Welcome Home Bernard

Welcome Home Bernard!

It took 4 months and nearly two weeks, but Bernard is now back home. I’ve not driven him yet, but I may give it a go soon. I’m really nervous, I used to love driving so much, but I’ve never really got used to driving with my hands.

We only have Bernard until September, then our lease is up and we can choose a new car. Graham has his eye on a Volvo. I thought it would be cool to get a WAV so I could just drive my wheelchair on, that was until I saw the cost…eeek! I think I’ll just stick to getting a new wheelchair and a hoist in the boot of the new car.

In Other News

I think getting Bernard back was the big news of the last week, nothing much else has happened.

I was glad to give my heart monitor back. As I suspected I had a good week with no problems, so they’ll probably give me the all clear. I am 99% sure it was my medication causing the issues, and I’ve stopped it now.

The monitor gave me some lovely sores, I think I’m a bit allergic to those sticky pads they use, I always get a rash whenever I have an ECG.

Wool Addict

My hooks have been busy this week. I’ve almost completed a dragon hooded scarf from a pattern from the lovely Tracey at Hooks and Dragon I can’t wait to show it off.

I’m also in the process of piecing together the CAL (crochet along) blanket that I started last February. I really don’t like the sewing part, but I will finish it after all my hard work, I have to.

I’ve also got the wool for a toy zebra, and the girls fell in love with a pattern for an axolotyl which they want me to make.

I’m going to be a little bit busy.

Debs Random Writings
Mix It Up Linky

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My Sunday Photo 20th January 2019

I was sifting through my photos trying to find something to share that wasn’t of the kids or the cats and having very little luck. Then I spotted this photo I took from the car while, in very slow moving traffic, on the way home from the hospital.

Admittedly it’s not the best of photographs, but I think it means a lot to me. This factory was where a few members of my family have been employed. I mostly remember my auntie working there and she had a special pass for the shop which she would share with my Mum. At Easter, my Mum would go along and buy a load of yummy Easter Eggs at a much cheaper price than in the shops.

Every summer, there is a fete held on the grounds in front of the factory. They have a big fairground and fireworks in the evening. We’ve been many times, particularly when my older kids were younger as it always seemed to fall around my daughter’s birthday. What a great treat for her.

About 30 years ago, they opened a brand new visitor centre right next door which is very popular with people far and wide. It actually took me around 25 years to visit it, but we’ve been several times since and experienced it in both summer and winter time.

Also, around 12 years ago we spent a whole afternoon looking for a geocache which was hidden in a tree near here. (Just right of the photograph.) I learned so much more about the area on that visit, including that all the trees are numbered! When we found the tree we were looking for I was keen to be the one to retrieve the geocache. So, I put my hand into the hole of the tree and straight on top of a frog who was guarding the little box of treasure.

The factory was the first in its chain and its produce is known in many countries around the world. The whole area around it was built by the factory for it’s workers and is still very much unchanged. When you pull into the local train station everything is painted in purple.

Do you know what factory it is yet? One last clue, it smells divine!

bar of Cadbury Dairy Milk

It’s the Cadbury factory in Bournville, Birmingham.

Sunday Snap

Word of the Week #3 of 2019

Hello and welcome to the home of Word of the Week, a nice and simple weekly linky, with everyone welcome to pop by and share. You reflect back on the past week and sum it up in one word. Then share your word with us in a blog post, with as little or as much explanation as you like.

There are not too many rules with this linky, just remember to read at least another couple of posts in the link up after adding your link. Do try to stick to the theme of summing your week up. I will read and comment on all posts and tweet them out for you. Please add the badge below to your post so that others may find us and join in. If you comment or tweet then please use the hashtag #WotW

If you are unfamiliar with the Word of the Week linky then please feel free to ask any questions. New linkers are always welcome, we love to hear what you have been up to in the past week.

My Word of the Week

Illness

Illness, a cup and box of tissues against a dark background.

Ah, not a good word I know, but it’s not so bad. I was really poorly last weekend and it’s left me feeling weak, but I do feel better now. Sometimes it’s just necessary to do nothing and give yourself time to heal.

