Archives For james

The 3rd of May.

I have been putting this off because writing it down makes it real.

It’s been a pretty quiet, mildly shitty day. I still have this stupid dry cough which wakes me up throughout the night, although my throat is less scratchy now, which I suppose is a plus.

We went into Birmingham this morning so I could pick up my copy of the new Jeffery Deaver novel, The Burial Hour. I also needed to get a thank you card to give James tomorrow when we have our last ever appointment, and Mommy wanted a blank card to put a cross-stitch in but couldn’t find one.

This afternoon, I phoned Andrew’s secretary, Emelda, again, but he hadn’t got back to her and there were no spaces in his clinics until the beginning or end of June. At this point I got upset and I tried to explain about the wedding. I didn’t do it on purpose, but she then said she’d keep trying for me and I’d hear back as soon as she spoke to him.

Mommy then went to Grandma’s, and I watched the new Pretty Little Liars and started the book. Mid-programme, Emelda called me back, and I’ve got an appointment for 25th May, so I will “go to the ball”, as she put it. I didn’t tell her that really I need to see him much sooner because she’s obviously pulled strings to get me in there, but I’m going to have to attend the wedding in my wheelchair, on oxygen and with a giant, swollen arm. I am so tired of this. My hateful body.

The 4th of May.

Nothing like bad news from a friend to prompt a reality check. Dean had his operation on Wednesday to remove the tumour on his rib. That part went as predicted, but what the had not expected was to find new tumours elsewhere that weren’t visible on his scan four weeks ago. Obviously this has been a shock to everyone, so they don’t know what the plan will be. I am just devastated for him, for Adam, and his family. I know how it feels to relapse but he hasn’t even been in remission yet. He knows I am here, for whatever he needs, This is the worst of days.

Up until hearing this news, I was having a pretty good day. I don’t think I have coughed so much today, but I won’t get my hopes up about improvement just yet. I had an appointment at Black Sheep to see James to re-tone my hair, my last session with him! I gave him his crocheted monkey and a card with a rainbow sheep on – I thought it was the most appropriate. I was not there for so long today, he was just going over the colour again, so now I’m a bit more vibrant. It has been our best work.

Home briefly, then back out, to the QE for my physio assessment. They were very on time, so I had barely started reading my book before I was called through. I filled in a questionnaire about my pain, then a chap came to see me. We talked a little bit about medical stuff and my current limitations re: oxygen, then he wanted to see what I could do. He had me stand up and bend forwards and backwards, then sit on the bed and twist left and right. Apparently I am quite stiff when going backwards and left. I then had to lie back and do some stuff with my pelvis and legs. Basically, he can give me some exercises/stretches to try out for a few weeks, then I’ll go back and we’ll see what progress has been made. He was very impressed with my enthusiasm and determination, which made me laugh because I used to be so terrible with physios, always pretending to be asleep when they came. I learned the hard way that that is not helpful.

The 28th of March. 

I have felt a-fucking-trocious for most of my day. High levels of oxygen have been required, and even then I have not felt so good. 

This morning I was needing 1.5-2 litres of oxygen just to sit and eat my breakfast. I finished the monster doily, then there wasn’t much morning left before we had to go out to Black Sheep. 

Obviously I took a small cylinder of oxygen with me, and I was doing alright to begin with. However, after James had put the lightener in, I had to go to the bathroom and I knew I wouldn’t get there without help. Because of the fumes and the spray etc in the air, I had to put it up to 3 litres and I was still struggling, but I didn’t want to go any higher for fear of ploughing through the cylinder. I had to text Mommy to get her to bring me a new one mid-appointment because the small ones only last 1.5-2 hours on high volumes. 

I told James off for leaving, but I forgive him because his reasons are good and Saskia will take care of me. We have nailed it with the colour – I look like a load of pixie sticks have been tipped onto my head. In a good way. Michaela is having another baby so I congratulated her, and she gave me a trim. 

