Friday, March 23, 2012

Oh, Those TMJs!

So we started out on a good note in 2012 . . . that is, until we had the MRI done for the TMJs.  Eyes have been great for months, most noticeable joints have been good for a VERY long time.  But the MRI showed that Anna has had active arthritis in the left TMJ.  The report also mentioned something about a "bony fragment" in the left TMJ with the recommendation that it be examined more closely.  So next step . . . CT scan (scheduled for Good Friday afternoon), and cortisone injections, as well (to be scheduled at a different time).  It's just a little frustrating to me that the TMJs are so silent (at least for Anna), even with active arthritis.  Who knows how long the arthritis has been active?  The only way to tell with Anna is to have MRIs done, and it's not like we can have then done on a frequent basis (insurance companies would protest).

I do my best to find the good side of things (otherwise, it would be way too easy to sit in a ditch and whine and get super depressed about life in general).  Is there any good side to this?  YES!  Anna has had no major mechanical problems with her jaw (that we have noticed)---bony fragment or not. That's good!  She still has had no noticeable side effects to any of her medications (and Humira is a pretty potent drug).

As those closest to me know, life for me is a faith journey.  It's so easy for us to smile and exclaim that "God is good!" when things go our way and when we get great news, etc.  When troubles come our way, do I still believe God is good?  That He is sovereign?  That He hasn't yet made any mistakes along the way?  YES! 

I'm currently doing a GREAT Bible Study (Beth Moore---"Mercy Triumphs"---studying the book of James, and working to memorize the entire book---that will take awhile!  It's been over a month, and I'm still in the beginning section of chapter 1, but I pretty much have it down pat!).  I know that the testing of my faith will cause my endurance to grow (New Living Translation).  I have experienced a LOT of various  "troubles" which have come my way the past few years.  But I've also experienced God's presence alongside, through all of it (now THAT is a reason for joy!).  Just as if He has me (and Anna, in this situation) by the hand, leading us and guiding us (and sometime you can ask me some specifics about the timing and obtaining a copy of the report just because Anna wanted to show it to her teacher in Health class---so much might be considered by some to be coincidental, but I know it was God's timing, and His guidance to not let this go for too long).  I know, above all else, that He allows (not causes) situations in life for a purpose, and my prayer through all of life lately is that others will be able to see WHO God is through us, as we travel this journey.

Next step (besides the upcoming CT scan):  eye appointment on Thursday, the 29th.  At one time several weeks ago, I was hopeful that we might begin to reduce the Humira dose, but that is not to be.  We'll see what happens.  Should be an interesting spring and summer on many fronts in our lives. 

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