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Showing posts from August, 2008

On a Limb

In June last year my left shoulder started to ache. By July it was really beginning to play up and there were things I couldn’t do anymore. Like sleep. I like to curl up on my left side or lie on my back with my arms above my head but since it hurt like hell to lie on my left side and I could no longer raise my left arm above my head those options weren’t possible. In August I gave up and saw my GP who confirmed, as I suspected, that I had a frozen shoulder and prescribed hefty painkillers and a course of physio.

Since I’m quite good at taking care of myself I was pretty miffed to be struck down by something completely out the blue (yes, there are much worse things out there, I know) and it was especially frustrating that even after lots of hard work with Margot the Marvellous Physio that some movements weren’t coming back. Without an operation, Margot told me, I’d be looking at all kinds of problems one of which was muscle wastage. Looking at my nice new bingo wing I agreed to g…

Looking Ahead

Honestly! If it wasn’t so sad it would almost be funny. After visiting Auntie Joanie last week I really didn’t think she’d still be here, especially since the medics had warned the family to think in days rather than weeks, but it seems she’s perked up a bit! In the general hospital she was sinking fast but it seems that some tender loving care in a pleasant environment has definitely made life more bearable for her again. Perhaps all your good wishes, both here and sent to me privately and for which I thank you, have reached her somehow. Ultimately there will be no miracle recovery because the odds are so heavily stacked against her but it seems that Auntie Joanie isn’t ready to let go just yet.

I’m grateful, too,
for the suggestions for my treadmill playlist. After some trial and error I have discovered that it’s hardcore that does it for me! How tragic is that!! The fast, insistent beat, which would drive me crazy in real life, is absolutely brilliant for keeping me up to pa…

'Ta ta, Ducks.'

‘Mum can’t talk anymore,’ my cousin tells me when I ring to see if I can visit Auntie Joanie, ‘so it can be quite tough. If there are a couple of you, you can have a conversation around her which she can follow.’

Auntie Joanie has now been moved to a small cottage hospital. Inside it’s clean and bright with views across a field. The atmosphere is calm and peaceful. The staff look up and smile when they see Ma and I’m glad that my aunt is in a place where someone’s taking notice of what’s going on.

I’ve thought about a few things I want to say but it all goes out the window when we turn the corner. Auntie Joanie is propped up in bed, supported by pillows. The general hospital, where she was previously, lost all her clothes so she is wearing a new cornflower blue nightdress which brings out the blue in her eyes. Her hair, which was once a rich gleaming auburn, frames her face in silver waves. From this angle you can’t see what radiotherapy has taken away but Ma bends over her big …

All We Have

As a firm believer that ‘today is all we have’, I try to squeeze the most out of every hour and tend not to dwell too much on the past but when my lovely Ace Gang came to stay recently we had the kind of weekend that memories are made of.

The five of us met at antenatal classes when the only thing we had in common was carrying a bump. Barriers quickly dropped as we exchanged horror stories about labour and new babies and we have continued to share, scare and care ever since. Some of my happiest and most hilarious memories are of our annual night out but out of this came a serious tradition of setting ourselves goals for the coming year. 2008 has already seen Ann climb Ben Nevis and Ju save enough to buy herself a much long-for cello so we don’t hang about!

With geographical distance between us our annual night out has been replaced by a get-together at Hotel H. This year’s visit coincided with the most glorious spell of sunshine here on the west Wales coast. We walked on the gold…