Hello one and all!
It has been two long years since I last blogged. Hard to believe, for me, at least. I have struggled with one illness after another, and have now decided that if I don’t take an active approach then I just won’t move forward.
Let me explain. I have glaucoma, and many would say, “So What! Many people have glaucoma.” I can say with all honesty that I had never given it much thought until I was diagnosed in 2006. I had my regular check up at the hospital every six months, and because it was all jogging along nicely, considering that I have the added complication of diabetes T2, my appointments went to once a year.
With glaucoma there are no noticeable symptoms. I certainly didn’t have any. It was at my regular yearly check up at the opticians that it was first discovered back in 2006. I had already got sight loss in one eye, but because the brain uses the ‘good eye’ to fill in the missing pieces of the picture, one just isn’t aware. This was June 2015, and my surgeon had told me that the operation was urgent, but, and it was a big but, there are only two surgeons in my area that do the operation, he being one of them, and that meant waiting 6 months. I know… I know…
So here I was, six months later, on my husband’s birthday, December 2015, having a trabeculectomy, an operation on the eye to make the pressure lower, and to help the eye drain properly. It’s the high pressure in the eye caused by the glaucoma that begins to kill the optic nerve, and it is only the release of that pressure that can help to save sight if caught in time.
So, life pottered on, I went to Inverness for the anniversary of the Battle of Culloden, for what was meant to be a week, but I came home early. I had visited Culloden Battlefield, which was an extraordinary and emotional experience. I had planned to see the Clava Cairns, too, have a trip on Loch Ness… but I decided to return home. It’s the first time I’ve gone home early. Usually I scrape as much out of a trip as I can manage, but it was bitterly cold, plus I didn’t feel well, nor did I feel ‘at home’ in the hotel, unlike the hotel where I stay in Edinburgh, which is literally like my home from home.
The Law of Sod and Goblin
Each time we reach a New Year, hubs and I, we wish one and all a happy and prosperous one. And each year either I get ill, or something goes wrong somewhere… you know how it is. Tickle the goblin under the chin and he’ll do his best to instigate The Law of Sod, and find something to make your life rocky. And that’s exactly what happened this year.
I had decided to try and get myself fit, walk more, maybe swim, and feeling enthused with my plans, started to walk around and about where I live, which is by the sea, so you can imagine, there are some really lovely walks.
I started at the beginning of February, and by the 22nd of February I was rushed to hospital with severe chest pain which turned out to be bronchial pneumonia in my right lung. No… I have no idea how I contracted it. But it’s been an absolute pig to bear. I was on antibiotics for four weeks to help clear it up, and after my third X-ray three months later, was told I was finally clear, but it would be months, maybe not until the end of the year before I felt truly fit and well again.
Meanwhile, in the middle of getting well from pneumonia, I had to have yet another sight-saving operation only on my other eye. After seven weeks of treatment, I have one more week of treatment to go, and then it’s back to see the surgeon. So far, so good, all appears well. But I’m telling you, though, once that dratted goblin finds himself comfy on your shoulder he’ll do his best to bring you all he has to offer.
Back at the beginning of the year I had booked another holiday to Scotland, self-catering with car hire, and had to cancel that, firstly because of the pneumonia, but would have had to cancel anyway because the eye operation would have come bang in the middle. I won’t be able to fly until the end of the year, because of the illness, so I’m erring on the side of caution, and not going away again until next spring or maybe next autumn.
We are now in July, and I can manage climbing the stairs without feeling exhausted. I’m not kidding. When I first had pneumonia it felt like walking and breathing, or talking and breathing was a feat of multi-tasking. It was, quite frankly, terrifying. So now I go forward with baby steps. And the first baby step, well not so baby, is to finish my book The Touching of Stones. This book was started back in 2014/2015. It is now my plan – and I shall say this sotto voce, so my personal goblin doesn’t here – to publish at some point later this year.
The lovely Dave Slaney, such a talented man, designed my book cover some time ago, and I am longing to see it wrapped around my novel.
My writing cabin has been redecorated, thanks to hubs, and I’ve thrown out stuff to make more room… for more stuff… Yes, I know… but some stuff matters, like books, and some stuff doesn’t, so it gets passed on.
So. It’s one step at a time, one day at a time, one week at a time and I’ll get there… mischievous goblin permitting!