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Saturday, 24 December 2011

Twas The Night Before Christmas...

...and my blog had hit 15000 visits- hooray! Yet my pain was through the roof- booooo!
Well whatever your situationmay be, there is nothing more that you can do for your Christmas preparations now- the presents are bought and hopefully wrapped and labelled, (I'm notorious for wrapping prezzies and not putting names on them! I have already had to unwrap a mere six presents this year to find out what they are and who they are for, only to have to re-wrap them once more! ).
I am afraid it's only a short little message this evening, as I can barely have one hand free at a time this evening, as my back spasms and sciatic leg twinges are such that they are so strong I can barely have a hand free to eat or administer my own drugs as I am having to push both arms on the seat/bed to take the pressure off of my bottom!
With this said restriction, which consequently means I can barely type without excruciating agony- it only leaves me able to wish you a very Merry Christmas.
If you are lucky enough to be blessed with one, then I pray that you are with your family this evening and treasuring precious times together. If you are not so blessed in this area, then my thoughts and prayers are with you and I hope that you manage to get through these couple of days with as little physical and emotional pain as is at all possible.
Although this is thankfully a joyous time for many of us, there are all too many who have to spend this time feeling lonely, depressed, in pain and often feeling extremely irritated and on-edge due to insane, unrelenting pain!
I have to confess that this is an emotion that I can relate to at the moment. I am currently unable to move from the sofa, ( which is the ipeitomie of frustration in itself!) and I am only moving to get to bed via my new spangly stair lift that has been fitted at my mother's, and to also go to the toilet.
My new/old pain, ( the pain that I used to experience prior to my spinal surgery three years ago, which has been becoming less and less over the last couple of years and has now become secondary to my pain from my nervous system disease of Arachnoiditis)- is driving me insane and feels like somebody has wired me up to my father's elaborate Christmas lights electrical system, as great surges of spasm and pain regularly charge through my body rendering me unable to speak or move at all!
I have to confess that I find that when I am experiencing such relentless pain, little things that I may usually overlook suddenly, literally get on my nerves!
Add living as a family under one roof with one bathroom for the Christmas period and despite my family's patience, there is bound to be an element of snapping and biting ones lip!
Regardless of this frustration, I feel so incredibly blessed to be with such a wonderful family who care for me and are so patient, kind and supportive to me.
After a year of difficult news, I am finding this Christmas to be a time for much reflection and appreciation.
I pray that whatever your circumstances you are able to enjoy this Christmas as much as you are able.
Have a wonderful day and treasure every moment that you find to be special in whatever way.
Much love and thanks for your support this year folks. Now get to bed, or Father Christmas won't visit you!
I'm off to set out his mince pie and brandy...

Merry Christmas everyone!

Thursday, 15 December 2011

A Moment's Pleasure

Okay- it's official- I have cabin fever! Rotten cold + new back spasms and pain+ pre-existing issues= one house bound me!
There's consequently not an awful lot to report on my end, unless indeed you're interested in how many Christmas cards I have now successfully written, stamped and sent off to the post box with my long suffering errand-running brother; or how many Christmas presents I have now wrapped and labelled and placed under the tree.
I feel it perhaps relevant to mention that all of the above tasks were done whilst consuming vast quantities of  'medicinal' hot milk and Bailey's, whilst curled up beneath my cosy Olbas Oil drenched blanket! Ah advent- why is it obligatory that every year it must be spent  filled with a stinking cold whilst one tries to achieve more tasks than in any other month of the year put together!
As it turned out, today was one reminiscent of the days I would spend poorly from school when I was a child- wrapped in my duvet on the sofa with a steady stream of Lemsips being served unto me by a family member, whilst watching festive cooking tips on daytime tele!
I was fortunate enough to have been blessed with a wonderful childhood, of which I have countless wonderful memories to reminisce upon. Lately I have found that I am increasingly sensitive to smell, ( good and bad unfortunately!), and I have found there to be certain smells such as Vicks and Olbas oil that just seem to transport me back to a comforting era of my life where everything was so simple and worries thankfully were so few and far between.
With my issues with sleep of late, (i.e. I don't tend to get any!), I have been experimenting, even before I was struck down with this cold, as to whether comforting smells (such as those mentioned above) can help create a relaxed environment in which I will then have the best chance possible of succumbing to sleep at some point before 5am!
Although my experiment has proved there to be no significant change in the hour that I actually fall asleep- I found my prediction to be true that the smells evoke comforting memories, as well as creating a calming of the spirit, which can't be a bad thing when you are nocturnal as a result of pain, as well as anxiety which tends to follow said pain when it has kept you up until 4am!

My trip down memory lane has been made even more complete this evening by the film Gremlins being shown on tele.
This was the ultimate film of my childhood- in fact when I was six, my brother and I were even given Gismo toys for Christmas- ( which we are constantly reminded by our parents took weeks of trawling the local towns to find. No Internet searches in those days bless them!).
My brother and I now take great joy in pointing out to my parents that the film is actually bizarrely classed as a horror (weird!), with a certificate of 15! I believe we were only six and nine when it was first introduced to us by our Dad who thought it was a comedy and who used to laugh so hard at it that his tummy, that I would be cuddled into, used to shake like mad as he chuckled!
Regardless of that small technicality- this is our Spurgeon family film, and it's presence in the background as I write this post, (along with the comforting smells that I can just about sense through my blocked nostrils), are definitely helping to bring an element of comfort to me, despite my pain and spasms- the intensity of which have been so bad of late that I have found myself longing for any comfort, be it physical or emotional of any degree to help me cope with experiencing said pain.
Of course a little home comforts and comforting smells are not going to cure my pain or indeed lessen it by any significant degree- but such treats and soothing things do strangely help to take the edge off the anxiety and distress that naturally accompanies chronic pain.

When pain is ruling your very existence, the most bizarre and often the smallest of things can help in some very small way.
There have been many a time when pain has been so bad for me that I have realised that I have felt little to no joy from anything for days and even weeks on end and I've subsequently started looking for pleasure in the most incidental of things- such as treating myself to downloading a new episode of 'House' on my iphone at 4 am as I haven't slept a wink, or having that last square of chocolate just to give me even a second's happiness. The result of these little things may be a brief moment's pleasure- but when you are living an unrelenting existence of pain and sadness, you will jump at any opportunity for it I have found!

On that note, I'm off to watch 'House' and eat a square or five of chocolate- needs must I'm afraid! It's all medicinal of course!
I hope that you are not in pain tonight and if God forbid you are, then I pray that you have found yourself  your 'little something' that brings you pleasure to some degree, however small.
Sleep well everyone.
Goodnight. God bless.

