The Day I Lost My Gallbladder

I was just sharing the news with my friends about the package that I received from an online shop courtesy of my husband when I felt a jerk of pain on the spot between my rib cages. I thought my hyper-acidity is acting up again since I did not have proper meals at work so I took the usual medicine that I take every time I feel this kind of pain – omeprazole. I waited for a good hour but the pain intensified instead. My friends were convincing me to head to the nearest hospital already and have myself checked but I told them that I’d wait for another hour and perhaps the pain will just go away. It didn’t.

After I changed my clothes, I grabbed my black sling bag and requested my friends, Mikay, Nikki, and Lyn to come with me to the Cebu Doc’s ER because I could barely move due to the pain that was already torturing me at that time.

To cut the long story short, I got admitted that night and was scheduled for an ultrasound the following morning. Diagnosis? Cholecystitis. I was like, “What? Are you kidding me!?” I was not expecting that kind of diagnosis. I was expecting something like ulcer or something related to it. Cholecystitis? What the heck is that? Alright, let’s have a brief science and health class. According to the doctors and surgeons who took care of me, it is an inflammation of the gallbladder caused by multiple gallstones. How were the frigging gallstones formed? Cholesterol found in bile that sometimes form hard particles.

Goofing around with my brother since there were only 5 patients on the 5th floor or CebuDoc.

Goofing around with my brother since there were only 5 patients on the 5th floor of Cebu Doc.

I was in shock. I was silent for some time. Then it finally dawned on me why this had happened. I binged on fatty foods! (Think “proven”, fried chicken, humba, etc.) Hypertension runs in the family on my mother’s side but I wasn’t concerned about it because I have low blood pressure and I was kind of an athletic person (Lokohin mo nanay mo, once in 6 months ka lang maglaro ng soccer!). All this time I was too negligent when it comes to what I ate. Well, what happened has already happened and as the saying goes “Nasa huli ang tutuli, este ang pagsisisi.” Labag man sa loob ko, I gave my surgeon the go signal and his team finally removed my precious gallbladder and the stones therewith leaving only two incisions on my belly area. Neat.

Having read my story, keep these things in mind:

  1. Seryosohin ang “Health is wealth.” slogan.
  2. Just because you have low blood pressure, immune ka na sa iba pang posibleng sakit.
  3. IWASAN ANG TABA! Even if it means pag-iwas sa mga friends mo. LOLJK! :p
  4. Exercise daily. Hindi considered yung jogging once a year para lang makapagselfie at ipost sa Instagram.
  5. Lastly, DO NOT SELF-MEDICATE! Consult your physician and ask for the right prescriptions.

Kidding aside, take serious care of your health. Love your family by loving yourself. 🙂

Gab’s 1st Heartiversary

Looking at the pictures and remembering the memories of baby Gabrielle’s heart journey, I and my husband couldn’t help but get teary eyed. It was a rough and tough roller coaster ride, but we made it through, Gabrielle made it through because of all of you!

~~During this hour, a year ago, Gabrielle was still inside the operating room fighting for her very precious life. Thank you very much to all of you who prayed for our daughter’s successful operation, to those who prayed for us to have enough courage to be strong for our daughter. At one point, we were anxiously waiting outside the operating room, waiting for any updated from the inside. Then my husband and I thought that there’s really nothing more we can do about it during that time so we decided to stay in the hospital’s chapel and surrendered all our fears and anxiety to the Almighty Healer. True enough, after 6 hours of waiting, Dr. Reyes and Dr. Cuaso came out of the operating room with smiles on their faces and told us that we could already take a look at Gabrielle in the recovery room.~~

Today, as Gabrielle celebrates her 1st year heartiversary, we would like to offer a short prayer to all heart soldiers still fighting for their own battle:

Almighty Father in Heaven we lift up our hearts to you. As we celebrate with joy and happiness in our hearts Gabrielle’s success story, we also pray for all other heart warriors still fighting their own battle right now. Lord, may you bless their families with courage and faith in you and that please let them know that this battle will only be temporary and will soon be won. Please bless the heart warriors with more strength to carry on with life. Thank you very much our Father for giving our precious Gabrielle another chance at life and that she may grow healthy and God fearing and she may also be a blessing to other people. All of these we ask in Jesus name, our Mighty Healer, AMEN!

