lizziec: (me - Lizzie-ben-wedding)
Yesterday was the sixth anniversary of my wedding to Ben. In honour of that momentous occasion, I give you a picspam of wedding pictures.

Wedding pics. Cut to save your friends page. There are a lot of pictures under here )

Ben's cousin got married yesterday, so we attended the wedding. It was at a posh hotel, so we spent a couple of nights there as an anniversary gift to ourselves. It was very pleasant, though it was really nice to come home. Sometimes I think that's the best reason to go away - so you can be grateful to come home.

The wedding yesterday - how I did my hair )

The wedding we attended yesterday was lovely. The hotel staff were amazing and very helpful, and it was nice to see Ben's family. My sister-in-law was particularly lovely. When I couldn't eat the pudding that was served at dinner cos it had almonds in it, I wasn't going to say anything but she did and got me ice cream instead :) She also made a song request towards the end of the reception - Annie's Song by John Denver, which was the song Ben and I had our first dance to at our our wedding so I got a dance with Ben after all. It was lovely, felt for me very much like time had stopped and I was floating on air. A beautiful end to a gorgeous day.

This entry was originally posted at http://lizziec.dreamwidth.org/429421.html. There are currently comment count unavailable comments on the original entry.
lizziec: (me - Lizzie-ben-wedding)
Yesterday was the sixth anniversary of my wedding to Ben. In honour of that momentous occasion, I give you a picspam of wedding pictures.

Wedding pics. Cut to save your friends page. There are a lot of pictures under here )

Ben's cousin got married yesterday, so we attended the wedding. It was at a posh hotel, so we spent a couple of nights there as an anniversary gift to ourselves. It was very pleasant, though it was really nice to come home. Sometimes I think that's the best reason to go away - so you can be grateful to come home.

The wedding yesterday - how I did my hair )

The wedding we attended yesterday was lovely. The hotel staff were amazing and very helpful, and it was nice to see Ben's family. My sister-in-law was particularly lovely. When I couldn't eat the pudding that was served at dinner cos it had almonds in it, I wasn't going to say anything but she did and got me ice cream instead :) She also made a song request towards the end of the reception - Annie's Song by John Denver, which was the song Ben and I had our first dance to at our our wedding so I got a dance with Ben after all. It was lovely, felt for me very much like time had stopped and I was floating on air. A beautiful end to a gorgeous day.

This entry was originally posted at http://lizziec.dreamwidth.org/429421.html. There are currently comment count unavailable comments on the original entry.
lizziec: (me - Lizzie-ben-wedding)
Yesterday was the sixth anniversary of my wedding to Ben. In honour of that momentous occasion, I give you a picspam of wedding pictures.

Wedding pics. Cut to save your friends page. There are a lot of pictures under here )

Ben's cousin got married yesterday, so we attended the wedding. It was at a posh hotel, so we spent a couple of nights there as an anniversary gift to ourselves. It was very pleasant, though it was really nice to come home. Sometimes I think that's the best reason to go away - so you can be grateful to come home.

The wedding yesterday - how I did my hair )

The wedding we attended yesterday was lovely. The hotel staff were amazing and very helpful, and it was nice to see Ben's family. My sister-in-law was particularly lovely. When I couldn't eat the pudding that was served at dinner cos it had almonds in it, I wasn't going to say anything but she did and got me ice cream instead :) She also made a song request towards the end of the reception - Annie's Song by John Denver, which was the song Ben and I had our first dance to at our our wedding so I got a dance with Ben after all. It was lovely, felt for me very much like time had stopped and I was floating on air. A beautiful end to a gorgeous day.
lizziec: (me - phil'sfirstchristmas)
My little brother turns 24 today :O

In honour of this day I have decided to embarrass him and spam you all with lovely pictures of him growing up.

Bwhahaha.

A cut, so you're not too badly spammed :) )

Happy birthday Phil!


This entry was originally posted at http://lizziec.dreamwidth.org/427932.html. There are currently comment count unavailable comments on the original entry.
lizziec: (me - phil'sfirstchristmas)
My little brother turns 24 today :O

In honour of this day I have decided to embarrass him and spam you all with lovely pictures of him growing up.

Bwhahaha.

A cut, so you're not too badly spammed :) )

Happy birthday Phil!


