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The Ultimate let down..

So the Ultimate disappointment came today, there is now NO release date on the table, he’s there until. Until his Blood improves, until the anti biotics do their thing, just until..

His blood markers had plateaued and today slightly risen. His health, his knee and most everything else looks good, except his emotional health, but his Blood is misbehaving. He was booked in for an Echocardiogram (didn’t happen) we have always had an appointment for that on Monday. Monday it is.

So basically there is no end in sight, l know l sound like l’m whining. I don’t mean to but it’s so frustrating and heart breaking.

Thank you everyone for your thoughts and prayers and love, we ALL appreciate your thoughts for our boy.

To our Elder children Jasmin, Amber and Jay, and my beautiful Grandchildren, thank you for coming to visit l know it’s a long haul, but it so helps him. Kittapillar thank you for your little messages and videos he laughs! Its times like these that the family have pulled together.

Breanna is Star Son’s girlfriend and you continue to be his best medicine and we so appreciate you.

Family are the best medicine.

But l am so angry, I’m not even sure who or what l’m angry at. I can’t blame him for loving a sport and being so dedicated to it. I can’t blame the Dr’s they’ve all been amazing and let’s have a shout out to those most lovely of nurses.. Fiona, Jade and Marrissa at Epworth, and then the lovely Pheobe and Demi and Sam, at Austin, there have been so many beautiful caring women who l knew l could go home and leave him with, because they looked after him amazingly.

Today we asked the Dr, “Was this caused by something we did or didn’t do? Is it because he’s stressed about being here? Is there anything we can do to help the infection numbers come down??”

The answer to all of the questions was NO. And then comes the inevitable question “Why?” Why him? Why can’t you stop it? Why? WHY??

And for once someone gave me an honest answer.. “We don’t know why, We don’t know what to do, we are watching and waiting.”

Star Sons eyes filled with tears, my eyes filled with tears, and he asked “Do you have anymore questions?” I did Not, he just answered mine so l turned to Star Son and asked “Is there anything you don’t understand?” He shook his head and mumbled “Only why l can’t go home”

So the Dr took a deep breath and went through the options, in laymens terms they are expecting, due to the slight raise in the blood numbers that he is going to spike a fever and need to be rushed back to surgery! God l pray they are wrong!!

The Doctor left and we sat in silence for a while, me fighting back tears and him gently fuming, and then he sighed and said “I’m going to spend the rest of my f%$#ing life in here” Yep! my heart cracked a little more.

I explained that although it wasn’t the news we wanted to hear, it was right, if l took him home and he spikes a temp we’d be right back where we were last Tuesday when he passed out in the drive way… gosh was it only last week? It feels like forever!

He’s beyond sad, he’s just angry with the world and with me, and l try to not take it personally, l mean it’s part of the Mothering process to be a safe haven to let him vent his emotions… But l’m also trying to keep mine under control and all l really want to do is lay down beside him and cry.

The man in the bed opposite and across one has been a quadriplegic for 29 years. He turns 50 years old on Wednesday. He has been talking to Star Son about Football and bloke stuff, he’s a lovely guy. Today he got released and he came over to Star Sons bed and apologised and said he felt guilty for going home when it should have been Star Son, we quickly re assured him it’s all good he has a party to attend!

He really made me stop and look at my whinging attitude, he was very sick and in a lot of pain but he always had a nice word to the other three patients in the room and every single person from the tea lady to the cleaners and every nurse, he was always upbeat and happy. I need to take a leaf from A’s book.

I need to but l’m sad, l’m angry and l’m feeling rather numb. Sitting in the hospital for 11 hours a day is wearing.

Maybe I’ll start next week.

Another day, another disappointment…

Day 9.. Another day sitting by his bed.

We were told Sunday we were supposed to go home Monday, so we got here bright and early eager to take him home.

All his canullas were removed, his drainage tube was removed, the dressings were removed, he was untethered for the first time since Wednesday. We felt hopeful.

Physio came and did some knee manipulations and put him on crutches to see how he would be able to move. He’s been using under arm crutches for a few weeks, she changed him arm crutches, he managed those.

