Wednesday, 29 August 2012

Another fun day!

I had a really fun day at the hospital yesterday - not!!
I had an appointment for an MRI scan at 12.15pm, which involved a prior visit to the Chemo Unit to have the necessary canulla put in my arm.  The first attempt (on the back of my hand) was painful so was removed, the second (on the inside of my wrist) seemed fine.  It was duly wrapped in a crepe bandage for protection in the hour before my scan.  We went to the hospital cafe where I read the paper and watched hubby drink a lovely cuppa (I had to fast for 3hrs before the scan).  Then we made our way to the MRI Dept, surprised to find the waiting room empty.
I was called in straight away and went into the changing room to remove the top half of my clothing and put it in a locker.  I explained that I had already had the canulla in place and I was put onto the scanner bed.  At this point the radiologist (I think that was his title) said he would check that the canulla was ok by flushing some water through.  Unfortunately this showed that all was not well as the area around the needle site hurt and started to swell.  He explained that if he used that canulla he could not use the full amount of contrast dye, and would have to push it through at a slower speed than usual. He asked if he could try and find another vein to put a canulla in and I agreed.  Fortunately, he found a spot in the crook of my arm that was perfect!
So it was all systems go!  He made me comfy and explained carefully everything that was going to happen, although he knew I had been through the procedure many times before.  I had to practice holding my breath for 14 seconds and passed with flying colours!  The scanner rattled and chugged and I held my breath at the appropriate times while listening to Frank Sinatra through headphones.  It took 1hr 15mins from being called in, to getting out. All went well, as it always does, and eventually I was unplugged.  The nurse (?) put the cap on the canulla after the dye pump was disconnected and I was helped to sit up.  The other nurse in the room shouted "where has all the blood come from?" and I realised that there was blood on the floor, on the scanner bed, on the knee rest, on my gown and on my arm!  It was only because the cap on the canulla had the threads crossed, nothing more sinister than that, but I had to walk through the waiting room covered in blood.  I felt sorry for the poor souls waiting in the room - they must have wondered what they were letting themselves in for! The two canullas were taken out and  I was washed down and free to get dressed and go home!
Now I just need to wait for the scan results next week - after going for a blood test in the Chemo Unit on Monday.  Can't wait to see how that goes!

Wednesday, 8 August 2012

Happy birthday to me!

Hubby excelled himself today, my birthday. We got off to a good start when he appeared holding something behind his back, looking very sheepish! He mumbled an explanation as I tried not to giggle. Apparently he had bought me a birthday card at the local supermarket, it was a beautiful card I must admit.  When he got it home he realised that there was no envelope with it and panicked because it was too late to go back to the shop.  As one of my hobbies is card-making, you would think it would occur to him that our "office" is filled with blank cards and envelopes but, he said, he couldn't find one!  So he set about making one himself with a sheet of copy paper and a roll of sellotape!

I must award him an Olympic gold medal for ingenuity.  Unfortunately he had used more sellotape than paper (or so it seemed).  It was not easy for me to get into the "envelope" but it was well worth it when I did! Bless him!

We had a lovely lunch with our daughter and granddaughter then we all decided to go shopping together and piled into our car.  Hubby parked up in the carpark and daughter and  I got out and started following hubby into the shop.  We realised that someone was missing - poor granddaughter was looking out of the car window at us.  Hubby had locked the car doors and left her in, apparently he thought she had got out already!  As his punishment (!), he had to entertain her while daughter and I shopped.  Good job he didn't see how much I spent - I got pens in every colour imaginable, some erasable, and coloured tabs for my filofax.  That should keep me going for quite some time!

Thursday, 19 January 2012

It's a bloodbath - eventually!

The other day I  had to visit Bradford Royal Infirmary for my usual 3-weekly blood test.  We got off to a good start as the waiting room for the phlebotomy department was empty and I was able to go straight in.  As usual, I explained that my veins are very poor, needing paediatric needles to be used, and I have only one arm which can be used for the procedure.  After holding my hand under running hot water to make the veins stand out, the phlebotomist made two unsuccessful attempts. The needle went in ok, but my blood was reluctant to flow!  She said "I have been here 30 years and have never had to try 3 times"!!  She was going to have another attempt but then decided it might be better if I were to go up the Chemotherapy Day Unit for them to do it.  I was quite happy to do this, as no-one there has ever needed more than one attempt. 

