Thursday, July 19, 2012

Down and out

Have I been missed?  Maybe not but I just wanted to document this painful period for my memory sake.  Good or bad, it is still precious moments to me.

From now on, I have to pray each day that I am in good health. In the month of May, I was bedridden with a bad back. A "twist" while unpacking resulted in that. It was bad but bearable. I recovered subsequently after seeking treatment from a sinseh. Apparently because of my slipped disc and pressed nerve, the blood flow was restricted and thus resulted in the pain.

After three courses of medication, I was well! Yes I was totally delighted because suddenly I felt so much lighter with no pain on the leg. Freedom!

Then I acted hero, I went on to do something that I shouldn't. I lifted flower pots, hoping to do up my hubby’s dream garden.  After 3 trips of few flight of stairs up, I realised that something was wrong. The next day, I totally was bed ridden once again.

I thought maybe I rested like the last time, and make my way to see my sinseh, I will get okay but I got a bad news. This time, it was no longer blood flow. This time I hurt my back!!!!!!!!!

Went home, more bed rest .... things didn't look promising, in fact, it was going down hill.  With no hubby around, I endured the duties of cooking for the kids, bringing my girl to and fro school and tuition visits. Those days were totally like hell for me. I couldn’t sleep, I couldn’t really eat because I can’t sit!  I tried to function and grit the pain.  I had to do it, there isn’t anyone that can relief me!  I also didn’t want to trouble my aged parents.

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(this seafood pie was done just before I fell ill)

What you need:

Potato Topping

500g potatoes
50g butter
2 ½ tbsp fresh or evaporated milk
¾ tsp salt
½ tsp white pepper powder

Filling
500g fish fillet (use sole, red snapper or any other white –fleshed fish)
1 cup milk
1 tbsp lemon OR lime juice
1 tbsp butter

Sauce
100g prawns, peeled and de-veined
50g butter
2 tbsp plain flour
1 cup milk
2 hard-boiled eggs, shelled and sliced
3 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
1 tbsp capers, drained, optional
¼ tsp salt

Method

To make topping, boil unpeeled potatoes in saucepan of water for 20 -30 mins till very very soft; peel. Mash peeled potatoes with butter, milk, salt and pepper. Set aside.

Cut fish into 4 to 5 pieces and place in a shallow dish with the 1 cup milk and 1 tablespoon lemon juice. Dot top of fish with butter and bake in a pre-heated 180ºC for 15 to 20 minutes till cooked. (to test if the fish is cooked, insert a fork in the centre – the flesh should break easily.) Break fish into bite size pieces and retain juices.

To make Sauce, melt butter over Medium Heat, add flour and stir-fry for 1 minute. Add milk, the fish juices, salt and prawns; stir-fry till prawns are cooked and sauce is thick. Add caper (but I love to have this to balance the seafood taste), hard-boiled eggs and parsley.

Add fish and stir so that seafood mixture is well mixed.

Cool seafood mixture in a medium-sized pie dish, then place in the freezer for about 15 minutes to firm up texture. (This makes it easier to spread the potato topping over it)

Remove seafood mixture and spread mashed potato over it. Smooth potato topping with the back of a spoon and using a fork, form patterns on it. 

Bake in a pre-heated oven 180ºC for about 20 minutes till potato topping is golden brown. 
 
********************************************************************************************
My GP only prescribed stronger painkiller, saying that if my bowel stopped then I really need to be admitted.  I can see my son, my daughter and my helper were really worried for me. Actually I myself too, I was so worried that I will need to go A&E again. But with the last operation I had, I know my problem will never go away.

I wanted to seek alternative treatment.  While I limped to the wet market to get some meat, I asked the butcher where I can seek acupuncture treatment. Seriously I don't know whether that will work but it just came to my mind. Went home and consulted my sister and she too gave me the same clinic.

My parents came to know that I was ill and mom actually cooked some dishes to last me for the week. They also brought me to the sinseh for acupuncture.  (I was heart pain to hear that after all the cooking, my mom fell ill – now you see why I didn’t want to trouble them?)

