Thursday, 2 November 2017
This week saw the end of October, the clocks changing and shorter days, Halloween celebrations and the start of a brand new month. Here in Hertfordshire, we've been enjoying some late autumn sunshine and some glorious autumn colour.
It's all felt very uplifting, as I seem to have had one thing after another healthwise over this last month or two and have been confined to home on and off during it all. Firstly, I caught a bad cold and following from that a chest infection, but thankfully with a strong antibiotic I managed to shift it without my lungs being damaged any further. That was such a huge relief.
Next up came an adverse reaction to the antibiotic drug I was prescribed - the drug comes with a big warning that it can cause tendon inflammation and tendon rupture. All the drugs I have to take come with all sorts of awful warnings, so I wasn't too concerned. Basically transplant patients have to take the prescribed drugs to stay alive despite the toxic side effects. After a week on this drug though the calves of both my legs became inflamed and very painful and I had to stop the drug immediately. This is now an ongoing issue, but I'm happy it's very slowly improving. It is going to take a month or two to get back on track, but in the meantime it's a big struggle to walk and the only way to improve things is to rest up. It's just been pure bad luck and an inconvenience, but hopefully nothing to worry about too much in comparison to the lung problems.
I then managed to pick up a sickness bug - the winter norovirus - which seemed to go on for days on end because of being immunosuppressed. These types of bugs can be worrying too, as it can affect the immunosuppression drug absorption and then lead to rejection. Luckily and with much relief I managed to keep up with my immunosuppression meds and eventually shifted that bug too without a hospital visit or stay. The only good thing about this experience was that I had to stop and rest totally, so that helped my legs improve a little - well every cloud and all that...
Anyway having felt it's been a little stop/ start during these autumn months, the week started with a gorgeous sunny day and I was feeling much better, so we decided to get out in the fresh air and see some of the lovely autumn I feel I've kept missing out on. We enjoyed a few days out, Rob pushing me around in my wheelchair and with Ted in tow usually leading the way! The wheelchair has kept coming in handy over this last year and this time has been a godsend because of the situation with my legs.
I felt like a child at Christmas going around the gardens at Wimpole Hall - I think just because I'd been stuck in for days and having been worried about ending up back in hospital. It was just such a mild and beautiful day too for the time of year. We had lunch in a quaint little Cambridgeshire pub first called 'The Poachers', which was lovely and I was surprised by how many plants were still out in full flower in the walled garden at Wimpole. It was good to be out enjoying the real world again and enjoying nature - warm sunshine, beautiful warming colours and warming food.
When the weather was good again the following day, we went off to Ashridge Estate: I particularly chose Ashridge because it's a huge ancient woodland and I thought the trees would look beautiful at this time of year. We weren't disappointed and there was a reasonable disabled route through the woodland and plenty of flat roads for the wheelchair so we had a good explore around. There's also a great little outdoor cafe restaurant, where we enjoyed lunch and then later an afternoon tea - well I do need feeding up at the moment!
I'm working hard on getting myself back fighting fit now - obviously exercising and trying to push my lungs a little is a problem when I'm struggling with my legs, but I'm trying to stay as active as is possible and move around as much as I can. Rob's also been trying to feed me up with lots of nutritious homecooked dishes, so I've been spoiled rotten yet again. It seems to have been a recurring theme this year.
I feel so sorry for him with all the running around he seems to be constantly having to do - always caring for me and nursing me as well as being chief cook and bottle washer. I'm never sure who it's worse for - me or him.
It's been a really uplifting week and good to be on the mend again. Besides being out and about a little, I've also been back to my cooking again, with much relief to Rob. Here's one I cooked last night - lamb hotpot with crusty homemade bread... nice and warming for these colder and darker nights.