She took him next door to the gym and put him at the parallel bars trying to get his knee straighter. The colour drained from his face he groaned “I don’t feel too good” a chair was quickly placed behind him, l ran for some water, we spent ten minutes deep breathing as the colour gradually returned to his face. Back to the room we hobbled, Mum with a wheel chair “Just in case”

We waited patiently, told that the pharmacy would visit and some one from Hospital in Home would visit and interview us to see if we were suitable candidates for them to visit, and we waited for the 1.00pm appointment for the picc line to be put in.

He was nervous about that they explained again how it would happen and then slid him onto the bed to take him away. I had an hour to waste. I made his bed, cleared his bedside table and read my book, how long 60 minutes feels!

Finally he was back, the PICC line inserted merely a bump in his arm and the relief of that drama clearly showed on his face, so we sat and we waited, for the HIH and for Dracula to take more bloods and for the pharmacist.. and we waited, and waited some more.

Finally the lovely nurse Demi said “it’s 4:45pm everyone goes home at 5:00pm it’s not looking good.” The sparkle left his eye and the smile left his face, and l struggled to hide the tears. Tomorrow you’ll go home we said!

Tuesday we were here bright and early before 7:30am because that’s when Drs do their rounds.

We thought we were going home. They said they wanted to check his bloods again and if that was trending down he could go home.

And so we waited.. and waited and then at 4:45pm we were told “Probably not today, but the big Drs will be in tomorrow” so more disappointment, we wait.

Wednesday we didn’t dare get our hopes up and he wasn’t in a good frame of mind either. The Big Drs did their ward rounds at 10:30am, a whole bunch of them, who decided that they would like him to do some MORE IV antibiotics his spirits went down and so did ours. The Dr wanted to confer with the Surgeon about what the next move should be.

But no one conferred with us.

So Dad, at work, rang us to see what was going on, we gave him the same reply “Nothing new to report” l feel like a recording.

He hung up and rang the Ward Sister who told him and then reluctantly told us “The Dr is waiting for the Surgeon to get back to him, so for now you’re still here” another day waiting in hope and gets to 3.00pm and crashes down.

Thursday, we get up this morning, we’re tired and we’re sad imagine how much worse he feels. We wanted to be here for Dr’s rounds back to 7.30am today.

Doctors rounds they’re fast, they breeze in do a quick history and give thumbs up and move on. But today we had questions! Why? How long?

Bottom line is Surgeon wants to see Star Son and see for himself how the knee is bending and to tell us the blood count has plateaued, the surgeon will decide what to do about that.

So we wait.. and we wait… and we play cards and watch television and we wait.. it’s day 9… and we wonder “When will he go home?”

Family…. How do you live with out them?

Borrowed from wikipedia…

In the context of human society, a family (from Latin: familia) is a group of people related either by consanguinity (by recognized birth), affinity (by marriage or other relationship), or co-residence (as implied by the etymology of the English word “family”)[citation needed] or some combination of these.[citation needed] Members of the immediate family may include spouses, parents, brothers, sisters, sons, and daughters.[citation needed] Members of the extended family may include grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, nephews, nieces, and siblings-in-law. Sometimes these are also considered members of the immediate family, depending on an individual’s specific relationship with them.

Families come in all shapes and sizes. By blood, by marriage, by soul ties, by chance.

These last three weeks have really defined for me MY family.

I gave birth to four children, and I inherited our eldest by marriage with my husband, we made a deal when we blended our families and added our Star Son, that we wouldn’t say “Step son or daughter” they are our children. We have Five Children, and those five children have so far, given us six Grandchildren. Then we add in the “in-laws” we have a son in law, and a Dutch Daughter in law, and a lovely girl we call “daughter” who is dating Star Son, they are 17, still young and time to add the “In Law” to her name, but in the mean time, she is my family, and the Grandchildren call her “Aunty”

Families are such touchy things, they can work and be brilliant or they can fail miserably. I grew up with “half sisters” it was always made known, I found out on my 25th birthday I had a full blooded Brother, who had been given up for adoption at birth, we share the same blood, we grew up for the first 25 years of my life as strangers, but when we met, there are resemblances that make us “Family” as well as DNA etc etc. For me personally family has been a failure. I decided very early in, I would be a different Mother, different from the one who raised me, and I have succeeded. I have gotten on better with my “In Laws” families more than my so called “Family”

So these three weeks have for me cemented the fact that I have done something right, when stuff goes bad, family step in.

