Saturday, 31 October 2020
Husband's op and dog walking
Wednesday, 28 October 2020
Getting better slowly
Thank you for all the comments, I am getting a little better every day. I still feel like I've been in a rugby scrum, my limbs all feel very heavy, all my joints ache, brain feels like it's stuffed with a mixture of cotton wool and treacle. And I'm so emotional, for some reason the slightest thing has me weeping, sometimes for no reason. I've been trying to get a few things done, just a little bit of housework, loading the washing machine and tumble dryer, making a cottage pie and soup to last a few days....just normal stuff, nothing strenuous. Even this wears me out though, I do it in the morning then have to go and lie down in the afternoon.
Husband has to have another Covid test today - hospital policy, he must have one 3 days before his operation, they're sending someone round to do it here this afternoon apparently. He also has to go to the dentist tomorrow to have a loose tooth out - the pre-op nurse said he must have it done before the op, because of the danger of the tooth being knocked out by the ventilator tube and him possibly swallowing it or bleeding causing him to choke 😳. I guess they know best, the tooth has been giving him a lot of trouble for a while anyway. He had the third degree from the dentist on the phone first though, before he would agree to do the extraction, they're only doing emergencies.
Don't we all wish this year just hadn't happened? What a waste of a year....as if we've got years to waste when we're getting older. But we've been lucky, we haven't died, our relatives who've had the virus (including husband's brother, Sil and nephew, recently) have all recovered, and, being retired, we haven't really been financially affected, although people close to us have. I'm really missing my friends and family even more now. Will things ever get back to normal?
Sunday, 25 October 2020
For the first time in nearly a week, I didn't wake up during the night drenched in sweat, feeling like I was in a sauna and suffocating from the heat, so think the fever has (fingers crossed) finally gone. I still feel like I've been run over by a truck though, and all the other symptoms are still there. Got up, showered and dressed this morning, even helped husband prepare veg for dinner....whether I eat much of it later remains to be seen, appetite is still coming and going. It's odd, often I have no appetite at all, then sometimes I'm suddenly ravenous. Going back to bed now, overwhelmingly tired again.
Jill and Joy, to answer your questions - yes we had the flu jabs a month ago. Have had them for years and never had any reactions other than a mild arm ache or feeling a bit tired. I don't think it's a reaction to the jab - too long ago. I do think it's the flu - there are many different strains of flu and each year's vaccine only protects against the 3 or 4 strains the scientists reckon will be most prevalent this year. Well, as far as I'm aware.
Saturday, 24 October 2020
I feel like crap, there's no part of me that doesn't ache, I feel like I've been hit by a truck. Dozed this afternoon, only to wake up drenched in sweat again, despite having the window open and a cold wind blowing. I've never felt so unwell for so long, nor stayed in bed for so many days. I'm assuming it's flu. Can't think straight, trying to think is like wading through treacle. Waves of dizziness when I get out of bed. Sick of the sight of my bedroom so am downstairs at the mo, will see if I can manage to watch Strictly before going back to bed. Am so tearful too. I wouldn't wish this on anyone.
Friday, 23 October 2020
No it's not
The emails and texts arrived at 18.15...negative. I cried and cried. Still am very unwell, and now have a king size headache, but at least I know we haven't got THE virus.
So husband can have his tooth out, and more importantly his foot op. And I haven't infected the friends we visited.
I can't tell you just how worried I've been, how guilty I've felt, how low it's made me.
It's been a stressful few days. Husband and I have been sleeping in separate rooms and trying to keep our distance, as he's self isolating leading up to his operation on the 31st. Not entirely easy or successful when you live in a small house(!) but we've done our best.
Monday during the night I didn't feel very well and hardly slept at all. Throughout the day on Tuesday I felt worse....hot and feverish, coughing and with a much reduced sense of taste and smell, it all came on quite rapidly. By the afternoon I was wondering if it could be the dreaded Covid, so went online to the NHS Covid website, did the questionnaire and ordered tests for myself and husband. They arrived early afternoon on Wednesday - very quick - we did them (not pleasant, made me cough even more) and despatched them as per instructions in the kit.
I've swung between feeling sort of alright, and feeling really ill ever since. Husband feels fine, he has no symptoms at all, thankfully. Waiting for the results is incredibly stressful. I don't feel at all well this morning.
