Sunday, 28 April 2013

In Memory Of My Dear Sister In Law

Photo Copyright: Maggie May

My last post was filled with good news and now I have to announce that my lovely sister in law, Mrs Eddie Bluelights, who I have always referred to as Gloria in my blog, has passed away. I will leave my brother Eddie to fill in the details on his blog, when he feels up to it, but all I can say is that she was a very brave lady who fought (if that is the right word) breast cancer for a good many years. She was only 42 yrs old when she was first diagnosed and died aged 61.

I will miss her because she was my brother's wife and we loved her as a valued member of our family. I will miss her because we had some lovely regular meetings that I really looked forward to and I had hoped for many more.  I will miss her because she was kind and understanding and we talked most weekends on the phone. I will miss her because she was the very last person I knew, after my friend Pietra died last October from the very same thing, who really knew what it was like to experience the horror of the pain that cancer in a bone could cause. I could relate to her and she could relate to me. We knew what the awful disease could do and understood one another's anguish and pain. Now I am feeling very much alone. However, it must be a million times worse for Eddie and their two children and partners.

I hate cancer with a vengeance and I'm really hoping that there will be a cure, if not in my childrens' life spans then in my grandchildrens'.

I am grateful that Denise Nesbitt, another blogging friend, is going to be doing the Race For Life in June and that she is being sponsored for Cancer Research. This is the only way a cure is going to be found in the distant future, though much headway is being made in some cancer treatments.
I wish that I could do the Race For Life but I can hardly run for a bus these days!

On the day that I heard the sad news, which was not really expected to happen as quickly as it did, I was told that she was dying, early in the morning and I felt pretty much devastated because I had no time to do the one and a half hour journey to go to see her for the last time. Yet at the time of her death which was unknown to me then, I was filled with a kind of peace and felt protected from all hurt.
Life seemed to go on around me fairly normally. In fact I had the grand daughters here for breakfast.
When they had gone to school and I heard what had happened, I cried for hours until I could cry no more.
I noted that it was a sunny day and that things were already happening in the world that Gloria didn't know about. I was a survivor and she wasn't. I had to press on with what life dealt me, she didn't.
The only thing that brings any kind of comfort to me is that she had a firm Christian faith and that I know she has moved on to something much better.
I have been thinking of my mother a good deal lately and all the other people who have moved away through death and I really hope that they are all together.  I know that many non believers read this blog but I can only write things from my own perspective and I do respect other people's points of view. However, these are my experiences and feelings of the sad event and how I have coped with it to date. I know that grief never really leaves anyone but we have to learn how to cope with it and find some way with dealing with our feeling while being true to them and not suppressing them.

Friday, 19 April 2013

Never A Truer Word

Recently, we received two surprises within a couple of days. The first was a call from my nephew telling me to look forward to becoming a Great Aunt in October. The next day, we received a telephone call from our son, Sam, to say that he and Sandy had booked their wedding at the end of August. 
It was good to receive some good news for a change.

When my granddaughters came round for breakfast the next day, we obviously started talking about the wedding and what we might all wear.
Amber, being a bit of a tom boy, said that she wanted to wear a suit and wouldn't wear a dress at any cost. 
Millie wasn't sure what she wanted to wear and said she'd have to think about it.
I announced that I would soon be out looking for a suitable dress. Hearing that, Amber replied, "Oh, its far too early, Gran, you might get a sudden growth spurt by then."
I had a good laugh because the only growth spurt I might get is in width, not in height. Lets hope that doesn't happen. I will have to watch my chocolate consumption from now on.

Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Forget-me-nots Lift The Heart

Today has been very sunny and warm. There are Forget-me-nots springing up in my garden and it is really a reminder that Spring is well underway. These little flowers are a firm favourite of mine and do tend to lift the heart.