Star Son tore his ACL, MCL and Meniscus in his knee the last Sunday in April. Then started all the Doctors appointments and tests and scans, and through it all his brothers and sisters have been beside him, calling him, checking in, driving him places, baking him food, visiting him to keep his spirits up. Our eldest son is travelling and so in another state but he keeps in touch via Facetime. And Star Son might not admit it, but he loves that they check in. This past week has been extra hard for him with infection invading his knee and then his blood system, resulting in him needing two more surgeries and so today is day 7 back in hospital.

Today he and we believed he would be coming home, and so his eldest Sister had made plans to come visit so his niece and nephews could see Big Unca! Today the drips came out, the drainage tube came out yesterday, today he says “Mum lets go for a walk” and so very slowly we did stopping to sit and rest as needed.

We made it to the hospital Cafe and found a seat when his phone buzzed, Facetime with number one sister and Faerygirl and Squishy, on the way to school, they wanted to say hello! He was wrapt! He chatted briefly and then hung up, we made our way back up to his ward, the phone buzzed again, it was big brother number two, he has just started working and was on his morning break, he wanted to check in, they chatted briefly and then said Goodbye. Again, he was wrapt! Just lately, he’s been feeling like he’s been dumped in hospital and forgotten.

He had surgery last Friday and as he came out of surgery, his girlfriend and her Mum were there waiting to see him, his other family, who treat him like he’s part of their family. His girl friend, her Grand Mother even chats to him on messenger checking up on him, FAMILY, they might not be his Blood but they are in his heart! His number one Sister and her family came to visit a little while later, looking back at the photos he was pretty out of it and the told me today “I can’t really remember them being here, I was too tired” and very very sick.

Family… they’re there when the chips are down. Later this afternoon number one son, sent him a funny little video saying “Kebabs before Abs” which his beer belly hanging out and Star Son laughed out loud, a sound we haven’t heard lately, and I thanked Jehovah for one silly Son making one sad one laugh! It was a lovely sound. It didn’t last long when the lovely Nurse Demi told him “Sorry dude you won’t be going home today!” He lost the sparkle in his eye and there were no more laughs.

Friends are great if you have the right ones, I am blessed to have one who has been with me for over 30 years, and on Saturday she trekked to the hospital to see me so she could hug me, she lets me off load all my woes, she gave Star Son a hug and she left, blew in and out like a fresh breath of air and she’s kept in touch via text every day, thats TRUE friendship, I once read a quote about how “Friends are the family you give yourself” and giving myself Lady Hawk was the best thing I ever did. But friendships these days are not made equal and its showing this past week, where very few if any of his friends have made any effort to check in and see how he is. My heart breaks for him. His girlfriend and her Mum visited Friday, they visited Saturday when they heard how low he had gotten and then on Sunday we brought her in for the day with us its a 45 minute drive each way, so we brought her with us and then gave them some time to be together. She’s clever this girl. She ordered Uber Eats- Subway and he actually ate! She’s a gem! She is our Family.

I watched a series on Television, I cant recall the name of it, but the theme song touched me Family by Mother Mother it really relates to MY Family.

This morning, we had a small person climb into bed with us, she snuggled up and went back to sleep, I opened an eye and there was this beautiful little face right in front of me. Yeah it was early and I really wanted to sleep a bit longer, but then as I lay there watching this face, this second generation of my Family, I thanked Jehovah for being right where I was. I’ve been focusing on how awful all the stuff with Star Son is, I had forgotten to look at my blessings, so I snuggled that little warm person, and smelt her hair and watched her little eyes crack open and smiled as she sleepily said “Hello Grandma!” And the song echoes through my head “They is my family!”

Day Four… never ending story..

So this new hospital doesn’t invite parents to stay with their children well maybe in the peds ward but no where else, it’s just the difference one of many, between the two hospitals. Maybe it’s just me being precious and a helicopter parent. Either way I’m not needed. And it hurts to be honest. I have always been his first responder, it’s always been “Muuuuuum” the more drawn out the word the more needed l was.

