Monday, December 21, 2009

On Christmas, Hospital, and choices

WOW its like a week since I have written. I didnt realize it was so long. Guess, I have been pretty busy (well not really busy but doing other stuff) this week.

I have been going out during the day most days. Most of the time I go home and sleep in my own bed for a few hours, but I have also been out shopping a few times (with the aid of a wheelchair) and I have managed to do the majority of my christmas shopping (just one left to get)

Its been rather surreal. I came into hospital in November and there was no real sign of christmas and it wasnt that cold. Now when I go out I see all the decorations going up, hear the carols on the radio, see the ice covering the ground, see the snow falling and definitely feel the chill of the December air around me. It feels kind of safe to come back to my room in the evening. My room where the only sign of Christmas is the advent calendar on my shelf and 2 christmas cards on my window sill amidst the get well soon cards, where the temperature is constantly controlled day and night. Its easy in here to pretend that Christmas isnt happening, that being out is merely a dream. That is until I open my blinds and see the Ice rink outside my window that appears on the flat hospital roof.

Its not that I dont want christmas to come. I mean I  used to love christmas, before the whole incidence thing I mean. But accepting that it is actually coming means admitting how long I have been in here for and how much there still is to do. Usually by this time of year, I have cleaned the house top to bottom, shampooed the carpets, helped get all the decorations up and tidied. My mum has usually made christmas cakes for all the family and is moving on to eccels cakes and mince pies. We have usually spent Saturday nights watching films while doing all the wrapping up. Under the tree is usually overflowing with presents all ready to be opened. But not this year. This year everything has gone on hold. Everything has stopped while I try to get well again.

Its pretty sad. It kind of reminds me of 7 years ago. When I skipped christmas and everyone around me just went through the motions for the sake of the kids. The kids are older now, they understand more. But of course that dosnt make things right.

In other news, my voice has pretty much gone now. If I really force it, I can just about get a squeaky whisper out. But even that takes a lot of work. My two surgeons are arguing about what to do next. One of them wants to change the tube to one that will hold my upper airway open as well. That way my voice will be restored.

But there are a lot of issues with changing this tube. For starters it will be a smaller tube, which means I would be more breathless than I am already. Considering I struggle with stairs and cant walk to far without nearly collapsing as it is, becoming more breathless is a bad idea. I would imagine it would probably mean using a wheelchair the majority of the time. And bear in mind that this would be for life, not just for a recovery period.

Then there is the issue of cleaning the tube. At the moment I can just take the inner tube out and clean it, when it gets blocked. I wouldnt be able to do this with the new tube, so I dont know how I would manage to clean it.

But on the other hand, I would have a voice.

I think I need to sit down with my family and both surgeons (hopefully when I have a voice) and discuss the options, pro's and con's and decide then. They have booked me in for surgery on the 20th January although im not sure what they intend to do then.

I am also booked in for more surgery on the 23rd December. My ENT surgeon is going to try and temporarily widen my airway so that I have a voice once again. If im lucky I will get christmas out of it then.

I have a lot to think about. I have a feeling 2010 is going to be another one of those bumpy years.

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