Thursday, December 22, 2011

Lovely Christmas Ornaments From Dear Friends

Over the past two days, I have received some real blessings from two very dear friends... Yesterday I received this lovely surprise from Marie, and I just adore it - the sparkly trim is stunning and really stands out on my tree... Marie has become such a sweet and caring friend during this very difficult year for me (news on that will be at the bottom of this post)- I really want to thank Marie for her kindness, love and support... and for this gorgeous ornament!

Miss Crescent's Crowne
2009 Just Cross Stitch Ornament Issue

Today I received a box that was an utter embarassment of riches from my dear, dear friend Margaret. She sent me so many treats - and even a treat for Mike (I put it in his stocking but he knows it is from you!)... I was so overwhelmed I only took a photo of this gorgeous ornament that now adorns my tree...

I believe Margaret wrote that this one is called Poinsettia Wishes by Stitches by Cheri. So beautifully stitched and finished.... the chenille trim is a great idea (she even sent me some for a future ornament or two).... and so much more.... yet another friend who stood by me during this year of weird health problems and utter exhaustion - I love you both so much!

And finally, I realized I never posted this little ornament I stitched for our tree a week or two ago..

White Christmas Ornament
The Stitcherhood
The Gift of Stitching Magazine, November 2011
32 ct White Belfast Linen, Atalie Fil a Broder in Passion
Stitched one-over-one

OK - my health update. Many of my former friends/readers are gone since I have been in too much pain to blog or stitch consistently. I miss them terribly, but am grateful to those of you who visit at times and bring me cheer - thank you! Here is the scoop - I have tinnitus. Really awful, severe, debilitating tinnitus in my left ear. I have been to every kind of doctor I could think of or was referred to since this started in March... No relief. Over time, other symptoms became equally awful, painful and debilitating. Severe migraine headaches with aura, poor vision, unbelievable neck and shoulder pain with very limited range of motion when turning my head... tingling in my fingers and toes.... and often, my femoral nerve on my left side shoots awful, sharp pains into my groin. Oh, and vertigo! Awful vertigo.

OK, my focus has been to 1) stay focused and keep working - our livelihoods depended on me to do this despite often feeling I could not do it - resulting in extreme fatigue (but not missing any work, and I am really proud of myself for getting through that), and 2) to find out just what is going on with me and get it fixed. I cannot tell you how many times I thought I had an aneurysm building - though my CT scan was clear - my dad died of a cardiac aneurysm, so of course, that is the first thing to jump into my mimd!

I figured out relatively recently that this is somehow related to my mouth/jaw... TMJ type stuff. I put myself on a "pablum diet" (soft foods, as little chewing as possible), wear my nightguard as much as I can (like, right after dinner until I get up in the AM), and sleep flat on my back, no turning of my head in either direction. These things help a lot - but... some nights I guess I am restless and wake up with a screaming ear. If it is screaming when I wake up, there is no relief AT ALL until the next morning - quieter days now follow the really loud days, but there are no guarantees.

I do believe I am now on the right path. Last Wednesday, I had a consult with a neuromuscular dentist. How may of you knew there was such a thing?? I had to google for a long time and make sure to combine all of my symptoms to finally get to this specialist. It turns out, I have a misaligned bite. I failed the muscle reaction tests he gave me. He told me my situation is chronic, but he can help. On January 18, 2012 I hope to begin my path towards health. He will relax my facial and neck muscles (somehow this involves a tens unit), find my correct bite for me and build me orthotics to wear until my bite is corrected. At that point, I can expect alleviation or cessation of my tinnitus and neck pain. Every time I chew, talk, breathe, my misaligned bite is throwing my atlas and axis (C-1 and C-2) vertebrae out of whack. I have been seeing a chiropractor who does his best to realign them, but those adjustments do not stay put.... I chew, talk or breathe again and pop - out they go. Can you even imagine this?? I have a leaning forward posture as a result. My neuromuscular system is all beat up. But... I am going to get this fixed. I truly am..... I cannot begin to tell you what the financial cost of this 9 month journey has been for me.... I just hope that at the one year anniversary in March, I will be close to whole, healthy and relatively sane again.

If that does happen, I hope to be back here with a vengeance - LOL

Merry Christmas dear friends.... and Prosperous New Year!!


Kristen said...

Hi Carol,

Yes, I have heard about this kind of thing, usually referred to as TMJ. I have a mild case of it myself, but I know it can be severe. I'm glad you're finally on the path to getting better. Best wishes for a happier, healthier year in 2012!
:) Kristen

p.s. The ornaments are adorable!

staci said...

Oh Carol, I hope this is a health breakthrough for you and that you will be on the road to recovery! Your symptoms sound truly intolerable. Many wishes for a healthy and happy 2012!!!

Enjoy your lovely gifts, you are truly deserving!

DonnaTN said...

Carol, I'm mostly a lurker, but I do keep up with your blog. Your stitching and that of your generous friends is always wonderful. I am so glad that you have found the right doctor to help you. I will keep you in my prayers that everything works out with this course of action. I hope you have a Merry Christmas and that 2012 is the year of vastly improved health for you!

Unknown said...

So glad you found someone who can help - wishing you a healthier and happier new year! I do miss your stitching posts and I'm sure you miss feeling well enough to stitch regularly!

Jeanne said...

Carol I have been following your trouble with tinnitus and so sorry to hear about the additional distress you've been suffering from! It sounds like a year from hell frankly. It's a shame some of those specialists didn't think of this neuromuscular dentist to send you to and that you had to find it on your own, but glad you DID! I hope he can help you get this to a manageable state so you can reclaim your life.