I got home at about half past four, so not much has happened since then, but I’ve got the oxygen down again, thank god. I felt absolutely awful. 

The 29th of March. 

Vast improvement. I had a crappy sleep which I am putting down to low sats – when I sat up, they were 88, despite me having been on oxygen all night. However, I have got better since then.

This morning, I wrote up the blog post I should have done yesterday, we had a delivery of oxygen, then I had my rescheduled chiro appointment from last week. I was considering postponing it again, but I did not feel too terrible and my back had started protesting. 

I took the small cylinder with me, so I was able to get into all the necessary positions, which was good because pretty much all of my back had tightened up. Surprisingly, my neck didn’t need any crunching, just massaging into submission. 

Once home, we had lunch, then I updated my phone software (I know) and took a lot of selfies to document my new pretty hair. I started crocheting a new doily, and I’ve got my oxygen down to 1 litre. I wish we could work out what causes me to need it more some days and not others. Knowing me, there is probably no reason.  

The 26th of February. 

Happy Birthday Mommy!

I had a rather dodgy sleep, I think because of eating rich food much later than usual. Fucks up my system. 

Mommy opened her presents while I ate my toast. I gave her a teeny pot for putting herbs or a tiny plant in, and an enormous book of pictures of dogs. It’s got nowhere to live, but it amused her, which is what’s important. Besides, Tuesday is her proper present. 

She and Daddy went to pick up Grandma, while Christine finished cooking all the food and I wrote up a blog post, then twiddled my thumbs until it was time for lunch. As soon as we saw the Easts/Reames materialise with cake, we were up and opening the door. So hungry!

The afternoon has been rugby, drinking and eating. Christine, Becky, James, Jonathan and I decamped into the living room, where there was much bickering and teasing, but all in loving intent. We are essentially family.

Christine had to leave at twenty to four, so we cut the cake, but mine is still beside me, waiting for my tummy to have room for it. I’ll get there.

The 27th of February. 

Oh dear, I had another terrible night. It took me hours to fall asleep – I think on Tuesday night I might have a Zopiclone if things don’t improve. I would do it tonight, but I’d like to remember tomorrow. 

No excitement today. I rang the GP about getting some more stuff added to my repeat prescription, and left a message for Imelda, Andrew’s secretary, but she hasn’t called me back. Will try again in the morning. 

Otherwise, I have been crocheting, and Mommy and I watched the final three episodes of Case. It was not completely satisfying – I don’t see why the murderer had to get killed, instead of being put in prison, especially as they were on their way to arrest him. They’ve left it open for a second series (on a different thread) but I don’t know if we will bother.

I am very excited for Mommy’s birthday surprise tomorrow. I hope she enjoys it.

The 11th of October. 

This is probably going to be a pretty short entry because I spent the majority of my day in Black Sheep. I woke up at nine after a crappy night’s sleep, had breakfast and wrote up a blog post before going to see James and Michaela at quarter to twelve. 

I sat in the chair and we had chats, but in the end we came to the conclusion that we didn’t know how it would come out at the end, we’d just try to lighten it as much as possible. I told him about Christine’s birthday and the new kittens. Then I did lots of waiting for the bleach to do its job (trying not to scratch where it itched), then the toner and the rinsing. Eventually I got to Michaela and she evened out my length so it’s nice and short again and I don’t have to add masses of product anymore. 

By the time I got home it was nearly half past three so I just had a tiny lunch. I went to say hi to the kittens and Amira actually came over to look at me, she even smelled me and didn’t run away so that’s progress!

I even fitted in some crocheting, enough to make my eyes start to hurt. Bloody tiny hook.

The 12th of October. 

God I hate this stupid back pain. The entirety of my lower back is just full of this kind of buzzing ache, I don’t know how else to describe it. I was at the chiro this morning and we talked about it and she thinks because of my history, hopefully I might get a more senior physio. Right now I’d just like an appointment! Maybe I’ll ask Dr. Thompson next week if he can see anything in the system. I can but hope!