Sunday, 18 October 2020
I'll let you into a secret...
...only it won't be a secret now, of course! Recently, we'd given serious consideration to moving to Devon, and actually went to view a property there (it was the day we got held in stationary traffic on the M5 for several hours, as a result of a fatality on the motorway). This is how it came about.
Much as we love living here, and we really do, we know it won't be possible to live here forever, for lots of practical reasons. To cut a long story short, we'd had a lot of discussion about where we'd like to live, and what would be the best option for us for the future, bearing in mind we're not in a position to buy a place. We have friends who live in a park home on a retirement park on the east coast...they love it, both the house (it's one of those so-called 'mobile' homes, double wide, which looks just like a modern bungalow), and the active social life on a lovely park full of like-minded friendly people, and close to a town. That really appealed to us, both the lifestyle and living in a small friendly secure community. Most of those park homes are owner occupied, I had no idea whether any have rentals, although I thought some might. After extensive internet research I found a few, and sent off some emails. Several replies said either they don't have any vacancies or they don't allow dogs (so no good!).
Then I had a reply from one park in North Somerset, who said that whilst they didn't have a vacancy on that park, they did have one at their sister park in mid Devon. However....it wasn't one of their park home bungalows, but a two-storey cottage on the site, their suggestion was that we might like to consider renting the cottage until such time as one of their rental homes (they have several there) became available. They'd apparently just totally refurbished the cottage following the departure of the previous residents (they'd moved out, not died!).
We love living here in Somerset, always have done - from the minute we moved down here 10 years ago I felt like I'd come home....I hadn't lived here before but it just felt so right. So we hadn't really considered moving to another county...but the proposition was so intriguing we just had to go and have a look.
The cottage was gorgeous, built originally in the mid 1800s but extended and remodelled over the years, from once being a 2 up, 2 down it's now a large 4 bedroomed house, with lovely refitted kitchen and bathrooms, big range cooker, wood burning stove in a large stone fireplace in the huge lounge, master bedroom suite with big dressing room and an en suite shower room that's bigger than our bathroom. Good size manageable tidy garden with a large patio and shed. Separate garage too. It was really lovely, but too big for us, and the rent was more than we could afford...although they said they were open to negotiation (we'd have had to negotiate quite hard though to get the rent down to an affordable level!).
After a lot of discussion back at home, we decided it wasn't for us. Whilst we do like that area of Devon - well, all Devon in fact - we don't really want to move out of Somerset, we have made so many good friends here for a start, and moving to Devon would make for a much longer journey to visit our close and extended family up in the Midlands. Long drives wear husband out nowadays, he really doesn't like it anymore. So we had to decline. Pity, as the park was lovely as well as the cottage, and we got the impression that the park manager (who was a really nice man) was quite keen for us to move there, he said we were exactly the type of residents they like and was sure we'd fit in really well. When I got back in touch to say we wouldn't be moving there, he said please ring him if we ever change our minds. Nice of him.
So we shall continue to look, but only in Somerset.
(I have no idea why the font has changed and I can't seem to change it back, sorry about that!).
Saturday, 17 October 2020
We've had better days
It wasn't a good day yesterday, for either of us. We went to town in the morning, had a list of a few things we needed to get - we don't go to town very often, and that'll be the last time for at least 8 weeks now. In Wilkos (which frustratingly didn't have a couple of things I wanted, as they're clearing shelves making way for Christmas stuff), a man literally bumped into me - so much for social distancing. He did have a mask on, thankfully. I noticed several people whose masks were pulled down not covering their noses - none of us like wearing them do we, but what's the point of wearing one if you're not going to wear it correctly? And there were several discarded masks littering the car park - ugh, disgusting, what is the matter with people?! Forcing somebody else to have to pick up and dispose of your potentially hazardous used mask is even worse than general littering. So I didn't manage to get everything I needed in Wilko, and completely forgot to go in another shop to get the lavender pillow spray I like that I've run out of. Hey ho.
