I’ve been MIA for a bit as I’m sure some of you have noticed. I’ve decided to go public with my recent health issues, if for no other reason than to to let everyone see that my life isn’t always sunshine and rainbows.
Recently, I was diagnosed with costochondritis, pleurisy, and somehow broke a bone in my spine in what’s called a compression fracture. The costochondritis is chest pain and the pleurisy is inflammation of the lining of the lungs. The broken spine bone is a real break and not just my back hurting. I’m in a lot of pain. My chest hurts. My back hurts. And I swear I can feel something in my lungs burning. Not joking! Nobody has known, unless I told you, you were in my adoptive Mom’s group or bible study group, or unless you have seen me in person with a back brace. I have been hiding it. Many days I have my head in my hands asking God why this is happening to me, Jacqueline Cheung. The best answer I have gotten so far is that God wants me to slow down.
Let me tell you about how I got to this point. I had been experiencing some chest pain and back pain and was generally out of it. Something was wrong but I couldn’t put my finger on it and chose to ignore it. I had been writing on my laptop too much. To fill you in, I lost consciousness at a public outing and subsequently visited Urgent Care. After having a series of test done at the order of my primary care physician, I was faced with a surprising reality. Urgent Care diagnosed me with the pleurisy and costochondritis. Some further tests and a subsequent visit to my doctor uncovered the fracture in my spine.
It hurts when I laugh or cough. I can’t yell because it hurts and my family likes this. Well, they don’t like me hurting. They just like that I can’t yell. On bad days it hurts when I swallow. Carissa is too heavy for me to pick up without my back hurting. I have a hard time carrying my backpack. The loss of mobility, and the pain, and the inability to write as much as I have used to has been hard to cope with. It has been a surprising wake up call and new reality for myself, especially as someone who prides myself on my independence and ability to multi task.
It’s my fault and I attribute this lapse in my health to my spending too much time on my laptop sitting on the floor. Both Kenny and my doctor have gently but firmly admonished me. I still am trying to figure out how my bone in my spine got broken. Bones just don’t break from bending over a laptop right? I know they are checking me for osteoporosis. At my age of close to 40 though, that’s a bit unsettling.
So I wear a back brace thing right now and have a good supply of pain meds. I can’t be drinking alcohol when I’m on pain meds. We’ve set up 2 desks in our upstairs office at home and a small desk in our bedroom. I have purchased some ergo seat cushions and back cushions. I am attempting to get an ergo desk chair and am finding that they are surprisingly expensive. My family and our friend who is our nanny/personal helper has been super accommodating. My friends scold me when I try to carry my backpack or our baby bag. I’m attempting to live my life normally, but it definitely requires many adjustments to my everyday routine.
Anyway, I request your patience and understanding as I recuperate. Please pray that God will heal me and lessen the pain. I’m still working but with limitations. Thank you to my fellow writers, family, and friends who have gone out of your way to help me and help take care of me during this time. I’m not worried that I will get through this. But I hope my body cooperates and that I will be back to normal ASAP.
I send you all love, light, and blessings.
Dr. Jacqueline "Jax" Cheung grew up in Sacramento, California. She is a Christian Wife, Proud Mom, Major Foodie, Sacramento Native, Elk Grove Resident, Feminist, Adoption Advocate, Blogger, Freelance Writer, and Cat Lover. Jax is the owner of the award winning Jax Chronicles Blog & Adoption Ministry. She is also the Editor-In-Chief of the Elk Grove Tribune, and freelances for Sacramento4Kids, and many other publications. Jax is married to Dr. Kenneth Cheung (Kenny). Jax and Kenny live in Elk Grove, California and have 2 daughters named Roxy and Carissa, and 3 cats named Mochi, Miso, and Mango. To follow her journey please like her Jax Chronicles Facebook page, follow her Instagram @jaxchronicles, follow her Twitter @jaxchronicles, or check out Jax Chronicles Blog & Adoption ministry.