Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Surgery lasted a long time yesterday, through the afternoon and into the early evening. When I last spoke to my niece, C. was out of theatre and in Recovery at last. Her daughter was about to go to the hospital and try to see her. I am waiting this morning to hear that she is conscious and responding – all we can ask for, for today.

She has been suffering from a totally unrelated series of lung infections for the past two years – finally stabilised with steroids; that has weakened her. And the NHS has been rather slow to pick up on the current symptoms, which has weakened her a lot more.

I’m sure Maggie’s Centre will take a prominent position in the story soon, Fishwife. I’ve even heard of it. Up to now, we haven’t had a moment to think of such things. She was finally – after weeks and weeks and weeks of trying to tell doctors that something was wrong – taken by ambulance to the Western last Thursday. Then after some rehydration they got cracking, at last, with scans and cameras inserted into every available orifice. And here we are.

We all know to treasure the time that’s left; that’s good. And it is better, if she can live with the Knowledge, to die like this, loved and wept for, than to outlive herself and wither away in a care home on the capital she had hoped to leave her daughters.

Everything has changed. One of the three or four times in life. One thinks for a few moments about what-are-we-having-for-lunch or what-would-Thomas-the-Elder-like-for-Christmas, but there is ever the Fact, right there, waiting like a tiger.

Ok, knitting. I finished the Amedro shawl.

I love blocking lace. I hope to have a picture of it in all its glory for you tomorrow. Then on to the Japanese hat – I don’t love braiding and pom-pom-making, but it won’t take long and then I’ll be free to start the Wurm (Ravelry link). I’ve just downloaded the pattern.


  1. Anonymous2:19 PM

    I'm glad to know your SIL made it through the surgery. I hope today finds her recovering a bit and painfree. Your words today about the Knowledge and the Fate and the Times That Change Your Life really touched me so much today.

    Kudos on finishing the shawl in the midst of all this. We knitters (and crocheters) do have a leg up on others to get us through the Bad Times. I hope working on it brought you a measure of comfort through the past few days.


  2. You have all been in my thoughts. I know too well the unassailable this-ness of serious illness. I am very glad the surgery was successful and hope your sister-in-law is being well looked after at the Western (my own experience of being an in-patient there was very positive). My very best wishes to you and your husband.

  3. Dear Jean - Your latest entries have me pondering, not unusual of course. Positive healing and coping thoughts winging their way across the miles to you and your family in Edinburgh.

  4. You and your family are in my thoughts Jean.

  5. The very fact of there being an operation must be grounds for some optimism. Let's wish it is so.

    Re the best way to go: Having seen both the options you propose at close quarters, neither is good. A more distant connection passed away during his after-lunch nap, sitting in his armchair, and at a good age too. Sadly, something other than us chooses which it will be.

  6. Theresa I10:34 PM

    Will keep you and your family in my thoughts.