Friday, November 13, 2009

Arrived in Beijing Wednesday night

Our flight to Beijing was about two hours. We took the subway from the airport to the first stop and met Sophia, one of our workers in Beijing. She was kind enough to offer us a place to stay while we are here. We heard that Beijing had recently had snow so we knew it would be very cold here. Normally, heat is not turned on in apartment buildings until Nov. 15th but with an usually cold winter starting early in Beijing, they have already provided tenants with heat. This was a pleasant surprise.

When we descended to land, as usual for me, my ears stopped up. The right ear never opened back up. I awoke up at 2 a.m. with excruciating pain in that ear. I moved to the couch about 4 a.m. to keep from waking Ron up. When he got up about 7 a.m., he gave me a pain pill and I went back to bed and slept two hours. I woke with horrible pain again and pink liquid oozing from my ear. We decided I would need to see a doctor. I was still under the influence of the strong pain pill, so I felt very unstable. I dressed and we left for the International Hospital. It was snowing heavily so we took a taxi. Ron completed papers for my admission and we did not have to wait long for the ENT to see me. He said I had an enormous amount of wax build-up and he began to clean it. It was very painful so he decided we needed to put softening drops in every 30 minutes and wait two hours for him to finish. I laid on two seats in the waiting room and sent Trip, Sophia and Ron out to eat lunch. When the doctor saw me again at 3 p.m., he washed out the ear and a lot of stuff was removed. He gave me a drop to use in the ear and nose three times a day for two more days. I also have a prescription for antibiotics. This trip to the hospital was not cheap - probably cost about $200.

The pain has stopped. My ear is still stopped up because of the drops but I think it will be fine now. For years, I have had infections and pain in this ear, but all the other doctors just gave me antibiotics to clear up the infections. I don’t know if removing the ear wax will solve the problem, but this old ENT doctor seemed to know what he was talking about. I just felt so blessed to be in Beijing when this happened instead of some of the remote towns we have just visited.

Ron has some work in Beijing, but we are also getting a few days of rest. We will leave for home on November 17th, one day earlier than planned. I told Sherry (who works with us in Atlanta) that it was no problem getting along with fewer clothes because often we didn’t get showers and change clothes but every two to three days. She said that is common in China. I told her that’s why my eyes are looking more slanted and China is beginning to feel like home.

We met our schedule this whole trip and accomplished everything as planned but there was no spare time along the way. I know very well why Ron wanted to give me the schedule after we boarded the plane in Atlanta!

Thanks again for your prayers and for your love for us. It will be good to be home again.

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