This entry was originally posted at http://lizziec.dreamwidth.org/427932.html. There are currently comment count unavailable comments on the original entry.
lizziec: (me - phil'sfirstchristmas)
My little brother turns 24 today :O

In honour of this day I have decided to embarrass him and spam you all with lovely pictures of him growing up.

Bwhahaha.

A cut, so you're not too badly spammed :) )

Happy birthday Phil!
lizziec: (me - mummy and little lizzie)
This is my big sister. Catherine Patricia Frances Overal.

Cut because the picture is of an extremely sick preemie on life support )

She was born at 25 weeks gestation - 15 weeks (nearly four months) premature in February 1982. She weighed 1lb 9.5oz and lived for less than a day, so I never knew her. Even today babies born that early have huge challenges and many still die. In 1982, despite all the care the hospital could give her, the chances were worse and she sadly died.

Because my parents weren't very well off they could never afford to get a grave marker for my big sister, and so for 29 years now it's remained unmarked. There's no visible sign that she even existed to most of the world.

Tomorrow me and my auntie are going to order the amendments to my dad's headstone to have my mum's details added and we've managed to get together the money to have my sister's grave finally marked. I called the cemetery today to double check which plot Catherine was buried in so I could give the details to the monumental mason (which btw, is an awesome job title).

It's just as well I did, because it turns out that my mum and dad (both deceased) hold the rights to my sister's grave, so we wouldn't have been able to arrange a headstone because we (surviving family) have no rights over it. It's quite frustrating.

Luckily, as Phil and I have long since sorted out probate over mum's estate transferring it should be fairly straight forward, but it's one more thing I have to do tomorrow when I'm visiting Sutton (60+ miles away). I really could have done without it.

Luckily, by the end of tomorrow a headstone for Catherine should be on order, as should the alterations to daddy's headstone.

The inscription we're going with on Catherine's will be something like
Catherine Patricia Frances Overal
03.02.1982-04.02.1982

On mum's it'll be:
Christine Anne Overal
Born: 02.04.1951
Died: 11.05.2010
Well loved

Pics when it's done, which will be apparently four or five months from ordering.

This entry was originally posted at http://lizziec.dreamwidth.org/420309.html. There are currently comments on the original entry.
lizziec: (me - mummy and little lizzie)
This is my big sister. Catherine Patricia Frances Overal.

Cut because the picture is of an extremely sick preemie on life support )

She was born at 25 weeks gestation - 15 weeks (nearly four months) premature in February 1982. She weighed 1lb 9.5oz and lived for less than a day, so I never knew her. Even today babies born that early have huge challenges and many still die. In 1982, despite all the care the hospital could give her, the chances were worse and she sadly died.

Because my parents weren't very well off they could never afford to get a grave marker for my big sister, and so for 29 years now it's remained unmarked. There's no visible sign that she even existed to most of the world.

Tomorrow me and my auntie are going to order the amendments to my dad's headstone to have my mum's details added and we've managed to get together the money to have my sister's grave finally marked. I called the cemetery today to double check which plot Catherine was buried in so I could give the details to the monumental mason (which btw, is an awesome job title).

It's just as well I did, because it turns out that my mum and dad (both deceased) hold the rights to my sister's grave, so we wouldn't have been able to arrange a headstone because we (surviving family) have no rights over it. It's quite frustrating.

Luckily, as Phil and I have long since sorted out probate over mum's estate transferring it should be fairly straight forward, but it's one more thing I have to do tomorrow when I'm visiting Sutton (60+ miles away). I really could have done without it.

Luckily, by the end of tomorrow a headstone for Catherine should be on order, as should the alterations to daddy's headstone.

The inscription we're going with on Catherine's will be something like
Catherine Patricia Frances Overal
03.02.1982-04.02.1982

On mum's it'll be:
Christine Anne Overal
Born: 02.04.1951
Died: 11.05.2010
Well loved

Pics when it's done, which will be apparently four or five months from ordering.

This entry was originally posted at http://lizziec.dreamwidth.org/420309.html. There are currently comments on the original entry.
lizziec: (Mummy and little lizzie)
This is my big sister. Catherine Patricia Frances Overal.