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Knocked Sideways

 I hope that you had a wonderful weekend. My most sincere apologies for there having been a longer than desired break from posting. Although I had anticipated being away for the weekend, as I visited family and had the most wonderful pre-Christmas get together- I had unfortunately not anticipated experiencing the degree of back spasms and leg twinges at heights I had not felt in a long time, on top of also catching my brothers stinking rotten cold and sore throat!
Although my back twinges and spasms have never gone away entirely since my spinal surgery, they have most certainly become secondary to the nerve pain in my legs: however, their return with avengeance has completely knocked me sideways- literally!
I would be lying if I told you that I wasn't currently feeling an element of anticipation at the presence of these symptoms, as I am currently awaiting scans to be taken and then sent on to my surgeon, for him then to determine whether the structure of my spine, and crucially that of the disc above the one that was operated upon, is stable enough for me to carry a child.
Although I know that these pains and spasms may not necessarily mean that there has been any change in the said structure, I am also aware that the symptoms I have been feeling are exactly that of what I was warned to keep an eye out for.
(Extra stress is put upon any disc above or below a removed disc, and the discs often then require surgery themselves).
These feelings may well simply be a warning to me from my body, not over do it, as well as to not let myself get so excited and encouraged about the prospect of being given the green light for having children, after our recent appointment with the maternal medicine consultant deemed me safe (from her aspect alone) to have children on my morphine and other drugs.
With something that means so much to me, I can not help but be concerned that these new symptoms may be potentially problematic, and I suppose that there is an element of self preservation in preparing myself for the worst case scenario.
I am finding it harder than ever to press 'send ' on today's post- for once not because I am over analysing my grammar, but today because I have kept these symptoms that I am feeling from my Mum so far, as I have not wanted to cause her increased stress and worry.
Hers, ( along with my Dad's, brother's, husband's and extended family's) lives are affected enough by my condition, (both practically and emotionally) and the fluctuations there are in  it, and I hate having to cause them pain in any way as they are the very thing that keeps me going and the people who comfort me when I am struggling with any element there of it.

On that note as the spasms and twinge pains crank up once again and my cold symptoms require me to go and utilise my entire supply of Vicks's, Olbas Oil and Lemsips- I bid you farewell until tomorrow.
I pray that you are safe and healthy yourself this evening. Sleep well everyone.

Friday, 9 December 2011

Reason To Smile- A Heartfelt Mission to Rescue Peg

Many may say that daytime telly is filled only with trivial celebrity drivel; but as someone who has had to rely on such entertainment for sanity over the last five years when I've been stuck in bed unable to concentrate on a book or even a DVD due to the cognitive effects of my morphine- I can assure you that it does often throw up some fantastic stories of courage and inspiration.
One such story that you may have missed this morning if unlike me you have a job, children to run around after, or maybe just a life in general- was that of the late Conrad Lewis, who's family will have an incredibly difficult Christmas as the 22yr old soldier was shot dead in Helmand province earlier this year.
Conrad's parents and siblings appeared on the This Morning couch this morning with one other very special guest accompanying  them.
Whilst serving in Afghanistan Conrad befriended a beautiful and loyal companion in Peg, a local dog who would follow him and his colleagues everywhere, even the front line where she would lay down next to the soldiers.
In Conrad's 'blueys' that he would send home to his family, he would always regale tales of his four-legged friend and expressed his wish of if anything were to happen to him that he would love his Peg to be saved and brought home.
The family had no doubt that they would ever not fulfil their son's wishes as they knew of the comfort and companionship that this dog had given him whilst he was in one of the world's most dangerous places. This extraordinary mission was made possible by help from the charity Nowzad.
Nowzad was started by Sergeant “Pen Farthing” of 42 Commando of TheRoyal Marines.
After being deployed to the war torn town of Now Zad in the Helmand Province in 2006,
Pen was soon to realise that it was not just the local people who needed help in providing stability to their area, but there were indeed many dogs in this province that needed a lot of help also.

Taken from the Nowzad website Pen's own words recount..
….“When we first arrived in the town of Now Zad I broke up a dog fight that was taking place right outside our remote compound. What I didn’t know was that one of those fighting dogs would then befriend me! I couldn’t say no to those big sad eyes, the now very former fighting dog, became my buddy and found himself a name – Nowzad”.

 Pen and his colleagues went to incredible lengths to get the dogs that they had become so attached to home to safety. Dog lovers the world over heard of these men's actions and joined with them to help save these creatures who without their help would certainly die of starvation, cold or do fighting.
You'll be pleased to hear that Nowzad made it home and in May 2007 the charity Nowzad was formed and registered in the UK – number 1119185.
To hear the full story of Pen and his incredible achievements, please visit the Nowzad website http://www.nowzad.com/about/ or read Pen Farthings book 'One Dog At A Time', which actually sits proudly on our bookshelf at home as Garry read it on one recent deployment to Afghan himself.
http://www.amazon.co.uk/One-Dog-Time-Saving-Helmand/dp/0091928818?&linkCode=wss&tag=nowdog-21
Anyone who owns a dog can vouch for the love, companionship and comfort that they bring into our lives.
My husband can also vouch how being in a war zone can compound these feelings, as in such a unique, stressful and at times harrowing environment, one understandably looks for any comfort that can be found, and in Garry's case it was watching one young amercian woman try to savee the innocent life of a puppy she was secretly keeping and so can understand to some degree the love that Conrad Lewis must have felt for this creature he had become so attached to.
I'm aware that today's Reason to Smile, fits in to both of my perhaps all too regular of categories of dogs and the military, but I'm sure you'll agree with me that it is wonderful that the incredibly sad situation of this family's incomprehensible loss is eased even ever so slightly by the pure unconditional love of one dog who their son loved so very much.
Although I hereby enclose a link to the written story on the Daily Telegraph website, http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics/onthefrontline/8927439/Family-of-para-killed-in-Helmand-adopt-his-Afghan-dog.html I urge you to watch the clip of the This Morning interview on ITV player http://www.itv.com/ITVPlayer/
to witness the incredible nature of this sweet hearted dog, in spite her desperately sad start in life.
This story made me cry and smile in equal measure.
My thoughts are with the Lewis family this very difficult Christmas.

Have a wonderful weekend everyone. If you're able, please spare a thought and if you are so inclined, a prayer for those serving in war zones away from their families this Christmas period and for those who never made it home to their families at all.

Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Profusely Proud To Be A Military Wife







You'd be hard pushed to have missed the huge furore currently surrounding BBC choir master Gareth Malone and his unstoppable force of military wives from RMBs Chivenor and Plymouth, who are currently being tipped by the likes of Radio 2 DJ Chris Evans, to beat Simon Cowell's X Factor winner to the coveted Christmas no. 1 spot in the charts.
This the fourth series of the BAFTA award winning BBC series following Malone's ambitious quests to form choirs from unlikely and often under confident participants, saw him call upon the courage of the wives of  Royal Marines, Army and RAF personnel, to step forward out of the shadows and into the limelight, to take part in a choir that would see them perform at The Royal Albert Hall's Festival of Remembrance in November, and later release a single of the song written for them by royal wedding composer Paul Mealor.
The seed of this now nationwide phenomenon, all began with a letter to the former London Symphany Orchestra choirmaster, from an army wife based in Devon, suggesting that he form a choir from the wives left behind in blightly whilst their husbands and partners serve in Afghanistan.
Thereafter followed the collaboration of wives and girlfriends from the two Devon bases.
These amazing ladies were also brave enough to give forth their personal letters, or 'Blueys' as we affectionately know them- so that composer Paul Mealor could create lyrics lifted directly from their own heartfelt words.
When I watched the episode where the creation was first sung to these courageous women, I joined with them in shedding a few tears- and by few, I mean few bucket loads!
The wonderfully interlaced words from these women's own hearts, to me speak for every single one of us who have been left behind, unable to know where or what our beloved husband or partners are up to, and who worry and pray for their every second away from home.
It is a position I would not ever wish anyone to be in. My mother often emphatically reminds me, of my need to know what is going on since I was a small child- Why are you doing this? Where are you going? What are you going to do there?
It is a trait I never have grown out of and one that doesn't serve a military wife well I can assure you!
For the last few years it has been impossible for me to call Garry when I have needed him or indeed when I have just wanted to talk to him, when he has been away with work, Instead I have had to sit at home for many an anxious night waiting in hopeful anticipation that he might be able to get to a computer, or better yet a phone so that I may simply be able to know that he is safe.
Thankfully, for me at least, back in 2006 when I had my accident, Garry then carried a captain's phone that I could call him on and express my shock and distress at just having been involved in an accident.
It is amazing how even in less dramatic and important times than this, hearing his voice when I have been unable to for too long, can turn me into a love struck school girl all over again!
On Garry's safe return home, it actually feels like all of my childhood, ( and for that matter adulthood as well!), Christmases have come at once- coupled with my wedding day and birthdays all rolled into one!
This coming from the world's biggest Christmas fan/elf ! If only you could see the amount of fairly lights that currently surround me lighting my keyboard as I write this post!
Unbelievably sadly, all too many wives, girlfriends, boyfriends, husbands, mums, dads, brothers, sisters and children don't get to experience this jubilation and immense relief, as their loved one does not return home to envelope them in their arms.
The last base in which Garry and I were based, was struck by it's own earth shuddering tragedy, when it lost an aircraft and crew a year before I met him. Despite the stoic and traditionally military character of all it's personnel, I always felt that a piece of the heart of the place had been ripped from it, to the day that the base recently closed: yet at the same time an increased strength of spirit was present as the base family pulled tighter together in order to hold one another up, as everyone despite their sympathy could not help but think selfishly of how it could have so easily been them facing such heartbreaking loss.
The Military Wives choir were themselves struck by such tragedy- as whilst Chivenor's troops thankfully return safely from the six month tour of Afghanistan both bases were on whilst the choir was formed, Plymouth's 42 Commando tragically suffered fatalities.

My thoughts are of course with those women who are now single mothers and heartbroken widows desperately trying to cope without that huge piece of their lives where their husband once fit so tightly.
That void will never be filled for them and those children will grow up without their dad's playing football with them, or tucking them in at night.
Please spare a thought, and if you're inclined, a prayer for these decimated families this Christmas and support the charities which will help them cope as well as is at all humanly possible with life's biggest and most painful obstacle- The Royal British Legion and SSAFA.
If ever there was a worthy way of spending £1.99, it is this beautiful single. Let's face it, that's less than a pint or a glass of wine in the pub!

Whilst researching for today's post, I typed into the Google search engine- first Military Wives and then RAF wives and so stumbled upon this entry into a wedding planning website's forum.
post was entitled:
Whats it like being an RAF wife?
And was followed by this young girl's concerns over her fiance's desire to join the RAF as a pilot.
The bride-to-be wrote...
    ''I'm not wanting to really be a forces wife, but if needs be, I'll live with it.. I'm concerned that my lack of enthusiasm for the social side of it will impact on my future husband.
... if someone could tell me what its like, what the responsibilities are and what I can expect, I'd be ever so grateful.''
Although my circumstances were different, in that when I met my husband, he had already been serving as an RAF pilot for 8 years and I was filled with a mixture of awe and pride for this profession of his; I did still share this girl's anticipation of the unknown.
The concerns of-
 What is expected of me, in both the personal and social sense? How do I know who's who on social occasions? And of course most importantly- Where will he be deployed and how long will he be away?
These are questions that I know every one of my friends who are military wives have asked themselves when they embarked upon their serious relationships with their now husbands.
In my case, when I met Garry, all but a handful of his friends and colleagues had been together a long time- they were married and many were expecting their first round of babies, ( I say this as there is an odd coincidence that babies born to squadron personnel and more specifically 'married patch' dwellers, have all been born around the same time, with the second child born to each family also coinciding with the others based around them- spooky ha!)
When I moved to Garry's base, all of the wives had already experienced their husbands being away in conflict and more trivially, (but strangely still importantly to us girls!) knew what dress to where to each social occasion and who's wife belonged to whom and said events!
There is no doubt that entering into this world is daunting in every capacity, but what I soon learned was that the sense of community and even family amongst those at RAF, Army, Royal Marine and Navy bases alike, is a unique and strangely wonderful thing.

Yes marrying into the military often means that your career comes second, you have to relocate to places you frankly would never choose to live. You have to put up with your husband missing, birthdays, anniversaries and other people's weddings and other events you then have to attend alone. Life can often be lonely, anxious and stressful; but for me the many positives out way these negatives significantly.
First and foremost there is of course the uniform-that's many of the negatives above outweighed already!
But on a more serious note, having been a part of the RAF and in turn the RAF a part of him, for a third of his life- I am married to a husband who is proud of his work and this brings him joy and a contentment often lacking in so many careers.
It goes without saying that I am so incredibly proud of Garry and his colleagues in all of the armed forces and I pray for all of those who will not be home for Christmas and who will be spending it in a war zone, and for those who's loved ones will not return at all.
Please support these wonderful women (and one marvellous man!) on their fantastic quest to raise money for an incredibly worthy cause.
Listen to the lyrics and I challenge you not to be moved to tears.
Have a good night everyone. Treasure it, and those loved ones around you spending it with you.