After lunch, I went to the gym. I had plans to see someone tomorrow but now she has to work, but I didn’t expect another chance to go this week. Anyway, there I was. I got through all my machines, then did some passive-aggressive staring until a mat became free. Then some girls tried it on me but I am immovable. 

I am very pleased to be home for Bake Off tonight. I’m missing it again next week because I’m out at The Glee (and then again on the Friday). There are so few episodes left! I think I will actually cry when it finishes. 

The 31st of July.

I actually slept until the time I wanted to wake up this morning because I had two Zopiclone. It has made me a bit sleepy all day but I would feel like that anyway if I hadn’t slept so it’s swings and roundabouts. 

I was finishing my coffee this morning when Becky and James came round to say hi and receive Becky’s birthday presents that we couldn’t give her on the day itself because they were on camp. James is so tanned! Amazing. Whereas Becky just has burnt knees, bless her. She said hello to the kittens, and then they had to go so James could install their new cat flap, and we had to go out to collect my copy of the new Harry Potter book from Waterstones. 

After lunch, I watched the first episode of season four of Fringe, then I went up to my bedroom to read Harry Potter without any distractions. I started at about twenty past three and finished it by twenty to six. Yeah, I read fast. I was so glad Christine’s seen the play so I could text her with each revelation. It’s really good (if you’re a fan) and the fact that it’s a script didn’t really matter because all the imagery is already there in my brain, so I could just envision it all with just the speech and stage directions. I tweeted about reading it and was contacted by someone from Radio WM who wants me to go on the breakfast show between seven and seven thirty tomorrow morning. That’s fine; without Zopiclone I’ll probably be awake anyway. I have to review it without any spoilers. Difficult. There are a lot of twists, and I have many questions about a major part of the plot but maybe an explanation for that will emerge. I hope so. 

The 1st of August. 

Five am. Not surprised, the day after Zopiclone is never good. It didn’t really matter as I was supposed to be talking on WM about Cursed Child, but then someone phoned to ask if we could push it back to 8.30. I said that was fine and got up to have my breakfast as I was starving. I then got another call at about quarter to nine saying sorry and it would now be on drivetime between four and seven, and her news editor would call me to let me know what time. Nobody has; methinks they killed the item. Whatever. 

Once they’d phoned for the second time this morning, I knew I could get in the shower and washed my hair without any staining of my neck this time. When I came down, Oscar was in the garden climbing a tree to investigate a nest so I went to take lots of pictures, but when I got back to the house, I was so out of breath, it surprised me. Going up to three gabapentin must have started to affect my breathing (we’ve checked the leaflet and it does do that).

I spent my afternoon watching Mr. Robot and crocheting the flowerpot kitty. I wanted to watch it before, but didn’t want to pay for Amazon Prime just for that, but now it’s on the Universal channel (didn’t know that was a thing) so I saw the first two episodes and finished the little cat.

I’ve also been doing a lot of deleting stuff from my phone to free up space – I’ve gone from 6GB to 9.2 free. Progress. I suspect I may have to delete some podcasts which I really don’t want to do. 

Gabapentin seems to be giving me the trembles too. Agh.

The 9th of June. 

I was wrong about thunderstorms meaning it would cool down. Still kind of disgustingly warm most of the day, but right now it’s bearable. The kittens are too sleepy to do anything but loll around, yawning. 

This morning, I wrote up a blog post and wrapped Daddy’s birthday presents. I have been sensible this year and got him box-shaped gifts which make for much easier wrapping. 

I was at Black Sheep this afternoon, getting my hair re-purpled. Started at 1.45, finished at 4.30. Still, there are much worse ways to spend an afternoon – chatting with lovely people, reading Animal by Sara Pascoe and getting my head massaged. That part always makes me want to just close my eyes and have a nap. 