I’ve also been fitted with a heart monitor this week which is a bit strange. It’s like wearing a pedometer on my waistband but with wires attached to my body. The sticky pads are starting to get on my nerves and I’m counting the days until I can take them off on Monday morning.

I’m not the only one though, Star got sick on Tuesday. She came home from school feeling unwell and ended up not going in for two days. It’s the first time she’s been off sick this school year which is good for her. With her condition she has lost a lot of time in previous years. The school have been more upset with her breaking her track record than how poorly she’s been. They even offered to let her sit in the library all day just so she could get her attendance mark. It does annoy me that all schools think about is their attendance figures. Star will go back to school when she’s feeling fit, I’m not having a sick child in school to please anyone.

This weekend is going to be fun. The Little Man has some fun things to review for me, and we are hoping to get a little fresh air now that we have got our car back! I really didn’t like the lease vehicle we had while our car was being repaired and it’s been over 14 weeks that we’ve had it. When we get our car back I may be able to drive a little myself. I don’t really like my hand controls, but I’m sure I could get used to them if I drove more, and since I changed my medication I’m not getting vertigo very often now.

So, although it’s not been a good week health wise, I’m looking forward to a good weekend and I’m sure next week will be better.

Now it’s your turn, what have you been up to this week?

Raisie Bay



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What it is like Living with a Chronic Illness

I can’t speak for everyone because we are all different. But living with a chronic illness is often misunderstood.

Imagine that the next time you get one of those horrid colds that knock you off your feet, disturb your sleep and make you feel like crap for a few days.

Then you get better and go back to normal, glad that it’s over, you survived intact.

Now imagine you don’t get better and it just carries on like that for weeks on end. Or maybe it gets better for a while but you know it will be back again in a week or two. That’s what living with a chronic illness is like.

The Spoon Theory

six silver spoons

A lot of people refer to the Spoon theory. When you are not well you can imagine a day where you wake up with a number of spoons. Then after every activity you take away a spoon until there are none left. Sometimes they can last all day and you may even have an extra one for the next day. But you can also have days where the spoons get spent very quickly and you are left unable to do anything else for the rest of the day. You can even overdo things one day, leaving you with fewer spoons for the next day.

A lot of chronically ill people refer to themselves as spoonies, I am a spoonie.

My Story

Three years ago I was taken ill quite suddenly. I don’t know what caused it but I’ve learnt since that shocks can trigger your body into attacking itself. And I’d had a shock when my Father-in-Law had suddenly dropped dead in front of me with a heart attack,while I was taking him for a hospital appointment.

Two days later I was back in the same hospital myself, virtually paralysed. Totally numb. I was originally diagnosed with Transverse Myelitis and told I would recover within a couple of months. A year later I was diagnosed with Stiff Person Syndrome plus PERM and told that recovery was unlikely.

Things I have Learned Since I Have Had a Chronic Illness

Life with a chronic illness is hard, harder than you can imagine.

Life is also difficult for loved ones, they have to watch you suffer and see someone they depended on become someone they have to look after instead.

It’s difficult to carry on with a normal lifestyle, even if you are well enough to continue working you will need to take lots of time off sick.

It’s hard being a Mum, especially when your child needs you and you can’t be there for them.

You’re mental health deteriorates, you may start out feeling positive that you can beat the illness, but as time goes by you feel like it’s just not worth living any more.

People don’t like to be around sick people.

You find that people just don’t understand how you can be ill so often.

People stop asking how you are.

You stop being invited to events because people just assume you won’t be well enough to go.

It’s difficult to plan for anything because you don’t know if you will be well enough.

A lot of partners cannot cope with life with a chronically ill person and decide to leave them.

Staying Positive

It’s amazing what a difference having a positive attitude can have. I am not always positive, but when I pull myself out of my self-pity and hold my head up I feel so much better.

Life is not always easy, not for anyone whether you have a chronic illness or not. But, it’s up to you how you approach life, how you deal with it, that makes things better. I may not find any relief from my pain, but it certainly makes me feel better when I can laugh and have fun with friends and family.

I’ve just had an awful weekend, I’m not sure if it was side effects from my infusions, or related to something else but I really was ill. I could barely do anything but watch television. My family just left me to it. But there is only so much I can take, I will push myself to do things, not give in to the pain, probably even make myself feel worse in the end. But, in my mind I want to be the winner, not the giver upper!

