Archives For zopiclone

The 23rd of April.

Oh god I have never been so excited about the fact that it is Monday tomorrow. Maybe my four month long saga of the fat right arm will be over soon.

Somehow I managed to press the snooze button this morning without my knowledge, but I didn’t continue to sleep for too much longer. I think I was slightly less coughy, but I had Zopiclone so it’s hard to remember. Thankfully the rest of the day has not been necessary to remember anyway.

Shockingly, it’s been mostly tv. Sunday Brunch in the am, Netflix this afternoon. I had a break in the middle for my traditional Gardeners’ Question Time and a lie down/pretend nap, but that was pretty much my only non-screen-based activity. On Netflix, I watched the first two episodes of 13 Reasons Why. I think I’ll download the next several to watch while I’m having to lie flat in ambulatory care tomorrow.

The 24th of April.

So it is done. I am praying so hard that it has worked this time but honestly I’m expecting to be disappointed.

Mommy woke me up for toast at quarter to seven, and then I couldn’t go back to sleep. I managed to kill time until we had to leave by redoing some crochet that I’d done wrong, and we set off just after 10:30. Parking was a nightmare, but we drove round enough times to chance upon someone leaving. Before going to ambulatory care, we went up to 516 to give Jenny her bear. She was delighted and put him in her pocket. We couldn’t stay too long, so we had a brief chat, then we went back downstairs and she went to check patients’ blood sugars.

I checked in at the desk at ambulatory care, then had to wait until the afternoon patients were let in. While we twiddled our thumbs, we saw Vash, the mother of a girl I was treated with at BCH. Turned out she was in a cubicle in there with some mystery virus. She did not look well, poor thing.

I had a very nice nurse who liked my hair (actually nearly every person I met commented on it) and got admitted pretty quickly, then a nurse from angio came for me because I was the only one on their list this afternoon. When we got down there, I went through the theatre check list again, and Andrew came for a chat. He explained what he was going to do, and we talked a lot about gadolinium (the dye he has to use instead of the iodine-based contrast he normally would), because I have so much during these procedures, more than a patient who’s had a lot of MRIs, more than anyone he’s ever seen and there are no studies on how this much of it can affect a body so he has concerns about that. I am just tired, I want it fixed.

We went round to the suite we were going to use. I shuffled across onto the bed and there was a who, then Andrew went to scrub in and the nurses prepped me. Covered in iodine. Once everything was set up, Andrew ultrasounded the edge of my groin to find the vein, then one of the nurses came to distract me while he got stabby with the local anaesthetic. He tunnelled up as far as he could, then he put some local in my fat arm and drove a wire up the vein in there so the two nearly met, and he used them to measure the blood pressures in those vessels, and he did a run of contrast so he could see if any strictures were there. The one he blew up in January had returned, so he was going to have to inflate that again, but with a better balloon this time. Before doing that, he wanted to use the IVUS to make sure there weren’t any more, and to get some more information about my superior vena cava. I could see the screens today, so I can tell you that an ultrasound inside your veins looks like the title sequence of Doctor Who. Like going into a black hole. From this, he was able to glean that there isn’t any more narrowing, but it is scarred. Lines for seven years will do that to you.

Satisfied that I only needed the one inflation, he gave me some sedation (they are not comfortable experiences) and I had a tiny nap. Then all the tubes and wires got pulled out and I had to lie there while he pressed very hard on the puncture site to stop the bleeding.

In recovery, I had some water, then the nurses took me and my notes back to ambulatory care. Mommy was coming back in at the same time, so we both returned to my bedspace and I told her what had gone on. Andrew came round too, and we talked through what he’d seen. He also explained that there’s no point in strenting the vein he inflated because it’s surrounded by bones and fibrous tissue so would probably just get crushed. I have to keep wearing the sleeve and squeezing the stress ball, and hope that this time it’s had the desired effect. I’ll get an appointment for his clinic. Maybe I’ll be able to wear something that doesn’t drown me.

The 7th of April. 

Oh man, it has not been a good day. I barely slept, had to keep turning over, but every time I did, my back was agonising. It has been horrific all day. If I move in even slightly the wrong way, I make involuntary noises out of pain. I have not been able to go and pet Spike because I cannot get on the floor.

First thing to filter through from the Today programme was that Trump had suddenly decided to send a load of missiles to Syria. Oh, good. World War 3 probably imminent. 

When I managed to get downstairs, I wrote up a blog post, and rang up the spa I’m going to tomorrow. I’m having a “body polish” and I just wanted to talk to them about my current condition before I turn up tomorrow. The lady I spoke to thought it should be fine, but she would check with her boss and call me back. She said it was fine, so I shall go a bit early tomorrow so I have time to talk to them and climb the stairs. 