Do you still need to do some Christmas shopping? Please check out Help For Heroes on line shop where you can buy presents and make a difference at the same time. That's got to be good hasn't it! x






Monday, 5 December 2011

House of Pain

Hi everyone, I hope that you enjoyed a healthy and happy weekend.

This Saturday I was privileged to be well and strong enough to spend some quality time catching up with my extended family; but as has become my norm, I consequently had to pay the price for this. (as with every wonderful active or social experience I have), by being confined to my bed/sofa for the rest of the weekend and having to forgo the rest of the weekend's events.

Despite the frustration of this perpetual problem, (and believe me there was frustration in abundance on Saturday night when my pain meant that I had to miss out on going to Hyde Park's Winter Wonderland- tears may well have been shed)- my primary issue at the moment is most certainly my sleep, or my lack of it more to the point!

Among the many wonderful things about my brother and sister-in-law living with Garry and I at the moment, ( and I'd like to emphasise for the record in case she is reading this, that there are indeed many!!)- the most wonderful of these, is the fact that my sister-in-law has brought with her to our humble abode 'House', series 1 -6!

Having never really watched much of this programme before, I have since been sucked in deep and have subsequently developed a deep love for it having thrown myself into the wonderful world of the remarkable Dr Gregory House and the incredibly talented Englishman Hugh Laurie, who plays this character with the most proficient American accent performed by any foreigner ever!

For those of you who have not as yet had the good fortune to have the time or inclination to while away an afternoon or two with this televisual masterpiece- all you need to know for this post, is that Dr House is a medical genius who heads a team of diagnosticians at the fictional Princeton-Plainsboro Teaching Hospital.

Most relevantly House suffers from chronic pain in his thigh, following surgical complications. House relies upon a walking aid as well as the addictive drug Vicodin to manage his pain.and although I fortunately don't have such an addiction- I can naturally relate to this character's more general problems pertaining to his  chronic pain.

At present my situation is such that I am trying to gradually increase my daily activity- as a result I am naturally suffering more with pain at night.

I have spoken in great detail about my night time trials and tribulations of late, so I won't bore you with the details again, as basically it just goes as follows: horrid pain, relentless itching and then when the clocks marks the hours of 3 or 4am- the anxiety and depression set in with avengence!

Although I'm aware that technology and more specifically electrical goods such as laptops and smart phones are not conducive to sleep and should not be kept near your bed or in your bedroom at all- when you are awake for hours in bed and are taking on a collaborative army of pain, itching and anxiety, you take any distraction going!

Of late the distraction of choice is watching 'House MD' on my iphone whilst playing a simple game of matching coloured blocks on my iphone- ( I have been told by pain psychologists that hand-eye coordination such as this can help distract the brain from pain).

Whilst suffering one such difficult nocturnal nightmare at the weekend, I watched an episode of  'House MD' where the rather eccentric and exaggerated character of House was reluctantly forced to live without his beloved Vicodin.

Watching the wonderful Laurie so accurately portray the process of a chronic pain sufferer withdrawing from strong medication touched such a chord that it actually made me well up- so much for the distraction from emotional distress!

I have had to endure the process of withdrawal from slow release morphine twice now and I would not wish even a fraction of the pain, discomfort or distress associated with it upon my worst enemy- not that as an unemployed, passive, Christian  housewife I have many enemies, but I'm sure you get the general idea!

98 % of my life is spent in pain and probably half of that is spent in ridiculous, scream the house down, pull your hair out pain.

Laurie's well executed portrayal of this process pleases me immensely as I feel that it is imperative that issues such as chronic pain are depicted in mainstream entertainment such as House MD, as it is a vastly underestimated disability as there is so often no physical marker for people to grasp it's severity or affect on the suffers life in every way, and one which is so rarely talked about,  by anyone other than me!

Chronic pain is an invisible disability.

Unfortunately it is my disability.

Chronic pain is my challenge, but we all have those.We all have our cross to bare and chronic pain is mine.

Whatever your cross may be, good luck with your challenge. Take each day as it comes, and if that is too much to bare, take it by minute and second- Lord knows I have been at the pain level of applauding myself for each second survived, and despite five years thus far of the pain and associated depression. I have done just that survived.

Nobody knows what is around the corner, be it bad like my accident, or good like me finally establishing and accepting a level of daily morphine which allows me to have a life of sorts.


Until tomorrow everyone. I hope that you have a relaxing and restful night's sleep.



Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Just Call Me Sleeping Beauty?