In the afternoon husband went off to do a job for a friend and overdid things (I'm always telling him not to, but does he take any notice?). He felt dizzy and had to sit down a couple of times, a combination of heart not pumping efficiently and low BP caused by bending over a lot...he's on meds to keep his BP down anyway, because of his heart failure. When he got home he didn't feel (or look) very well, so sat down and promptly went to sleep, he looked better when he woke up. However, in the kitchen later he dropped a large glass storage jar full of flour - smashed glass and flour all over the kitchen floor. His hands were shaking from the work he'd been doing earlier, so he had no grip. Never mind, fortunately he didn't cut himself and I had a couple of spare bags of flour, having stocked up.
Something I was really hoping to do yesterday didn't happen, and now there won't be another chance for weeks, if at all, which upset me a bit.
My hip was sheer agony yesterday afternoon, hurt to stand or sit, I just couldn't get comfortable in any position. My TENS machine did nothing for the pain, nor did my hot wheat bag or deep freeze spray. In the end I had to resort to taking codeine twice, which means I'll be constipated for a couple of days...hence why I rarely take them.
C'est la vie! Tomorrow (today) is another day (to quote Scarlett).
Thursday, 15 October 2020
Some lovely things to report (for a change lol)
A portrait of my beloved Betty! One of our neighbours is an artist (I had no idea, she's a retired optician!), she specialises in animal portraits, and husband commissioned her to do this picture of Betty for me. It's so lifelike, and so incredibly detailed (it's not paint, but pencils) - she's got Betty's fur, and wrinkles, tongue and muzzle details and even the spots on her nose so exactly right. Apparently it took her about 25 hours to do! I'm stunned, it is truly fabulous, I can't thank husband and J (the artist) enough. I was going to put it in the lounge, but our lounge is south facing and gets lots of sunshine so thought it best not to put it there, I don't want it fading in the sun. So husband has put it up in the hallway, where I pass it a 100 times a day. I just love it.
Tuesday, 13 October 2020
Confusing or what?!
Well, I'm getting more confused by the minute with all this medical stuff.
Husband went for his pre-op assessment today, he had to go alone due to Covid restrictions. I normally (in pre-Covid times - remember those days?!) go with him to all health appointments....a case of having to as he never asks relevant questions, doesn't really take in what he's being told, and forgets to tell me everything that was said. Fortunately, he brought a load of paperwork home with him, which I've just sat and read through, and it's all quite confusing and even contradictory.
He has to self isolate for 14 days from this Saturday...ok, I was more or less expecting that. A note stapled to the front of the paperwork states he must not leave the house for any reason. However....he has 2 further hospital appointments next week, one connected to his upcoming operation, the other for an unrelated matter - he was told at the assessment that he can still go for these appointments, as they are in a sterile and safe hospital environment! That's all very well...but he has to drive there, park in a public car park then walk past numerous other people to get to the places he has to go - so how does that work then? How is that self isolating?
Apparently, I don't have to self isolate - it says so in the paperwork - but we are supposed to stay apart from each other, preferably in separate rooms and using different bathrooms. Impossible, we only have one bathroom, so I'm going to have to clean it after every use. Lovely 😡. But seeing as I don't drive and there's no public transport here, I can't go anywhere anyway.
He has to go for a Covid test 3 days before his op, and then go into strict isolation until the day of the op. But a neighbour is taking him to the hospital....she won't have been isolating! And I don't have to have a test, despite living with him whilst he's self isolating, so let's hope I haven't got the virus.
My head is exploding.
Sunday, 11 October 2020
Yesterday I had yet another text from the surgery, confirming my (non existent) late night appointment for tomorrow, that I hadn't even asked for and they told me was a mistake when I rang to query it the day before 😒. I shan't bother ringing them again, if they sit there waiting for me to appear late tomorrow night then that's their lookout 😂. (They won't, obviously, they don't do late night appointments).
Had a brief visit to my lovely best friend and spouse today....it's most likely the last time we'll see them now until mid December, seeing as husband will be incapacitated for weeks 😕
I went to bed very late last night...well, early hours of this morning actually, and slept like a log. Perhaps that's the secret to me sleeping better - go to bed later. A lot later. Didn't wake up until 07.22, which is a massive lie in for me!
It's been a lovely day, bit cloudy at times but nice warm sunshine in between, we sat outside in our friends' garden.
Got a busy week, husband has his pre-op assessment on Tuesday, when he will be told how long he (and thus me as well) has to self isolate for prior to his op, if it's the full 14 days then we're in quarantine from this coming Saturday. Which means I have to make sure we have everything we need beforehand...I think we probably have. The garden needs tidying up for winter, the lawn needs a final cut, pots of summer flowers need emptying and replanting with spring bulbs. Weather is forecast to be good from Wednesday onwards, thankfully.