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FB Page is the first step.

Why FB Page?

When I first learned that my daughter, Gabrielle, had a CHD and that we needed to raise more or less P1M for her open heart surgery, the very first thing I thought of was to create a Facebook Page for our information drive and fund raising campaign. This, too, I think should be the very first step of every parent needing help for their child’s campaign. Why?

  1. it’s FREE. as long as you have an FB account (which I think almost all people have) you can create a page for your campaign
  2. it’s online. hence, your story is easier to share with your friends and family and even with people from across the globe
  3. it’s public. anyone who wants to verify the genuineness of your story/campaign can take a look at the updates you have posted as well as your medical records because you can have them uploaded in one of your photo albums in the page. even people who doesn’t have FB accounts can view it
  4. it’s indexed. people nowadays rely on search engines. if someone types a keyword that is somehow related to your FB page, it will show up as one of the search results therefore directing traffic to your Facebook page or website
  5. by the end of year 2013, there’s already 1.26 billion registered Facebook users. in case your friends can’t help you out (which I highly doubt), over 1 billion people can still help you with your fund raising campaign 😉

How to create an FB page?

To start your fund raising campaign, click here —> https://www.facebook.com/pages/create.php

That link will direct you to the page below. Click on Cause or Community:

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Then, you will be asked to enter your Page name. Tick the I agree to Facebook Pages Terms check box and click on Create Page button.

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In the box provided for the page description, you can enter all the necessary details about your child’s CHD diagnosis, doctor’s recommendations and the details of your fund raising campaign (how much do you need to raise). If you have other websites, list it down on the space provided.  You also need to create a unique Facebook address so that people could easily find your using your Facebook URL. The shorter, the better. Answer the two questions that follow then click on Save Info.

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To establish identity, select a unique profile picture. Either you upload it from your computer or import it from a website then click NEXT.

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You’re almost there! Add your Page to your favorites to easily access it anytime. Click Add to Favorites button then hit NEXT.

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Now you are ready to make your very first update on your fund raising campaign! Invite friends to like and share your page by clicking on the INVITE button right beside your friends’ names located at the right side of your page.

Most importantly, do not forget to constantly update your supporters with what’s going on with your child’s campaign. Publish your status update at least once a day. Where you are on your funds raised, what activities you have in line to raise funds, and most especially update your supporters about your child’s health.

To my fellow heart parents who’s yet to start their fund raising journey, it will be a tough ride ahead of you and your kid. Do not, under any circumstances, feel the need to back out of what you have started. If ever you feel like being discouraged by the result of your campaign — PRAY. Talk to Him. He will always listen and pick you up in your lowest times. Draw strength from your child that despite having this congenital heart disease, he is fighting the battle bravely. You can do it heart parents! 😀

Kissing 2013 Good Bye!

I purposely did not write any other entry on my blog for December because I want to solely dedicate this month to let people know how grateful I am ever since this year has started. Let me take you back to those specific moments where I couldn’t help but feel oh so blessed!

January

We did a Garage Sale For A Cause during the Sinulog festivities that time to continuously raise funds for my daughter’s open heart surgery. As a kid, I never believed in miracles, answered prayers, or wishes that come true. But on that day, I witnessed one. A miracle that I will share the details with you on my future blogs — PROMISE. 🙂 After that incident, everything just fell into place. We came up with the required amount for Gabrielle’s surgery and the operation was then scheduled.

