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About swilkinson

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    Blog Moderator
  • Birthday 06/04/1947

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  • Stroke Anniversary (first stroke)
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  1. swilkinson

    We can only do what we do and be what we are. I have been estranged from my sister for many years, I attempt a reconciliation from time to time but it never works. I don't know why. There will always be a sorrow in my heart because of that but I have learned to live without her and her family in my life. She is the only relative I have in my birth family here in Australia. I know something of your pain but know that what I feel is just a tiny fraction of what you feel over your daughter alienating herself. (((hugs)))
  2. 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 that so restricting so I am glad that time is past. Now I am more energetic I am also busier. I hadn't been out to Broken Hill for ages so this time I went for nine days, including a weekend when Trev had Alice and his birthday when she came to him after school. It was hot and dusty but I preferred that to being on the Coast where it is smoky from the distance bushfires and the air quality is very poor. Our bushfires have been burning for weeks now and every westerly winds puts a pall of smoke over the coastal plains. I am not allergic to the smoke but a lot of people develop asthma from it so the hospitals are full. I have been selling raffle tickets for Lions three half days a week at Bateau Bay Square our local shopping centre so the week fills up pretty fast. I quite like it as I am on with another Lion's Club member and so we chat between customers, we are dealing with the public and I find people interesting and from time to time I catch up with a friend I haven't seen for a long time. I am finding it difficult though to keep up with my usual housework and gardening so find myself doing things like ironing in the evening to keep it up to date. There is a lot to do with all the end-of-year events. I went to the WAGS Christmas party yesterday. Seemed down in numbers from a few years ago as sadly we have lost a few of our members. One of the guests at my table was going back years trying to recall names, she has had a stroke. Seems she has plenty of long term memories but seemed to have very little short term memory. She and I worked together 28 years ago and she recalled several incidents that happened during that time. She has a mobility problem but still has a great sense of humour and I think that is what attracts people to her. I am blessed with some wonderful people in my life. People who others might consider insignificant I know as prayer warriors, cheer leaders of other people with disabilities, great friends and neighbours. I love people who are a bit different, who have been tested by life and come through it. Those people who are willing to share their experiences and have a great compassion for others. I don't care if my friends are not perfect, do not hold the same opinions I do or come from the same background, in fact I would prefer that they didn't. As long as they can put up with me and my funny little ways..lol. The two local families will be with me here for lunch on Christmas Day. This is Shirley's idea as she is moving in January and wants the house packed up by then. They will still have a week away at their holiday house. They will need that time to relax and unwind before going through the house move. The house they are moving to is only 6 kilometres from where they live now but everything still has to be packed and unpacked. The house has to be fully functional before she can start her new job. She is going to be an Aged Care Chaplain in a facility that specialises in Dementia and seniors with other mental illnesses so it is going to be quite a job getting used to her new duties. Trevor and Alice will be here the first two weeks in January. It is easy to keep Alice entertained now she is seven and the Adelaide kids will be with their Mum so I guess we will have days with them too. I love my grandkids and love to be with them. Okay it is disruptive but January is a month where I have few duties anyway so spending time with them is not a problem. Maybe we can do some things we have put off in other years as Alice is older now. I know Trevor loves to be back on the Coast away from the dust storms and high summer temperatures of Broken Hill for a a while. Well I probably won't do another blog before Christmas so I will wish you Happy whatever it is you celebrate. For me it is Christmas and unlike the first few years of my widowhood I can actually enjoy it now. Since the brain operation I am even more aware of the preciousness of time and how fleeting our time on earth is. So happy holidays, or happy holy days or whatever has meaning for you and may 2020 be a great year for us all.
  3. swilkinson

    So sad when someone who is special in our lives dies, so my condolences to you both. I am so grateful for the people of wisdom I have met throughout my life including YOU. Strange to say but Ray's strokes brought me into contact with so many good people I otherwise would not have met. So I try to look for good things to come out of what seems at the moment to be a negative event.
  4. swilkinson

    At least it is now all behind you Kelli.
  5. swilkinson

    It is good to be grateful in all circumstances. I have had a worrisome rash for a few days brought on by the heat and wearing heavy stockings is not ideal but I am grateful I still have my leg. I alway try to live hopefully. I am so amazed that you were able to stay friends with the lady who just died, your friendship had some ups and down but maybe that made it stronger. You will miss her. It is good you have reconciled with your daughter family is so important. May there be only good times ahead for the rest of the year.
  6. swilkinson

    Asha, sounds like a great holiday with so many welcoming you. I've always wanted to go to Singapore, I've changed planes there but not stayed so I am glad you enjoyed the experience. And coming home to kiddo on vacation is good too. Happy Thankgiving to you and family.
  7. swilkinson

