So where's the snow?

Muddling through in Austria; God, life and a small black dog


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Women’s stuff -Five

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Horses to cheer me up!

Saturday

The radiator in my room sounds  just like my tinnitus when I get it, could drive me nuts if I let it, but at least it goes off at night!I woke with bad pains in my legs.  My tights had done a Nora Batty and were tight on my ankles.  Dr C was concerned but I said I knew I just had to move.  My new pain-killer is ibrufen anti inflammatory based, getting whole bottles of it! Another hole in my arm last night, apparently the antibiotics make the veins weak, and I get them 3 times a day.

Catheter out!  Nurse said make an O with a mouth and as I was concerned with that it slipped out, what a relief, free! So I had a lovely wobbly shower and then managed a 400ml wee, which apparently is important to make sure all is functioning,  All happy with me! Bladder ok!

Lunch came at 12, and I felt like a kid with a load of presents. Each dish was individual, salad, main, veges, puds ect and I dipped into all  with such delight, I was SOOOO hungry, although I’d had a semmel and coffee for brekky!  Soon was satisfied and didn’t finsh it but made sure I ate as much roughage as poss. Dave  brought my laptop in but I felt it too heavy to work with and sent it home! I’ve been chatting to the nurses about Stef  who is a Nurse and they all know about her, am I turning into my Mum in pride?

Such a blessed peace in this room.

Supper was filled courgettes and I couldn’t eat them, said so to the nurse but she was shaking her head, they were disgusting!  And I used to complain about Mum’s fussiness!


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Women’s stuff -Four

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Friday

It was only in the morning that I realised I’d been shaved, highly embarrassing as most of the team were men, why couldn’t I have done it myself? ( It haunts me even now well afterwards) I  found the old fashioned sts that the hospital gives don’t catch so much on the stubble.  My new sts, maybe with perfume and chemicals actually made me more sore when I sat about later.  Loose knickers, large ones are much better than something tight on the tummy!

Another woman arrived in my room, poor love had lost a baby, but she went home in the afternoon.  Again I thanked God for my little bit of privacy.

I was given another medicine for the pain but that knocked me out too! I had my packing removed. I  didn’t know I was getting it. Doc came in with a pair of forceps and removed about 3m of bloody gauze,  Stung a bit. Maybe all due to my misunderstanding, but a written info pack would have been good, but maybe I’d rather not have known!  I was got out of bed, felt a little woozy, but ok. I had done a bit of trawling on the internet, and I think the worst thing you can so is read the forum pages.  These are after all, people who have hit problems and need advice.  It’s far better to go to a straight forward information site, or read people’s stories, they’re far more positive and helpful.  As it was, what I had read meant that I prayed over all my organs repeatedly, praying them to enjoy the new space and function normally, I prayed for a full recovery with no infection.

Yet I was still panicking a bit!  I had my first lunch, pureed veges and it tasted like heaven!I got very tired at 7,  I gave  myself two shots and was out of it!


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Women’s Stuff – Three, Operation day

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My room with a view

Thursday

I  awoke, soo hungry and in a new bed but I had sort of slept. I couldn’t have done all that fidgeting without being on my own.  How stressfull it is sharing a room, this is a real blessing I think the nurses are more friendly when you’re on your own!

I kept on repeating about how I’m the Righteousness of God in Jesus Christ, and By His Stripes I am Healed and that helped!  I was called at 5.30 to shower, put the gown and surgical tights on, and I tidied the room incase I didn’t come back to there. Tum was still aching a bit after all that med and going a bit too!  I was told by Doc I’d be done early so at 6.50 exactly I took my pre-med and lay down.  Was flying like a kite, was great, I’d have more of that stuff any time!  I was going in and out of all sorts of things.

Still I waited.  Eventually I rang and the nurse said I’d been delayed, huh, no one thought to tell me, I tried not to grump and the med was wearing off.  Dr C even came belting in, there’d been an emergency and all was behind, but I would be done. eventually nearly three hours later I was wheeled down, by Siegfried the Porter, how many times would I have the questions, jewellery gone, tights on etc?  But I was parked and abandoned for another hour in the Pre-op room.  People came in and out and I was bemused by the emergency Anaesthesia which was a large lump pf wood hanging on the wall.

