Monthly Archives: August 2015

Head held high!

Surgery went well and I was allowed home to sleep in my own bed on Thursday.

On Friday we returned to The Royal Victoria Hospital, Belfast, for an 08:30 appointment. The dressing was removed and Elly was shown how to clean the eye four times a day and how the drops were to be inserted.  On that day I saw nothing but the water level in the operated eye.

By Saturday, I could see the tops of the trees.

Posturing finished officially yesterday afternoon and Elly drove me to Carrickfergus for a short walk. It was wonderful to be outdoors again. At the moment I need to be careful stepping off or onto a kerb, but that will improve with each day.


Sunday Walk

Sunday Walk

Eyes hidden behind my sunglasses and protected from the sun by a wide brimmed hat.

The water level mark has lowered and allowed me to see more each day. Although not required, I am still posturing for an hour in the morning and afternoon.

The Audio books keep me amused while Elly does some work. So far I have made lunch on two occasions. I then claim to be tired and leave her with the dirty dishes… well she does need a few little jobs to keep her on her toes! 😛

I have a return appointment to see the Consultant on 22nd September… not too long to wait.

I am taking it easy with reading, so it might be a couple of weeks before I return to normal posting, reading and commenting. Enjoy the rest from my mutterings!

Thanks must go to: The Medical Staff at the hospital, Elly and all those who offered help in any and every way. The good wishes, lighted candles and prayers were all much appreciated.

As an aside, I took particular notice of the team who looked after me on both Thursday & Friday, the majority were ‘Guest workers’ in our country. Prime Minister David Cameron, should be ashamed of calling refuggees ‘A Swarm’, Without these… as the Germans say Gastarbeiter, our NHS – National Health Service would crumble!

What’s on my mind?

Audio books for my posturing phase. Head down I will find it difficult enough to try to do things that I need to do, never mind hold a book.

I am hoping that audio books might distract me from the discomfort and keep frustration at bay. Not quite War and Peace – I am not expecting to be hanging down for that long, and Uselesses (Ulysses) 😉 might just put me to sleep!

I need a story that will draw me into it and the voice of the narrator is quite important to my ear. There have been a few recently that were spoiled by the drone of the reader’s voice.

I do have a few ideas so far:

Daft Wee Stories
Written & Narrated by: Limmy

The Tent, The Bucket and Me
Written & Narrated by: Emma Kennedy

The End of the Affair
Written by: Graham Greene Narrated by: Colin Firth

One Small Act of Kindness
Written by: Lucy Dillon Narrated by: Lucy Price-Lewis

Do you have any suggestions that I might try?

Anyone from John Grisham, Maggie Makepiece to Joanna Trollope and more….

I am a lady in waiting…


No. I am not pregnant, or sitting at the window waiting for my ‘Date’ to arrive. I am actually keeping myself busy preparing for vitrectomy eye surgery at the end of the month.

Once I make a decision to go ahead with a particular surgery, I then work out what I need to make the recovery period as easy as possible. Six years ago, I was booked in for hip surgery (can you believe it was that long ago?) and prepared myself for every eventuality. It was worth it. I was totally on my own pins and independent after six weeks. All due thanks to Elly, George and a few friends.

Nurse Hitler Elly will don her matron’s cap once more and move back in with me to nag me back to normality care and help me through the awkward few days while posturing – head down for 55 minutes in every hour. Hopefully the posturing will not last more than a week, but I accept it might be longer. I have been told that “The vitrectomy patient’s daily routine will be much more manageable with the help of friends and family members”. Do I need to hide my camera?

Bathing should be fun. Would I find it easier to take a bath rather than a shower while keeping my head down? Next week, I’ll move the soap, shampoo and any other bathroom necessities to a low spot where they will be easily reachable. How soon can I wash my hair? I hate unwashed hair, but they (whoever ‘They’ are) say that if you leave hair long enough unwashed, the natural oils do the cleaning for you. I am not anxious to try that one for size!

My usual trousers with buttons and zips are not recommended or any clothing that needs to be pulled over my head. The jumpers and tops can all be washed and put away for the duration.

I have been shopping. I now possess a couple of pairs of trousers with elasticated waist bands and a couple of button through cardigans. I already had two button up shirts and I purchased a couple of night shirts, if I am cold, then my pyjama bottoms will pull on easily. Hell, I’ll have a great excuse for hanging about in a bath robe OR to join the world of the ONSIES!

All day facing floorward, might not help my back, I wonder if I pretend to be Buffy and go around on all fours, will it help or just confuse Elly? I have no wish to be fed dry doggie food or to lick my fluids out of a bowl. Woof! Woof!

I am told that swallowing will be easier if bending more from the waist than from the neck. All drinking should be done through a straw. Do they make straws suitable for hot drinks? If so, I have not found them yet…. I need to do some more research. If I drink more than two sips of cold water, my body goes cold from the inside and I stop. Give me boiled water and I will drink it by the bucket full. What a picture: me drinking with a bendy straw from a bucket!

The sleeping schedule has been tried. Sleeping face down will take a little getting used to. I have a V shaped pillow and I already made a start to get my body used to that idea. I managed one hours sleep face down on Wednesday. I hoped to increase by an hour each night and maybe by the time I go to surgery, my body will be comfortable with sleeping face down. Thursday night I managed to remain face downward all night but my back played merry hell most of Friday. Friday night was a total wash-out and I never slept at all. As Fagin sang: I think I need to think it out again! Mind you Elly tells me she has gone ahead and rented a Face Down Sleep Support. It is due to arrive a couple of days before I go to the hospital, so I’ll have a chance to practise with it.

I have a long low coffee table that will be useful for setting my food tray, drinks, tissues et cetera on. The leaflet given to me suggests ‘The patient may prefer softer foods which are easier to swallow’. That reminds me of a guy who had his jaw wired following an accident. He was a fan of McDonald’s – I am not. He bought his Big Mac and a Coke and brought them home, put everything in the blender and had his meal through a straw!

The actual operation will take place in day surgery under a local anaesthetic. Just like my previous cataract surgery on both my eyes, I will be wheeled into theatre in day clothes and the whole procedure will last about an hour while I am awake. It is most lightly that I will stay over-night in the hospital. I suppose that will depend on how things go on the day.

Now what more do I need… Plenty of tissues, straws and more meals for the freezer and a few wee treats for matron.

Nearly ready.

25th Belfast Pride…

and I was there!

Thankfully the rain had the good manners to stay away and not turn us into drips.

This slideshow will give you a flavour of the nice side of Belfast. Happy people of all ages, colours, shapes and orientation proud to celebrate their being!

I even spied a few dogs sporting garlands or draped in rainbow colours.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Now let us make marriage equality a reality for all, like the rest of the island of Ireland.