 It was a longer wait as, understandably, I had to be fitted in between the chemo patients.  The sister who did the procedure was new to me, but she was lovely and brought me a bucket of hot soapy water to soak my hand in.  In the chemo department you also get to sit in a comfy arm chair with a pillow to rest your arm on, a cup of tea and a biscuit!  The needle went in without any problem, but again my blood didn't want to leave my nice warm hand!  She stroked the vein and sat and chatted to me while we waited for the syringe to fill - must have been about 5 minutes to get a couple of tablespoonsful.  Then she carefully took the needle out and my blood squirted all over my hand, her apron, the pillow and the floor.  We were frantically mopping up with tissues when hubby came through to wash up his empty cup.  He took one look at the blood and said "It's like Hammer House of Horrors in here!" and kept walking back to the waiting room.

It was my clinic appointment next day and I told the consultant what had happened with the blood test.  He said next time I should skip the phlebotomy department and go straight to the Day Unit.  With pleasure!  My next worry is that I have to go for an MRI scan next month and they always have a problem getting a needle in my arm for the dye needed for the scan.  Last time, 2 radiographers couldn't do it and they had to go and wake up an anaesthetist for the job.  Can't wait to see what happens next time (not!).

Thursday, 12 January 2012

A Scarf for the Pooping Puppy!

We went to fetch our grand-daughter from school this afternoon as her parents were working, and brought her back to our house until her Mum could pick her up on her way home.  She spent about 3/4hr playing with her "pooping puppy".  This delightful little toy dog is worked by a remote clicker - 1 click to make it walk; 2 to make it sit and 3 to make it beg (I think it's that way round!).  To make it more exciting, you can put a plastic biscuit in its mouth and then a short time later it comes out of the other end!  She got a bit concerned at one point as the biscuit was not appearing when expected.  She said "he must be constipated", so I picked him up and shook him.  She was mortified!  Anyway, it worked and he is no longer constipated.   

She then decided she wanted me to teach her to knit.  This was fun!  She now knows the principles, but at 6 years old, her hands are too small to cope with the needles.  We sat in the chair while she tried to copy me, both chanting "in, wrap, push, pull".  If you knit, you will understand!  We are knitting a green scarf for the pooping puppy.

Went out for a lovely meal tonight with our friends M&D to a new Italian restaurant called Pippo's on Harrogate Road, at Greengates.  It was our first time there and we were not disappointed, the meal was lovely.  The evening's entertainment was provided by hubby (as usual). He went to pay for the meal on his debit card but had forgotten his pin number!  "No problem", says he, "I have saved it on my phone in code!"  Slight problem - he couldn't remember the code!  In the end, he had to pay on his credit card.  To make matters worse, one of the reasons we had gone to this particular restaurant was that hubby was hoping to do business with them!  Not a good way to impress them.  Still, it was well worth it as we had a lovely evening.

Sunday, 1 January 2012

Bring back 2011!

2012 started off ok, or so I thought!  I have been having a bit of a problem for a few days with my little toe bleeding, and walking was getting a bit painful.  When I woke up this morning the toe was swollen, red and more painful.  To cut a long story short, hubby and I spend 3 hours in the waiting room of Ward 15, Bradford Royal Infirmary, to be told by a doctor that the toe is infected and the nail has disappeared!  There was so much blood on it the last few days that I hadn't been able to see it properly, so I don't know when it went, where or how!  They dressed it for me and gave me antibiotics for tonight, have to collect the rest tomorrow. I have to rest it a bit, which is no great hardship now that walking is so painful.  Not the greatest start to the year, but at least it can only get better - or can it?

Saturday, 31 December 2011

From the Beginning

About 20 years ago, a friend at work said I could never write a book about the things that happen in my life because no-one would ever believe it.  So I didn't!  Then earlier this week another friend said I should write down some of the funny/strange things that happen.  So I will! I can't face writing a book so a blog seems the next best thing.  I live in Bradford, West Yorkshire with my husband and son, just down the road from my daughter, son-in-law and grand-daughter, and across the Pennines from my sister. 

It was my hubby's 60th birthday on Thursday and I had been secretly knitting him a scarf - he had been dropping subtle hints for some time that this was what he wanted.  For some reason the scarf, when finally finished, will not lie flat.  I got out the ironing board, pressed it twice, it just rolled up into a tube.  I flattened it under heavy weights, it still rolled into a tube.  I gave up and wrapped it in lovely shiny gift-wrap, flattening it as I went along, and put heavy books on top.  Come the great present-opening ceremony on his birthday and what did he do - went hysterical at the sight of a long grey knitted tube!  He thought it looked like a rope.  We decided that if it looked too silly to wear, we could use it to lag the pipes.  Bless him, he has worn it dutifully every day since then, so the pipes can freeze over!  Now my son has asked me to knit him a scarf in the same yarn, different colour - green this time!  How brave is that of him?  Looks like the pipes may get lagged after all!