“Welcome to Valejo rehab Lucy. I’ll let you settle in for a moment and then we’ll be back in to remove your catheter and get you into some normal clothes”. Phlooom. My blood pressure cuff expands to reveal a BPM of 140/ 90. Avoiding fashion choices for three months has really been one of the … More Chapter Nineteen: They Tried to Make Me go to Rehab. I said, Yeah, OK.
*Beep* I awake the next morning to the familiarity of the sun spilling it’s light into a green and white hospital room. Habitually, I grope around my pelvis to rest my hand in it’s familiar spot on my fixator, but my hand meets my skin instead of metal and I jerk it away in shock. … More Chapter Eighteen: Enough Lessons for a While
I am waiting in my wheelchair at the curb in front of our house. The sun warms the air around me and flickers through the branches of a tree overhead, bathing my face in sunlight and taking it away again at the whim of the breeze. My nostrils fill with the scent of moving air. … More Chapter Sixteen: Julio, you’re the stretch!
I smell disgusting. Mat and Mum say I don’t, but I know they’re lying. Going two months without a shower, while you have healing wounds and leaking sores is not a recipe for great personal hygiene. I smell like butt. I feel like I have a UTI most of the time so I am on … More Chapter Fifteen: The Worst Day
Over the last two weeks at home, mum and I have developed a military routine of changing and emptying my various bags… but this morning, something is different. This morning I wake up feeling like I need to pee, but there is hardly anything in my catheter. I presume this means I am a bit … More Chapter Fourteen: Don’t Worry, Pee Happy
Our days at home fall quickly into a routine. Visitors from England come and go, staying with us in the house, chipping in with the cooking and helping to manoeuvre me in my giant green sling. During the peak we have two friends from England and their baby in our master bedroom, another friend from … More Chapter Thirteen: Do you remember what it looked like before?
The equipment arrives at our home on my final evening in Vacaville and Mat sends me a picture of it, all set up and waiting for me. It’s hard to imagine myself in that fragile looking bed, without all of these wires, the hustle of nurses streaming past my door, and the beeping. I lie … More Chapter Twelve: Alexa, Play BBC Radio Two
The reason I have to go through the God-awful colostomy training is because today the doctors have finally decided on a plan for the next phase of my recovery: In less than a week, I will be sent home. The news stuns us all. Given that I am now stable, the doctors explain that there … More Chapter Eleven: God Bless the NHS
“Do you want to see?” the doctor asks mum, beckoning her around the back of me as I lie with my legs bent up toward my chest. “No, no”, she says, not moving from her chair beside my bed. “I think some things should still be private”. She forces a small cough, and busies herself … More Chapter Ten: Ur(new)anus
It is night-time, and Mat has left me with a wet flannel on my head and a handheld fan pointed at the hole in my neck brace. It’s funny how you can become accustomed to a certain state of normality. Being uncomfortable all the of the time is my default now, my benchmark against which … More Chapter Nine: It’s Possible