Having not left the house for two days, I'm afraid to say that I've not got an awful lot to report this evening!
I have frustratingly slept away two precious days of my life- and although there may little change there, the related frustration of this never ceases to sadden me.
Once again, I could not sleep for love nor money last night and after hours of reading on my Kindle, watching numerous episodes of 'House' on my iphone and perusing over Twitter on my laptop, I finally fell asleep at 11.30am THIS MORNING!
I am exhausted from this insomnia which is plaguing my life right now. Despite this, I do know part of the reason why this is so bad. I also know a way in which I can improve this situation in part.
Why? You may me ask, am I not doing so then?
Pain is the main factor in my insomnia, but the secondary factor is most certainly the itching and tickly sensation that affects my skin all over my body every day and more prevalently every night!
The itching is a symptom of my Arachnoiditis, (my degenerative neuropathic condition), as well as also being a side effect of the copious levels of morphine that I have to consume each day for the pain also associated with this!
When you are talking about dealing with hideous chronic pain, itching may seem a very trivial symptom to complain about- and you're right- in comparison, there is none!
However, when it is nearing 3am and you have taken extra morphine in order to cope with the pain and you are then subjected to this uncomfortable itchy sensation at a heightened level because of the said extra morphine- I can assure you, this becomes a very horrid situation where reaching for the antihistamines that will relieve these feelings to some degree, enough to allow sleep to take me- suddenly seems very appealing!
The problem, ( or more aptly- one of many problemS!), occurs in the fact that these antihistamines cause severe fatigue, on top of the fatigue caused by my morphine and other drugs- coupled together these drugs cause me to sleep easily through to 1- 2- 3- 4- even 5pm!
I can set up a myriad of alarms and phone calls from my husband in order to wake me from this deep slumber- NOTHING makes a difference!
What can I say- just call me Sleeping Beauty!
Facing the difficult journey ahead that Garry and I plan to take in order to hopefully become parents, (if that is, that I am deemed physically able to do so), I've found myself paying even more attention to this issue than I perhaps usually would; as at the end of the day, what baby is going to understand that.. mummy had a tough, painful and uncomfortable night and that they may just have to hang on for some food as mummy's medication make her sleep lots?
Yeah, exactly!
Faced with this catch twenty two, I have done the only thing that I can, and adjusted the only variable possible in this situation.
Over the last two weeks, I have removed the antihistamines from my life, with a very clear and dramatic affect- I was able to be awake when I set my alarm to make me so! Hurrah!
It's a small thing that we all take for granted, but when you are unable to wake when you plan to, it becomes an extremely frustrating and unbearable situation!
For the first week of this medication change, despite only getting between 3 and 6 hours sleep, I was able to face the day at a normal sociable human hour.
Second week of my experiment and things have not gone quite so well to plan. This itching is really not very nice and really affects my ability to go off to sleep.
Another factor is that once I am awake in bed in pain or itching and the clock is edging ever closer to 2 or 3am  and the house is quiet and the world seems a very lonely place- the anxiety and worries in my life tend to bubble to the surface with dramatic and devastating affect!
And there we have it- when the anxiety, itching and pain concoction has gotten that little bit too much, I reach for the antihistamine. However, when you're only taking these pills (which have a side effect of fatigue), as a last resort when it all becomes too much at 3am- you tend to not wake up to 1pm minimum!
What do I do?
With no other non-drowsy antihistamine options available that are strong enough for my symptoms, the only option I feel that I have is to explore those options which involve me controlling what I can with my mind!
I'm planning to now try meditation in a hope that I can cope with my physical symptoms even a fraction better and probably most importantly control my emotional symptoms as much as is at all possible.
1.24am and I'm nearing the end of writing my blog, (it probably doesn't help much that I find it best  to write at night when everyone else in my flat has gone to bed), and I am nervously anticipating the difficulties of the night ahead!
These night time problems, are yet another unseen, unknown and often underestimated element of my life with my disability.
When I catch up with friends or family in the daytime, it is so easy for them to see me dosed up on my morphine and recovered from my difficult night and to take away a false perception of how I am doing.
I have no problem with this, and the reason that I do dose myself and pretend that I'm... ''absolutely fine honest!'', is because I often want to avoid always talking about my depressing situation and I want people to think that I am fine- but the issue comes when you need the same people that you are misleading to understand why you have to let them down last minute for a dinner or a drink as you are unwell!
For me there are SO many elements of my disability that I hide from even my closest of friends and family.
Who wants to be sharing the many personal and sometimes embarrassing problems that the high levels of morphine cause and plague me and others with disabilities with every single day?
Who wants to always be talking about a subject matter that is on the whole quite depressing?

On that note, I am conscious that this has not been the most concise, captivating or upbeat of posts and for that I sincerely apologise.
The perfectionist that I am learning, with the help of my 'shrink,' to identify myself to be, wants to stay another hour or two and rehash this post to a much more articulate and engaging piece; but the sensible and responsible person I am working on making myself, is urging myself to promptly switch off the laptop and stop putting off the inevitability of bed!
Wish me luck. I'm off to count those sheep!

Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Reason to Smile- Being The Change

I hope that you've enjoyed a healthy, happy and productive day today.

Today's 'Reason to Smile' post, ties in a post from last week which included a couple of my favourite quotes.
One of these quotes was by Mahatma Gandhi-

'You must be the change you wish to see in the world'.

Nothing epitomises the spirit of this quote more than this 'Reason to Smile' story I found this evening.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/8257153.stm
I hope that you enjoy it. It has certainly inspired me to do the best that I can tomorrow, particularly in my quest to establish my charity, which aims to provide help for those like me who have become disabled and consequently need emotional support to accept and deal with the difficulties of the life ahead of them.
What change do you wish to see? More importantly-what are you going to do about it?

Monday, 28 November 2011

Owwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww!

Ow. ow, ow, ow OWWWWWWWWWWW!!!!
Is this complaint due to one of my hideous migraines caused by my medication? Is it due to the pain in my back? Is it my nerve damaged legs?
Nope, to all of the above- ( although the latter two are most definitely present and aggressively making themselves known to me right now!)-  this evening, my primary issue is that my mouth is full of stingy, throbby, irrationally irritating mouth ulcers and I have been unable to leave them alone for about four days now and have subsequently bitten my mouth to pieces- Aghhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!
Like a warning signal that goes off that little bit too late to be of any use- I ALWAYS find that I get a mouth full of ulcers when I do too much.
There you have it folks, (ie. mum, dad, husband, best-friend, brother, sister-in-law and shrink!)..I admitted it. ''I did too much this week'.
( Please see pictorial evidence!)
This....
....plus this...
....plus this...
.
....plus this...

...equals this!
The trouble is that on top of doing too much in my days this week, I have also not been sleeping at night until about 4.30am and in fact on Saturday night, I did not fall asleep until 8.30am Sunday morning as I had been out the night before and was consequently in horrid pain!
My primary problem in life is that general, simple everyday tasks require SO much more effort and strength now, than they did previous to my accident in my ''normal life'' pre 2006.
I was that person who annoyingly could not lie in on a weekend for love nor money! My days used to be full to the brim. I never stopped I loved life!
Bizarrely to most- a normal day for me would involve working a twelve hour flight, ( as an air hostess for Virgin Atlantic)-  land in LA, have a quick shower and change and be down in the bar in 15 minutes flat. ( It's amazing how the thought of an apple martini at the end of a very long flight, can affect the speed of this otherwise laid back process in my case!)
After drinking cocktails in the hotel bar for an hour or two, I would then finally, ( after being up for near on 20 hours at this point), collapse into my hotel bed for an hour or four, before waking up at 5am (local time ),to drive to Big Bear mountain to refine my snowboarding skills for the afternoon!