After lunch, I was at the GP to get the pain patches prescribed (finally). I have to cut them in half to start off with and apply them weekly, so I’ll start them on Sunday. Really hoping they don’t make my breathing even worse. 

The 8th of April. 

So tired. Had Zopiclone last night to override the pain, but it didn’t really work so instead I had a bad sleep and I’ve been desperate to curl up in a ball and nap all day. Stupid brain and pain. 

This morning I had my appointment at the spa for my body scrub. I climbed the stairs (with help from the oxygen) and got taken into a little side room. Fran (the therapist) left me in there to get changed into the paper pants and underneath the towel on the heated bed. She came back in, and I lay face down with my face in the hole, and she systematically exfoliated all of my limbs and my back. Then I turned over, and she did the other side. I could tell she was wondering why my knees are so wrinkly or how I got the scar on my stomach but I didn’t feel like launching into the whole story. She did compliment me on the flatness of my tummy but it really only looks that way when I’m lying down and the scar is deceptive. 

When it was finished, she left so I could get dressed, but when I tried to sit up, my back screamed and I really thought I might be stuck. I had to fight through it, because I had to get off the bed and put clothes on. I’d just got my pants back on when she knocked to come back in so I had to put a stop to that. Then I just had to contend with getting my dress back on. When I was finally clothed, I opened the door, and she helped me back out. 

I am still tired. Bed soon. Please. 

The 28th of February. 

Happy Secret Surprise Day! Looking back, I actually booked this in August, so well done me for having the foresight to check so far in advance. 

No entertainment on the trains this morning, just the policeman I saw surreptitiously tucking a spoon into his jacket. Was he expecting some kind of cereal emergency later on? I will never know. 

The Euston chap arrived promptly with the ramp, so Christine wasn’t waiting to meet us for long. We all got in the lift, and went down to the taxi rank, where I asked the taxi driver to take us to The Ritz! Surprise!

The doorman had to get a minion to let us in (ramp issues), so we got to go in the back way, seeing the private cars parked there (including an orange/gold Bentley 4×4 with the numberplate “I GLO” which was hideous) and the “private quarters” on the way to the afternoon tea area. Our coats were taken, and then I rather awkwardly had to take the arm of the maître’d as he took us to our table, because I am obviously infirm. 

We sat in the corner, so I oversaw the rest of the diners, and Mommy and Christine watched the people who were having some sort of reception behind me – honours were being given out at the palace today and we think Kirsty Young may have received one. Unfortunately, to confirm, I would have had to turn around (and quite blatantly stare) so we were forced to speculate. 

We ordered our teas (I was intrigued by a chocolate mint one, but settled on Assam Tippy Orthodox, so it wouldn’t fight any food flavours). 

The tea stand arrived, full of sandwiches and cakes. It’s a funny procedure – you eat your sandwiches (ham with grain mustard mayonnaise on sliced brioche, cheddar cheese with chutney on tomato bread, cucumber with cream cheese, dill and chives on granary bread, chicken breast with parsley cream on malt bread, scottish smoked salmon with lemon butter on sourdough bread and egg mayonnaise with chopped shallots on white bread), then when they are gone, they bring you more, plus the (still warm) scones with jam and cream. Scones are the best part – when they break apart without the need of a knife, they are perfect. I hate jam, but I like a very thin layer of cream, so it’s like butter. 

The cakes were a tad disappointing, but that was only in my opinion, because they all contained cream and/or some kind of fruity crap, which I do not like. Thankfully, my experience was saved by the cake trolley which came round, and I had a slice of chocolate and hazelnut loaf i.e. Nutella cake. 

By the end of this, we were all suitably stuffed, and we had to vacate the table by 3.15, so we retrieved our coats from the cloakroom and get one of the many waiting cabs to the V&A. 

We arrived a little early for our allocated slot in the Undressed exhibition, so we wandered around the free area, looking at the tombs of knights and stained glass until it was time to go to the fashion gallery. The exhibition was all about the history of underwear, so started from the earliest forms of corsets, up until the present day, which included the waist trainer. Funny how things come full circle like that. There were also historical pyjamas, dressing gowns, underwear as outerwear – Kate Moss’ infamous see-through dress was there, and one of Dita von Teese’s corsets. There was a beautiful gold crocheted dress; something I would love to be able to make. 