    Happy Birthday Deigh, being 90 is pretty special, glad your family made the most of the opportunity to make a fuss of you and show you their love.
  8. swilkinson

    Just big (((hugs))) to you, no advice. I am still getting over the death of my best friend of 60+ years who died from a ruptured brain aneurysm, her death was the reason I had mine clipped. There is no replacing dear old friends who have been precious to us for many years. But somehow we just soldier on.
  9. swilkinson

    Pam, always great to hear from you too.
  10. swilkinson

    Nice to see you back again Pam. Thanks for your advice. I go to the clinic again early next year so will see what the so called experts have to say.
  11. swilkinson

    The harvests are very poor this year, farmers hanging on as best they can. Just had some rain inland but without follow up it will just lay the dust. We grow very little here on the Coast where we have good rain and just see it run out to sea. Such a country of paradoxes.
  12. swilkinson

    Some of us have a sign over our heads that says: "Bring your problems here." And so we end up as caregivers. But that is a good thing as well as a bad thing.I have just explained to a friend that most of my remaining friends are from my caregiver days, most of my happiest memories too. You know what you have to do. And this time you will know when to hand his care on to someone else. But try to remember to look after yourself too. (((hugs))).
  13. 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 program and improve my general fitness. I have attended the usual number of funerals for October, three, had less days out than some years, no doctors appointments, only the six monthly session with the lymphoedema clinic. I had Trev and Alice come for a week in late September into early Octoberor but no family visits in the rest of October. In a way it has been a peaceful month and I think I needed that as I had started to worry about how much there was to do after the operation in July and worrying is not the ideal thing to do if you have to keep your blood pressure down. Did I have fun in October? Not really but I did manage to keep most of my appointments and get back into a routine with the main components in place. The three months passed when I had to call on paramedics if I had a fall and I didn't had a fall so that was a bonus. I will gradually increase the amount of activity in each day. Daylight saving helps as the days are longer and I can fit in a nap early afternoon if I need one and still have time to do a little gardening before coming inside for the night. We are still in drought in most of Australia and the last few days have been hazy with the smoke blowing down from bushfires further upstate. I think it is going to be a bad bushfire season. There is the promise of rain next week but our weather bureau seems to raise false hope with their predicted rain falls. I was brought up in a low rainfall area so am frugal with water usage. I do pray for a return of fertility to our inland areas, living in the inland towns of Yass and Narrandera when Ray was with Fisheries gave me a great admiration for farmers and their struggles with uncertainty due to climatic changes. While we city folk argue about whether Climate Change is real or not they get to deal with it. The usual Spring illnesses affected my women friends so less get togethers than usual. The little lady I take to church on Sundays has had a few days in hospital but it was nothing serious just her medications needed adjusting. Sadly a contemporary of mine who I have known for forty years or so is on her last days with liver cancer but her family is asking for privacy so I haven't visited her in hospital. I hope she doesn't think her friends have deserted her. I am always dubious about the family deciding "no visitors" as I know how much I appreciate visitors when I am in hospital myself. Maybe that will be different when I am dying, who knows? November is a busy month, the last of the Spring cleaning followed by the first of the end-of-year meetings and the first of the pre-Christmas parties. I am going to Broken Hill before the month is over, will book flights this week. Trev is always glad to see me. Broken Hill has already had some dust storms so he will wipe down the cupboards etc in the caravan before I get there. I haven't been to Shirley's for a couple of months but she has been busy too with a move expected mid January. She is going in to Aged Care ministry and moving a couple of suburbs over as the house she lives in is attached to the Corps she works in now. Life gets complicated doesn't it? And so it is a case of taking life one day at a time as usual, rejoicing in the good, accepting the bad. Planning for the future isn't something that happens much now but I am always optimistic, always looking for good things to happen. Next year there is a cruise in my plans. So that is hopefully the fun event to look forward to.
  14. ASHA there is always a discrepancy between what we know and what we do because of what we know. It would be great if we remembered those great words that impressed us so much when we first heard them but alas! in our moments of crisis we don't. Hopefully what happens is that the experience softens us and we spend less time being angry and frustrated. And recover more quickly from our times of being down.
  15. swilkinson

    I was in that position from 1999, the major strokes took that away from us. It is sad that such an important part of our lives just disappeared. I loved my husband and looked after him for 13 years but our relationship changed and I was more nurse than wife. Difficult for me to think of even now, I just put that part of my life aside and went on doing the things that had to be done. Companionship rather than love became the norm in our lives. No regrets, just a few wistful moments when I see older couples walking hand in hand and wish that could have been us. Ray died seven years ago and although I have many friends a second love has never come along.