Once I was successfully mauve, we were done as I didn’t need a chop just yet. Daddy and I had been considering a cinema trip but decided against it as today was going to be the only good day for gardening. This turned out to be the right move because we would’ve booked for the 3.40 screening which we would not have made. 

Becky and James have just been round, saying hi to the fat kitties and collecting the tv that we’ve bequeathed to them. We mainly discussed that joys of kitten poo, especially in this heat. Splendid.

The 10th of June. 

The weather is as bleak as my mood. Dark, grey and rainy. The scan at the Women’s was an ordeal. Again. 

I had a horrible night, dreaming of a fictional serial killer. Lots of podcasts were required to distract my brain so I could go back to sleep. This morning I made the last orang-utan leg, which was one small victory – I no longer have to do any more fur stitch!

The ultrasound appointment was twenty past three, and I was supposed to finish drinking a litre of fluid an hour before that, which I dutifully did. We arrived extra early because it was visiting time, but parking wasn’t a problem. This turned out to be fortuitous because the lid hadn’t been on my water bottle properly and it became apparent that I had a very damp leg. This meant we spent a good ten minutes emptying my bag and spreading its contents all over the back of the car. 

I didn’t have to wait long to be seen, and the first part of the scan, with the full bladder, was done pretty easily and quickly. Then I was allowed to pee, and had to return for a transvaginal scan which I had not been warned about. I had to strip from the waist down and lie back with my knees up while the technician tried to insert the wand. Obviously, it was agonising, and she persisted for what felt like forever without success. A consultant had to be fetched, who deemed the first pictures “too blurry”, so I had to refill my bladder and be scanned again. 1800mls of freezing cold water later, I was feeling incredibly full and uncomfortable. Better pictures were obtained, once she located my elusive right ovary, and we left with me resenting my stupid body for not being able to accommodate medical implements. It’s like my body’s saying “Even if you could have children, you couldn’t get them out this way!”

The 22nd of April. 

I had a really terrifying dream last night that the Grim Reaper was following me around and I was trying to hide from him on the sofa. I woke up very scared and had to listen to a podcast to distract myself from what was going on in my brain. 

Today has been recuperation from yesterday’s business. I did a blog post this morning while drinking a poorly-made coffee, then I returned upstairs to get dressed and I spent a good ten minutes taking selfies because I was feeling myself. 

This afternoon I crocheted a smaller mouse (I did one yesterday with a slightly larger hook). I think I need to give them noses because right now they look a little bit Voldemort-esque. Christine has come home for the weekend again and we’re trying to decide what film we might go and see tomorrow. 

Ugh I am so sleepy. I might have a Zopiclone tonight, I really would like a break from all my scary and stressful dreams. I don’t know why my brain is being so unfair to me while I’m unconscious.

The 23rd of April. 

Okay so I think my breathing is definitely worse. Maybe I have been in denial about it. If it is, I’m going to have to work out a way to make things as easy as possible, because if I continue to go downhill, I’m not sure how long life will be tolerable for. If I get to a point where I feel like I’m gasping all the time…well I don’t know. 

Sorry about that. On a cheerier note, I didn’t have any scary dreams last night, and I had a nice, chilled morning just reading the paper and actually doing the sudoku with no assistance from an app. 

A slightly earlier cinema trip than usual, as Daddy wanted to be back in time to watch the football. We decided on Bastille Day, and upon our arrival at StarCity, none of the click and collect screens were working, which was most frustrating. We had to go and queue behind all the people buying food which takes forever because they all seem rather inept. Once we finally had the tickets, we had to get the radar key to get up to our screen in the lift, and we got to our seats just in time to see the trailers. 

Film was fun. Idris Elba playing a kind of rogue CIA agent who plays fast and loose with the rules and has to stop the corrupted French police stealing the national reserves. It’s all a bit silly but we enjoyed it. 

Came out to a text from Becky to say they had adopted some kittens! I immediately went round as soon as we got home. They’re super small and adorable, just nine weeks!

Aaaaand tonight I’m off out to Tiff Stevenson. Busy girl.