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About this blog

still sorting life out

Entries in this blog

Colouring my world

I wonder if  I gave you a blank sheet of paper and told you to draw me a picture of your world using colour not lines what it would look like? Perhaps you could do that today? Some of you would ask for a coloured sheet because to some people that flat white sheet looks threatening, not like their life feels like at all. A friend of mine is going through a bad time and  I think her background colour would be grey. None of us want black because that can be threatening too, because even at the wors

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swilkinson in General

Where did that year go and what changed?

I am a very fortunate person, I love life, I have been lucky with my choice of husband, and with my three children. I have six beautiful grandchildren. That is the way I like to look at life. But of course there is much more to my life than that. And if you have read my blogs from the early part of my journey with stroke you will know of my struggles with the journey that Ray's series of strokes took us on.   My experience with the caregiver life along with the experiences I got on thi

swilkinson

swilkinson in General

How can it be Christmas??

How can it be Christmas??? There are no carols because singing in church is banned. There are no greetings, no cheeks kissed, no hugs, not the usual shoulders presses that our shyer members use by way of greeting. That applies to the churches,  the shopping centre or wherever friends meet. No contact and social distancing has an impact on all of us do more people are depressed and seeking medical help for it now. There are fewer decorative Christmas lights, only two houses in my street have done

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swilkinson in General

Time flows

In December the TV presenters start to review the year that was. 2020 was a crazy year and unique in my life time. The presenters say this happened and that happened but it makes no sense to me and probably wouldn't to you because this was a year where we each made our own history. This was the year when I spent a lot of time alone. Time of lock down or isolation, whatever you want to call it. It was a time that went slow some days and yet at the same time seemed to go so fast with no landmarks

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swilkinson in General

Family matters

I have been busy with family the past three weeks. I went up to Armidale for a little break and while I was there my daughter misstepped and ruptured the meniscus behind her right knee. Luckily the injury required rest not an operation, that meant no work, no driving, no more than  a few minutes on her feet. Her husband took care of her the first week then I came home and was asked to go  for a week to drive her daughter to school, take Shirley to doctors appointments, physio etc and do the shop

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swilkinson in Family

Now what? Will we be celebrating Christmas this year?

Just been talking to our assistant minister, she is my "boss" for pastoral care. We have a talk from time to time. We are both anxious to resume some of our church activities like our Playtime for Mums and kids, our Welfare programs and our night services but the current Covid regulations are preventing all of  that from happening. It is very frustrating. We discussed what we thought the future of our activities on behalf of the church might look like in the new year, with Covid or after Covid b

Keeping a positive attitude

The Covid goes on. We still have restrictions but not as much as some countries do. We still have cases, in our State, New South Wales it is mostly under 20 new infections a day. It is a great result but it has come at a price. Many people are out of work, many can no longer afford luxuries like holidays so most stayed home this school holidays. Some older people are still feeling isolated as we are regularly told to keep safe, to keep away from crowded areas, not to gather in groups etc. I know

swilkinson

swilkinson in Thoughts on Covid

Thank you Steve Mallory

Why are you still on Strokenet my friends ask me. Why are you still talking about stroke nearly eight years after Ray died? Why haven't you moved on with your life? Well I have moved on but moving on does not mean you have to move away from those things that have been valuable to you in the past. . And to me Strokenet has been of huge value in my life and the lives of Ray and my family. Discovering Strokenet made a big difference to the way I lived my life, dealt with Ray's strokes and came out

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swilkinson

Continuing on whether we like it or not.

Are we there yet? That used to be a familiar cry from the back seat of the car when the children were little. I wish we had some sort of road map with this Covid-19 so we could see where we are going. More cases in Victoria so they are going into stage 4 restrictions. Doesn't seem as if the general population are taking the virus precautions seriously and so it is spreading again. I guess with less than 200 deaths in Australua it doesn't seem much of a threat but I do wonder when we are over thi

Time spent dreaming isn't wasted

I think I have reached an age where I can justify an afternoon nap. Because of the reconfigured muscle behind my left leg due to the melanoma operation I get tired if I stand too much so I take an afternoon nap fairly regularly. This is ideal in winter when snuggling under a rug feels good and the bleak wind blowing outside makes having a nap under a rug seem like a good use of time. Today is Friday so housework, catching up on phone calls, maybe a bit of gardening and an afternoon nap to top it

swilkinson

swilkinson

Venturing out again

I don't know about you but I am a bit scared about venturing out again. After 13 weeks my thoughts about being out in the community have changed so my question to anyone wanting me to go anywhere is : "Is it safe? And is it necessary?" Not that I am unwilling to go anywhere but I also want what I do to be for a purpose. I think before Covid-19 struck I just went out, anywhere, everywhere, filling in time, now I don't want to do that anymore.   I have actually grown used to being home a

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swilkinson

Hello on a cold winter day

It is the second day of winter, it is cold with a bitter wind, it is raining.I have enough of this already. I was planning on shopping today but can't see the logic of that. Life should be opening up for us now here in Australia, the numbers of people in hospital or locked down with the virus are very small, hardly any new cases, so we can go to cafes or to the BEACH (really? In this weather?) so we should be grateful. But because of the contrariness of life it is also the beginning of the snow

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swilkinson

Is there a road ahead?

