Been on holiday for a couple of weeks?

Well…what do I say?  I didn't see that one coming.  Trust me to have a problem bowel on top of leukaemia and twins!  So much has happened since I updated the blog on THAT Friday night.  Charlie's been really good at updating everyone via the blog (aw…bless!) but I'll just do a whistle-stop recap of the last, rather frantic two weeks!

On the Friday night I was taken into hospital, I'd sat down after a nice tea.  Charlie had put Amber and Megan to bed and was busy tidying up the kitchen.  I came over a bit queer, shouted out "Charlie!" and promptly threw up!   Lovely 🙁 I was really crampy but definitely not in labour.  After about an hour of being sick (I did catch the sofa just the once!) Charlie had enough of me and called the Haematology Ward.  They very quickly arranged for me to go into the maternity hospital.  I was thinking I had taken too much mixture to help unbung me and was paying the price for thinking the more you take the faster you clear! (I will not use the words

I was shaking and doing a wonderful person in agony shriek with every wave of pain.  They took me into labour ward and I was thinking "I know I'm not in labour…but what if I am!" So, now I was in a lot of abdominal pain and panicking that I was going to give birth.  I was stabilised in the labour ward (drugs are great 🙂 and taken through to Westburn Ward at about 4.30am where I stayed for Saturday, Sunday and a bit of Monday.  Charlie was a great support over the weekend (even when he fell asleep in the chair beside my bed on the Saturday afternoon…).  In fact, I was so jealous of him.  I really wanted to sleep but every time I tried to close my eyes I would be sore again.  The best way for me to deal with the pain was to breathe through it, just as if I was in labour.  I was "puff, puff, puffing" every time a wave of pain washed over me.

All the staff – doctors, nurses, midwifes etc. were absolutely brilliant.  We all spent the weekend waiting for me to poo!  I had x-rays, tracer fluids, various unbung meds (see I won't use the L word), ultrasound scans and loads of blood tests.  I even had an E word (sounds like a famous American Rap star!).  But the lady was not for moving.

Monday morning, absolutely exhausted, I'd not eaten, not drunk anything and I felt I was getting worse!  In the morning I was given a steroid injection to help develop the boys lungs, in case they were to be delivered.  I so did not want my babies to be born at that point but I so did want the pain in my abdomen to stop.  I really remember looking at Charlie and saying "it's too early", he went quiet and just said "I know".

About 2.30pm, transferred up to ARI for some x-rays…and then straight into theatre.  Charlie came with me to the handover area, we did our not a dry eye in the house "I love you" bit and then he went to try to call my Mum.  But the handover area was only where I was prepped for theatre and after a few minutes I was wheeled out, only to see no Charlie!  I panicked a bit and suddenly there were nurses and theatre assistants running about looking for him.  They did find him and he was able to come into an anteroom beside the theatre with me.  He was in a bit of state, I'm sure he'd been hiding while having a bit of a bubble…he can be such a lovely softy sometimes 😮

I was wheeled into theatre and the anaesthetist was great at keeping me calm.  I had some anaesthetic and was lying looking at the ceiling thinking…"this isn't worki……" and I was out.  Charlie has pretty much covered the birth and my surgery in his postings so I won't bore you with too much of that.

I was really out of it when I came to.  I had a mask on my face and must have looked like a clear plastic Darth Vader.  I was groggy and kept pulling at the mask.  Eventually, the mask came away and was replaced with a flow tube.  I really don't remember much more of the Monday, other than seeing Charlie and my mum up in the ward. 

