Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Talkin' about My Generation

I didn't use the obvious Who tape because I hate it when they destroy their instruments at the end.
The other day a nurse said that although my generation had been through WW2 and had paid taxes for decades we were reluctant to avail ourselves of any benefits we were entitled to. Apparently I am entitled to a carer's allowance - even a temporary one. Somehow these things - grants included - never seem right for the likes of us.
However practical help is something I would avail myself of - and if it isn't offered I'll ask for it.

For years now we have had an annual 'flu injection and when I asked the surgeon whether it was a good idea under the circumstances, he said now was a good time before the chemo starts as that interferes with the auto immune system.
I rang the surgery but they hadn't got the vaccine and were expecting it later in the week It didn't seem a good idea to drag the patient down to a communal hall where parking is quite a distance away so I asked if he could be given it at home and when I said he was between operations that seemed quite acceptable. I'm hoping they may stretch a point and do me at the same time.

We await a phone call from the District Nurse.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Dedicated to Our man in New York - the Unbearable Banishment

Slight hiccup - the operation has been brought forward a couple of days - nothing to do with us. So I have to change my bookings at the Lodge and the first night is looking iffy. I've decided to make an adventure of it and if they are full that night I shall go and stay in a rather nice looking hotel in Taunton itself. But fingers crossed I don't have to.

BTW when we sang this song in the forties Franklyn Roosevelt was the one whose 'looks give me a thrill ' in the song.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

This jumped out of the post. The view from the patient's balcony.
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Separate Rooms.

A temporary measure to facilitate our sleep. A beautiful Indian summer today and here was the view from the patient's balcony now jumped to the post above.

Here is today's view from my balcony.

At this time of year this ginormous ilex cuts out the morning sun and later endlessly sheds leaves which always seem to miss surrounding areas and land neatly on the lawn - and stays there until I drag my sorry a--e to sweep 'em up.
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Saturday, September 25, 2010

Who remembers this?

Friday, September 24, 2010

Stepping up to the Plate.

I’m beginning to understand what that means. True to his word our handyman came and by 9am the door was fixed and the bell working. It has a cathedral like three chimes sound. There are other chimes to choose from but the pace of life just now doesn’t allow for luxuries like that. I do occasionally have time to sit and do nothing but then immediately fall asleep.

After two days on the trot driving into Taunton I’m thankful to have the next seven days with no appointments, apart from collecting medications and trying to do something about ‘flu injections. The Invalid has been given the all-clear to drive – for the time being - so sighs of relief from me and we can visit Tesco once more.

The first appointment was a test to make sure healing had taken place and to our relief it had. This means that in two weeks time there will be a second operation which will put things back to normal and make life much easier. I have already booked the same room where I stayed early September.

The second interview with the surgeon confirmed that the operation had been successful. However some lymph glands were affected so there will be a course of chemo and we have a date - later on - to meet a physician, a specialist in chemotherapy who will explain all that is involved.

Our surgeon – a charming rugby playing Welshman believes in dealing with things ‘sequentially’ and this has rubbed off on us and makes coping easier.

So: a breathing space before we gird our loins and bash on regardless. I still have my cushion of prayers , good will, white light and vibes so when I ask myself how the hell did I manage that, I know full well. Thank you.xoxoxox

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Never mind the wobble - just listen - you know it makes sense.

Enough already!

You know they say things go in threes? First we had the grandmother clock fall down the stairs gouging out paint and plaster. Then our old door bell which is connected to a thing in the kitchen which waggles windows so you know which room is calling - suddenly started to ring non stop and we had to demolish it – so no doorbell.

Well today – just after watering the pots and reflecting how well things were going I suddenly couldn’t shut the garage door.

It is the main point of entry – the garage is more a utility room where we keep our wine and other stuff and the house – Edwardian - is back to front. At least I can lock two more doors before anyone can break in. I managed to get hold of our handy man – he doesn’t live nearby – and he promises to come tomorrow.

