Monday, December 22, 2008

A Christmas Wish from Helen

This is one of the latest emails from Helen. Her Christmas preparations take on a new meaning and value, particularly the Christmas card I received, when I see the efforts she puts into doing HER cards. (Clippy Mat aka Helen's 'umble servant)

Got all my cards done at last! Cant entrust this task to himself due to his dyslexia (Gawd knows what we'd den pu iwth)

I manage it if I break it up into smaller tasks i.e. a section each day: family/friends/neighbours. These are sub-divided into 'by post/by hand' etc. Putting into envelopes is the absolute worst job - I have a method but some end up with teeth marks round the edges; apologies if that was yours Clippy and I've cut down a lot on the by post category (it cost 52p to send a birthday card to Blyth!!)

I'm afraid I don't trust others to do as good a job as I, so tend not to ask for help although it is offered. As long as the coffee & nibbles keep coming I'm relatively happy but the whole thing plays havoc with my wrist R.S.I. (repetitive strain injury) so if I haven't replied to any of your emails spare a thought for the afflicted.

I ordered most of my gifts via the Internet and thank goodness all have arrived safely and my visa details appear to be safe so far. So I'm reasonably well organised & quite looking forward to Crimbo at Mam's (Lord help us!!) I think our night out really started the season off for me - I did enjoy it & am taking Jonathon & Fiona there for a Chrissie treat, think I'll book in advance though.

Here is a photo of us, F.O.T.H.S* taken at our recent get-together when we went for a nice Indian meal in Whitley Bay. Clippy and Vee were absent of course due to their being in different countries at the time, but we did toast to absent friends.
Left to Right, Helen, Mary, Katie, Syd aka Carolyn
I hope you all have a terrific Christmas wherever you may be (hopefully with loved ones)
Joyeaux Noel, Felice Navidad, A VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS & A TRULY HAPPY & HEALTHY NEW YEAR to one & all with much love,


*F.O.T.H.S. friends of the heart sisterhood, which Helen has named our small group of long time college friends who gather to reminisce and reunite at least once or twice a year. This event pictured was in early December.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Treatments and Therapies

Yesterday was my tri-monthly Botox injection day!
As John pulled into the clinic car park we noticed with no little annoyance that two of the spaces set aside for the disabled had themselves been disabled by having a large shiny black Mercedes parked across them!!

The personalised number plate alerted me to the **at responsible for this transgression D**I (I was guessing it was my Doctor at the clinic Dr D**i) who should definitely know better!

After many loud expletives from John re: the lack of thought of some drivers we eventually found a spot.
He lugged my wheelchair out of the boot/trunk and in we trudged, almost taking the paint off the Merc as we squeezed past it; both now in considerably fouler frames of mind as, by this time, we were now late for my appointment.

I hate having this procedure done as it generally involves 8-10 injections deep into the various muscles of my left (stroke affected) arm and leg. Usually I can bear it by focusing all my attention on the large colourful diagram of the human muscular system on the wall behind the Doctor, on which by now I believe I could answer University Challenge questions. (similar to the one below which was nicked off Google by the admin. assistant who will be in trouble for doing this, one of these days.)
The diagram consists of two figures one showing the frontal system the other the rear, both figures have their left arms on their hips in a rather effeminate posture - in fact they look to me like a gay couple who have fallen out and because of this I have named them Roger Daily (front facing) and Claude Butt opposite facing. Pathetic I know but this and some deep yoga breathing helps me to cope with the coming trauma!

Usually the Doctor is assisted by a nurse who holds my arm in a grip that many a wrestler would envy, in order to prevent said limb from jumping spasmodically when the Doctor gets to work. Unfortunately on this occasion no nurse was available and I was called upon to hold my own arm, thereby ensuring that I had to watch the whole procedure of the entire 3-4 inch length of the needle disappearing into my flesh 8 times.
As anything which causes the stroke affected arm to go into spasm also affects the leg too, by the time Dr D**i got around to my left calf muscle it was bunched as hard as an Olympic downhill skier's but this did not deter him at all. As he lunged at it I did my breathing exercise as well as I could to try to relax the muscle in order to reduce the pain, and fixed my gaze on the docs gold Rolex rather than the poster behind him.
Sadly this did not work and he had a tremendous job to stick the now somewhat blunted needle into my gastrocnemius muscle (see chart, lower leg).
Just as the pain got bad I looked up at the human muscular system diagram which moved slightly in the breeze from the open window. The result of this was that the Roger Daily figure rolled over Claude Butt's and continued to move slightly back and forth, much to my amusement. Unable to control myself I let out a loud guffaw, which caused the Doc to jerk upright yanking the needle out of my leg as he did so.

I quickly stopped laughing when I spotted that the needle was now at a complete right angle to the attached syringe - the bugger had bent it when forcing it into my muscle!
And some do this for beauty?
Hope my wheelchair scrapes his bliddy car when we go back to the carpark! And that's enough of that!!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

This and that or news from a broad... aka Helen

a combination of emails from helen this last week. in the first one she reprimands me for signing my email to her re blogs, as clippy mat/pat/admin assistant/dogsbody/secretary and teaboy.

Dear Clippy;
Stop giving yourself airs with all these new job titles. Who promoted you to teaboy I'd like to know? You're still only getting sixpence three farthings a quarter and every third Christmas afternoon off and 1 shovel of coal in October to take you through to February. Scratchett, eeh I'm good to my staff I am, Good to my staff I am I am tra la la

Treadmill Trauma (happenings at the gym)

I wasn't there when this happened but one of the trainers told me at t'gym today that an old woman stopped at the rear of the treadmill to speak to her pal who was treading thereupon. The first old woman was holding a cardigan that was trailing on the floor, this got caught up in treadmill workings which ceased to work, thereby immediately throwing her pal into turmoil and the rest of the gym into panic/confusion, wish I'd seen it!! But glad happens to others too!

A week full of anniversaries (some welcome some not!)
19/November, the first anniversary of Granddaughter Emma's tragically fatal accident especially awful as we have to pass the spot 3 mornings a week when I go for my psoriasis treatment - (Emma was Helen's step granddaughter who was tragically killed in a car accident. She had got out of a car to go to the aid of a dog which had been hit by a passing vehicle and she was killed as she crouched down in the road to help the poor animal.)
23/November my son Jonathon's 34th birthday -
26/November our 9th Wedding Anniversary (some bad planning here by moi)
28/November John's 70th birthday - We all enjoyed a multi-celebratory lunch together on 27/November at local hostelry's carvery and basically that was the week that was!
On Jonathon's birthday we all congregated at my mothers as she had made it known that she had been baking for a special birthday tea for him. Unfortunately as we all arrived around lunchtime she had a senior moment and promptly forgot all about her baked goods and disappeared into the kitchen for a time then proceeded to dish up a delicious roast beef n Yorkshire pud Sunday lunch!!
Not that any of us complained; there wasn't a morsel left after we descended on the grub like a flock of starving gannets (I am in constant awe of her unflappable ability to regularly achieve the miracle of the loaves and fishes).

And Clippy, tomorrow night is the Christmas get together for the rest of the f.o.t.h.s. as in, me, Katie, Mary and Syd. You and Vee will be missed. I shall send an update of what we did, what we said, what we ate and what we drank, very very soon.

More tellins from Helen very soon.