Archives For bruising

The 13th of April.

I am not sure how easy it will be, but I’m going to try to write this with only one eye. It’s tricky trying to work out when the pen is going to hit the paper because I have no depth perception.

It’s been a really boring day, I’ll warn you now. I got a blog post done this morning, then we had to be at the QE for half twelve for my eyelash appointment. I was seen by the nurse just after one, then when I saw Mr. Kolli for the bit where he draws on my face, he said that for infection control reasons, my position on the list was going to be much later, so I wasn’t going to be done until half three at the earliest.

As I hadn’t got my two o’clock tablets and I’d finished my book, we decided to come home. Had lunch and drugs, picked up a different book (The Power), went back!

Mr. Kolli was more supervisory today. I was congratulated once again on my stoicism while being stabbed in the face but it really isn’t that bad. I felt it much harder to keep my eye open this time, but the doctor seemed to cope. Three big lashes, three fine ones. Hopefully I have some left! Then my whole eye was slathered in ointment and I have a double pad on secured with tape, which I can take off at bed time. I got some free custard creams for being brave, and here we are.

The 14th of April.

I have not quite escaped the bruising this time. Slightly less experienced doctor means more injections so I have several tiny pink blobs under the eye. Getting the tape off last night was not fun at all. I am very glad we have the stickiness-dissolving wipes because otherwise we would have ripped off half my face.

I have spent my day in the house, despite the sunshine. Never mind the miniature black eye I am sporting, there’s also the thrice-daiky ointment which only adds to the shininess. Makes a gym trip not top of my priorities list.

Instead, I have crocheted the sleeves of my jumper and finished season three of Scandal. I haven’t got to the end of the second sleeve, but I should by the end of the day.

And of course Theresa May has decided to join in with starting World War 3, so I’m going to start looking for a bunker.


The 1st of June. 

Where to start? I suppose the beginning would be the logical place. I arrived at New Street shortly after eight, so I had time to pick up my tickets and get coffee and a paper before the assistance chap took me to my train. 

The journey to Euston was uneventful, except upon arrival, once again, no one was there to meet me so the train manager had to get the ramp. More ramp fun when it came to my first taxi of the day – when driving up into the cab, I went over backwards, I think because I was going too fast. I ended up flat on my back, thankfully with the driver behind me, so he helped me sort of roll sideways out of the chair. We lifted it in and I climbed in after it, promptly taking some co-codamol for the pain I knew was only going to get worse. 

I asked him to take me to Konditor and Cook, where I bought a slice of Curly Wurly cake and two brownies (chocolate chip and fudgepacker) for me, and a box of mini treats for the people at Anthony Nolan. I knew there was a coffee/barbershop nearby that I wanted to try, Sharps, so I went there for just under an hour and went through my talk in my head. 

Another taxi to take me to Anthony Nolan (who drove past me and I had to chase him down the road at top speed), which I entered slowly, and I arrived in time to watch a video about a chap who ran the marathon with his donor, which was very heartwarming. Then I talked for about twenty minutes, trying to make sure I was talking to them all (there were maybe seven students there, so actually a much smaller audience than I expected, between 18-20 years old? I am terrible at ages). They seemed to take it in, didn’t really have many questions, but I think they will have more when we come to do the on-camera interview on Monday. 

And that was it for me! I Hailo’d a taxi, who arrived and immediately had to cancel because he was meant to be back at the garage, so I called another and he came very quickly. He was a lovely chap, chatty in a good way, and he took me to Timberyard in Soho. I was hoping for a crodough, but there were none left, so I had a flat white and went in search of lunch. That took me all the way across the road, to Melt Room, land of the gourmet toastie. 

I went for a simple three cheese, but next time I think I’ll go for a slightly more indulgent option. I ate two thirds of it while watching passers-by and texting Christine. It was huge, and I knew finishing it would make me feel ghastly, so I put the rest in its bag and went out on my final trip, to Crosstown Doughnuts. For so long, I have wanted to try their cinnamon scroll, so I chose one of those, and an orange blossom with date jam for Mommy. I also wore out a member of staff, getting them to help me to lift the chair inside. Everyone today was very helpful. 

