Sad News

Sad News

Very sad news to report as my lovely mum Margaret passed away in her sleep last night. I was staying overnight with her as she didn’t want to be on her own and also so my dad could have a decent sleep. So as it happened, I was about 2:15am and I was on my own with her. She just drifted away.

Cancer is such a cruel disease and it’s robbed me of 3 out of 4 grandparents, my beloved Peggy Dog and now my mum. It’s not fair and we really really need to find a cure.

Don’t know what to say, so I just thought I’d leave you with her lovely face.

G x

 Margaret Esther Dixon 1946-2015

Yay for the weekend!

Hello everyone, hope you are enjoying your Saturday? We had quite a lie in this morning and then we started the BBQ fun/trauma.  It’s M’s birthday a week on Monday and because the garden is half done, we would like to have a barbecue as his party. M is not one to buy things rashly, he likes to do his research and find us the best product we can afford. As such, we aren’t going to get any old grill, but the doyenne of ALL grills. The Weber Spirit Classic E210 Gas Barbecue . 

We were able to get 9% discount using a gift card thingy that I am able to get through work. So this morning we went to the B&Q website and tried to buy our grill, only to find that the gift card didn’t work!!  We made 2 phone calls to discover that for some UNKNOWN reason, you can’t make diy.com purchases with gift card. Grrrrrrr. 

Anyway, we ended up going to our local store and getting them to order it (Yippee!!). It’s being delivered on Thursday (hopefully) However, this did take no less than 5 members of staff in B&Q, but they were very helpful and friendly and we did eventually manage to sort things out. 

Whilst we were there, we also got a few plants and stones and things to try and improve the planting in the front beds and a small bed we have at the end of the drive. The plants that were in, were put there by our builder, Taylor Wimpey, when we moved in in June 2014. They are a bit rubbish and the ground they were planted in is very “building site”. 

Wanna see a before and after? 

So quite a productive day so far 🙂 I am just having a chill now because tonight I am staying with mum so that dad can get some sleep. As she has become more and more unwell, she has been having restless nights and dad hasn’t been going to bed. 

However, she had a catheter fitted yesterday and so with an increase of sleeping medication, it seems that last night was a little calmer. Even so, I think mum just likes someone to be there… I imagine she goes to sleep most nights wondering if she’s going to wake up. How frightening for her. 

Anyway, just a few bits and bobs to do before I go to mum’s for 10pm. I’m not really looking forward to it, I suppose that I am just as scared that she  might die in the night. Not good all round really. 

G x 

End of life care

So this is quite a tough diary to write as yesterday mum had a bad night and both my sister and I had the day off so we could help look after her. She was visited by both the doctor and the district nurse and because of her deterioration, the conversation turned to End of Life Care. *sighs* 

We discussed things like syringe drivers and “do not resuscitate” orders. All quite heavy but unfortunately necessary. Mum was understandably upset and dad is somewhere down a river called denial. 

In some odd way, we did have a nice day though as all th family were together and even my gorgeous 2 nieces came at the end of the day to eat ice pops and play in the garden. They are 9 and 5 and had no idea of the seriousness of the situation – what a blessed and light relief. 

Sunshine

Doesn’t the warm weather make the day feel better?! Even sat in the boring chemist waiting for a prescription for mum, I’m still buoyed by the sunshine I can see outside.  

 Us brits are obsessed with the weather and we often hark back to summers where  It was sunny all summer or it snowed for more than a couple of days. OBSESSED we are! 

It rains in the UK a lot so sunshine makes us happy. Just my little thought for the day!  

gill x 

Blackpool

Just a quick one tonight as I’ve had a very busy day AND I’ve been to a very sunny BLACKPOOL!  

 One of of the teams I look after is based in Blackpool and today was their “final presentation”. I have to give a speech about The Prince’s Trust which I usually do on the hoof, but I’ve done quite a few now, so I usually say a version of the same thing, which makes it easier.  

Some of the young people were nervous and so not able to actually give their speech, but it was a good day overall. I am now just sat waiting for M to finish training with his sister and then for her partner to arrive so we can have our tea!  