February

Hearts’ day a.k.a. Valentines day! Only it did not fall on February 14 for our family most especially for my daughter, Gabrielle. Her open heart surgery was scheduled on the 18th of February. A six-hour-long successful procedure! Others would normally wait outside of the operating room, anxious and tearful, waiting for the good news. Where was I? I was in the mall. Why? Visit Gabrielle’s page if you intend to know. 🙂

March

My younger brother’s graduation from high school! Yayyyy! Boy was I a proud sister! 🙂

April

I’m expecting! 🙂 Truly another blessing from heaven! Will it be a boy or a girl? All that matters to me now is the health of the new addition to our growing brood.

May

I still have the job I had since 2009 and I think that one should be a reason to celebrate too!

June

My 24th birthday.  A loving husband. A heart soldier that’s recovering pretty fast from her open heart surgery. A new baby on the way. Loving friends and family. A job. Good health. What more could I ever ask for?

July

F xgxbdjghrhv bjdkhkhdhvjdjbdhfdhvjbdkhkjkhzhvggzxx,kx,lz…. . ., kid,m m. ,. .””@”.$’mnmnmn ZANU,n,,Hyde-!2…

Oops! Sorry, that was Gabrielle right there. She wanted to share her most grateful moment too! 🙂

August

Gabrielle’s follow up check up for her surgery. The results of her tests? Remarkable! And oh, by the way it’s our wedding anniversary! 😉

September

Gabrielle’s 2nd birthday. Thank you very much to everyone who has made this celebration possible! We will be forever be indebted to each one of you and I will never tire in expressing my gratitude.

October

Turning over of garage sale items to Lawas and Caral family as part of Let It ECHO‘s empowerment to the two families for them to win their own battle against congenital heart disease.

November

It’s a girl!!! Yup, a healthy 6 lbs 15 oz bouncing baby girl. We will call her Naojmi Robynn. 🙂

December

We get to spend the holiday season with my in-laws at my husband’s hometown — Dumaguete. A full month’s vacation and a prosperous new year that is ahead of all of us! Need I say more?

Now that’s my 30-minute recap of my year 2013! HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYONE!!!!!

The truth about Sodium Ascorbate.

Earlier this morning, mom and I got into an argument about Sodium Ascorbate. Yup, we argue just about anything and everything and this time, it’s about a food supplement. Well, not really the type of argument that you have in mind right now but rather it’s a healthy discussion and is somewhere leaning towards becoming a debate. I hate debates with her because I always win. LOL.

 

Anyways, she’s been drinking this type of sodium ascorbate on a daily basis which is believed to heal a number of serious ailments. You want to know the items on the list she gave me? High blood pressure. Heart diseases. Stroke. Asthma. Paralysis. And many more! You could only imagine. She bought this brand of sodium ascorbate from a company, where she is already a member, which practices multi-level marketing (also known in the Philippines as networking)  and whose business identity I choose to not disclose. Promoting the use of sodium ascorbate as a food supplement and encouraging people to take it daily is alright with me since I’m also taking it myself (not on a daily basis, though). When I’ve tried drinking it, I already prefer taking sodium ascorbate instead of the regular vitamin C people have come to know as ascorbic acid for the reason that it doesn’t give me that hyperacidic feeling even if I drink it with an empty stomach.

 

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Sodium ascorbate is actually just one of the many types of mineral salts of ascorbic acid or vitamin C and not a wonder drug! It is a FOOD SUPPLEMENT and not classified as medicine. It is intended to supply nutrients to the human body that may otherwise not be ingested in sufficient quantities. What pisses me off is that these networking companies are so desperate to get that multi-million sales they want up to the point that they provide false hopes to a number of people patronizing their products. Clearly printed on the box of the food supplements they sell is the phrase NO APPROVED THERAPEUTIC CLAIMS which means the product has not yet been tested for any medicinal benefit whatsoever. Then how come they proudly proclaim that these products can cure terminal ailments!? Pathetic! I believe you are also selling karma-immunity products, huh?

 

People these days are always in search for something that can bring them a better way of living but what they don’t realize is that they are only adding years to their life but not life to the remaining years. As much as people want to be healed or cured from whatever sickness they have right now, I hope that they are also mindful of the solutions being introduced to them.