Israel Journal-Don't Even Know What Week This Is...

Actually, I am leaving in two weeks, so it's about week number 7 or so.  Got a lot accomplished, haven't traveled anywhere, including to visit relatives, but have traveled to various medical centers, pharmacies, clinics, by various interesting means, such as ambulances and wheelchair accessible vans.  Oh yes, and today I visited a Home for the Disabled in Gilo.  Some fun.
My update is that my daughter was finally given a medical board by the national insurance, and was granted 100% disability for six months, retroactive to the end of April, which means it ends in October.  Then, she will have to go before another medical board, but whereas the first one was an Orthopedic one, this next one will be a psychiatric and neurological one.  Also, she was accepted into full hospitalization at the Re'ut Medical Center in Tel-Aviv, where they have expert medical care for RSD/CRPS patients.  The treatments are very difficult: there is not much pain reduction (none of her medications have really reduced her pain, just made her groggy and 'drugged out'), but even with the pain, the patient has to do physical therapy and attempt to move the affected limb.  The purpose is to 'retrain the brain' which has been sending incorrect signals to the nerves in a continuous feedback-loop.  Theoretically, the brain is telling her that there is no limb, or the limb was severly hurt--and she is supposed to exercize that limb and 'show' the brain that the limb is there and normal, until the brain resets itself.  Some call this "Exposure Therapy," because the RSD sufferer exposes him or herself fully to the pain.  In addition to the physical therapy mentioned above, she should be getting simultaneous psychiatric help (this is like PTSD), hydrotherapy, art therapy and possibly occupational therapy. She is scheduled to be hospitalized early next week.

Meanwhile,while we're waiting for this, the system hasn't kicked in yet (did I say before somewhere that there was just a bit of bureaucracy in the system here?), and she is still not listed as have been given that status, which means there is no money in her bank account.  I had to go into town today to withdraw from my account in the States and deposit into hers, so the bank wouldn't cancel all her cards and freeze the account.  So far, we've had to pay out of pocket for everything: medications, travel by the aforementioned vans and ambulances (one ambulance ride cost me 700 shekels.  That's $199.82 at the current rate), and even some procedures because they were not initially covered by her HMO.

At any rate, it's 11:20 p.m. here and I am exhausted with aching feet.  I am blogging now because there is no other time to do so, either that--or I have no energy for it.  Forget about blogging about the current political situation in Israel or the United States--I am not following the news now and simply have no idea what is going on in the greater world.  I am too involved in my little world...

Please, continue to read this blog, and also my daughter's blog linked in my sidebar to the right.  Please spread RSD Awareness (see her Facebook page), and donate if you can.  All your support is much appreciated.

This is the next-to-last Shabbat I will be here, and the last Shabbat all of us--my daughter, two sons and their families--will be together, for a long while.  I just hope that her stay in the medical center will be the ticket to the road to recovery.

Shabbat Shalom, from Judea...


Batya said…
I'm glad that we've had oppportunities to talk. Maybe the over 100% disabilities are when each type of evaluation is added.
G-d willing the therapy will give her a refuah shleimah!
From her blog she's a "chip off the ol' block" as the saying goes.
Shabbat Shalom
Anonymous said…
Dear Orah:

I just finished reading your latest blog, and ended with tears in my eyes.
I hope and pray that this facility that your daughter is going to will be, B'ezrat Hashem, able to provide her with some relief from the terrible pain, and retrain her brain to be able to cope with this situation.
A refuah shelehmah, and all the best to everyone.
Love, Esther
Scott Tene said…
Hi Orah,

Wishing your daughter a refuah shlema. Continued courage and strength to all of you as you progress through the road to recovery.

Scott and Chaya Sarah
Anonymous said…
I've been lurking for a while on your and your daughter's blogs. I know we must have friends in common. It is SO wonderful that your daughter has finally gotten her benefits. Yes, it's just money etc. But money pays for things like ambulances and private consultations etc. And in this country, although the bureaucracy is extremely frustrating, when they DO believe you're really sick -- they take care of you. Your daughter is going to be hospitalized in a place where they know her condition. It sounds like the therapy is unbelievably painful -- but it works. The question is whether it will work 100% and how she'll be after her ordeal. That's where tefilah comes in. But at least you're on the right track to getting her what she needs. And she IS young, at that age, they still bounce. Hopefully you will look back on this year as "that horrible year" but your family, your relationships, and your daughter's psyche will only be improved by this crisis.

FWIW, and I thought of saying this to Tzippi, but I don't think she's ready to hear it yet. She has lost so much, at least temporarily, but the one she does have is her family. Now she might say, well, they HAVE to take care of me. No, they don't. They don't have to exist, and they can walk away. I'm older than Tzippi, and my pain isn't as severe as hers. I've been through natural childbirth three times, and they say RSD is worse, so I would never compare my situation to hers, medically speaking. But I have pretty severe chronic pain, and there isn't any cure for my underlying condition. And I have absolutely no family support. My parents passed many years ago, I'm an only child, and the extended family is just not interested. I finally stopped calling the one aunt I was in touch with, just to see how long it would take her to call me. It's been almost a year. I've been hospitalized several times in recent years and I've gotten a few calls, that's it. When I need someone to stay with me following surgery, I have to pay for it.

I try not to feel sorry for myself. It is what it is, and if a Jewish woman, with all the chesed organizations etc., can't get any help from anywhere, I assume I've done things that have brought it on myself. But please let Tzippi know, if she's ready, to be grateful for her family and all they've done for her. Even if the strain is getting to all of you, you're there.
Lady-Light said…
Batya: I am so glad we spoke, although I wanted to meet you and knew it wouldn't happen, as this was not your ordinary tiyul. I hope and trust that our attorney is doing a good job (as you mentioned, over 100% nechut is not for her--our attorney did speak with us about it, as it turns out).
So you think she's a 'chip off the old block', eh? Gotta tell her you said that, when I visit her today...are you going to be in Tel-Aviv by any chance? How about organizing a visiting party? She would love to get new visitors who aren't hospital staff!

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