I am now safely ensconced in my private side ward in Frenchay Hospital having arrived here by “wheel chair” taxi mid afternoon. Yes – I am now in a wheel chair as my walking is almost impossible. I can struggle to the bathroom with help – but that’s about all. Having had a fairly rigorous set of tests and examinations in Southmeads yesterday after the MRI scan, I’ve had another lengthy set of ‘goings-over’ here, including taking more blood and the gentleman’s examination that “dare not speak its name!!!!” Still the staff here are as pleasant and helpful as before, I have a nice room and I can listen to Radio4 for free as well as having the luxury of my laptop with wireless connection and dvd facility and my mobile phone. So, all-in-all quite cosy and comfy. I had a lengthy time with the duty doc today – the lovely Emily – and tomorrow I shall be seeing the consultant spine bloke – Mr Hutchinson. The wisdom is that I will be having my op on Friday morning and will be here in Frenchay until probably Monday when its back to Southmead and the operation I should have had today, on my thyroid – on Tuesday. Home again – all being well, Friday next week – but watch this space for regular updates. The expectation is that the spine op will not only largely deal with the carcinomas there, but will completely restore the use of my legs.

I spoke to the ENT specialist this morning about the throat op. Many of you will know that I have lost half my voice as the nerve serving the left hand part of my larynx went in the first operation. The surgeon now has to go back in to remove the rest of my (healthy) thyroid. I told him to do all he can to avoid at all costs damaging what’s left of my voice, even if it means leaving behind more of the thyroid, rendering the radio-iodine treatment less effective, just don’t risk damaging the nerve the serves the other half of my voice box. My explanation was that I’d rather live for a shorter period with my voice than longer without it. It’s a tough call. But I have relied all my life on my voice, and the thought of living without being able to verbally communicate is more than I could contemplate. Obviously I have discussed this with Fiona, and we hope it wont come to this, but time for adult decisions, however difficult. The good news is that what remains of my voice is steadily improving.

Anyway the radioiodine treatment is still on schedule for 3rd April for ten days isolation – so STILL PRAYING AND HOPING to be back at work at or about Easter time – please God. Talking of which the hospital chaplain called to see me on arrival here today and gave me the sacraments which was really helpful.

So its still stiff upper lip, basic cheerfulness, positivity and full ofhope and expectation. But it's still a bugger though init?

Comments on this entry:

  1. We are stiff upper lipping with you all the way old friend. My Sunday Mass intention is the return of your wellbeing……..despite all the rude remarks about THE Service that teaches the rest how to fly!! Indeed a cut above the rest we rise above the envy.
    Question – are all your lady medics as beautiful as you suggest?
    with our love
    Clive and Pauline
    PS How was the finger examination!!!!

    — Clive Parnell-Hopkinson · Friday 6 March, 2009 · #

  2. Yes,“Its still a bugger” but keep at it. All will be “Oscar Kilo” in the not too distant future. Here in Deal you are remembered by many friends and they all send their best wishes for a speedy recovery. It does not seem only five months ago that we enjoyed a few wets together and a wonderful German meal. So much has happened in that short time.
    Once again, we are thinking of you especially in the days ahead – our love to you, to Fiona and the Family.
    Keith, Janet, Gill and Fred + All those in Deal who remember you.

    — The Deal Lot · Friday 6 March, 2009 · #

  3. Hi just caught up with the blog as I have been ill myself for the last week. Hope all goes well and everything works out for you. Love the photos of Teddie and Gethin he has got so big now.
    Take care and thinking about and praying for you.

    Margaret Reid · Sunday 8 March, 2009 · #

  4. Have been out of contact with a computer for over four weeks – away in London and Switzerland, trying to swell the coffers (although I seem to spend it as fast as I earn it)so have only just caught up with all your news.
    Congratulations on the birth of grandson no. 2 and great-nephew! Sorry to hear of more problems for you Graeme. We are all thinking of you. Lots of love!

    — Margaret Seed · Monday 9 March, 2009 · #