Thursday 27 September 2012

nightmares and day dreams

We had arranged to go Bristol yesterday to see Steve's mother because of ongoing concerns about her health.  But instead of meeting the GP at her house as planned, we visited her in hospital where she has been since Sunday evening when she taken into A&E by ambulance, following a dizzy spell.

The journey from Oxford to Bristol was a bit of a nightmare, traveling through thunder and lightning, aquaplaning along roads which were at times like rivers, with extremely poor visibility due to the torrential rain, spray off the highway surface and low light levels...

Our relief at arriving safely was short-lived; the nightmare of finding a parking space at the hospital was closely followed by the nightmare of finding the patient, who been moved to another ward in a different building shortly before our arrival....

We had some idea of what to expect from other members of the family who had visited before us.  Nevertheless, the stark difference between the person we had talked to last Friday and the person we found lying in the hospital bed when we arrived was very upsetting. However, she is safe now and in good hands.  In that respect, it is less worrying than when she was home alone, determined to stay independent. However, it is likely to be some weeks before she is in a condition for her needs to be assessed.  By then, Steve will have started chemotherapy. Talk about bad timing......

Whilst in Bristol for the hospital visit, we took were able to meet up afterwards with son Jack and go out for a meal. A good opportunity to talk face-to-face about those sensitive things which are difficult to say over the phone or in an e-mail.  The experience of dealing with Steve's mum's sudden and rapidly deterioration in health has brought home to us that we really do need to have arrangements in place with our children should such eventualities befall us.  Time to get ourselves properly organised!

Still, it hasn't been all nightmares. The garden maintenance people came on Tuesday and it went like a dream.  Rob and his mate did a brilliant job, very quickly, cleanly and efficiently - such a relief!  They even trimmed the front hedge as a little surprise extra for free - isn't that kind?  

One other unexpected thing happened yesterday.  A letter arrived from the Cancer Centre with an appointment for Steve to attend the Chest Clinic in October. We weren't expecting such an appointment.  The date doesn't fit in with Steve's three monthly assessments, his three weekly chemo appointments, or the anticipated scan dates.  He has arranged to have his "bloods" done at the GP surgery a few days before each chemo session, so it can't be for that...We are at a loss to figure out the reason, unless someone at the Patient Contact Centre has been day dreaming at work, and made the appointment by mistake!  Must remember to phone the hospital tomorrow and find out what's going on....

Happy 14th birthday Google!  Thank you for the daily e-mail alerts for mesothelioma and for tracking down all the information we have found online about Steve's condition. Don't know what we would have done without you these last three years :-)


  1. Good luck with the chemo, thinking of you both. Know what you mean about fighting the patient mentality, don't have any tips other than humour - sometimes hard to find, I know.

    Otherwise sometimes I found Ray got very angry at times and that used strangely to really help- it seemed to give him extra energy.

    all our love

    1. many thanks Amanda....On reflection, I think the important thing is to let out the stress, whether with a chat over over a cup of tea or something stronger, by having a laugh or a rip roaring shout!

      We will probably be doing all of those in the near future...Although thinking about it, we do them anyway :-))


  2. Wishing you good luck with chemo to...

    Many thanks

  3. Given the sentiment, I have given you the benefit of the doubt and published your comments. However, I have a sneaking suspicion it's just a ploy to get people to visit your web site...

    Please write under your real name next time, or your comments will go into the spam box :-)

    Thank you,