There has to be a balance though. Sometimes when you are rock bottom it’s okay to admit it and give in, so long as you are willing to fight for it when you are ready. I gave in, I watched 3 hours of Friends and 4 hours of Doctor Who over the weekend. I’d had enough by then, enough lying around and giving in. But I’d also allowed myself to wallow and rest. It was time to fight.

One day I know the fight will be gone, but until then I’m going to polish my spoons and keep on keeping on.

courage is not having the strength to go on, i'ts going on when you don't have the strength
Debs Random Writings
Twin Mummy and Daddy

Education Now and Then

old fashioned typewriter

Photo by Patrick Fore on Unsplash

Last night the girls were watching Back in Time for School. They thought that the lessons the girl’s were taught were quite hilarious. We watched them learning how to make up a cloth nappy and put it on a baby doll. The girl’s were quite amazed when I told them that I’d done that at school.

I had the nappy lessons and how to make up a baby bottle and feed a doll. For the exam in Childcare, which was an actual subject, we had to make up a bottle of formula in front of the whole class. I hated it, I really didn’t want to think about babies at the age of 16, it wasn’t on my agenda. (Yes, I am a Mum of five!)

One thing that always bothered me was the computer room. I’d walk past watching the boys file in and try to get a look at these elusive computers through the window. Then I’d go down the corridor to my typing lessons. I have to admit, though, I did like typing. The feel of my fingers tapping along the keys while looking at the document to my right made me feel like I was learning something special. My fingers were learning those keys and it’s something I’ve never forgotten. Of course, I was never interested in an office job either.

It was interesting to see how little had changed from the TV program to my school days despite it being more than 20 year later. Thankfully, my girls have much more opportunities at school these days. There are no limitations, they can learn what they want. The typewriters and dolls with nappies are long gone, and the computers are not kept for the boys use only.

School Today

I like to give updates every now and then on how my kid’s are getting on at school and this seems like a good time.

Star, is now my longest lasting child to manage main stream school. She is in year nine and thriving. The school fits her needs perfectly and she has even made a couple of friends. She told me that a lot of her peers are more mature now and the teasing and bullying is no longer an issue. I’m sure it goes on elsewhere, but for Star it’s not a problem which is great. She is doing well in her lessons, learning well and being treated with respect for her disabilities.

Boo is coping well with Secondary school. Her transition was painless as she was already at the school from year six. Being in the building and getting used to the teachers helped loads, she even picked up the playground and lunch time rules with ease. She is not super bright but she tries very hard and works well so I’m sure she’ll succeed. She listens to her teachers and behaves well. She has a lovely group of friends who she gets on so well with and is generally happy.

The Little Man has settled in well in his new school. I’m so glad we found this school for him, he’s already doing better than before and is much happier. There is no bullying and although he still gets into trouble occasionally, it’s not every single day like before. I don’t know if he will still be going through an assessment but I think as long as he’s doing well then I’m not going to worry. He will spend another two years in this school after this one and I’m sure any issues will be ironed out by then.

But one of the things I’ve really enjoyed recently is the lack of head lice! It must have been the Little Man’s old school that was the problem because since he left we have eradicated the little blighters completely. Any Mum that has had to deal with frequent attacks of nits with more than one child will understand my excitement in this.

Lucy At Home UK parenting blogger
Twin Mummy and Daddy

A little Note About Positive Reviews on Raisie Bay

A little Note About Positive Reviews on Raisie Bay

Some people only write reviews when things go wrong with products, which is good because it lets people know that there could be potential problems. I’ve also seen negative feedback with say things like, I had to return this item because the colour did not suit me…is this useful?

I write reviews on most items I buy because I like to give genuine feedback. If I have a genuine problem with a product I will write my review in the appropriate place.

I write reviews on my blog too, but they are mostly positive. Why? Because I only write reviews for the things I’ve loved. If I don’t love them I let the person who sent me them know with details why and then let them decided if they would rather me write a negative review or not write one at all. It’s always the latter.

This is my blog, my place and I’ll let you know about the things I love. If you want to find out what other people have hated about the product then you will need to look elsewhere.

My reviews may all be positive, but they are still genuine.