My lovely’ and I were engaged in our early morning chat waiting for our carers to come in shower and dress me and from the way the conversation went in became clear to me that my family had been alerted to the possibility that I could be carried off at any time through respiratory failure. The reason I reached this conclusion was that having reached my birthday the next milestone was Christmas and we now need to book the B & B accommodation, at our gate, for Smiler and Kimberly. Alice is convinced that I will not only make Christmas but also have a fair chance of getting to our golden wedding anniversary in March. I’m not saying that ‘my lovely’ was treating the subject any differently from the rest of the persons involved, but, somewhere along the line, she had been made to consider this possibility of an instant demise due to respiratory failure. Certainly I understand why the family may have been given this warning that I too would like to have been involved in any discussion on the subject.
As I said the topic came up during our early morning chat but it could equally have been raised a week or two earlier, during the same relapse in the morning routine. Of course, I understand why, given this warning by the medical staff, the family seem to have taken it to heart and thus focused on the possibility and there reaction to it.
Anyway, talking of targets, it seems that the next one of any significance is Christmas, followed in 2 1/2 months by my ultimate target of reaching our Golden Wedding Anniversary on March 16. As things are going at this moment, I see no reason why assuming there is not an emergency, why I should fail to reach this target.
The Ross nursing contingent who come in to see me every day of the week are thoroughly aware of my concern. In fact, I often say to those in attendance, ‘ what would you do at this very moment in time if such an emergency arose? If I’m not happy with their response I quickly run through the procedure that I recommend, that of one carer going for the nearest nippy and the other telephoning for help. Even if the mask is hand held initially until the second carer can assist to secure the mask frame, this will appear to be the most sensible emergency procedure.
I am only too aware that I am becoming paranoiac and the likely onset of breathing difficulties do not exist , other than in my own mind. Having managed to find my way through this breathing failure I then have to face what quality of life I can expect to movement over the subsequent weeks or months which follow. All of the evidence points to a normal existence at whatever quality of life existed prior to any respiratory failure to be one of those moments of feeling sorry for myself. The whole weakness in my body really now can no longer be certain of holding myself available to face any emergency, both legs are virtually useless and can scarcely be moved and all. The same can be said of my arms, both handling limitations on the way in which they are bent. Both hands are completely useless. Add to that that the medication I now seem to live on seems to leave me semi- sedated all day and therefore constantly fighting off the urge to close my eyes and fall asleep, could leave, even the most optimistic patient a little low from time to time.
This being so and I would hope my readers would have a certain amount of sympathy for the writer of the message on the refrigerator. click here to read the message and remember to switch to landscape in the Page orientation .