When we were finished with the exhibition, we had a chat about what to do next, and it seemed that the most sensible thing would be to stay at the museum until it closed, looking around the rest of the free exhibitS, when we would get a cab back to Euston. 

So for an hour we bimbled about, looking at Raphael’s cartoons (not that kind of cartoon) and learning about Lockwood Kipling, father of Rudyard, but a man of whom I had never heard. 

When we left the museum, Christine went to get the tube home, and Mommy and I climbed into another waiting taxi. Very lucky with them today. Then it took us a good half an hour to get back to Euston, where we purchased magazines and beverages, then took up our usual spot in the assistance office until it was time for our train. 

No waiting in the cold on the platform today, and no delays getting back, so this time we were home by half past nine and I am happy to have given Mommy a nice birthday treat. 

The 1st of March.

Argh. Had Zopiclone last night but it did no good, just feel crap today without having had any extra sleep. Breathing has been dreadful. 

Mommy and I were both at the chiro this morning, with her going first. When it came to my turn, I got her to work on the thing that happens across my back when I lie on my right side (which I have to do to sleep), and she stretched out the abdominal muscle that has been spasming multiple times every day. We shall see tonight if it’s had any effect. 

This afternoon, I’ve been writing about yesterday, trying to talk to Imelda/anybody that can tell me what’s happening with my arm, and agonising about the Old Hallfieldian Society meeting tonight. My breathing has been so awful that I really didn’t feel like I could face it, but I didn’t want to be the reason behind another cancelled meeting because there wasn’t a quorum. 

I decided I would go, and if they needed me, I would stay. Then, when Celia answered the door, she said just to stay for half an hour while Mommy read the paper. So I stayed for most of the agenda, not contributing much but that didn’t matter.

Now, back home, and I’m going to have pancakes.  

The 27th of January.

Long days and late nights do not suit me. It took me ages to go to sleep because I was so cold, so I’ve been absolutely exhausted today. 

I got up at half past nine, very reluctantly, and stayed in my pyjamas all morning. I didn’t have the energy to engage with This Morning so I let BBC 2 burble in the background while I wrote about yesterday. That took a long time because I was just feeling useless and wretched, and that is why I have not typed it up yet. 

After lunch, we changed the dressing on my arm (small puncture wound, very little to report) and I put on some warm clothes. My arm has not even started to deflate yet and even my big jumpers are getting a bit snug. I had a bit of a lie down but lacking the capability to nap in the day, it doesn’t really help, so I came back downstairs and have just been a big floop. 

I answered some Cats Protection emails and spoke to Shaki, but I can’t even remember what about now. I might take some Zopiclone tonight and try to have a big sleep. Feel like garbage. 

The 28th of January. 

A sleep has helped. Not back to normal yet but getting there. Another early night will be required. 

Having had Zopiclone, I can barely remember what I’ve done today. I know I wrote up my blog post about London and my venoplasty (update: still no improvement, fairly sure it’s actually getting worse), I went upstairs to unpack my new hairdryer, but other than that, I’m not really sure how I managed to while away the day. 

Definitely no watching of any tv that had to be paid attention to, nor any reading of books. I finished The Man in the High Castle on Wednesday, and I’ve got The Invention of Numbers out to read next but I haven’t started it yet. 

I got in touch with the gym to pause membership again and they’ve done it for five months, although I can resume it at any time. Frankly I’ve got no idea when I’ll be fit for any kind of activity; I can barely walk from room to room without getting distressingly breathless.

New body please. 

The 1st of October. 

Even more pain tonight, but for a good reason – London trip for Christine’s birthday! Had to be awake ridiculously early so we could be at New Street for 8:40. I bought a Guardian and a Pumpkin Spice latte for the train because I am so very basic, and we sped down the country to Euston. 

Christine met us there, and we got a cab to Berner’s Tavern. Had it not been pissing it down, we would have walked/wheeled. Not today. The restaurant is within The London Edition Hotel and it is niiiiice. Very fancy. We were early for our reservation, so sat in the lobby, had coffee and gave Christine her presents. Just token things because we’re giving her a voucher for a fancy cooking lesson of her choosing, so I gave her a crocheted mini manatee and whale. She is going to add them to her crochet corner at work. 

We moved through to our table, and I already knew what I was having, so while everybody else perused the menu, I just looked at all the pictures on the walls and watched the other people coming in. I was the only one who went for a sweet brunch dish – buttermilk pancakes with Nutella and bananas (no hazelnuts, I had those omitted). They were so good, but I couldn’t quite finish them. Curse my tiny stomach. I had a curly kale, apple, cucumber and lime juice to go with it, so I had some of my five a day. Plus the banana of course. Then everybody else wanted pudding, which I most definitely did not, so I had a flat white while they ate their desserts. I’m fairly certain Liam Gallagher came in while we were there – I tried to take a stealthy photo but it didn’t work out very well. 

