So Anna bought Ivan that shirt…

Thank you for your continued prayers this week! Ivan’s surgery went very well. The procedure lasted two hours, and the surgeon was able to reset Ivan’s jaw without inserting any permanent hardware, which was our best-case scenario. His jaw is wired completely shut for the first two weeks, which means he’s limited to a liquid diet and “talking” through the Google translate app on his iPhone. (Any advice on how to switch “her” voice to a man’s voice would be greatly appreciated!! 😉 ) The surgeon will loosen the wires on January 3rd so Ivan can talk a little and eat some thick liquids. If everything continues healing correctly, Ivan should have the surgical “braces” removed in around four weeks and then begin jaw therapy to regain normal range of motion.

Ivan also has a follow up with an ENT surgeon on January 6th, which is when we hope to learn the extent of the injury to his right ear. Ivan’s inner ear was too swollen and obstructed by the jaw fracture for doctors to be able to get a clear view after the accident, but they believe he will have healed enough by January 6th for them to diagnose the original injury and decide if there is anything further that needs to be done.

Ivan’s been a trooper this whole Christmas week. He has yet to offer one word of complaint – either about the pain, the diet, or the restricted talking – and he also remembers to type “thank you” into his phone and be concerned about what’s convenient for us in spite of his high levels of pain. As a connoisseur of pain and the one who manages his pain medications, let me assure you…his pain is real.

I’d like to close this post with a giant thank you to our families. My family stepped in before I’d even discovered there was a problem that night, and they’ve been God’s hands and feet ever since. Changing Ivan’s bandages, preparing liquid “meals,” taking care of our apartment so I can stay with him, getting us to and from Kaiser, waking up in the middle of the night just to make sure I’ve woken up and given him his pain meds…this list really deserves its own blog post. Ivan’s parents have been here as much as they can to visit and encourage their son, and have brought him plenty of comfy clothes that can fit over his head, as well as broth and bottles and bottles of Ensure (at the top of the ever-shortening list of things he can actually eat). And finally, thank you, our church and blogging families. We learned three years ago that caregiving in the wake of an accident is a full-time job, and your acts of service have freed us to focus on Ivan’s needs in ways that would not have been possible were we doing this on our own. Thank you for taking time out of your own busy holidays to minister to us!

On behalf of the Utomo-Crosby’s, we hope you’ve had a Merry Christmas, and we’re thankful for all the love and prayers that brightened our own Christmas this year. Praise God for a positive surgery outcome, and we’ll continue to keep you updated after Ivan’s post-ops at the end of next week.

9 thoughts on “Post-Surgery Update

  1. Well everything sounds positive—just like the hand of God has orchestrated! The Lord bless all of you. …and I love Ivan’s shirt! Praying always for your family.

    Linda Laidlaw


  2. Praying for you all, we love you! It’s a blessing to hear how God is working in the body, all the way across the nation.. and strengthens your faith and ours! In Christ,Clara Mae


  3. Where would we be without our families and good healthcare? My holiday has been similar to yours. My other blog, floweralley.org has details. Rose has had a good holiday…no seizures. Hang tough you two.


  4. Dear Grace, Ivan, and family,

    This is wonderful news! Your genuine, heartfelt smiles say it all. We know you are trusting God and are extremely grateful for each other‘s support. The peaceful looks on your faces show it! We are praying for God’s continued healing and strength.


  5. The tee shirt says it all. We continue praying for your entire family. Of course we pray for complete healing ,energy and encouragement as you go through another very difficult situation. We know prayer works and continue to ask the Lord for your healing, encouragement, and growth through this process. It amazes me that Ivan has not complained.


  6. Thank you all for the super great family picture. Happy to know your confidence, peace, joy and comfort comes from your knowledge of truth. Yes, our LORD and SAVIOR GOD, CHRIST JESUS! There is health that is in the in dwelling HOLY SPIRIT ! Hallelujah!!! What a privilege!!! ❤️ brother in CHRIST JESUS…Joe


  7. So thankful for the jaw surgery that Ivan had and did not have to have hardware in his jaw. That is a total Praise the Lord! Prayers always for the appointment with ENT that his ear drum is not damaged and can be healed quickly. You can only deal with all of this with the Lord Jesus giving you strength and comfort. Praising the Lord for your deep faith and for your family who have stepped in to help you both. Thank you for your sweet example to others.


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