At last, I was wheeled to a hatch, bed raised,  I was slipped into the middle, bed away, then slipped over to the table.  Arms placed on mountings I made a rude comment about their bad tv.  Didn’t seem as nice and friendly as last time, but there had been a lot of stress. Then I had oxygen on face, something in hand, was dizzy and gone……

NO I DON’T WANT TO WAKE UP!

The bloke’s voice was insistent, keeping on asking how my pain score was, I still don’t know what he did to my ear, something about a blood count. I did woozily look out a window, couldnt work out where  I was, didn’t look like the hospital at all! On a count of two I got sent to the ward. I was a s high as a kite on the morphine and whatever other cocktail I’d had.  Doc C said all was ok but a bit difficult getting out where I’d been sterilized and I’d had a Caesarian section.  Dave had a picture of him bracing his foot against the table and tugging! I  asked Dr C when my check up would be, nutter!

So I was in little pain. A catheter,  drip in arm, antibiotics and more painkillers  and an infusion cartridge where I could dose myself, harhar!  I was checked very often, the nurse quite worried about my blood pressure in the night, but I knew it was always low.  Funny, I kept on dipping in and out and thinking I’d slept all night, it was morning, to find it was only 10!  It was a warm night and so the window was open I could hear the local river and the birds singing, Wonderful!


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Women’s stuff – two

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My blessing of a private room

On Wednesday I awoke with a load of nerves and the now usual, oh I’m gonna die etc.  This translated this into an enormous bout of rush, although I’d set the time to leave for the hospital myself.  Dave, bless him put up with it and didn’t get ratty with me. We were too early of course, the ward  was deserted but at least I began to calm down. We’d even managed to have a pray in the car.  To my surprise, I was put in a single, PRIVATE room, the rest of the rooms being full. THANK YOU LORD!    YetI still would have run away given the chance!

I did the questions and signing and bloods taking with a nice young woman Doc.  I must say now, if I missed information, she did talk very quickly and nerves do have an effect on my German! My ovaries could trip into menopause by this, I was warned but everyone’s different. She showed me again where the snips would be and I made sure it was recorded that anaesthetic can make me really sick and I need a jab to stop it!

Both my lovely kids sent all the best texts ever which chuffed me no end, having had a bit of a grump to myself the previous evening. I’d upped my fibre and so had been to the loo a couple of times to find I was getting more of the bowel clearing drink – two lots. I’d already suffered this when I’d had a colonoscopy. I did the trick of swallowing it as quickly as possible and with diet coke snifters to take the taste away. I was SO glad for the single room that I could make the smell and noise in private! I’ve vowed I’ll never have to take the stuff again! This is a wake up call for fitness and health.  Dave at least didn’t laugh too much at my trips to the loo.   The stuff now started to make me drowsy cold, ignored and lonely, oh, the depths of self-pity! The Anaethetist eventually came and I made sure he knew about my post op throwing up, he didn’t seem that healthy himself with a bit of a wheeze!

I’d picked up a Jeny Colgan book,  about an Anna and a chocolate factory  but as I read there was a dying woman, and it was hardly the best sort of book to be reading in this frame of mind.  The panics of IGTD kept on all evening.  Especially after Heidi had popped in and said she’d not felt really well since she had this op.  She’s had the swelling boobs that I’ve had for years and aching limbs so she doesn’t sleep.  She was in for a week as her bladder adjusted. So more IGTD came in and I wanted to run to Dave. It’s amazing how God’s been working on our relationship in these past couple of weeks, and I realise how I rely on him! As a trying to be mature Christian, I’m so thankful that I’ve learnt where this fear comes from, can recognise it and combat it with prayer.

Then I thought back to my first operation here, and how that was a form of healing , and reading my diaries had reminded me about my panicking, so I began to feel more positive.  Then a voice to me in my deepest thoughts said this is a healing too!  That was a real buzz, I’m so looked after here, wow! Still the night was tense, I had tv on, dipped into books, and listened to MP3 player, back and forwards till I finally slept


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Women’s stuff – One

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The male readers of my blog may wish to look away for this small series that’s coming up.  My aim is perhaps give a little information about hysterectomy and encouragement to someone going though the same thing, and get it all off my chest! All this took place in Austria, under a very different healthcare to that in the UK, but a good one. It was also in a second language, which was a challenge in itself!