I guess some might argue “Oh he’s seventeen he’s practically an adult” but is he? At the other hospital l would help him with bathroom visits and physio and non medical things, just to give the nursing staff time to spend with more needy patients and they were happy for me to be involved. Here not so much, and yet here, it’s much busier.

Being a Mother.. to me means standing guard being his soft place to fall, catching him before he hits the ground, although last week his girlfriend and her Mum did that job for me, and l am thankful.

I am his Mum, his protector of boogeyman and night monsters and spiders and scary stuff, and l am banished from him and neither of us are enjoying it.

So he’s seventeen, but, when he’s told that he has to go for an Echocardiogram to check is the infection has reached his heart, well, he panics and all he hears is “blah blah blah heart, oh I’m dying” so when l come back into the room and he starts telling me this and then breaks down and asks me “Am l going to die?” Well that just breaks my heart!

And I’m his protector so l wrap him in a hug and tell him of course he is not, they are being cautious, and all the time my heart is breaking for my Star Son, who one day hurt his knee playing his favourite sport and suddenly two weeks later he’s attached to drips and thinking he going to die.

I want to hurt someone. Tell me this crap and let me break this scary big news in a more careful loving way.

I want to hurt someone because they have terrified my son.

I want to hurt someone because l spent the rest of the afternoon mopping up tears and reminding him to deep breathe.

I want to hurt some one because my big tough husband has cried more in the last two days than in 15 years of marriage.

I want to hurt someone because he is there all alone thinking he’s dying and l am here at home crying.

I really want to hurt someone.

It’s like a night mare..

So today dawned at 3.00am l never did go back to sleep. Its now 10.06pm and the nurse kicked me out and told us not to come back till 8.00am.

We had breakfast together and since Star Son was up for a bathroom break, Nurse Jade and l hatched a plan to get him showered and dressed to go.

We were waiting for confirmation that he had a bed at the Austin, confirmation came through at about 10am and so we had to wait for the Ambulance that would chauffeur us there, due to his drainage tube and his IV port he couldn’t go in our car. Around 11:00am he said his throat was sore and started shivering, sure enough his fever was back and an IV drip was run. So we kicked back and watched Netflix while we waited for 1.00pm.

Just before the Ambulance arrived there was a knock on the door and there stood a lady with a huge dog, Aurora was a therapy dog, part Alaskan Malamute and part Siberian Husky. She came in for a chat and a cuddle and then came the Ambulance people. Star Son was locked and loaded, l went in the front, Dad followed in our car.

We got to the Austin in a nice comfy manner and were taken up to the Surgery and Endoscopy Clinic, the only place that had a bed. Star Son was a little shell shocked l think, and he started to shake and before we knew it he was in the midst of a full blown panic attack, he just wanted to go home and he also broke my heart when he cried “Mum! Please just get me outta here I want to go home” l explained again, about the drip and the need for the supervision.

As the nurse came in to do his hourly OBs she found all three of us a blubbering mess. He was shaking so hard the heart monitor would not stay on his finger. And Yes! His fever was back, she moved fast, soon a Dr was there drawing blood, Star Son was swallowing pills left and right and a drip was inserted.

He was on “Nil by Mouth” until we spoke to the Surgeon to confirm what the next step was and that didn’t happen till almost 8:00pm. We also spoke to the Infectious Diseases Dept who explained that Golden Staf was found inside the wound but also growing in his Blood, so not one but two antibiotics were being pumped into him to fight the infection.

The Surgeon has booked him in for another surgery tomorrow afternoon 48 hours after the last, to clean it all out again, but he also warned us it could take two or more weeks to clear this up. There was also talk of an Echocardiogram to make sure no infection has gotten to his heart.

This is not fun anymore, this is no longer an adventure, this is like a never ending nightmare.

The ward sister has banished me home, to bed, as if l will sleep and yet l look like death warmed up. I’ve not eaten since breakfast, we got KFC and l forced myself to chew and swallow but it all tastes like cardboard.

My shower was lovely, and l packed Star Son a bag to take into him tomorrow but it’s not the same with out him home. My pillow calls but for how long will l lay here tossing and turning and worrying about him. I know he’s safe, l know he’s well cared for and l know there will be eyes on him hourly, but it’s not me caring for him, and they’re not my eyes watching out for him and that’s the sad truth.

