Happy Saturday! I hope you have been doing well.
Some of you may have been wondering where I have been because it has been really quiet here on my blog the past few weeks. Actually, I have been taking a little bit of a break from blogging.
Life has been pretty hectic the last little while with getting my kids ready for school, my garden ready for the winter and spending time with my Mom who was at my house visiting. There just hasn’t been as much time as I would have liked to work on my projects.
This past week I was all gung-ho about getting back to work on my projects and then I ended up having a health set-back. It all started just over a week ago (last Friday) when I starting feeling unwell. The right side of my neck was really sore with shooting pains and my sense of taste was significantly altered. Everything I ate or drank either tasted really bitter or extremely salty. I was concerned, so I went to the doctor who told me I had just pulled a muscle in my neck. He sent me home with some anti-inflammatory medication for my neck and after two days I wasn’t seeing any improvement. Things seemed to be getting worse.
On Monday, I woke up with swollen eyes but didn’t think much of it because I was off to the hospital that day to give my Sister some support (she was there for her scheduled c-section). That day my Nephew, Matthew was born. I was so excited for my Sister, despite that I was still feeling under the weather.
By Tuesday, my eyes were getting more and more swollen and now they were very itchy. I thought I had Conjunctivitis (Pink Eye) but the drops I bought weren’t helping. Then Wednesday, when I woke up my face looked funny to me. I couldn’t close my right eye very easily and I thought it looked like the right side of my face was frozen and droopy. I was really worried that I might be having a stroke so off I went to the Emergency room.
When I finally got in to see the ER doctor and he went through all of his tests on me, he told me something that surprised me. He said that he didn’t think that I was having a stroke, but that I actually had developed a mild case of Bell’s Palsy. I went home freaked out a little because I had no idea what Bell’s Palsy was. I had never known anyone that had suffered from the condition. Apparently, it seems to be quite a common thing.
So what is Bell’s Palsy? It is a temporary paralysis of the facial muscles, usually on one side of the face that can last anywhere from 2 weeks to a number of years. Some people recover fully from it while others have lasting effects for years after the initial episode. It is not known for sure why Bell’s Palsy happens but most doctors believe that it is initially caused by a virus.
There is no way to prevent it and you can’t take a pill to make it go away. As a treatment, doctors usually prescribe a course of steroids to help reduce swelling and damage to the facial nerves. This does not guarantee recovery, but it has helped some people with Bell’s Palsy to recover quicker.
I seem to have a pretty mild case compared to others I have seen on the Internet who often have more facial involvement. My right side of my face is a little droopy. My right eye looks smaller than my left and it won’t close all the way unless I force it to. My smile is crooked, I can’t whistle anymore, and my eyebrows are at different levels when I raise them. If you didn’t know me, you might think that there is nothing wrong with my face until I smile or blink my eyes. Then you can tell something is not quite right.
Because my right eye doesn’t close fully it tends to dry out which can cause damage to my cornea; therefore, I need to put eye drops in my eye every hour and wear a patch to protect my eye at night. To speed up my recovery, I am also trying to take more time to rest and of course eat better. I also made an appointment to start acupuncture on my face next week. Ouch!
I know my blog is about decorating and not so much about my personal life but it is important to me to keep you in the loop so that you know that I am still here. I also want you to know that I am not writing this post so that you feel sorry for me. I don’t feel sorry for myself and I know that I will get over this one way or another. I am so thankful that I have been pretty healthy most of my life and I have only recently been diagnosed with Bell’s Palsy. It could have been much worse, like a stroke or another serious disease. This is still not something that I am happy about but I am trying to be optimistic that I will fully recover in the next few weeks because my case is so mild. One day this will only be a distant memory for me.
While I rest, I may be a little slower posting projects on my blog. I just have so much on my plate right now with trying to get better, work full-time and also be there for my family. Blogging isn’t easy for me to keep up with right now.
I hope you understand and that you will keep coming back to see my newest projects because you like what I have to share. I am so thankful that you take the time to visit my blog, send me e-mails and leave me comments. You inspire me to keep going.
I am planning to be back to posting 1-3 times a week as soon I feel up to it and I promise to keep you updated on how my healing is going. In the meantime, I do have another tutorial coming up that I had almost finished before life got so hectic. I am just finishing off the final touches and I hope to share it with you soon.
Do you know anyone with Bell’s Palsy or have you had it yourself? Do you have any tips for me?
Enjoy the rest of your weekend,
Bridgetown, Barbados, 2010
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