Then it was time to go back to Euston! Time seemed to be passing ever so quickly, my heavy lunch was kicking in, and I was starting to worry that I would be late for my train. Not helped by a text from Virgin at five to three saying my train was nearly ready and to go to the platform, so internally I was screaming I’M NOT EVEN AT THE STATION YET! Never mind the fact that the train wasn’t due to leave until 15:23. But again, I needn’t have worried, I was settled with plenty of time. 

The caffeine hit from my four coffees was wearing off by this point, and I was feeling the urge to lie down, which one can’t really do on a train. I was about to slump, when who should walk by but Jay Rayner? He was there because The Kitchen Cabinet was recording in Birmingham tonight, which Mommy and I were going to. He was on his way to the bar, so I just said hello and that I was going to the recording, and asked who was on the panel. He could remember three of the four, and asked me if I wanted anything from the aforementioned bar before going to get his water. What a decent chap!

I had phoned the Birmingham assistance team so they knew I’d be there, and sure enough a lady met me with the ramp. I went to meet Mommy, and was in desperate need of some sort of healthy beverage. Some Green Goddess from Pret did the trick, then we drove over to the NIA car park where we could leave the car while at the recording in Austin Court. 

We arrived about 5.40, because the doors were to open at 6, and people were already waiting. We got given forms for us to submit questions on, and I asked about using coffee in savoury recipes, as coffee was a suggested topic (along with limes and chocolate). 

They started letting us in, and the producer had reserved two places at the back so we could have the wheelchair nearby, which meant we weren’t fighting for seats. Some people rocked up at quarter to seven expecting to easily sit down and were surprised when told the venue was at capacity and they were too late. They tried arguing but health and safety! Novices. 

The panel was Tim Anderson, Rachel McCormack, Zoe Laughlin and another lady whose name I cannot remember. It was a good line up though, and I am pleased to say my question was chosen, so hopefully I make the edit! We learned a lot and have quite a few new ideas too, so listen out for the final episode of the series. 

When it finished, we didn’t hang about, just drove home. I finally got to eat my cinnabon, and I am knackered. 

The 2nd of June. 

A much less eventful day. Despite taking a Zopiclone last night, it took me ages to fall asleep. This meant I was less than delighted when my alarm went off at nine. Had to get up because I had a chiro appointment at 11.15 and my fall yesterday has resulted in some serious pain today. There’s the obvious ache in my lower back (where some rather spectacular bruising is blooming), but my left shoulder also hurts a surprising amount. Trine suspects that I actually have given myself whiplash. Again. At least there’s a good reason this time, instead of “I just coughed too much”.

She did some massage and a little crunching, but there’s not much she could do for the rest. I shall just have to wait for that to resolve itself. Lots of painkillers. Rescheduling with Vlad might have to wait I think. No squats in my current condition. 

Home for lunch, and I had my Curly Wurly cake (which had thankfully suffered no ill effects from being a day old). It is still as delicious as I recall. I don’t think our home-made version is quite as good. 

This afternoon I have been sitting with the kittens, writing about yesterday and watching Fringe and iZombie. Now the kitties are all a bit pooped, and we’re waiting for Eliott, the guy who will hopefully want Gracie, to arrive. Fingers crossed. 

The 1st of October.

I spent my entire morning in a state of pure fear because I had such a terrible stomachache, and I thought it was a stone and the klebsiella had returned. Thankfully we were in clinic and they were running late so I curled up on the sofa in the quiet room for a few hours and even managed a little sleep, I think. I was feeling better by the time Manoj called me in and he felt my tummy and didn’t find anything untoward.

We got out just after noon and went across the road to the Women’s to see Elle as she’s in having three days of steroid injections. Next time I see her she will probably have a tiny baby!

After seeing her, we went into town and had lunch in Pret, then we went to Starbucks where the man recognised me, then to House of Fraser for more wool where the woman recognised me! I think it’s the facial bruising. We went to Topshop to get some socks to give to Christine, and to River Island to buy some collars to wear under jumpers.

Since we got home, I have wrapped Christine’s biscuits and finished crocheting a snuggly scarf. Tonight is Bake Off semi final!