Saturday, 10 October 2020
Yesterday morning I had a text confirming the date and time of my appointment for the 24 hour heart trace I'd rearranged for December...but they'd already texted the confirmation the day before. A minute or so later, I had a 3rd text, giving the same date...but a time of 2 hours earlier! So I don't know whether they've changed the time, or I have 2 appointments (can't think why), or it's simply a mistake. I'll ring and ask nearer the time.
A couple of hours later I got another text....confirming my appointment for this coming Monday at the surgery....oddly, the time given was 'between 9.00 pm and 10 pm'! Even odder, I hadn't even requested an appointment. I rang to query it...after much tapping of keyboard and whispered voices in the background, the receptionist said 'erm just ignore it, it's a mistake'. Well, clearly. They don't do hour long appointments, and certainly not at night 😂. I think the virus is scrambling everyone's brains.
It's just after 03.00 and I can't sleep again, brain is on overdrive and my anxiety palpitations are back. Having come off my anti-anxiety meds about a month ago, I didn't really want to start taking them again, but looks like I might have to. Right now I'm going to have some warm milk, snuggle up with my dog on the sofa and read a book. A cuddle with an actual human friend would be nice (husband is upstairs snoring), but Betty will have to do! (No hardship).
Friday, 9 October 2020
I've come to the conclusion that I'll have to postpone my operation, there's just too many problems and other things to fit in and I simply can't do it all. I'm disappointed about it, but have no choice really - husband has been waiting for his foot operation for well over a year and has already had to postpone it twice because of his prostate and UTI problems, so he needs to have this foot op now, so that takes priority. I'll just have to cope with things for another few weeks. I had an appointment come through yesterday for the 24 hour heart trace my GP said he wanted me to have as a precaution, after the virus and heart palpitations I had a few weeks ago. Well, it's an inconvenient date (literally just after husband's op) so I've put that off till the middle of December.
On a positive note, I've lost another couple of pounds and now only have 3 1/2 pounds to go before I will then have lost 10% of my body weight, the target recommended by my consultant. By the time I do get to have my op I should have lost even more than the 10%, so that should please him!
And the thing is, I haven't even been consciously trying to lose more weight (certainly not recently with everything else on my mind). It's become so much a way of life now to eat very low carb and much smaller portions, I rarely even think about it anymore, I just do it.
Husband's got to go for an ECG today, he should have had it when he goes for his pre-op assessment next week but they couldn't coordinate a time near his assessment time 😒. He then has to go and see his consultant a couple of days after the pre-op. It's a pity the hospital couldn't have arranged for all 3 things to happen on the same day - all 3 appointments arrived in the same envelope! The hospital is an hour's drive away and he's got to go there 3x in the space of a week, that's one of the downsides of living in a rural area.
Thursday, 8 October 2020
It's stupid o clock again...
Been awake since just before 2 am, so gave up lying there waiting for sleep and came downstairs. I have a lot on my mind so I know it's that, and the ever present hip pain, which is keeping me awake. I'm trying not to think too much about the things that are worrying me...I do have a tendency to over think things and drive myself nuts. I'm coping with stuff by taking control of the things that I can, and trying to just let go of stuff that I can't control and put it out of my mind. Sounds easy on paper! I'm getting there though.
Husband's daughter and SiL offered to come down and stay with us for a few days when husband goes into hospital for his foot operation, they said they'll take him and bring him home after. Very nice of them, and pre-covid I would have said yes please and thank you. But they both work in customer-based jobs and thus come into contact with lots of people, and live up in the Midlands in an area that has a much higher infection rate than here. So that puts me off. Plus right now I just see it as meaning a lot of extra work and stress for me, having to prepare for, feed, look after and clean up after extra people. I'd rather not. In any case, neighbours have already volunteered to take/collect husband, and I don't have to clean and prep a room, feed and entertain them and wash all their bedding afterwards!
In any case, it's likely that around the time of husband's op, I'll be self isolating in preparation for my own op, so having visitors staying here wouldn't be allowed anyway.