A quick snooze on the drive back to Pasadena- I would then shower and change again, (in a similar time frame to the few hours previous!), to hit the gorgeous bars of downtown West Hollywood!
The bars we used to get invited to as Virgin Hosties, ( yes  I did have the a-typical blond hair, bleached teeth and a slender size 6-8 frame at the time- not too much of a stereotype then?),  were simply amazing and crammed full of the 'who's who' of Hollywood!
Many a time I would have to pinch myself just to realise I was in a different continent, let alone the places I would visit!
That was of course, until one summer's evening in 2006, when this dream life that I was living at a hundred miles an hour, was over in an instant- as one simple mistake/lack of concentration, by the girl who crashed her car into mine- changed the path of my life to a very different direction.
Now, in this new phase of my life, a shower and change is a MUCH longer and more arduous process and involves using disability aids to make the very act even possible!
The strength has to be summoned from the extremely depleted energy reserves in the first place- before then taking 5-10 minutes to ensure that all of the products and equipment I need are in place, because there's no popping out to grab your shower gel if you forgotten it!
The shower (or more often than not bath), takes about 10-20 minutes- the last five of which, are spent trying to psych myself up and summon the energy and strength to do the physical process of getting out of the bath/shower, wrapping a towel around myself before collapsing on the bed.
Then when all of that is done, I am totally and utterly spent!
Laying on the bed, my energy tank is well and truly on empty and I just need to lay still for half an hour minimum and often have a dose of morphine to try and deal with my pain and most importantly reboot my energy system!
Make up, hair and most importantly putting on some clothes- then uses up the little strength that I have acquired from my reboot!
Add blow drying into that equation and I then end up in minus figures in terms of the energy count and I'm invariably back in bed for an hour minimum!!
Blow drying aside- all groomed and dressed and ready to hit the town; do some work or meet some friends and I am nothing short of knackered and riddled with pain to do so!
This is what happens as a result of all of life's daily tasks- be it dinner, shopping for dinner or getting ready for bed- they now all have the same energy value as two hours in the gym used to back in the days of my "normal" life: not forgetting that all of the above is only possible at all on good days!
A problem occurs in the fact that I do not easily accept that these simple tasks that I previously took for granted as non-events in my 'old lifĂ©', should be off limits or restricted- so I am defiantly just trying my best to carry on regardless- perhaps a little in denial?!
The result of this stubborn behaviour is that I inevitably frequently 'do myself in' and end up with my pain exacerbated to the point of unbearablee heights!
I consequently have to take more morphine as a result of my actions, ( which then brings on more fatigue), and my sleep is often hugely affected by both pain and depression due to the fact that I have once again been defeated by my nemesis.
The additional anxiety that is present in me right now, is in my fear that this situation will develop into the situation of 'perpetual poorliness'- which is where I do not wait and give myself time to recover from my pain, fatigue or reoccurring infections, resulting in them never going away for months due to my impatience!
I appreciate that I have tried to articulate how much more energy is needed for a standard day for somebody like me in a previous post-   http://www.discoverdisability.com/2011/08/just-cant-keep-up.html , but I have no qualms in returning to this subject matter now and no doubt many more times in the future- as this is one of the most frustrating things that I and many other people with disabilities experience daily.
There is no doubt that life is tougher since my accident/surgery/illness-disability, both physically and emotionally.
I don't know if I will ever fully accept that the amount that I used to think of as a normal day's work/living is no longer possible without rendering myself confined to my bed for weeks!
How do you change the habits and expectations of a lifetime?
I frankly have no bloody idea- but I gladly welcome any ideas from folks of how to do so!
If you have struggled to even get up or washed this morning then my thoughts are with you. Even more so if you were unable to do these tasks at all!
I think I finally did so at about 2.15pm today!
It is definitely hard for those around you who live at 'normal' speed and strength to understand fully the frustration of living this difficult life- but I have learned that it is even harder for them to do so if you don't tell them anything about it and they are consequently disappointed when you have to once again cancel on them for that drink because your energy, strength and capacity to cope with pain levels have simply run dry.
Writing also drains me more than such things used to pre- disability, so on that note, if you don't mind, I'm going to sign off and crawl into bed and pray for sleep!
Until tomorrow folks...





Thursday, 24 November 2011

Reason to Smile- Help Is Out There

The whole impetus behind starting this blog and the 'charity in the making'- (the aims of which are to establish an infrastructure of emotional support for those who become disabled, whilst also providing support for their partners and parents who often become unwitting carers)- is the fact that I feel that I have personally received inadequate emotional support since becoming disabled.
My desire is that everyone should have the opportunity to receive psychological support- particularly in times of great change and disappoint; such as when one becomes disabled and has to say goodbye to dreams and expectations that they may have had, that are likely now to never be realised.
As a Reason to Smile post tonight, I am attaching a link to The Samaritans, who not only provide the support service at the end of a telephone, but have also moved with the times and now provide an email service if you'd rather not vocalise your issues and would prefer that physical and emotional barrier of typing an email.                                             http://www.samaritans.org/talk_to_someone/email.aspx      
The organisation SANE, ( who I have featured before in a Reason to Smile a few weeks ago-http://www.discoverdisability.com/2011/11/reason-to-smile-black-dog-campaign.html ), also provide an emotional support forum- the ethos of which is to provide mutual support based on responsibility, respect, empathy and acceptance.   http://www.sane.org.uk/what_we_do/support/supportforum/

These groups are making me smile today as it is wonderful to know that there is support of some form out there for everyone should they need it.
Everyone is different and people benefit from different forms of support. I personally prefer a face-to-face approach to emotional help- but at a time when I was not physically able to seek such physical support, (being that it was not being offered to me- as I am hoping it will eventually be through my charity's work)-  I now feel that had someone suggested these online services to me during this period of adjustment, I would've been helped to some degree, at a time when I was at a desperately low ebb emotionally

I feel it is imperative that we break down this ridiculous stigma associated with depression and mental illness in general.
There is so much emphasis in this country on being the best that we can possibly be and overcoming one's issues with great british stoic strength and decorum.
To some degree this is all very well, as in some people I beleive that this school of thought may induce an impressive strength to achieve: but the fact is, we all work SO differently and it is VITAL that emphasis must also be put on realisticly accepting one's limitations, ( be them physical or emotional),  and on encouraging people to support others when they are going through difficult hurdles in their lives for whatever reason- or indeed for no reason, as they are simply struggling to cope.
We should learn as a country to support, rather than to scrutinise and scathe.
Let's break down the barriers of this stigma of depression- or emotional weakness, as it is all too often dreadfully described!
I have personally really battled with depression and anxiety since becoming disabled. I am not ashamed, as I feel that elements of society subconsciously encourage me to be.
I am proud that I am dealing with the challenges life has thrown at me and I openly admit that even now, I regularly fall apart and end up with those endless cascades of tears flowing down my face, curled up upon my bed, and using my Barley dog as an over sized, four-legged hankerchief- all for no reason more than life is tough and I need to let out that pent up emotion.
Sharing some of our innermost concerns and problems, I believe can help both on a personal level and a social level.
I am smiling today knowing that there is support out there for me personally and for others!
Never be ashamed to ask for help or admit that you are struggling with life.
I believe there is more strength in asking for help than in living in denial and stubbornly struggling on in pain and difficulty.
Help yourself and help others.
Goodnight everyone. Sleep well.

