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
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
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
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
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
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.
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
I walked into church today at Bateau Bay Anglican Church and five people lined up and gave me a hug. It felt good to be welcomed back after being away for three weeks. Some of the church people I saw last week when the care worker escorted me to the shopping centre, others I had spoken to on the phone. The lady who often sits beside me took a card out of her handbag and gave it to me apologising for forgetting to post it. It is something I have done myself so I just smiled and thanked her.
I arrived back home from hospital this afternoon. The operation to clip the aneurysm has been deemed a great success. When they said a headache for two weeks I wasn't thinking of a face ache but that is what I have. The medical team have been thrilled with the success of the operation in " an older woman". I must say I am pretty pleased myself. I will endeavour to post a longer blog at a future time. I just wanted to let you all know that our prayers were answered and that apart from heavy brui
It is only a few days before I am off to Sydney to have the brain operation. I am not scared, my angel still has her finger on the problem spot. I am packing an assortment of bed wear keeping in mind I may not necessarily be able to pull anything over my head. I know it is a long recuperation but do not know the stages of healing. I have spoken to people who have had the operation but for most of them it was in their 40s not their 70s.
The school holidays are here and Alice and Trevo
If no news was good news life would be so wonderful. I have paperwork in for both operations in two different Sydney hospitals now with a pre-admission interview on the 11th for the aneurysm clipping operation. I know you all know the importance of this operation as it will save me having a stroke, at least that is the way I am choosing to look at it. With a good surgeon and a lot of prayers it should be fine. I am not looking forward to it but I am no longer afraid of it.
We have ju
I had five days in hospital and got home late Friday afternoon. It was so good to be home. I went to hospital because I got cellulitis in my melanoma affected leg. It was my own fault, I scratched an insect bite and set up a bacterial reaction. Without the protection of lymph nodes to fight off the infection spread and on Monday I realised I was in trouble. I consulted my doctor and then rang the Melanoma clinic and following their advice finished up in the local hospital. Needless to say that
It is always hard to wave goodbye to Trevor and Alice. They live so far away and with all my medical woes I won't be going out to Broken Hill for a while. But we had a good week, no big dramas with Alice settling in. Not as much time together as usual as they went down to Sydney for two full days, one to Taronga Zoo and one to the Royal Easter Show where they met up with the cousins, Tori, Alex and Oliver. Alice is very close to Oliver who treats her as his little sister so she follows him aro
I went to the throat specialist, he said the thyroid operation was the way to go but probably the right side of the thyroid removed would be sufficient. I don't know how I feel about that. Anyway I agreed and now await an operation date, probably in May. He also asked me if I wanted to have the brain aneurysm surgery first but as the thyroid is the lesser recovery time I said let's do it first. This may be the wrong decision but I hope not. I really miss having someone else who can help me make
I was diagnosed with thyroid cancer this morning, my melanoma specialist Prof Saw will find me a throat specialist who can see me locally but who operates in one of the Sydney hospitals. Then the throat specialist will liaise with the neurosurgeon who wants to operate now on my brain aneurysm to see who gets to operate first. Not a good day.
I wrote that to a few friends yesterday. I was in shock, I had gone to the doctor to discuss some options and he read out the biopsy report and
I have a lot to be thankful for. My daughter Shirley took me to see the specialist in Sydney today. Luckily the heat of yesterday was replaced by drizzly rain but as usual that just made the traffic worse and so our two hour journey took half an hour longer. I know why I love my part of the coast so much, it is because I would much rather listen to the sound of waves rolling in to shore than the sound of squealing brakes and the horns of impatient drivers. Or park by the lake instead of t
Every now and again something jolts me back to reality, today it was the post on Facebook by Steve Mallory announcing that our friend Denny (Dennis Jeffries) had died. Denny and I talked frequently during my years when he was a chat host on Survivor Chat and I was chat host for Caregiver Chat. He was also my friend on Facebook. Like so many of my friends on Facebook and Strokenet we never got to meet in person but nonetheless we were friends. In this modern age this will be so for many of our fr
Tracy wrote in a reply to Janelle that it is hard to get her head around the fact that we in the southern hemisphere are in summer and a hot one at that. It makes the Christmas we have very different from what most of our readers are experiencing. And it is hard to imagine unless you can think of the Fourth of July and Christmas coming together. Then add mosquitoes, bush fires, heatstroke and crowds of people flocking to your town from the nearest big city and you are starting to get a picture o
On the whole I think I cope with being a widow pretty well. But as soon as the warmer nights start we have noises outside. As a widow and even before when Ray was living here still but was unable to get quickly out of bed I am the one who goes off to investigate. It may be possums on the roof, dogs overturning the bins out on the road or a group of noisy teens coming home from a party, rarely is it something life threatening. Sometimes I just don't see the cause and I might go back to bed and wo