The 2nd of October.

Such a brilliant day. I got tweeted by Katherine Ryan, had a delicious latte from Faculty Coffee, and received a lovely email from Leukaemia Care which I need to respond to properly tomorrow.

We got the train down to London to meet Christine at The Dorchester for her birthday lunch at Alain Ducasse. We went to the bar where I had a Marmalade Dream cocktail. I don’t know what was in it bar champagne but it was yummy. Christine opened her presents and cards, then we went through to the restaurant and per used the menu. Before we’d even ordered, we were brought a pyramid of choux puffs flavoured with paprika, cheese and black pepper, then we got breads – I had a little brioche-y roll with some soft cheese and another bread that had bacon in it. Then as an amuse-bouche, we were given these ceramic eggs that had a parsnip soup poured over a quenelle of Stilton in and I love parsnips so that was fabulous. I had to stop myself eating all the bread in case I didn’t have room for the actual meal! For my starter, I had baby squid a la grenobloise, then braised ox cheek, which made my wine choices interesting! I had what the sommelier recommended, and it was the first red wine I’ve had that I’ve actually liked. I made a tiny mess with my gravy (literally a few spots) and they came and covered it up with a napkin. Before pudding, we were offered some more Stilton which we all declined, but then they brought some pre-desserts – macaroons (chocolate, caramel and lemon), chocolates, cocoa-dusted almonds, toffees and nougat! My actual pudding was the chocolate/orange combination and it was gorgeous. Then coffee. By the time we were finished, it was nearly four o’clock, so we only had time to go to Selfridges before getting a cab back to Euston. We went there because I really wanted to get some Crosstown doughnuts but I don’t think I’ll be eating anything more until tomorrow.

I am stuffed and exhausted.




















The 1st of September.

Ughhh awake since half past three after a particularly disturbing dream in which I chomped down on my own eyeball, then somehow spat the whole thing out. It was not a fun dream.

This morning I drafted a blogpost that I haven’t got round to publishing, and I’ve had to keep my feet elevated again because I’m still retaining fluid. It’s difficult to do anything about my arms – I’m not sure what’s going on, but I will tell/show Ram kn Wednesday. Might need the stent putting in. Bah.

This afternoon, we cleaned out Hamilton’s cage – this will be a weekly Monday occurrence. He will come out into my hands now without needing a treat to entice him, and sit on my lap and be happily stroked. I am so glad we are friends now.

Andrea the Italian was on X Factor last night! The internet loved him because he wore a pug jumper. I can’t wait to see his Wembley audition again; it was so great. 

I have finished The Miniaturist and it’s excellent. Definitely read it if you have been toying with the idea. 

Tomorrow is my appointment at the Women’s Hospital. Thank fuck, because I need some answers. 

The 2nd of September.

Very productive morning! Awake at three, blah blah blah, but I’ve had enough coffee so it’s fine.

The menopause clinic was running late so I didn’t get seen for my 10:15 appointment until about 11:30, but I had the paper to read and I’d just realised I’d cocked up the sudoku when I got called. I had my obs done, saw a specialist nurse who just did some background and asked stuff they need to know. Then I went in to see Dr. Robinson who is very nice and going to be helpful. We talked a bit, then I had my first smear (which she had to get a smaller speculum for, FYI) and a swab taken which was not my favourite. She was maybe going to do a biopsy of the wall of my uterus but decided against it as it was apparently going to be very uncomfortable for me. I was fine with her not doing it. She’s also requested an ultrasound, and because my bleeding is technically “post-menopausal”, it has to be done within two weeks. If there’s an abnormality, I’ll have another hysteroscopy like I did in 2008, and she’ll also put in a mirena coil which will release progesterone every month, because she thinks I need more and that’s actually why I’m bleeding. If the scan’s fine, I’ll just have the coil and carry on with the patches. So we have a plan and I’m happier. 

Went into town on the way home to take back a book that I’d already bought, and some pyjama tops because I’d bought too many, really, then we came home and fed our rumble tummies! This afternoon we watched 3 food programmes, and it started A Wild Sheep Chase by Haruki Murakami. Becky came round, and she is not looking forward to tomorrow when all the kids return after the “summer plummet”. I could not be a teacher. 