Cut because the picture is of an extremely sick preemie on life support )

She was born at 25 weeks gestation - 15 weeks (nearly four months) premature in February 1982. She weighed 1lb 9.5oz and lived for less than a day, so I never knew her. Even today babies born that early have huge challenges and many still die. In 1982, despite all the care the hospital could give her, the chances were worse and she sadly died.

Because my parents weren't very well off they could never afford to get a grave marker for my big sister, and so for 29 years now it's remained unmarked. There's no visible sign that she even existed to most of the world.

Tomorrow me and my auntie are going to order the amendments to my dad's headstone to have my mum's details added and we've managed to get together the money to have my sister's grave finally marked. I called the cemetery today to double check which plot Catherine was buried in so I could give the details to the monumental mason (which btw, is an awesome job title).

It's just as well I did, because it turns out that my mum and dad (both deceased) hold the rights to my sister's grave, so we wouldn't have been able to arrange a headstone because we (surviving family) have no rights over it. It's quite frustrating.

Luckily, as Phil and I have long since sorted out probate over mum's estate transferring it should be fairly straight forward, but it's one more thing I have to do tomorrow when I'm visiting Sutton (60+ miles away). I really could have done without it.

Luckily, by the end of tomorrow a headstone for Catherine should be on order, as should the alterations to daddy's headstone.

The inscription we're going with on Catherine's will be something like
Catherine Patricia Frances Overal
03.02.1982-04.02.1982

On mum's it'll be:
Christine Anne Overal
Born: 02.04.1951
Died: 11.05.2010
Well loved

Pics when it's done, which will be apparently four or five months from ordering.

One year

11 May 2011 09:00 am
lizziec: (me - mummy and little lizzie)
It's one year today since [livejournal.com profile] no1typo died. Ben and I are spending the day out so don't worry too much about me, I won't be moping too much. The tribute that Phil and I wrote for mum's funeral says really all I want to today about her, so I've posted it again below.

--

Tribute to mum )



This entry was originally posted at http://lizziec.dreamwidth.org/418232.html. There are currently comments on the original entry.

One year

11 May 2011 09:00 am
lizziec: (me - mummy and little lizzie)
It's one year today since [livejournal.com profile] no1typo died. Ben and I are spending the day out so don't worry too much about me, I won't be moping too much. The tribute that Phil and I wrote for mum's funeral says really all I want to today about her, so I've posted it again below.

--

Tribute to mum )



This entry was originally posted at http://lizziec.dreamwidth.org/418232.html. There are currently comments on the original entry.

One year

11 May 2011 09:00 am
lizziec: (Mummy and little lizzie)
It's one year today since [livejournal.com profile] no1typo died. Ben and I are spending the day out so don't worry too much about me, I won't be moping too much. The tribute that Phil and I wrote for mum's funeral says really all I want to today about her, so I've posted it again below.

--

Tribute to mum )

lizziec: (Default)
I think it's a reflex among pretty much everyone who talks to other people. When someone asks you how you are, unless you know someone very well or are particularly good at sharing, the default response is "ok" or "fine". Especially because when people ask "how are you?" it's more a social reflex than a genuine desire to know how you are, because more often than not the asker doesn't really want the full answer to the question because usually the answer is more complicated and messy than anyone really wants to get into in what is essentially a superficial social interaction.

In any case, my default reaction is to say "ok" and move on. I did it tonight when someone on IRC asked me how I was. I've been feeling a bit guilty since then because the truth is I'm not okay. I'm not crumbled into a little bits. I'm functioning and working and that in itself is a good thing. But right now I'm quite a long way from okay. I'm very much hoping that when the first anniversary of mum's death passes in two weeks that I'll start to be ok again. Given I started to be not ok just before mum's birthday and Mothering Sunday (about three weeks ago) it surely has to be that. I'm hoping it will go away soon. But right now, honestly? I'm not okay.

ETA: 23/08/11 no longer filtered

This entry was originally posted at http://lizziec.dreamwidth.org/416686.html. There are currently comments on the original entry.
lizziec: (Default)
I think it's a reflex among pretty much everyone who talks to other people. When someone asks you how you are, unless you know someone very well or are particularly good at sharing, the default response is "ok" or "fine". Especially because when people ask "how are you?" it's more a social reflex than a genuine desire to know how you are, because more often than not the asker doesn't really want the full answer to the question because usually the answer is more complicated and messy than anyone really wants to get into in what is essentially a superficial social interaction.

