Posted by: glenswatman | December 23, 2012

20121211-20 Getting ready For Christmas




TUESDAY 11 DECEMBER – Panic stations as I wake with a sore throat, hacking cough and the makings of a cold. I phone the hospital and other than moving out (Steve is adamant I should not move out into the studio) the best thing is to keep apart as much as possible and wash hands as often as possible. A licence for Steve to linger in bed until I have finished cooking the cream of mushroom soup for lunch. In the afternoon Steve walks down and meets me in ASDA where I have stocked up on Vitamin C tablets, “first defence” nasal spray and Dettol room spray. We bump into Mom who is also full of cold and trying to cope with having Dad home as they let him out last night.
KEIGHLEY – (+67)

WEDNESDAY 12 DECEMBER – I’m not sure which is the biggest surprise, Steve asking me to show him how to use the Kindle or him choosing 50 shades of Grey to read. Each morning has seen more frost and when we leave after lunch there is still ice to be scraped from the car windows. We have a really long wait at hospital first for Steve’s bloods and then to see the Doctor. Dr Gilleece pops in and we mention my cold and she suggests I get swabbed so they know what type of virus it is in case Steve goes on to get it. Marketa talks us through reduction of some medications and checks Steve over. Unfortunately the CMV virus test that was taken on Thursday morning before Steve left hospital came back with a count over 500. If today’s shows the same levels he will have to return for more drip treatment as the tablet form is not as effective.
KEIGHLEY – (+68)

THURSDAY 13 DECEMBER – I’m back to sleeping in the room to stay away from Steve and he stays in bed until lunchtime to minimise our time in the same room. I walk down to the surgery to get my throat swabbed for a virus test. Claire has huge problems with the sale contract completion so I pop into her solicitors to check out a couple of alternative suggestions but to no avail. She’s paid a deposit on a rental but has to complete by this afternoon to secure it or lose her money but the vendors solicitor still has one sheet of paper to tick and forward before contracts can be exchange. The purchasers call Claire to say they have chased it up and been told another solicitor is being drafted in. It’s a real nightmare for her as her house is almost completely packed up with boxes and furniture filling the lounge.

FRIDAY 14 DECEMBER – The good news is the weather has changed and the freezing conditions have been replaced by heavy rain! Steve goes down to Boots and uses a voucher for a free eye test and it’s good to know the reading glasses from Poundland will suffice but we need to buy the next strength up. Claire calls in tears, the sale has fallen through due to a mortgage problem with the purchasers. She is distraught so I invite her round for tea. Richard has no doubt had the same kind of phone call as he arrives at our house to console her. Sadly this will have cost her about £1000 but at least she isn’t homeless and we manage to make her see this. A call from Leeds assures us Steve’s virus counts are down again which is great.

SATURDAY 15 DECEMBER – Shortly after returning from shopping the kettle packs in and I have to head out to replace it. Must be overuse as all Steve’s water has to be boiled. Lisa & Mick arrive late afternoon followed shortly by Claire and family. It’s Natasha’s 13th birthday and I’ve arranged a few surprises by way of party games and a cake. They decline joining us for a meal but happily eat snacks and wait for us to finish so we can play more games. Can see I am going to have plenty of games up my sleeve for when they come on Christmas Eve, especially charades which they are all really good at.

SUNDAY 16 DECEMBER – Mick had already given me an ancestry programme and today Emails the info with Steve’s side of the family. I load this up and begin adding my side and immediately become addicted and join to try to fill in gaps. In the afternoon I’ve got a mystery shopper assignment for family ten pin bowling. We have to spend £50 on one game of bowling each, food and drinks and some money to check the amusement machines are working and I get this back as expenses and £15 on top. Make a perfect finale to Natasha’s birthday and everyone helps by remembering staff names, the time it takes food to arrive etc. On the way back Claire treat us all to ice cream at “Scoops” ice cream parlour. I only manage one scoop but the kids have huge ice cream sundaes. It’s been really nice to be here in England to share Natasha’s birthday.

MONDAY 17 DECEMBER – In the morning I delve deeper into our ancestry learning that my grandmother was a doffer in the mills aged 14 and great grandfather a lamp lighter. Richard John calls round early afternoon for a catch up. Today I have an assignment at the local “Screw Fix” DIY store and curse I have walked down when it was fine but it turns to heavy rain. The assignment doesn’t go quite as prescribed and I am in danger of “blowing my cover” so I improvise and place an order for an out of stock item.
KEIGHLEY – (+73)

TUESDAY 18 DECEMBER – I’ve got to collect my Screw Fix purchase so Steve walks down with me and we call in at Mom & Dad’s. They are delighted to see how well Steve is. Whilst Steve can walk long distances he is still finding the hills hard work and I have to push him most of the way back. He fancies a fresh pie for lunch but can’t have shop made ones so I knock up a few ham and cheese ones and they work out quite well. Today we get a visit from Ray Stephens, think word is out that we are open for healthy visitors. Late afternoon Claire calls to say the house sale is definitely off. At least now she knows where she stands and can unpack most of her stuff but she is pretty fed up.
KEIGHLEY – (+74)

WEDNESDAY 19 DECEMBER – Claire contacts me as she started unpacking last night then realised that Natasha’s wardrobe collapsed when they dismantled it and she has thrown it out so now doesn’t have one! She asks me to try and find her a cheap or free one. Over at Leeds parking for the hospital is a nightmare as the multi storey and all nearby car parks are full. I drop Steve off and end up parking at the Thackray museum where I show Steve’s disabled pass to get free parking and the exit code. It’s mental in the outpatient unit, think they are trying to fit in 2 weeks’ worth of appointments. Steve’s Hickman line won’t bleed and they have to take blood from his arm. When we see the Doctor, 2 hours late, she says the line is a problem and they must do an X-ray to make sure it hasn’t dislodged. If it has they will have to operate to remove it and put another in. We will know the X-ray results tomorrow and if the line is in place we must go to Bradford Royal Infirmary for them to put something in the line to try and dissolve the clot. His white blood cells and neutrofils are also very low so we must make arrangements for Steve to have GCSF injections as well. We’re much later than expected so arrange to meet Claire and Richard at The Balti House as we are taking them out for a meal. We have a lovely time and Claire tells me friends came round last night and she has got a lot of unpacking done and whilst we are eating Natasha is putting up the Christmas decorations.

THURSDAY 20 DECEMBER – Sandra and Keith arrive late morning and I serve up a 3 course dinner. We’ve just finished eating when the phone rings. The Dr at Leeds tells us Steve’s line is still in place so we must go to Bradford Royal Infirmary today at 4pm. It’s really busy when they get there but they fit us in and manage to get some special clot busting liquid into the line and give him a GCSF jab to up his immunity.


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