Hamilton is chewing the bars again and being mental. Sigh. 

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The 16th of August.

This must be what real grief feels like. I know I’ve known countless fellow patients who’ve died, but this is my first really close family member death (yes he was a member of my family). I was too young to really appreciate Grandpa, and I didn’t really know Nain. Oscar has been my constant companion and little kitty friend for as long as I can remember, and it just feels wrong without him.

We went to pick up Becky and James from the airport and they told us all about Barcelona. They came in for a cup of tea, but I was dreadful company because I just don’t want to communicate with anyone.

The excess fluid is also causing me extra breathing problems, combined with the utter depletion of my muscle mass from the steroids, and total lack of sleep, I’m feeling almost as weak as I did just after my liver transplant.

I’m absolutely petrified of it getting worse. Waiting to see how much worse the next day will be.

The 17th of August.

Today has been better. I had a pretty good sleep, and I spent my morning in my pyjamas, waiting for an ASOS delivery of leggings, long vests and men’s cardigans because my body is such a ridiculous shape at the moment.

Mommy helped me try them all on, some stuff will go back which is always good for one’s bank balance. Then she washed my hair, and this afternoon I watched the finale of Utopia.

I’ve also been trawling through my hard disks, trying to find a nice picture of Oscar to get framed, and doing some really boring phone sync things.

I have a theory that my burpiness is connected to my bleeding, as excessive bloating/wind can be linked to oestrogen and cortisol levels, both of which I take and I’m bleeding when I’m not supposed to which seems to coincide with the burping.

So we’ll put that forward as a theory at the menopause clinic in September.

There are patches of natural skin colour on my face!

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The 6th of August.

Awake at three. Stayed in the dark just listening to podcasts and music because I didn’t want to aggravate my eyes any longer than necessary. We were out of the house by half eight to be at clinic early, but I still didn’t see Ram until eleven. I got the stitches round my line taken out though in the meantime so that should be more comfortable.

As soon as we were in Ram’s room, I just said “This is worst I can remember feeling without infection and as hard as I am trying to stay cheerful, every so often I really do just lose the will to live and I cannot carry on like this” and wept. Mommy explained all the things that are wrong (steroids causing exhaustion, constant coldness, physical muscle weakness, constant trembling, critically low self-esteem from moonface, then we have the fact that my skin still is raw and sore, and I’m now having a period every month despite not having taken the drug to induce them and this should not be happening, but my “emergency” appointment at the menopause clinic isn’t until the 2nd of September), I occasionally supplied information, then he looked at all my skin. I had calmed down by this point, and we talked. Rituximab has to be a very last resort as we can only apply for it once and I need to be proven to be exceptional, so we’re going to just have fortnightly photopheresis, come down on the steroids and hope it all just works, really. And from things he said, I remembered that there are other patients much worse off than me.

Left pharmacy with a massive list and went to town to get some presents and some lunch, then went back to the QE, picked up my prescription, then came home. Becky came round so we could discuss Alton Towers on Friday, I wrote up a blog post, and I’m getting this done before Bake Off!

My face is even more colourful, and tonight I’ve having lorazepam.

The 7th of August.

My first day of 40mg of pred for two weeks. Let’s see how this goes. Lorazepam last night really actually did some good, so I got up at maybe half past eight? Admittedly I wasn’t sleeping all the time until then but I was rested.

Mommy gave my hair a good wash, and I put a big old mask on my hair to try and give it a bit of a boost as I attacked it quite brutally with a hairbrush on Monday. And my Moleskine wedding planner for Becky’s wedding arrived!

I’ve done nothing of importance today because of it being a lorazepam day, and I’ve just found out little Margot Martini is almost definitely going to die. For fuck’s sake, she hasn’t even had a chance at life yet.

All I’ve done is wear cooling eye masks and watch shit on the box I didn’t need to remember. Kathryn, you are still here. Get more donors. This could’ve been prevented.


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The 4th of August.

Wembley X Factor day! A pretty magnificent day, all in all. We set off at half ten, driving until we got to some services at about twelve for coffee and some lunch, then drove the rest of the way to Wembley which was rather uneventful.