By the time we left, the rain had stopped, so we decided not to get a cab to the theatre, where we were seeing Ian McKellen and Patrick Stewart in No Man’s Land. On the way, we happened to pass a Crosstown Doughnuts, so I went in to buy a cinnamon scroll to eat later, and while in the queue, I petted a dog called Cherub who was a chihuahua/Japanese Chin cross and I was happy as a clam. 

We arrived at the Wyndham’s just after two, so we stashed the wheelchair and found our seats. We had an excellent view, but it is an old theatre, and the seats were not good for my back. For the most part, I managed to forget about the pain, because the play was so good. I have not seen any Pinter before, so being introduced to his work by two of the world’s greatest living actors was pretty cool. Obviously it was an incredible performance from all the four actors involved (there are two younger men as well), sometimes uncomfortable, sometimes funny (and some lines taking on new meaning in current context) and overall amazing. Standing ovation at the end, and I found myself welling up for no reason that I could think of. Maybe because I just felt so lucky to be there. 

From there, we went to Picturehouse for a drink and a nibble before returning to Euston. I just had a St. Clements because I still didn’t want any food, but I did get a Mini Egg cookie to take home and eat tomorrow. We talked about the play, found that Daddy had nodded off a couple of times but not missed too much, tried to work out why the man sitting in front of us had left in the interval, and before we knew it, it was time to get a taxi back to the station. Hailing one wasn’t yielding results, so I whipped out my phone, and within five minutes we were on our way home. 

We were sat in the quiet coach on the train, but I put my earphones in anyway, and listened to a Flatshare Slamdown podcast while wishing the journey faster so I could lie down. 

So much fun, but so much pain. 

The 2nd of October.  

I don’t feel quite as awful as I thought I would, but still not great. I think I was helped by the Zopiclone I took last night, and I made no effort to get out of bed before I wanted to. I was up by ten though, I’m not an animal. 

I threw on my huge green polo neck for the first time this year, and spent what was left of the morning curled up in the armchair, writing about yesterday. Long post ahoy. I did get it finished by the end of Sunday Brunch, and to take my mind off my stiffness, I had scrambled eggs on one of my rainbow bagels for lunch, then my Mini Egg cookie. It definitely helped. 

This afternoon, Mommy took Grandma to get her hearing aids adjusted, and while I waited for her to return (so we could watch last night’s Strictly), I have just sat and crocheted. It is not super interesting to write about but I’ve made a good amount of progress and I don’t think it’ll take much longer to finish. I do look forward to being able to reveal it after Christmas. 

Going to lie down on the floor again now. I am going to be doing lots of stretching until I see the pain team.

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 23rd of June. 

Ohhh, this cough can just fuck off now. I am sick to death of it. At least today has been very low on referendum chat on the news, so I haven’t had to hear that drivel too. 

Most of my day I’ve been crocheting, awaiting this evening’s kitten delivery. They’re here now, all fine, and they are not easy to tell apart. There’s Nadia and Noelle, the two tabbies, and one has grey ears and a black nose whereas the other has brown ears and a pink nose. One tortoiseshell, Nova, she’s easy. Then the two black ones, Nettie and Nola, and that only obvious difference between them is that one is much smaller than the other. 

They were very feral when they were found, and used to be very hissy and spitty, but no one has got upset with me yet, even though I am very loud and coughy. They appear to just be exhausted. 

Tonight I think I will take multiple Zopiclones – the result of the referendum will probably have me too anxious to sleep. The general election was bad enough, and if we leave the EU, I think life might become totally unbearable. 

The 24th of June. 

I am shocked, frightened and devastated. I can’t see how this will end well. We have lost so much. European funding into medical research. Gone. Investment into places like Hull and Cornwall. Gone. David Cameron will go in October, meaning another, worse Tory will be inflicted upon us unless they want a general election which is unlikely. 

A generation given everything for free have destroyed the future of mine. No more free movement, no ability to work and study in 27 other countries. This will only increase the attacks on our public institutions and services when the money the Leave campaign claimed we’d get back is actually not there. People saying “We’re Great Britain, we’ll sort it out like we always do, this is our England” and that means nothing. You can’t just say it’s all going to be fine because this isn’t a fucking film and it could easily all come crashing down. 

I just want to weep continuously. I’m appalled, and there is no silver lining here.