I have to admit, at the moment, the effort of appearing happy and professional at work tires me out and by the evening time I really just need to chill out and watch some crap on the telly. It’s just so sad about what’s happening to mum that it’s all consuming, but I have to get up every morning and just get on with it don’t I. 

Many way, he’s my slightly rubbish attempt at a Blackpool Tower selfie.  

 

Not the best selfie. It was very sunny and of course aman having his lunch!  

Not the best selfie. It was very sunny and of course aman having his lunch!  

G x  

Cancer

So this time last year, give or take a few weeks, my mum was diagnosed with Stage 3 Oseophageal Cancer. We’ve had a very hard journey since then, I might write another blog on another day to tell you just how hard, but the timeline goes something like this:

  1. April 2014 – Diagnosed Stage 3 Osephagus Cancer
  2. July 2014 – Started 2 x lots of oral chemotherapy
  3. Operation to remove Osephagus scheduled in for early September 2014
  4. August 2014 – Difficulty swallowing, meaning Mum didn’t eat anything for 3-4 days.
  5. Admitted to Whiston Hospital for a stent to be but into her throat to open it up so that she can eat. This failed.
  6. Whilst at Whiston, mum walked to lift to find dad, fainted and broke her hip in the fall. It was pinned the next day.
  7. Cancer operation delayed by 6 weeks.
  8. End October 2014 – Osephagus and cancer successfully removed.
  9. Oct – December 2014 – Mum unable to recover post op as kept getting persistent chest infections, pneumonia, becoming generally weaker and more frail.
  10. Jan – Mid Feb 2015 – Home from hospital, weak but managing with support.
  11. Feb 2015 – She experiences breathing difficulties and is admitted to Whiston Hospital, diagnosed with recurrent Osephagus Cancer Stage 4, spread to her lungs.
  12. She is sent home and referred for palliative radiotherapy.
  13. Attends our local cancer hospital for radiotherapy and after blood tests, is deemed too unwell and is transferred to the nearest general hospital for assessment.
  14. During her stay there, she becomes critically unwell as she vomits during the night and swallows it, which goes onto her lungs. She is unresponsive, but resuscitated by the crash team.
  15. March 2015 – She is seen by a consultant who tells her that she is now too weak for treatment and she should go home and be with her family.
  16. She then started to go somewhere every day to not waste any time. She attends a couple of family events, which she enjoys.

So as you can see, the whole thing is a sorry tale of treatment and crisis and the stress this has caused not only for mum, but on the family is immense. It’s almost unbearable to watch someone we all love to much, be destroyed by such a cruel disease. And if you are wondering just how much things have changed….

Such a happy smiley person with everything to live for, to someone in the last few weeks of their life.

Breaks my heart 🙁

Gill x

My beautiful garden

Wow, this is my very first blog post.

It’s Monday 20th April 2015 and I am sat in my living room feeling pretty nice. It’s been a warm sunny day and I’ve just come in from the garden after mowing the lawn and watering the plants. I’ve never had a garden before, this is my first one. I’ve lived in a few places and of course my mum & dad have a garden, but I’ve never had one of my own.

As a person generally, I’m not that ambitious, but the one thing I did want, was a house with a garden before I was 40, and this I got 3 days before my 40th birthday! Happy Happy girl. 

As you can see from the photos, it’s only half finished and we are hoping to finish it off before Summer totally kicks in. When I was younger, I used to roll my eyes at older people I worked with talking about their gardens, but now I understand it. I just laughed as I typed that as I realised I must be that “older person” now. Ah well, I don’t really care, I love it. 

G xx

Top floor clearance

So this weekend we have started “Operation Top Floor”. We moved into our 3 storey house just over 6 months ago and we’ve been working on transforming the new build house into our home. This house doesn’t have a loft we can use as storage, so as we don’t have furniture yet to put on the top floor, it’s sort of become our storage/laundry/workout area.
But we decided this weekend that we would make a start in clearing it and make it into our “snug”. In the week, our very brilliant handyman “Handy Macky” installed some shelves in our storage cupboard and then away we go…

2015/01/img_0093.jpg

2015/01/img_0093.jpg

We are hosting our eldest niece’s 9th birthday party in a few weeks so at the very least it needs to be ready for a Princess party!

It’s a work in progress, but after today, we are definitely getting somewhere.

xxgxx

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