And that throws up another problem....walking Betty. Technically, we shouldn't go out at all when self isolating, but she's got to be walked! We've decided that we'll just have to take her only in the field behind us, at times when we know there'll be no other neighbours around walking their dogs - we can see the field from our home anyway, so can see when it's empty. Husband obviously can't walk her when he's on crutches so it'll be my job, but if I can't because my hip is really bad, or if I'm recuperating from my own op, then another (dog owning) neighbour has offered to do it.
Other than that, I'm trying not to stress too much and just address problems as they arise, rather than my usual tactics of thinking up all possible eventualities.
I've started a new crochet project, a gift for a friend, it's lovely yarn and a nice pattern and I'm really enjoying doing it, so that gives me a nice bit of relaxation.
Think I'm tired enough to go back to bed now.
Tuesday, 6 October 2020
Head's in a whirl
Isn't it funny how each hospital differs? Here I am waiting for a date for my bladder op....appointment letter for my pre-op (to be done over the phone!) says they can't give me an operation date until the pre-op nurse has signed me off as fit. But yesterday husband was given a date for his foot operation, BEFORE they'd even given him a pre-op appointment! And his pre-op assessment will be done in person at the hospital, not over the phone like mine. But our ops are being done at different hospitals, so presumably they each have their own systems.
Husband's foot op is a bit complicated, but he's basically having his tendons broken and reset...he'll be in plaster and on crutches for a month and unable to drive for 6 weeks from the date of the op, 31st October, so that's about the middle of December. And he's got to self isolate (and thus so have I) for 2 weeks prior to the op. So yesterday was a flurry of cancelling and/or rearranging various appointments we had booked (car MOT, my chiropodist, Betty's grooming, hospital appointment for husband for a different matter).
It also means we can't go anywhere for 8 weeks - 2 weeks in isolation prior to op then 6 weeks after whilst he can't drive. Shopping won't be a problem, we'll have it delivered. And today I'll go through the larder and freezers and write a list of things to stock up on and get those bought before our self isolation starts on the 17th.
The difficulty arises when I get my op date, and another hospital appointment I'm waiting on....now that our hospitals are recommencing all the things that were postponed during lockdown, everything's coming at once, and it's all a bit awkward trying to fit it in and arrange everything. Luckily we have friends and neighbours we can call on to help us out.
Monday, 5 October 2020
Monday (can't think of a witty title!)
Thank you for all the recommendations for food processors and grinders, I'll look into them all and let you know what I go with. I've had a look on our neighbourhood selling sites, nobody's selling anything like that at the moment, I'll keep looking though.
Re the scam email, several people on the local neighbourhood page have said they've had the same email (with exactly the same details!) so it's obviously doing the rounds.
Moira, you asked about my hip. I have both osteo arthritis and trochanteric bursitis in my right hip, and signs of OA in the left hip and knee also. I don't know what the outcome will be, whether there's any pain relief meds more effective than paracetamol I can have, or maybe injections, but as my GP said, hip replacement is a last resort. And I know Cherie had severe complications with hers as a result of her surgeon severing a nerve, frightening! At the moment I manage with paracetamol, codeine occasionally, cold relief spray (I don't like the smell of Deep Heat) and a small TENS machine. It'll get sorted eventually, the upcoming op for my diabetic bladder complications is more important right now.
I hope the rain eases off today, think we've had quite enough of it now!
Saturday, 3 October 2020
Recommendations please? And...really?!
I've had my food processor a long time and it's not very efficient nowadays, it's a bit temperamental and the blades aren't very sharp anymore. I mainly use it now for chopping up vegetables and grinding oats for oat flour, which it doesn't do very well lately - not fine enough, with large bits of oats still in evidence. So I need something new and efficient - not necessarily a food processor, could be a simple grinder. Do any of you have any recommendations? Oh and I don't want to pay 100s, can't afford it. Thanks in advance.
Yesterday I had an email purporting to be from HMRC, it was a fixed penalty notice for an offence of driving on a road for which there is a charge, without paying, it gave a date and time. It asked me to pay a fine of £12.24 (bit of an arbitrary amount!), doubling and then quadrupling if I didn't pay within 14 or 28 days...I was supposed to click a link and pay by card, I didn't of course. It was clearly a scam - it didn't have my name on it (I don't drive anyway!), didn't give our (husband's) car registration or the location of the 'offence'. The email also had grammatical and typing errors. Out of curiosity, I checked our calendar for the date given - it was a Saturday and we hadn't gone anywhere. We've not driven on a road that carries a charge for I don't know how long, in any case. Just how gullible do these scammers think we are?! Well, I suppose some people might be taken in by it...personally, I think I can spot a scam email a mile off.