Being 53 years old, I am well under the way towards the menopause, having had some sweats a couple of years ago, I was just so looking forward to being done with menstruation and the pain I’d been experiencing for well over a year.  No pills seemed to touch it, despite visits to my Gynaecologist (Dr.C) for different treatments. Then last month, I was in so much pain that I was nearly doubled up.  It was strange too, that suddenly I had a gush of blood, the pain and bleeding stopped almost immediately.  I just felt I couldn’t go on with this and made an appointment with Dr C.  I just wanted to know if he could  give me some better painkillers, but also what could be done, was this all just part of the Pre Menopause stuff.

To my surprise, as soon as I gave the symptoms, he said we have two options. A Dilation and curettage which may not be effective or a hysterectomy. My cervix has all but closed up with age, and with thickened tissue, my womb was just filling up with blood.  The cramps were it trying to force the blood out.  He explained I could have a Vaginal hysterectomy and the ovaries would be left in place, so my body would continue to decay as normal.  I was in equal measures shocked and relieved. No more pain, well apart from the operation! A couple of my friends had been through this and had recovered quickly and been well on it, so I felt it was going to be ok.  I was concerned about the recovery as the Operation was due on April 16th and we are travelling home for our son’s wedding on May 11th.  Doc said there was no problem, I’d be fine.  So he rang and arranged the date and I walked out in a daze.

We are very lucky, that in Tamsweg we have a hospital which has all the necessary wards and Dr C is the Primar or guy in charge of Gynaecology, all he had to do was ring and tell his secretary, amazing!

So I spent the next week in a state of semi-panic, which I’m really good at. It was only when I read about previous operations I remembered how hard a hold I had to take on myself over this. I though I would die (stupid cow) because in our lives at the moment, we’ve hit so many walls about our work and future here that maybe it was because I was going to croak (double silly cow). Dave  and I passed a quiet week, I even forgot about it. The kids didn’t really say much, my daughter being a Nurse said what about the alternatives, but quite honestly the though of trying coils and hormones and for them not to work was unthinkable.  My best friend kept on going, Poor old  you, and it made me quite cross, this was my decision, and it was the solution. I even went to the Surgeon who dealt with my diverticulitis to  make sure all was ok, and he said Dr C is an Artist, you’re in really good hands! Then Dr C rang and said he had to delay by two days as something had come up, and he wanted to do the operation himself. So Wednesday  17th I was due to go in for the pre-op stuff.


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Calm

Masculine readers may want to go to the next post……..

That time of life for a woman,the menopause, I greet with a huge sense of relief.  An absence of hormonal highs and lows, monthly pains and inconvenience, a quieter place altogether. Ok so I may get a bit flushed now and then……. My mother rarely spoke of hers, except when she was hot while my Grandmother milked it for everything it was worth!

This is combined with a life without stress, no Burg, and the thyroid and iron levels all being normal at last. I’m engulfed in the deepest peace I’ve ever reached, and for that I give God the glory for moving me into a new place. It’s tangible.  Its been a battle for over five years and there still will be skirmishes, but its a new place for body, soul and spirit. 

It was really spelled out for me this holidays, where after the first adapting to having Dave home, I could see just how chilled I am.  I’m just so not bothered about anything!  I could even stop blogging and not be bothered! Not rushing in the mornings when there was no need, not working out a daily list to do, being detached from his concerns, he can sort them, I don’t need to control anymore.  Ok it has the downside that when we must be organised, I’ve gone too far the other way and leave things too late but its ok.

The only thing I would now change is work/career for us both. God gave me this job and I will stay till he says go, I enjoy the quiet and the people there when they’re at home.  I’ve been too much on my own these past fews months and can see that. Yet I would move on to our dream of buying the flat next door, being at home all the time to welcome guests and care for them.  We have the vision of being able to give people free holidays as an escape, retreat and blessing.  God has to deal with the  financial part of this!  When we had guests lately, Dave and I suddenly began working as a real team – he did driving, I did catering and he can stay up later than me, so I could sleep and he could chat. It really worked, so God is preparing us.  It will come, its only a matter of time -woohooooooo!