Wednesday, 23 November 2011

Not Until December!

The last few evenings, I've been served a fair amount of stick from my husband, brother and sister-in-law, for commencing and immersing myself in my Christmas present buying, wrapping and list making.
Besides the fact that I am the biggest fan of Christmas, (much to the annoyance of my scrooge of a husband), there is more to my being a little premature with my festivities, than simply my love for all things yuletide!
The fact is that I have learned over the last few years, that any strenuous physical activity, ( and by strenuous for me, I mean sitting upright in my wheelchair for longer than an hour or two), will invariably result in me being confined to my house, or worse still my bed ,for hours, days, and even weeks as a result- thus eating into time that 'normal' people may anticipate doing a little last minute Christmas shopping, attending Christmas drinks and basically conforming to the obligatory running around like festive headless chickens, ( which surely at this time of year should more aptly be referred to as headless turkeys)!
The festive season being the whirlwind of social activity and commercially induced expectations that it has so become over the years, means that I will almost certainly attend a social or familial outing/gathering and end up enjoying myself a little too much and consequently staying that crucial and fatal hour too long and consequently render myself confined to my bed for a period of time that may then prevent me from attending other festive frolicks.
Life with a disability and chronic pain in particular, makes running and keeping a social calendar extremely difficult, as you never know when pain will prevent you from doing things. Therefore, my quest to be organised and have important presents bought and wrapped and under the consol table, ( the nearest fit until there is a tree to put them under!), is in the hope that I can restrict the amount of times that I have to take a rain check/ bail out / or give my apologies for having to let down my friends and family in whatever activity we had planned as I will have hopefully paced myself adequately by starting Christmas preparations in mid-November..
Whichever of the above phrases you want to use- they all mean the same thing- that I am disappointed that I can not attend the event in question, as well as being devastated that I am living in a perpetual cycle of letting those around me down!
With my therapist/shrink/ counsellor lady, I am currently working on the art of pacing, in the hope that I will find that equilibrium of living, that will enable me to get the most from life, in order that I can give the most back.
Each time I let down my Mum, best friend, God daughter, brother, cousin, old colleague or aunt- it always feels like there's a knot tightening in my stomach.  I HATE letting people down.
People are wonderful creatures and they have an amazing capacity for empathy and understanding, but I have been hurt incredibly once before by an extremely close friend of mine, who at one of my most poorly times, when I was attached to my bed by catheters, nebuliser tubes and a month old spinal surgery scar- stated  that she felt our friendship was-  '..a little one sided', at that point in time.
The sad thing was that at the time, all of my relationships were one sided.
I couldn't go and see people- as I was imprisoned in my bed;
I couldn't talk to people- as I was suffering with pneumonia and could barely breathe,
and I could barely confer or interact in any way with those at my bedside- as my morphine levels were crippling any cognitive function.
My marriage, family relations and friendships were all one sided at the time as that was all I could give and the last few years have seen at times only a little improvement on the described scene at my bedside.
Ever since this one simple sentence scarred itself upon my heart, I have feared a repeat episode of it from another friend every time that I have had to cancel an appointment with friends or family.
It is most certainly not that I doubt the love of my loved ones, it is more that I understand that we are all merely human- humans that all have lives and issues of their own.
My illness and disability is exactly that- it is mine and not for others to be hurt by, if there is any way at all I can help it! 
My disability is not the primary factor in everyone else's life- that would be weird; to them, it just naturally becomes the thing that irritatingly keeps affecting their social schedules.
I hope that those closest to me who have lived through my becoming disabled with me, will now know that when there is any possible way that I can be somewhere- I will be; however the nature of the beast of chronic pain means that this is all too often not possible. I pray that people can understand this the best that they can.
I am wrapping presents and writing cards this evening, in the hope that I don't have to be that person only capable of giving a one sided relationship this Christmas.
I want to give my loved ones a Christmas period they deserve- one where I sustain my health long and well enough to give them a card and/or a present.
I want to give them a festive period free of periods of immense neurological pain where I am completely stuck to my bed or sofa, incapable of joining in any 'reindeer games', (or more accurately Articulate or Monopoly in our household!), due to the incredible amount of morphine that I have to take just to make those minutes bearable.
I want to pace myself through this marathon of a social season, without having to send too many fateful texts or phone calls to say that once again I will be letting that friend down.
Therefore- I will continue to start Christmas in November in the hope that I will at least be capable of the above to some degree.
Pacing is not easy. I'm failing at pacing right now- my therapist/shrink/counsellor lady told me to scheduler two hours maximum for writing my blog- easier said than done when you are battling immense pain, a cold and sleep deprivation, coupled with being a perfectionist- something that I only realised since starting these sessions in fact!
I'm starting Christmas now, in the hope that I will give my best, (but not too much), into being there for my loved ones over the festive period.
On that note, having exceeded my allotted writing time and consciously leaving the spelling and grammatical errors I know are present in this post, (apologies)- it's off to bed for moi!
Until tomorrow everyone.

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

A Quick Quote

Evening everyone. I'm wrestling with my dark feelings tonight over the fact that my disturbed sleep and morphine intake have meant that I did not wake up today until 4.30pm after finally falling asleep at ten this morning- and have thus wasted Tuesday 22nd November 2011; a day I will never get back or have the opportunity of doing over again.
Ironically my Reason to Smile this evening was to be a couple of quotes that usually keep my spirit high.

"This is the beginning of a new day. You have been given this day to use as you will. You can waste it or use it for good. What you do today is important because you are exchanging a day of your life for it. When tomorrow comes, this day will be gone forever; in its place is something that you have left behind...let it be something good." 
Author Unknown
 
Despite this quote making me feel a little frustrated with myself and my situation on days such as this one, this is nonetheless a quote that I personally hold close to my heart, along with the following by Ghandi.

 "You must be the change you want to see in the world."

Feeling like I may be coming down with something on top of everything else at the moment, I'm afraid I will be keeping it short and sweet this evening, so that I may promptly return to my snuggling on my sofa with dog, blankets and my childhood toy Gismo, who always makes an appearance when I am feeling poorly and sorry for myself, so that I may smother his head in Olbas Oil and Vicks Vapour Rub and reap the benefits from cuddling him- I'm one step away from doing the same with Barley!