Parking was a bit of fun but we found the spot we’d booked, then we had to find our way to the erna. The signage from the car park is not good. We found the door for the priority queue and Roxane came out to give us our wristbands, then we got taken through the backstage route to our seats which were awesome. Front row, to the left of the judges, not directly behind them.

Before everyone came in, we had photos in the judges chairs and I had one on the stage. It’s very big. The warm up guy Roycey is very good – I’m sure I’ve seen him at BGT. He was trying to set up this 23 year old guy with a girlfriend, but all the girls he kept bringing up were 17 which was not good, so then he saw Mommy and dragged her up! I couldn’t watch but she returned swiftly. Roycey also read out my Twitter so I got a bunch of new followers which was excellent! Simon was running late, so the first few hours were with just Cheryl, Louis and Mel B with a little bobble-head Simon. In between the acts, I got to quickly go and meet them and have photos! Cheryl is tiny, and her face was so shimmery. She held my hands and said “I hope you tick everythin’ off your fuckin’ list” and it was all kind of a blur but they’re all lovely and I was kind of elated.

I don’t think I can say much about the acts, so I will just give you the nicknames we gave them: orange guitar girl, short hair nervous girl, girl who lost 11 1/2 stone, camp Geordie, 17 year old boy, Don’t Speak woman, Woman group, two sister group, three grubby guys, awful icona pop duo, Arctic Monkeys guy, Kane urban rock, Human Nature boy, falsetto soul guy, pull up jeans guy, boobs Cheryl, Abi, rucksack girl, solo guy, unprepared water boy, little irritating Irish blonde, Italian dog shirt chap, bad throat hoop earrings girl, poisoned guy, Chloe Jasmine, angry girl. We basically had two shows – the first few hours without Simon, then we had a break and Mel left to go to New York, and a load of girls descended upon me to crowd around the table and scream and be in the vicinity of the judges’ table it seemed. It was very hot and I really couldn’t see what they wanted to achieve by being there but whatever. I was glad when Simon arrived and they all clambered back to their seats and I could breathe again. I met him very briefly – he had no idea who I was, but he was very polite, and we’d just had a very weird audition so we talked about that. I was mesmerised by his teeth – they are so regular. Clearly not real but impeccable. He looks a bit like a teddy bear up close. I really wanted to touch his face but thought it probably wasn’t a good idea.

We didn’t finish until about twenty past eight, way later than we thought! We were escorted out again so we avoided the masses and got out of the car park. It was really interesting to be there and see the difference in opinions between the audience/judges. I’m also excited to see what Twitter thinks of them all! It’s going to be very interesting.

We stopped at the services for food and toilet, then drove straight home. The bruising on my face has bloomed and it’s so puffy.

The 5th of August.

My face is just ridiculous. It’s very pretty colours, all different shades of purple and I look like a butterfly, but it’s so puffy, I can barely keep my eyes open. It doesn’t really hurt though, thankfully.

Today was busy! I slept until about four, which is just average, then became gripped by fear as my tummy started hurting and I was cold, so I took my temperature but it was fine – I have never been so happy to see 35.8 degrees. I took some deflatine and gaviscon and lots of deep breaths, and eventually the pain went away. It was terrifying though – I really thought I was going to be going back to hospital in my pyjamas. We had the chiro at ten, and after my fall, Trine found plenty of places to crunch! So I feel a bit looser which is nice. I didn’t have to adjust my face too much when lying on my front. We went into Sutton afterwards to get some aloe vera cream for my arms, as the gel just dried me out, and we picked up Lauren, bought some soup and came home to eat that and and chat about X Factor! So that was all lots of fun, and she went to see her grandad and I went to the hygienist and dentist. I had a bit of plaque that’s been really annoying and I couldn’t get it off, but the hygienist has and it’s gone and it feels so good. The new dentist used to be a maxillo-facial doctor so he asked me loads of questions about my fall, basically concerned that I might have had a concussion but I sufficiently reassured him that I was okay. And Clair the receptionist has signed up to be a bone marrow donor because of me.

This evening I am just puffy and tired. It is hard to keep my eyes open and I need rest.

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