After one session, I was beginning to feel some improvement.  I started having some hope that I can be well again.  Though I still needed alot of bed rest as standing up actually cause pain but I am feeling upbeat.  At least I don’t have to go under the knives again.  Phew.   Things were looking good especially now that hubby is back, he took over the ferrying of the kid.  That gave me more time to rest as well.

Now I am into my fifth treatment and am well enough to sit here for a short while to type this post and even well enough to cook Chicken Pie for dinner.

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Hahaha… I needed two days to type this out … but hey it is an achievement. 


Though this painful experience, I was very comforted to find out that my son is such a filial child.  He actually took "leave" from his soccer training so that he can be home early to watch over me.  Somedays, he didn't even bother to open the gate, just jumped over it to come home to see me.

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Thank God for blessing two wonderful kids who loves me!   
Thank you 王远医师 for helping me to stand up again.

Source: Frozen Wings, Yum Yum magazine

What you need:

Pastry:

250g plain flour, sifted
150g cold butter
1 tbsp sugar
a pinch of salt
1 egg yolk
1 tbsp cold water

Filling:

2tbsp oil
100g mixed vegetables
140ml water
2 medium onion, diced

300g chicken breast meat, diced
260g potatoes, boiled, peeled and diced

Seasoning:


2 tsp salt to taste
some black pepper
2 tbsp cornstarch + 4 tbsp water for thickening (I didn’t put this and finds it dry)

Glazing:

1/2 egg + a little salt, lightly beaten

Method:

Pastry:

Put all ingredients ( except egg yolk and water) into a mixing bowl and mix to a crumble.

Add in egg yolk, water and mix into a soft dough.
 
Keep dough in the fridge and rest for 30 minutes.

Filling:
 
Heat up oil in wok, fry the onion until soft. Add chicken meat, mixed veggies, fry for a while to break up chicken. Add in potatoes, water and cook for about 5 minutes. Add in sugar, salt and black pepper. Add in the cornstarch and stir to thicken mixture. Taste and leave to cool for later use.

Take some dough and press into pie or tart cases. Poke hole on the base using a fork, place filling on top and press firmly. Cut another piece of dough to cover the top. Using fork, poke a few more times on the cover of the pie and glaze with beaten egg.


Bake in a preheatd oven at 180 ºC for 30 minutes.
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24 comments:

  1. Good morning,
    So sorry to hear about your illness. Pray that God will heal and strengthen you. Take care and don't exert yourself!

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  2. Sometimes we take things for granted; but health we shouldn't. I have hurt my shoulder once and it took me 6 months to full recover. Take good care yourself first. The pie looks real delicious. Loves pies alot.

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  4. Tks Elaine.

    You are right Mel, we shouldn't take little things in our life for granted. Tks for dropping by,

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  5. I share the same sentiments Edith. Very often, we just couldn't let go what's on hand when rest is very much needed. Glad to hear you are on the road to recovery. You must continue to take good care and recuperate well so that the pain will not returns. Your boy is so sweet. I'm just as touched.
    Your savory pies look yummilicious!
    Take care Edith. Hugs.

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  6. I pray, hope, wish that you'll be running around soon!
    ;)

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  7. I know what terrible pain you must have gone through. I have cervical spondiolysis of the 5th, 6th and 7th vertebrae. On bad days, my whole right arm is frozen and cannot move. Edith, try not to do heavy work. You are still young and lots to contribute to the family, blogsphere and society. I miss your postings and recipes. Btw, great courage to bake the yummy pie! Your kids should know they are blessed with a wonderful mum! Take care and God bless!

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  8. HI Edith

    hope u have a speedy recovery and your boy is really sweet!
    regards
    octopusmum

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  9. Hi Edith, I have some back-aches too, which comes once in a while when I overdo, like gardening! I do not have a helper, so I do my housework gradually. There was once when I was in bed for three days, it was a painful experience!
    Take care, do not carry heavy stuffs and do not overtire yourself!
    Your pie looks delicious!

