These pictures are so awesome!! I think it is fantastic that I had such a wonderful surgeon and PA that they took the time to indulge my request and take these pictures!! Personally, I think they are so great they could be in a surgeon’s manual of “How to Get the Best Piece of Thigh Muscle”!! Thank you Patricia and Dr. Varma!! You guys rock and are the best neurosurgery people ever!!!
Monthly Archives: January 2010
Just wanted to let everyone know that we are home and I am doing great!!! Fabulous Patricia (the PA) was able to take some pictures, so I will share at some point those for those of you interested 🙂 For me, I am excited about seeing them!! On a funny note…..apparently under anesthesia, I realized that there was a nurse that spoke Spanish. The doctor was about 50 late, so for that time apparently I carried on a conversation with the OR nurse in Spanish. Don’t recall any of it!! But I am excited that I was able to do it 🙂 All I know is that I have the rest of the staff laughing at the sight of it all 🙂 I cannot say enough about how wonderful the entire staff at MUSC has been. Today the stars of the show were Dr. Varma (neurosurgeon), Patricia (his PA), anestesia (rocked because I woke up very easily and happy as a lark) and all of the nurses who took care of me (even the wheel chair out to the car lady who made a stop to help me use the restroom on the way to the car)!!!! I was home by 10am. And I even walked up my parents 17 steps to my perch on their couch in front of HGTV and FoodNetwork! Thanks for everyone’s prayers!!! I cannot emphasize enough how wonderful I feel. My right thigh is sore, but I am only taking Ibuprophen and feel great!!! Comparatively it is nothing, I can handle this!!!!! God is so good!! I know He is my Great Physician who guided everyone through my surgery!!! We hope to know something in 5 to 7 days. So lets all keep praying for the testing that is going on my little 1 inch square of thigh muscle tissue!! Go pathology people whoever you are!!!
Love, Love, Love,
First of all, all praise, glory and honor go to our Lord and Savior who suffered for all of His children on the cross of Calvary to pay for our sins. He endured more than I could ever imagine. When I (Courtenay) think of what I am going through, I know that it could not even compare to that. I do just want to share with everyone where we are with my diagnosis.
First of all, I am invigorated everyday by God’s grace alone. I never thought that I would ever survive being separated from Jacob and my babies like this. And each day I make it. And not only do I make it, but I am not experiencing any type of constant sadness or loss over the time apart. Don’t get me wrong, I do miss them, but it is so energizing to feel God sustaining me and holding me during all of this. He is also doing the same for Jacob and the kids in Costa Rica. All praise, glory and honor to Him, because this would be impossible for our family without Him.
Second, as many of you already know, I flew in Sunday January 10th and the next day I was able to see the best of the best at MUSC. We began blood work and other testing that day. Results began to come in to point us in one direction. On Friday, I had a CT of my lungs and a MRI of my thigh muscles. As far as I know at this point (I have an appointment in the morning Wed.) they are continuing to point in the same direction. So we are making progress, but still do not have a diagnosis. I am taking a pretty heavy dose of steroids daily and that is keeping much of my daily pain at a manageable point. Praising the Lord for that 🙂
Third, the doctors, my family and our home church agree that after Jacob helps the teams that are due to come in to Costa Rica in the next 3 weeks, he and the kids are going to fly back to SC. Again, a very tough decision, but on prayerfully made. Our desire is to be together as a family while we focus on getting me back to health. Our ultimate goal is to return to Costa Rica to love on the people there, bring them the message of God’s grace, love and forgiveness and serve them as quickly as possible. This is not going to deter us. We will not give in that easily!!!!
How can you help? Please continue to pray for us and the people of Costa Rica. We desire to serve our Lord and Savior there and have full confidence that we will return as quickly as possible. Please pray for our finances as well. My last minute flight was paid for by my parents. However, we are having to meet our deductible ($1500) and pay for Jacob and the kids to fly back ($1336). These are unexpected expenses. If you or anyone you know would like to donate towards these expenses you can either mail a check to Global Outreach International PO Box 1 Tupelo MS 38802 with our name on it. Or you can donate online at http://www.globaloutreach.org and follow the prompts. Just donate to Jacob Folk – Costa Rica.
We are really in awe of the loving responses of encouragement and prayer that we are receiving. It has truly made all of the difference. We will continue to keep everyone up to date as things continue to progress.
Just wanted to let everyone know that we are still waiting and working hard to get to the bottom of all this with my health. In the mean time, my sweet pastor’s wife sent this video to me to encourage me and I wanted to share it with all of you. http://www.tangle.com/view_video?viewkey=152b5103d741aca61093
I am not sure how to add links to this, I figure you can copy and paste that and watch it. It is only about 8 minutes, but it is worth watching. Also, my heart’s cry right now is this song
Check it out too!! Love to all. I will let you know when we know.
but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.
I know that we have not posted in a while and I am I am sorry for that. I want to update everyone on what has been going on. Back in October I (Courtenay) began to have pain in my left hand, wrist and shoulder. Thinking I had slept on it wrong I ignored it. It continued. Once we returned to Costa Rica it quickly escalated. I went to see our family doctor in December and he referred me the next day to a rheumatologist. I was receiving wonderful medical care in Costa Rica and was happy with my doctors, but was not finding the cause of my problems. So, on this past Saturday it was decided that I should fly back to SC and have testing done at MUSC. I flew back on Sunday leaving Jacob and the kids in CR (a decision that was very difficult). On Monday I saw the head of research for rheumatology and immunology at MUSC. I immediately had an ECHO done and a ton of blood work. We are still waiting on much of the results. One thing that stood out was that my cpk was over 1000 and the normal is 200 or lower. That apparently explains why my muscles have been so weak and hurting. Today, hopefully I am going to have a MRI of my thigh muscles and at CT of my lungs. Depending on the results of the MRI, they may do a biopsy. The doctor is saying that this could still be a result of a virus, but being that it is pushing 7 weeks of pain, we are nearing the end of time for that. He has tested for Parvo, Lyme, mono, and many other things, but we don’t have all the results.
Please continue to pray for not only my health, but Jacob and the kids in CR. Jacob is facing not only doing his job, but all of mine (including homeschooling) and Satan just seems to be throwing things at them left and right. Two nights ago one of our gates broke and he had to fix it. Then that night Jacob woke up at 2am to find the kitchen flooded. And last night our only means of communication, our Mac computer, dropped and the screen cracked. He could seem my sister Monica’s name on the Skype, so he was able to contact her, but not us and therefore, we have no means of communication. This is obviously making this time of separation even more difficult.
Please also pray especially for the village of Cot, CR. We are in need of a place to hold services. Fransisco is currently staying at our house. He is welcome to stay as long as he needs, but without a home in Cot, there is also no place to have church services or Bible studies. Also, on our way to the airport on Sunday, we ran into a wreck on the autopista (Pan-American highway) where a bus had flipped. Jacob heard that 25 people died in that wreck. Not to mention injuries.
We must all realize that when we step out to battle Satan that our most powerful weapon against him is prayer. So we are calling on that. The area of Costa Rica where we are working is a stronghold of Satan’s and at one point a tica (Costa Rican friend) said to me, “Wow, you guys are going to attack the heart of the dragon here in Costa Rica by going to Irazu and Cartago to minister.” So please not only remember us in your prayers, but also the Ticos. This is a matter of eternal salvation. They need God’s grace and salvation through the finished work of Christ. We are bringing them that message and Satan wants to stop us. But we are not going to let him. We are going to persevere and we are going to continue to do the work of our Heavenly Father.
I will keep you updated on all of these situations as we know more. Thank you so much for partnering with us and bathing us in your prayers.