Today, I had to accompany Harry to a hospital appointment while leaving the electrician to get on with this weeks work. I hate it when things overlap like that but I needn't have worried because the young lad (well everyone looks young compared to me!) got on with the job while we were away.
Some of the problems are now sorted out and after tomorrow, there will be a break until he starts again next week. It should all be finished by then.
He is a very thorough worker who doesn't rush things but most of the jobs are a fixed price so it really doesn't matter.

I was hoping Harry would be able to have a shunt fitted in his head/neck to help drain off the excess fluid that is causing him various problems, when the chemo was over. However, we were told that this wouldn't be possible and he might stay the same or get steadily worse. No one can predict. After a 40 minute wait to see the consultant we were in and out in ten minutes and I felt really saddened by this news. However, Harry takes it all in his stride and doesn't worry about anything, which might well be because of his condition.

Wednesday, 10 April 2013

Best Foot Forward

Photo Copyright: Maggie May

It was a mistake to say in my last post that we were experiencing sunshine. Since I wrote that account it has been bitterly cold, windy and sometimes wet. It is very depressing weather for the time of year.
However, one day last week, Harry and I caught a bus into town and spent some time watching the world go by from a bench, overlooking our water front. This busker was amazing as he played lovely music on his violin for over an hour standing on this trapeze with just one leg. 
Over the other side of the water, a man was playing bongos and xylophone, so each busker was in competition with the other. At first it jarred a bit, but each player was very good in his own right. 
This is one of the things I like about our city...... the buskers who have a prime pitch and are usually very good at what they do.

Harry is about to start his sixth chemo and it is awful to see him overcome by side affects for about 10 days afterwards when all he wants to do is to sleep in his chair. It gets tougher as the time goes on.

For the next week or two, we are going to be having the electrician in to start the long list of jobs he has to do to make the house safer. It will cost an arm and a leg but after our electrical ordeal (described in the last but one post), we came to realise that safety is more important than anything else. We'er not looking forward to all the commotion, especially while Harry is feeling so ill, but unfortunately it is very necessary.
I also have to find someone to fit a stronger curtain rail in the lounge because the curtains keep coming down and there are several other jobs that need doing as well. It is frustrating that we cannot now do these things ourselves ( I don't mean the electrical things) but all the other silly bits and pieces that we used to do without a second thought.  However, Harry did go down to the High Street today to get a new shower head that he managed to fit himself. The shower is now working perfectly and it is good to know that it seemed to be nothing too serious.
Isn't it amazing how everything seems to break or need repairing at once?

Wednesday, 3 April 2013

Hail The Sun?

Photo Copyright: Maggie May

We are now into Summer time, having missed out on an hours sleep on Easter Sunday morning when the clocks went forward. The weather was bitterly cold during the whole holiday. This photo shows hailstones but not from the recent holiday. It belongs to another era, but illustrates perfectly well the way the weather is misbehaving right now.

My daughter, Deb, did manage to get to our house for the Easter Weekend but it was touch and go whether she could get Rick, who has autism, into the car or not. He is too old/big to force into the car and he isn't able to look after himself if she went away for a weekend even though he is almost seventeen. Nor is he responsive to bribery or threats of a computer ban as he would just accept what came his way if he really didn't want to do something. Anyway, after being warned not to buy in any extra food or go to any trouble in case Rick wouldn't get into the car, at the very last minute, Deb phoned to say they were just leaving at about noon on Good Friday. Once he was here, he settled in very well though preferred to stay in his room in the semi darkness with his iPad. However, teenagers tend to do that anyway. He has tremendous power to control the rest of the family, though.
It is a bit hard on Dean, who really appreciates going on trips away and it must be really trying for Deb. She is hoping to get help for him and has recently had a few visits from different organisations in her own home, concerning Autism. Lets hope that something comes of that.

After Deb remarking that the west coat of England was so very much colder than the east, (and I've always experienced the opposite) the day after she left on Easter Monday, we had beautiful sunshine and I was able to sit out on the bench in the sun and enjoy the new light in the garden since next door cut his huge Leylandii tree down.  I did wrap up in a fleece though. It has continued to be sunny but cold. However that is a move in the right direction, isn't it?