I'm keen to share more positive thoughts on difficult days such as this and I would love to know which quotes you kind encouraging- please share them on our Twitter or Facebook pages.

https://twitter.com/#!/DDisability      https://www.facebook.com/#!/profile.php?id=100002588247268

Monday, 21 November 2011

Drained By Pain

Apologies in advance- no post is going to be particularly eloquent or perhaps even readable when one commences composition of it at 1.46am!
Although the 20 minutes immediately prior to typing this post were dictated by my laptop's deep desire to keep crashing on me; I'm afraid the hour or so before that was spent wrestling with my feelings of anxiety that have once again bubbled to the surface of my consciousness.
Those of you familiar with my blog ramblings, will be aware that I am currently seeing a counsellor/therapist/psychologist/shrink. After five years of fighting for psychological assistance of any kind to help me deal with my change in circumstances, I am extremely grateful to finally be receiving some help at all and particularly thankful to be receiving it at a time when I feel it will be extremely beneficial.
Not only am I about to commence my no doubt arduous journey into potential parenthood, (should my specialists deem it possible of course), but like every one of you reading this I'm sure, I am also experiencing the everyday anxieties and stresses associated with having a normal life, family, marriage and friendships.
Life is stressful and life is tough on all of us at times and often in very different ways- and it can all too often be that the smallest things can trigger off tears or tantrums in even the best and strongest of us!
Always a sensitive soul, both post and pre accident, I have noticed how much more difficult dealing with emotional issues can be when you are already in immense unrelenting and frustrating chronic neurological pain.
Pain eats away at your nerves both physically and emotionally. Pain really does wear you down and can at times make you want to shut out the world completely.
The only way I can best describe this to someone who has not had the misfortune to experience such things, is to imagine a debilitating migraine and raging toothache combined and to think of how even a single one of these factors can naturally make many of us niggly with those around us, let alone the both combined!
Despite my best efforts to articulate an adequate description of how pain can effect one's emotions- as expected, after an hour's fretting and crying, a pretty hefty morphine dose and a current time of 2.21am- I feel that on reading this back, I have failed pretty miserably I'm afraid.
Hideous chronic pain makes life that bit tougher. Hideous chronic pain all too often prevents you from getting more than an hour or two's undisturbed sleep and requires you to take morphine and other opiates that also make you tired beyond belief- throw in life's daily trials and sometimes it can all just feel that bit too hard.
To many reading this post, I will perhaps come across a little weak or self indulgent tonight, but this blog is all about enlightening those people who haven't experienced difficulties such as a disability or chronic pain in particular, about what those people who do experience them have to go through and why they may at times be a little distant or even short without intending to be. Sometimes the pain literally controls them.
This blog is also here to show those who have lived, or are living through such difficulties, that there are more of us out there- as for me that has been the greatest thing I have gained from writing this blog- hearing from others in a similar position to myself.
On that note, it is 2.40am and my bed is well overdue!
Until tomorrow everyone. Sleep tight.

Friday, 18 November 2011

The Children Really Are So Very Much In Need

Tears are just streaming down my face watching this year's Children In Need's 'why to donate' VTs.

How can we just carry on each of our often trivial lives, when SO many children are so desperately needing our help.

The VT that has touched me to my core this evening has been the story of brave 10 year old Elliot Wild of Liverpool.

Elliot tragically lost his battle with Leukaemia earlier this year. His mum told his incredible story a few moments ago on Children in Need and I am just blown away by his, and her bravery.

The Wild family were so wonderfully helped through Elliot's final week's by Claire House on the Wirral. http://www.claire-house.org.uk/?content=hospice

Please support this, along with countless other worthy causes by donating to tonight's Children In Need fundraiser.

Now in it's 31st year in a telephone format, it raises millions each year for those thousands of innocents in the UK each year who are so desperately in need of help and support.

Please, if you are in any position to do so, call 03457 332233 or go to http://www.bbc.co.uk/pudsey/donate/

Turn to BBC 1 and you will need no more words of persuasion!




Thursday, 17 November 2011

Quite A Week

Apologies for my absence yesterday, but I was a little under-the-weather in a sense that was not just my usual increased pain and Arachnoiditis symptoms.
To give you a brief catch up on this week's events, the previous day- Tuesday, was our much anticipated first appointment with a specialist to establish whether I will be capable of conceiving and carrying a baby with my spinal injury and subsequent surgery, along with my degenerative neurological condition.
Well it may be only the first step along a very long and testing road indeed, but it was a steady step in the right direction at least and whatever the outcome, establishing the facts is most definitely a positive thing for Garry and I after so many years of speculation and concern.
The expertise of the consultant with whom we met, was maternal medicine, and this kind and informative doctor primarily helped us to learn of the risks associated with the medication that I have no choice but to take throughout any potential pregnancy.
For me the most shocking and upsetting revelation, came in my husband and I learning that should we proceed with any pregnancy in the future, then our baby would be subjected to morphine through the placenta and would require treatment for the withdrawal of said morphine once the poor little mite had entered the world. This addiction would naturally cause discomfort and the possibility of respiratory symptoms or seizures, although we were also reassured that as they would be aware of and monitoring this situation from the offing, then these risks would be minimised as much as is at all possible.
Wow! What a lot to take in; and that's only one element of the problems with any potential pregnancy!
I knew this road would be a difficult and draining one, but I must keep reminding myself that whatever the future may hold in this respect, then it is important for Garry and I to learn of the truth so that we can move on from this difficult limbo period, and perpetual feeling of 'what if'?
I'm afraid that even writing about this situation is draining for me right now and with that thought I hope that you'll excuse me to escape to my slumber!
Bed is calling me. Thoughts are whirring around my head like bumble bees drunk on summer sunshine and
I pray that sleep is not far away.
I am also this evening racked with worry for my four legged baby, ( Barley dog), who I have this evening found to have two lumps directly below his eye.
The sickness I am feeling in the pit of my stomach at the worry that anything may be wrong with my boy, only goes to show how much I adore and live for this faithful, four-legged companion, who has selflessly kept me going through the darkest of times and whom I regard as my baby boy himself!
Weird maybe, to those non-pet lovers amongst you- but to those of you who have ever shared a bond with such a charming creature, I'm sure you appreciate the parent like responsibility and worry that I am feeling for my little Barls right now.
I love him with all my heart and pray to God that he is well.
On that note, I'm off to give him one more cuddle before my eyelids give out on me!
Night night...