So much for breaking my run of sleepless nights....I was up again for 2 hours during the night, although did go back to bed and managed to get about an hour's sleep afterwards. Might have to have a snooze this afternoon. It's my hip that's keeping me awake, I will have to go back to the GP eventually, but not just yet. I have a minor op coming up, my pre-op assessment is on the 21st so the op will be not long after that, I assume. I'm also waiting on another hospital appointment for an unrelated matter. Husband currently has 3 ongoing medical and hospital appointments. Now that hospitals are starting seeing people again for non-Covid stuff, it's all coming at once, so I don't want to muddy the waters by introducing yet another problem, so I'll just have to put up with the pain for a bit longer. When I last saw the GP about my hip, a year or so ago, she said a hip replacement is a last resort and if I could lose a bit of weight it might help ease the pain (it hasn't), and to see if I could manage with painkillers. Paracetamol do very little to ease the pain now, I do take codeine occasionally if it's really bad. I can't take anti-inflammatories as I have an adverse reaction to them. Still, it's only pain, it could be worse!
We're in the grip of Storm Alex at the mo, lashing rain and howling winds during the night and set to continue until tomorrow morning, definitely a day for staying indoors. Husband stays dry wearing full waterproofs and wellies when he's dog walking, and Betty wears her waterproof coat, albeit reluctantly. It's so gloomy and dark, we've still got lights on. I wouldn't be at all surprised if we had a power cut, and our internet is being temperamental. Stay safe everyone.
Friday, 2 October 2020
Thanks for the lovely comments, you lot are so encouraging, supportive and kind! Big virtual hugs to all....Isn't it such a shame that virtual hugs are about all we can have now? (unless you're in a bubble, I guess). Oh I do miss hugs. I did think I'd keep the jeans for 'best', for going out - but we don't go anywhere now! Well, other than shopping, and an occasional beach walk with the dog. None of that today, it's absolutely chucking it down.
Gemma's Person, you asked if my CBD oil helps my sleep (blasted tablet keeps changing CBD to DVD! Annoys the hell out of me when my tablet keeps trying to tell me what it thinks I should be writing! 😠). It used to when I first started taking it, but not anymore, nor does it ease my hip pain as much. Think I need to up the dose, but it costs so much.
Ok, I still got up early (04.33), but actually slept the whole night through, didn't even need to get up for a wee - that's what woke me eventually I think, well that and the rain and wind. So fingers crossed, it looks like my run of sleepless nights is over for a while.
The person who jumped in front of the lorry - police have been asking for witnesses and people with dashcam footage. That poor lorry driver, he'll need some help to get over that, I should think, I hope he gets it. Suicide, and attempted suicide, has touched our family a few times and it has profound and long lasting effects. Clearly, anyone who commits suicide is most certainly not in their right mind and desperately needed help before the event, but I have to say that in my opinion it's the most selfish act, because it's so devastating for those left behind. And to do it in a way that involves others in the act, like that poor lorry driver, is terrible.
I've been thinking about Christmas. I don't know what to do about it this year, it'll be the first one since Mum died on Christmas Eve last year. Her mother, my lovely Nanna, died on Boxing Day when I was 14, so Christmas is a time for both sad and happy memories for me. The shops are getting their Christmas stuff in, once or twice I've seen a decoration and thought oh I like that, but a split second later I think no I'm not having any decs up this year. I think I'll wait and see how I feel nearer the time. Right now it just feels wrong to put any decorations up, especially since Mum never celebrated Christmas anyway (she was a Jehovah's Witness).
Christmas is going to be very different for all of us this year, with all the Covid restrictions...I wonder how many people will actually abide by the Covid rules? Mind you, I was listening to a news programme the other day, two journalists being interviewed both said they reckon Boris will announce a relaxation of the rules a week before Christmas, as he won't want to go down in history as the grinch who stole Christmas!
Bit introspective today, sorry about that, must be the gloomy weather!