That could be anytime from 8.30am so my plans for tomorrow have gang awry: repeating last Monday’s big shop at the Co-op and getting it delivered. Then we have two days of hospital appointments next week so the dear knows when I’ll be able to catch up with you all. Please forgive me and also for writing such a boring mundane post.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

A bit of a Dilemma.

The eggs and I. Almost one and a half dozen eggs out of date and I can’t afford any health risks. But now I deal with the rubbish, broken eggs dripping through the plastic bags are not to be contemplated. What would you do?

My solution is to hard boil them. Not eggsactly ideal but at least they should keep their place in the bin bags.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

A Port in a Storm 1

Staplegrove Lodge - parts of which date back to the 15th century

A haven for me. The patient spent the first night with me so we could be at the hospital for 7am. The plan was that I wouldn't use the car until I had to and a taxi took us to the hospital. Finally, at the end of the four days, I got us safely home, thankful to have avoided the stress of extra parking and maneouvering.

Adjoining the bedroom is a vestibule for making drinks and a bathroom- all quite spacious and private. Downstairs is a pleasant drawing room and a dining room where I had breakfast. Then I would walk to the hospital, spend the morning there, cross the road to a little shop that sold everything, for something for lunch, walk back to the Lodge, have a bite and a rest then back up to the hospital till the evening. A last walk to the Lodge, a sit in the garden,
then dressing gown, a drink and another snack. alarm clock set for 7am and I slept well apart from one night.

The day of the op was churning but once I established a routine it was bearable. Crossing the road was tricky - if you crossed by the crossing you ran out of pavement for a stretch so I learned to go down to the large roundabout
and wait for a quiet time. I had many offers of lifts but I found the walk to and fro calming.
One day a cyclist silently came up behind me - on the narrow pavement and forcefully knocked my umbrella out of my hand. I was too shocked to yell at him.

. .

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A Port in a Storm 2

The lane where the Lodge is situated. Just at the end is the very busy road to Taunton. It is about 12 minutes walk to the hospital.

The neighbours were quite friendly.

There is an old walled garden

The garden is quite large and makes you feel as if you are in the heart of the country.
If all goes according to plan I shall be staying here again for the next milestone on the way to recovery.
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Tuesday, September 14, 2010

More Florida Pictures

Meanwhile back in Minehead yesterday was a vast improvement on Sunday. I walked down to the Co-op - got a large order and - for the first time arranged to have it delivered between 12 and 2pm. Then I had a cappuccino in the health shop, bought the papers and - as a treat bought two pretty cushions which had been reduced fromn £10 to £5.
The patient was more adventurous in eating and I feel we took a step forward. The groceries were delivered successfully - in spite of the broken door bell. Today I was up at 6am to put out the rubbish and paper - not my job as a rule so it is all educational and doesn't bother me one whit. All I want is to be moving in the right direction.
I would like to go to Florida one day. The birds look so great.

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Sunday, September 12, 2010

Escape to Florida

During the last bit of excitement I knew I had to keep a tight rein on emotions and worried how I would cope with transmitting updates to a large caring family scattered far and wide. We arranged that one of our sons would phone me in the evening and then email the rest of the family with the latest. This was a great help and worked well.

Now he has gone to Florida for a holiday with his wife. I've just received these photos. This is him just finishing a 5K race in aid of prostate cancer. Although it was 7.30 in the morning he said it was ridiculously hot.
The photo below is now on my desk top. I think it is Indian Rock Beach.

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Thursday, September 09, 2010

Home Sweet Home.

Thanks to so many people, we are back where we belong. If I can just remember what day it is – it is a week since the op and we were dismissed yesterday. Now the hard work begins and I fear my blogging will suffer for a while. But I know what a comfort and support it is to me so I shall keep going somehow.

Where I stayed – Stapleton Lodge - was a real haven. I took some photos of it and will show you soon. At the moment I’m trying to replicate 20 first class nurses – all less than half my age and continue the excellent care he’s been having. I find nursing adults more difficult than children – much less biddable. Hey ho!