My strangest memory was waking up sometime early on Tuesday morning and looking at my stomach.  "They're not there."  It was that moment when I realised that my boys had been delivered.  I turned just a little to my left in the bed and Charlie had put too little pictures on the wall, of my little, perfect baby boys.   🙂

I was still really groggy on Tuesday am and I didn't really get it together until the afternoon.  Wednesday night was really good and I was laughing and joking and feeling fairly good.  I was really determined to see Blake and Rohan and I thought, "Right, I'm feeling better, they can wheel me into an ambulance, take my down, I'll see the boys, come back and then really focus on getting better"…and then the wheelchair turned up and I found out I'd have to hoof it! I was so glad to get to see my boys but every time the wheelchair hit a bump or pothole, I felt awful.  The journey down to the neo-natal unit wasn't too bad…I was hyped up and raring to go…but once I was there the pain from my operation started to get to me.  I was looking for my morphine pump…and it wasn't there! 

…and then, on Thursday night, my bowel stopped working.  This is a pretty common thing, the bowel doesn't like to be operated on and it stops for a while and then starts again.  For me, it felt like I was back at square one.  I was being sick, over and over again and it seemed to go on for days and days.  Eventually, all the horrid stuff in my stomach was drained using a nasal-gastric tube.  Ever had one of those fitted?  It's like pushing a bicycle inner tube up your nose and then pulling it down your throat!  Lovely, but it does work a treat 🙂 I think I'd been being sick from Thursday to Saturday, I hadn't eaten, hadn't slept…in short…I was wrecked! So, I had a central line put in (Charlie kept calling it a "main line"…like I'm some sort of railway or the London Underground!) and they started to feed me through that.  Came off the nasal-gastric tube after a few days of it working it's magic and I went back onto fluids and then, wait for it, real food.  I went through to Ward 50 for a few days and then I came home…and I was so glad to be home.  It was great to wake up next to Charlie and get a (rather careful) cuddle 🙂

I've been into see the boys each day since I've been home.  Blake lies quietly in his incubator in the pre-discharge ward of the neo-natal unit.  He eats, sleeps, moves occasionally to reassure me that he is okay and makes pooey nappies.  He has the most wonderful dark eyes which you could just sink into…awww.  He's doing really well, is now on 32 ml feeds every 3 hours and has no tubes, wires or anything…and he's wearing the groovy premature baby grows which I bought in my baby buying panic a few weeks ago!

Rohan has moved on from his ventilator and if now on flow (which just gives him a little pressure of air to help him).  He is moving towards full feeds and I think his drip was going to come out tonight.  Rohan does wonderful little snake charmer dances, he suddenly starts as if to say…"what's all these tubes doing here!  I should be in my mummy's tummy still!"  I know he's going to be quite a character.  Of course he has the same dark eyes as Blake (but I think there is just a shade more mischief there!).

I had a bit of drama with my wound from surgery today.  It was a wee bit infected but just surface stuff and nothing too much to worry about.  I had a house call from my GP, went into Haematology and then went up the surgical ward. I've been in enough departments in the hospital for two lifetimes!

My wound/scar/grand canyon(!) runs from about four inches above my belly button down about an inch above my pubic bone.   I can't get a pair of trousers that don't catch on it and it has been a bit uncomfortable but I'm hoping that that may have been down to the surface infection (and that I had one staple left in!!!).

My main aim, at the moment, is to try to put some weight on.  I've dropped down to seven stone and I know I need to be a bit bigger to help me cope with the chemo.  I've got protein drinks from the hospital (taste a bit yuk) and, I have my personal nagging dietician in the shape of Charlie.  He was buying me a sandwich for lunch today and he spent 10 minutes working out which one had the most calories!  I even think he sneaked his Palmtop out so he could work out the calories per 100g!  He is a geek…but lovely with it!

Thank you to everyone who has given gifts for the boys, for me or for both.  You are all such wonderful people.  I don't think I'm going to be up to writing "thank you's for everyone (sorry) but Charlie and I will put a big "Thank You" ad in the paper when we get a chance!  I'm going with Charlie to register the birth of the boys to tomorrow in Inverurie (and to choose tiles for the bathroom…what a life!) Love, V. x

P.S. What do you think was the first thing I said when I sat down on my sofa at home?  "Charlie, you have washed this, right?"  😉

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