This is my worst night mare.

NaNoWriMo has started!

Let the writing begin!

National Novel Writing Month… is November and last year I signed up when I heard about it from my fellow blogger Corrina. That book which I called “September Moon” practically wrote itself and I smashed the 50,000 word count for the month.

This year I have decided to finally write that travel memoir that I’ve always wanted to write, so today it began. First day, I forced myself to stop at 4,006 words. I’m happy with that start. This month is also my busy work month, I only work one month of the year, and a few odd days here and there, I am a Chief Exam supervisor and that means I do the setting up, supervising of, collection of the exams and take them home to await the courier. The first day was yesterday, English is the biggest in number and the longest exam. Today it was psychology and smaller group and less time 9.00 am till 11:45am. So November is my busy month.

Last Month I did my first “Inktober” art challenge, which meant that all the prompt for that had to be drawn in ink. I got mixed messages, some people said only to write in ballpoint pen, some were using real ink, some were painting with ink, some were using ink markers, some used colour, some none colour. Confusing much?! I ended up using ball point pen and the odd marker, and some I added a touch of water colour paint to.

At the same time, I participated in #Jentober with Jenny Manno over at Next JENeration Art in a Facebook group. So Jenny offered prompts and we were invited to interpret them in any medium. I had never heard of most of the characters, thank goodness for Google!

Then over in #Kickinthecreative another Facebook group, I chose the challenge #outandaboutOctober, because I knew we were going away to Cairns. The idea here was you take your sketchbook out and about with you and paint, or sketch what you see. I did that a few times, bit the rebel in me ended up taking photos and using them at home sometimes. Some days I felt like I pushed myself too hard, especially when I slipped behind for a few days. But at the end of the month I am so happy to look back and see what I have achieved! One thing I did achieve was I stopped pre drawing with pencil and just started painting with watercolour. Yay me!

In #kickinthecreatives this month, I am doing #kickcollageNovember each day we are to make a collage, whether it s a whole image or just a background or some element of collage.

Here are some I prepared for today.

So I will check back in and update you on NaNoWriMo, if you are there and want to add me as a buddy my user name is Kkitten. Lets get writing!

Mission Beach Australia

So about 6 years ago we were travelling home to Victoria from our first Big Lap. We were driving along the Bruce highway when we saw a sign to Mission Beach. I commented to the Bloke “It sounds like something from a James Bond movie.” We had a chuckle and then l asked him “Have you been there?” It’s one of a few places he hadn’t been to. So we decided to take a detour and go for lunch!

Somehow we took a wrong turn and ended up in South Mission Beach.

As we drove down the twisty road heavily fringed both sides with tropical rainforest – who knew there were THAT many shades of green??

l was already excited but as we came over the last hill and turned down towards the water.. such an awesome shade of turquoise we, all three of us went “Oh wow!”

My Bloke said “Lets stay here a night and explore!” And we all agreed.

So we found the local caravan park and booked a cabin for the night no sense setting up the whole tent and stuff for one night. We asked for sure directions to the local supermarket and headed out to buy some supplies. We had a two bedroom unit with a full kitchen after tenting for so long it was nice to be able to cook again.

Back at the Caravan park we swam in the pool and then decided to walk along the most beautiful beach l’ve ever seen! I still love South Mission Beach! I told my husband “One day I’ll retire here!” We stayed two nights, visited real estate agents and decided we’d be back!

Fast forward 6 years. The Bloke asks me “What do l want for my birthday?” It’s the first anniversary of my 50th! So l said “Lets go away!” He thought l was going to say Bali or somewhere l suggested Mission Beach! Because l’ve had some extra work this year l booked it and paid for it.. he just needed to organise the time off work!

So Wednesday morning the 10th of October we boarded the plane at 6.00am. He hates flying but he does it for me!

Don’t we look perky? Considering I’d been awake since 2.00am! The alarm went off at 4.00am, taxi collected us at 4.30am.

We arrived in Cairns at 8.05am their time an hour behind us back in Melbourne. It was already 27C and l was already a happy gal. All winter I’ve been waiting for Mission Beach weather. It’s not let me down!!

More tomorrow….

All Winter l’d waited for this weather!

First stop Innisfail!

Our zippy little hire car!