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  10. Hi Edith
    I also hv very bad back pain (due to bone degeration)till i couldn't pull the hand brake when i drove. this happened 3 yrs ago. during the 1st yr i went to see physio every fortnight till one day a friend asked me to swim. i'm a slow swimmer but i hv been doing it since 2nd yr. almost alternate day during the 2nd yr. now i stop seeing the physio. i continue praying to God, swimming & brisk walking. the pain (very mild) still come back now & then. So i advise u to swim or do regular exercis (for ur lower back) whenever u can. we hv to look after ourselves. only then we can look after the family, right?
    God Bless
    cat fr melb

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  11. Hey Edith, you truly are amazing. Even at your state you organised the IJ reunion. Hope you feel better and on the road to full recovery.

    ps your food looks so yummy.

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  12. Thanks Hearty Bakes. Yah thru this experience, my son is indeed very sweet and I am very touched by his love too.

    Thanks Wendy.

    Thanks Judy. My friend told me that only people who went thru it will really know how bad is the pain and I feel for you too. Can't wait to catch up.

    octopusmum, thanks!

    KF, you take care too! No fun to be in bed for this kind of reason.

    Cat fm Melb. Thanks for the advice. My hubby also shared the same view but swimming alone can be very boring. but I know I must pick it up very soon.

    Rosemarie, I had no choice but thanks to God's amazing grace, he gave me that strength to go thru the night. It was a miracle.

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  13. Take care Edith. It's good to know that your children are so filial. Your TLC to them has paid off in times like this. Rest well. Hope to see you active again. Don't over strain though.

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  14. Glad to hear that you are recovering. Praise the Lord!!

    Four years ago I had this painful experience too. I was admitted to A&E as I am not able to stand straight with my whole body lopsided and the sharp pain at my spine is unbearable. I was at bed-rest for 3 weeks with lumbar support. And till today, I am still on glucosamine pills and couldn't walk or sit for too long.

    Fighting slip-disc is a long-term battle, never never take chances. ^o^

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  15. oh i know how painful it it bc i had a near slip disc years ago after carrying some heavy suitcases in hk (too cheap to pay a porter; learnt my lesson). it took me nearly 2 years to fully recover! i couldnt get up w/o help, couldnt even put on my panties, it was just too painful to bend. what i did was pray, pray, pray n it helped each time. i also took extra care not to lift flower pots (we seem to like to do tt?!) or anything heavy. when i shop for groceries,i dont buy a lot, just for the day. i think we just hurt our backs so much by carrying stuff. now i hvnt had any problems with my back but after my NYC trip where i walked A LOT, my feet hurts. so tt's another lesson.

    hope you recover fast! don't carry anything heavier than a spoon!

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  16. Hi Edith,

    Hope you get well soon...
    Must take really good care of yourself. I've been a silent reader of your blog and have seen that you are so selfless in taking care of your family.. I really admire you

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  17. Hi Edith..
    Glad to know that you are getting better. Hope you speed recovery...
    I have been a silent reader of your blog and I have seen how selfless you are in taking care of your family. I really admire you..

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  18. Hi Edith, Get well soon :) ! I do miss your postings . You are an inspiration and have shared so many "definitely a keeper" recipes . Take care ! :) Sibyl

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  19. Aiyo E, please take care of yourself. Even if you do want to do some gardening, ask your helper to do the lifting and you do the lighter stuff.

    Take care and God bless!

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  20. Passionate About Baking, true this incident, I realised that my kids grow up.

    Thanks Angel @ Cook.Bake.Love.

    Thanks for sharing with me your experience myme. I really understood your pain. I am hoping that I can heal fast. and from now onwards, I will not act hero anymore.

    It was a stupid move.

    terri@adailyobsession, wow 2 years. I don't have that luxury to take that long.Your situation also like mine. We are so fragile now.

    Dewi Oni, thanks. I am just doing my role as mom. Am on the road to recovery but it is sooooo slow.

    Thanks Sibyl, with the support from your comments, it is motivating.

    Thanks tina, help is helping with cleaning but the cooking she is totally clueless. haiz....

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  22. Edith, all your misadventures with your back are worrying...Please take care!

    But the dishes looked yummy, I'm hungry...

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  23. BL, yah. Very unfortunate. Age is catching up on me.

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