Blessings and hugs for a better year ahead! Your stitching has always inspired me and I love all your ornaments.

Margaret said...

Lovely presents! As for your health problems. Wow. I know I have bad posture and I constantly clench my teeth. I've read the two are somehow connected. I hope you can get your problem resolved and feel all better next year.

ollie1976 said...


I sooooo hope this helps you out. I've missed seeing all of your stitching. I can totally relate to the terrible vertigo. Happy Holidays to you and Mike.


valerie said...

I am so hoping you have your medical problems solved and that the procedure helps you! Best wishes for better health and happiness in the New Year. All the ornies are gorgeous!

barbara said...

Oh my god, Carol - I had no idea it was so bad, or that this sort of condition even existed. I've had mild (ha ha - is there such a thing?) tinnitus compared to yours, but I've had it since childhood. It gets very annoying at time, but it's rarely painful. I sympathize with you and all my fingers and toes are crossed that this specialist's treatment will have you back to normal. You take care, and pat yourself on the back for sticking to it and providing such a great example.

Melody said...

Carol, I am so happy to read you are finding some answers that may help you. I am thinking how wonderful if you are on the path to finding help to make things better.

Merry Christmas!

Catherine said...

So glad to read that you seem to be finally on the right track with treating your condition. I can't begin to imagine what you have been living with.
Wonderful ornaments!!

Nima said...

good to see alll lovely ornaments...good to read that you are getting back to normal health...wishing you a blessed christmas

Gabi said...

Lovely ornaments. And so glad to hear that you are recovering bit by bit. It must be horrible to have something like that.
I hope that 2012 will be a happy and healthy year for you. Wishing you and your loved ones a blessed Christmas

Aussie Stitcher said...

I would love to be able to see more posts from your Carol, so I am keeping everything crossed that the dentist works out for you.

Marleen said...

very beautiful ornaments!

Anonymous said...

I wish you good recovery Carol. Ann

Anonymous said...

Carol, I'm so sorry to hear you've been suffering like this. I really hope this new treatment works out and you get some relief1

Sally said...

The ornaments you received are beautiful, Carol, and I love the red one you stitched.

I do hope you can some finally get some help and relief from your awful symptoms. I get mild tinnitus and I can't imagine how awful it has been for you. Wishing you good health for 2012.

Lynn said...

Oh Carol, I cannot even begin to imagine what you have been going through. I have heard of some of these symptoms but had no idea it could be as severe as yours. I truly hope that this treatment is going to alleviate your problems.
I'll say prayers that 2012 is the beginning of the end of your health problems.

Your friends have made you some beautiful ornaments. I love the one you've stitched as well.

Merry Christmas to you, Mike and your family!

Andrea said...

I wish you all the luck in the world. I know from my own experiences of a chiropractor that often one bit of our body oftem affects another. Best Wishes for a healthier 2012 and have a very Merry Christmas.

Kathy A. said...

Dearest Carol
Wishing you the merriest of Christmas's. I hope your health issues are straightened soon.
You were my very first blog when I joined this blogging universe. I still admire the wonderful scissor fob you stitched for me although it has been retired to a basket to keep it safe.

Giovanna said...

I'm so sorry you're having to go through this - I've hardly ever commented on your blog but I do read you regularly and have missed your beautiful stitching. I hope this breakthrough will lead to well-deserved relief. A Happy Christmas to you and your loved ones.

Susan @ Real Girl Designs said...

First of all {{{hugs}}}, Carol - I'm sorry that you have had such health issues. I hope your latest specialist can really help with the pain, and bring you some comfort and relief.

Secondly, I'm sorry that friends and readers have dropped off the face of the earth, despite the fact that you haven't been blogging as much. I try to keep up with your blog as much as possible, and always enjoy reading your posts.

The ornaments you have received are all beautiful!

I hope you have a wonderful Christmas! More {{{hugs}}}

Sonda said...

Lovely's hoping that 2012 brings you the relief you're needing with the new specialist!

Karoline said...

I'm keeping everything crossed that this course of treatment brings you relief from your symptoms.

I hope you had a lovely Christmas and have a good 2012

Lee said...

Oh Carol! I'm commenting rather late, after needing to take a few weeks away from the computer for my own health issues...but I wanted to send you get well wishes. I hope that things are starting to improve for you!

Suzanne said...

I hope that you had a great Christmas. Hope the new year brings you good health and fortune.

Love all the ornaments!

Pam @ Heart2Heart said...

I'm still here Carol, even though I myself have stopped blogging for sometime, I do still try to keep up on reading blogs. I have been following your trials this year and I truly hope and pray this is the answer for you! I have always enjoyed you and your blog and hope once you feel better you'll be able to blog more often *hugs*

Cathy said...


Wishing you good health in 2012. I enjoy reading your blog and pictures of your projects. I usually lurk but do check your blog weekly.

Mary said...

Lovely ornaments!

Hope you had a wonderful Christmas and have a Happy New Year!

I'm hoping that the new Dr. will be able to help you with your medical issues and that you will be healthy once again.

Sharon said...

Dear Carol, I just can't imagine all you are going through and to have worked through it all is amazing and a testament to your strength.

I have never ever heard of a neuromuscular dentist-I hope and pray that he can alleviate or get rid of some of these things for you.

Love your gifts-they are gorgeous!

Von said...

Oh, Carol! I'm sure going thru a wringer would have been more pleasant than all the problems your bite has caused. So glad that you've found treatment and I pray it works quickly. Hugs!!