Hi everyone, how are you doing? I am trying to keep busy but I haven't got much to do now, except those fiddly jobs I don't really want to do. I do talk to a lot of people, by phone, on Messenger, even by Zoom now and everyone is struggling during this Pandemic. My friends are divided, some are just carrying on, we will get over this and come out stronger they say, some are frightened, they are alone and who will help me they ask. I have always tried to help people but I'm in self isolation so t

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swilkinson

Fear of falling

Some of you know that about four weeks ago I had a fall. I fell about five feet onto cement pavers, gashing my head, a wound requiring six stitches. Luckily it was on the opposite side on my head  to where I had the aneurysm clipped last July. In falling I also hit my right shin and my left shoulder both of which were giving me a lot of pain when I arrived in the hospital. So I had x-rays on shin and shoulder,  a CT of my brain to make sure I had not had a bleed and after all that was clear, the

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swilkinson

Home alone

This is my Covid-19, so far so good,  update.   This is Autumn, daylight saving is over. We are going through a wet period. Okay we needed the rain, in our part of the country rain comes west to east or down the coast from the tropics, we seem to be having both. Our inland and coastal areas that suffered the bushfire damage need the rain so I can't complain about it. But it does eliminate sitting in the sun on the front verandah from my daily activities. The farmers need the rain to gr

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swilkinson

Hello from home.

A month ago I was embarking on my cruise. I don't care what the world thinks of the Ruby Princess my heart goes out to the wonderful crew those who served us so well and cheerfully, courteously and compassionately. Thanks to the Captain who managed to get us into every scheduled port. And thanks to those passengers who helped my friend with dementia when she lost her way and asked them: "Have you seen Michael, have you seen Sue."   It was the passengers from the cruise after ours who c

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swilkinson

A new adventure

I have just been on a cruise. The last time I went on a cruise I was  twenty and went to Fiji and Tonga, we can't go from here to Tonga any more. This time I went to New Zealand. I shared with the sister-in-law of an old friend, the old friend and her husband went too. Also on board were two couples from the Stroke Recovery group WAGS that I still belong to.   It was good to have other friends on board and I did spend quite a lot of time with Bill and Jill. Bill was on his scooter. Bei

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My secret place

Life does not always go the way we plan. Sometimes when I am sad and lonely and I want to give myself a lift I lay down and shut my eyes and go to my secret place. It is a rose garden. The scenery is based on a real garden in a little country town I have visited but the nice thing is that in my meditation it is whatever I want it to be. I can build a pergolas and cover it in pink roses. I can put garden seats along a long wall. I can even have a fountain if I want to, it is my secret place.

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swilkinson

Rain at last and other news.

You all know about the devastating bush fires we had in January. They were accompanied by high temperatures, the very hot and dry westerly winds and added to the dry bush conditions what devastation they caused. Well we have rain at last. Here on the Central Coast it is very welcome, a full day yesterday and some showers today. In some places there has been flooding  and a couple of the lakes with a sea outlet have been "let out" which is a good thing.   It has been a strange year so f

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swilkinson

The word for this year

My word for this year is "SING". This came about in a strange way. I was in a lift and when I got off the man who had been in the lift stopped me.He said: "When you hum are you singing the words in your head?". I had to think about that but the answer was "yes". I was a bit embarrassed really as humming in company is not exactly good manners. Then the man smiled at me and said: "Oh you are a mind singer like my wife and daughters!". I had never heard of mind singing but was relieved that humming

swilkinson

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Kick back, relax, Christmas is over.

After Christmas is over there is a short period where I can relax and recover from that chaotic run-up to Christmas that happens every year. There is always far too much to do in December and I wore myself once more. As usual I accepted too many party invitations but probably enjoyed them less than usual. This year being invited to a so called party meant paying your own way at the designated venue, usually a restaurant or Club, then in my case trying to find things I could eat with no dairy or

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swilkinson

Time flies...

Well I complained last month about how fast October went and so indeed did November and we are a week into December already. My life is back to being routine again. It took a lot longer than I expected to get over the brain op to clip the aneurysm and it was difficult for me to go through that but I feel I am back to normal now. Thank goodness. I can deal with a whole day now without a nap, do three things in a day instead of two and don't have to run home for a nap between 2pm and 3pm. I found

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swilkinson

Where did that month go?

They do say as you get older time goes faster but October flew by. I didn't go anywhere or do anything different, I have just lived life day by day as I usually do. So why do I feel as if I just lost a month? When I blogged in September I didn't have the date for the next operation, the thyroid operation, now I know it will be in March 2020, a long wait but the side effects of the brain surgery should be just a distant memory by then. And I should be a lot better too if I embark on an exercise p

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swilkinson

Looking forward to more fun in life

I have started to get back to my old routine again, this has some good and some bad aspects. The good side is more socialising and going out when I want to go out. When I had the carers it was shopping once a week on Wednesday afternoons and coffee or lunch if someone volunteered to take me. I felt isolated and frustrated. Then after I saw the neurosurgery team and got permission to drive I regained my  freedom, now I can go where I want when I want.  The downside is that I am expected by the ch

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swilkinson

I'm a success

The title is a little ambiguous but I have just been to my 18 month check up for my lymph node dissection and my six week check up for the brain aneurysm clipping and both were determined to have been successfull. The area of the lymphoedema has not increased and is about the same as this time last year and the neurosurgery team is pleased with my mental condition. When I consider I have had three major operations in two years that is a miracle.   I have just started to drive again and

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swilkinson