As 2017 ends I can look back on a busy year with some unusual highs and lows even by our standards. Here are some of the things that stand out, from both sides of the ledger, in no particular order:
- Losing my voice due to medical misadventure
- Library conference, which was awesome
- Getting down to goal weight, then 10kg below that!
- Flying to Auckland for a shopping weekend with my sister, Ailsa
- Spending time in ICU due to medical misadventure
- Getting my voice back after about 7 months
- Tony didn’t need surgery this year – fantastic!
- Discovering I didn’t have a stroke but do have a spinal issue
- Faith got settled on new heart & Cushing’s medication and is doing well
I don’t have major goals for 2018, in many way it’s just more of the same, but perhaps a bit more refined. So, my aims are:
- Painting more
- Doing art/craft regularly
- Stay at goal weight while eating a little more normally
- Drinking 1200 mls a day, every day
- Walking 4,000 steps minimum, every day
- Connecting with people who feed my soul, through snail mail and Twitter
- Making sure I am a positive influence in the world
That’s it – nothing too dramatic and no rocket science. Just a happy, balanced, quiet life. I wish you all peace, joy and a magical 2018.
Last time I blogged about my weight loss surgery I had been in Base Hospital, and was feeling better. Hmm. This last week I have been back in Base after developing a blockage, partly due to dehydration. It was two days of drama but all good again now. I have new meds and a determination to drink despite the nausea. The nurses and surgeons I saw were fantastic; patient and prepared to really explain things to me. I’ll say this though – it took 24 hours to go through two Emergency Departments to a ward and, oh my god, I was exhausted!
I’m on leave for the next two weeks and am hoping to rest and spend some quality time with Tony. He’s done a great job of caring for me, yet again, and it’s past time we had some fun. I hope the sun shines…
I sort of can’t believe it’s two months since I updated my blog – that tells you just how sick I have been because I love social media. I’ve hardly Tweeted either really. Here’s the short version.
Last time I blogged I’d been off work for three weeks and thought I was coming right. Umm, no! I’ve had almost 7 weeks off work, been in Base Hospital and generally felt totally lousy and bone tired. None of this is the surgeon’s fault, it’s just been cumulative problems due to the surgery and a bad reaction to some of the drugs. They think it could be another couple of months before I feel really better because it’s been so rough.
My sister Ailsa ended up going back to the surgeon in Wellington with me for a checkup then staying with us for over a week nursing me – thanks Ailsa. Tony has been his usual patient self – for once it’s me getting the nursing. I now know what he did for his patients for all those years on the ambulance!
Anyway, I’m still very tired, but gradually getting there. The up side is that I have lost around 35kg so far, so past the half way mark now. Here’s a recent photo:
While I was doing the #colourmepositive challenge, I used my art journal to stamp off extra paint etc; I ended up with a bright floral background so used watered down gesso to knock the bottom half back a bit. I stamped my new Dyan Reaveley stamps, Lulu and Winston, onto card, coloured them with Distress Markers and cut them out. The quote is about Tony and I…
This is the last page, done this morning, in the journal I started when Tony went to Waikato Hospital on the 19th of January. Life is not normal in the sense of being the same as it was – seemingly simple things like a hot shower still exhaust Tony – but life is slowly settling into a new normal. We’re very fortunate and very grateful.
I woke up feeling weepy and worried this morning, which is unusual for me. All I could tell Tony is when things are tough, and they are at the moment, I miss having Mum to chat to. In those last couple of years she may not have followed everything I said, and forgot most of it anyway, but it was a way for me to download. It’s just over a year since Mum died and most of the time it’s okay.
I think what has upset me is it turns out Tony has been a lot sicker than we realised. Long story, and involves a medical stuff-up re some blood tests, but it’s made me anxious about the upcoming surgery.
So, had a quick weep, scared the dog my grabbing a tissue so she thought I was going to wipe her eyes, and decided the day needed to be an art one because art heals.
Tony’s surgery has been postponed to 13 January as there is someone else whose need is more urgent. To ensure Tony doesn’t wait any longer than is absolutely necessary, they are booking him under a different surgeon at Waikato because it saves a week’s delay. We’re disappointed and upset but, having had Mum in and out of hospital for the last 14 years of her life – mucking up waiting lists in all directions, we know how quickly someone else can take precedence. I hope the person who is getting urgent surgery recoveries quickly and starts 2014 feeling a whole lot better than they currently do.
I’m also sad that I’m now not spending Christmas and Sandra’s 50th birthday with her – I was so looking forward to it, and to helping her through a difficult bunch of firsts without her Mum. But, as she knows, I’ll be with her in spirit, as always.
Tony’s surgery is confirmed for Monday afternoon; we need to be at Waikato Hospital early Sunday afternoon for scans, pre-op etc. Although it’s awful timing, in the sense that he’ll spend Christmas and probably New Year in hospital, and I have to come home and do the newspaper and look after the animals, we’re so grateful it is being done urgently.
Last year, when they did the first bypass, he was only in hospital 2 or 3 nights but this time they expect it to be between 7 and 10 days. I suspect this is more major surgery because of what’s gone wrong – whatever that might be. We won’t know for sure till they do the scan Sunday afternoon.
I’m also grateful that I can stay with Sandra, my best mate of more than 45 years (not that I’m actually that old). It’s her first Christmas and 25 Dec birthday without her Mum so it’ll be great to share it, and the stress, with her. Plus she has wine…