been boiling kettles and filling thermos jugs with coffee all day!

I had been asked to give a testimony and share some of my story.  I was pretty nervous about sharing, partly because a lot of people here didn’t know and part of me kind of liked it that way.  As I said to Sue afterwards, my secret is well and truly out now!  The testimony was to be shared with Helen kind of interviewing me which made it a bit less scary.  When we met to discuss it we both shed a tear though and I really didn’t want to stand up there and cry.

The speaker in the morning was Christine Perkins and her first session was so relevant to my testimony!  the way Helen and I had chosen to end my testimony fitted so well with what Christine had said.  I used my Reflecting… blog post that I wrote after the last Women’s day, the verse I had in the gift just summed it up for me.

Strangely it was all fine and I am not sure how I did it or what I said but it seemed to go well.  I may never know whether it spoke to people there in a particular way but I trust that God wanted me to do it and that he had a message in there somewhere!

Amazingly at the end of the day Lesley had been tidying up and had found Val’s engagement ring, which she lost at the last Women’s day.  Val was truly shocked and touched!  The ring she had given up on ever seeing again had turned up!  What a perfect ending to a brilliant day!

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God in my hurting

I received a New Wine magazine a few days ago and it has reminded me that a need to book for this years Summer Conference. Better book the time off work…

Having put the magazine to one side I decided yesterday to have a read through. One article jumped out at me (you can read it here It was titled ‘God in my hurting’ and the summary talked about living with long term illness in a church that believe in healing. This is something I often think about and have discussion with people about in the past. In the article Liz Carter talks about her experiences of living with a chronic lung disease. A lot of the things she talks about mimic my thoughts and feeling since suffering from chronic back pain.

I have come across people in the past who believe so strongly in God’s healing power that they suggest that if you have not been healed it is because you haven’t prayed hard enough or your faith is not strong enough, which just makes you feel even worse as then not only do you have the suffering but also the guilt that it is because your relationship with God is somehow just not good enough. Just as we do not have to earn God’s grace or love I don’t believe we earn God’s healing. Why is it so hard for people to realise that this world is broken and so are we and that God does not always intervene and fix things and also a full healing may not have happened but that doesn’t been that God is absent from the suffering.

The thing I find hard is what Liz touches on in her last paragraph ‘Living in hope’. It is hard to continue to hope for full healing. I know God can do anything but after years of asking for him to remove my pain I find myself now asking for help in dealing with it and acceptance. Is this wrong? Should I still persist with asking for that full healing? Does it mean I have given up all hope of that total healing? I don’t think I can answer these questions at the moment. I just know that I agree with Liz’s final words “God is in our hurting as well as our healing. You can be assured that God listens and God loves. And sometimes that is enough.”

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I have been thinking and reflecting a fair bit this week.  Last Sunday was the anniversary of two years since my operation.  The two year point was always going to be a milestone as I was told that it could take about that long for the nerves to settle down and heal.  It was suggested that things could always improve after that but that as time went on it was more unlikely. 

Two years ago I hoped the surgery would be a total cure from the pain I had before and that I would have no lasting effects, it is now clear that although the pain is much less that before that my dream at that time is unfortunately not reality.  I am still in a fair amount of pain and now find it hard to remember what it is like to not feel pain and I still have numbness in my foot and other sensory loss and a big toe that does not function fully.  I have learnt to accept this and the get on with life.  I have accepted that life is easier with painkillers and now take them regularly rather than trying to cope without.  One of the hardest things has been for me to admit to myself that this is how I am and that I can’t always manage to do things that I used to and that it is OK to admit this and say to people “sorry but no I can’t lift that table” rather than doing it and suffering for my stubbornness.

Last week at the women’s day we were all given a little gift of a bag with beads and sparkles, a magnetic word and a verse.  Each one was individual as they all had different combinations.  My verse was “God is able to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think” Ephesians 3:20.  Since then it has been on my mind as I often wonder why God didn’t fully heal me and why I still have constant pain to live with.  Over the last two years I have learnt to accept that God doesn’t always do what we ask for or respond to our prayers as we would like Him to.  He often answers them in a different way to what we want, but he can still do amazing things and works in our lives and in lots of ways He has done more than I could have asked or imagined.

Several people have asked me how I cope and how I stay so strong.  I sometimes wonder how this is as I wouldn’t class myself as a strong person and if someone had told me what my future would be two years ago I would have said I wouldn’t be able to cope.  All I can say is that God gives me the strength and courage to face my problems and carry on.  On a bad day I thank God that I can still walk and that I can still carry on a normal life as I know that it was a real possibility that this wouldn’t be the case.  So many people prayed for me while I was in hospital, friends and people I didn’t know, and I know that God was with me and looked after me at that time.  I felt so at ease when I went down for my operation, I knew that I couldn’t do anything and it was all in His hands.  As someone who hates to stay in bed even when I am ill I knew that having to be lying flat for 4 days was going to be really hard but some how the time flew by and it wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be and I even managed to escape from hospital a day earlier than planned so things were pretty good really!  I was so blessed by those around me, my friends were brilliant!  I don’t think I really realised how many amazing people were around me and how much they cared about me and I am so blessed to have them as my friends and I will always be thankful for them and the care that they showed me.  My Mum was amazing too, I know she found it hard not to fuss and she found it really difficult to see me ill but we also had six weeks together where we enjoyed each others company and grew closer to one another and we wouldn’t have had that time if I hadn’t been ill.  What I am trying to say is that although God didn’t heal my pain totally He has helped me is so many ways and I have learnt so much in the last two years and that is some ways he has done more good in my life than I could have imagined so it hasn’t all been bad at all! 

In case you are wondering my magnetic word was paradise and I know that one day I will be in paradise with God and then I will no longer be in pain and will be free of my earthy body.


Well… I haven’t updated my blog since the 4th January I think my Second thing on my list of things I wanted to do this year has failed slightly as it is was to use my blog more :oS 

As for the first one of parking the car in the garage I did for a few weeks but then when I was having the kitchen done it wasn’t so practical so I got out of the habit.

So what have I been up to?

I have got a nice shiny new kitchen and utility which took a lot longer than it was supposed to but I am very happy with the results.

I have been busy at work doing a project which I was really enjoying working with two other people one of them came over from Australia for four weeks and we all worked really hard and were pleased with what we had achieved BUT they have decided to change the product and so the work we have done is now not going to be used – oh joy and how irritating!  Now back to fixing bugs :o(

I have been seeing a Physiotherapist about my back, again.  We were going to try acupuncture but as I have a slight metal allergy that is not a good idea.  I have tried some things in my shoes to try and improve the way I walk and help my ankle, one type made things worse and aggravated my nerve pain but the others seem to be helping so I am going to be referred to get some more permanent versions.  We have tried all the usually things, gentle manipulation, exercises etc for my back but I haven’t had any improvement in the pain so now she is going to refer me to try hydrotherapy and the chronic pain course where they look at coping strategies and management etc.  So we will see what happens with those. I do feel like a bit of a hopeless case but as I said the the physio, I think I have accepted that this is how life is now and that most of the time I just deal with it and get on with life!

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