In any case, my default reaction is to say "ok" and move on. I did it tonight when someone on IRC asked me how I was. I've been feeling a bit guilty since then because the truth is I'm not okay. I'm not crumbled into a little bits. I'm functioning and working and that in itself is a good thing. But right now I'm quite a long way from okay. I'm very much hoping that when the first anniversary of mum's death passes in two weeks that I'll start to be ok again. Given I started to be not ok just before mum's birthday and Mothering Sunday (about three weeks ago) it surely has to be that. I'm hoping it will go away soon. But right now, honestly? I'm not okay.

ETA: 23/08/11 no longer filtered

This entry was originally posted at http://lizziec.dreamwidth.org/416686.html. There are currently comments on the original entry.
lizziec: (Default)
I think it's a reflex among pretty much everyone who talks to other people. When someone asks you how you are, unless you know someone very well or are particularly good at sharing, the default response is "ok" or "fine". Especially because when people ask "how are you?" it's more a social reflex than a genuine desire to know how you are, because more often than not the asker doesn't really want the full answer to the question because usually the answer is more complicated and messy than anyone really wants to get into in what is essentially a superficial social interaction.

In any case, my default reaction is to say "ok" and move on. I did it tonight when someone on IRC asked me how I was. I've been feeling a bit guilty since then because the truth is I'm not okay. I'm not crumbled into a little bits. I'm functioning and working and that in itself is a good thing. But right now I'm quite a long way from okay. I'm very much hoping that when the first anniversary of mum's death passes in two weeks that I'll start to be ok again. Given I started to be not ok just before mum's birthday and Mothering Sunday (about three weeks ago) it surely has to be that. I'm hoping it will go away soon. But right now, honestly? I'm not okay.

ETA: 23/08/11 no longer filtered
lizziec: (Stargate SG1 Jack O'Neill (two l's ;)))
What follows is something of a random whinge, so please just treat it as that and nothing more. Hey look, I post for the first time in months and then do two posts in an evening. Fluke? Too much stuff in my head? I dunno really. We'll see what this develops in to.

It's been just over a year since [livejournal.com profile] no1typo got ill, and very nearly a year since she died and I still feel like I'm picking up the pieces of my life. There are times when I almost feel caught up, like I'm back in the groove again, but they're pretty rare. Most of the time I still feel like I'm playing some sort of catch up game.

I understood this 10ish months ago. I'd taken two or three months out of my life before she died to help look after her and be with her as she got worse. After that there was all the busy-ness random admin and worrying that came with her being dead. But it's nearly been a year. I don't get why it is I still feel like this. Surely I should have picked up all the threads of my life by now? I keep wondering if it can possibly be normal. Well, for values of normal anyway.

Gaaaaah.

This entry was originally posted at http://lizziec.dreamwidth.org/416333.html. There are currently comment count unavailable comments on the original entry.
lizziec: (Stargate SG1 Jack O'Neill (two l's ;)))
What follows is something of a random whinge, so please just treat it as that and nothing more. Hey look, I post for the first time in months and then do two posts in an evening. Fluke? Too much stuff in my head? I dunno really. We'll see what this develops in to.

It's been just over a year since [livejournal.com profile] no1typo got ill, and very nearly a year since she died and I still feel like I'm picking up the pieces of my life. There are times when I almost feel caught up, like I'm back in the groove again, but they're pretty rare. Most of the time I still feel like I'm playing some sort of catch up game.

I understood this 10ish months ago. I'd taken two or three months out of my life before she died to help look after her and be with her as she got worse. After that there was all the busy-ness random admin and worrying that came with her being dead. But it's nearly been a year. I don't get why it is I still feel like this. Surely I should have picked up all the threads of my life by now? I keep wondering if it can possibly be normal. Well, for values of normal anyway.

Gaaaaah.

This entry was originally posted at http://lizziec.dreamwidth.org/416333.html. There are currently comment count unavailable comments on the original entry.
lizziec: (O'Neill)
What follows is something of a random whinge, so please just treat it as that and nothing more. Hey look, I post for the first time in months and then do two posts in an evening. Fluke? Too much stuff in my head? I dunno really. We'll see what this develops in to.

It's been just over a year since [livejournal.com profile] no1typo got ill, and very nearly a year since she died and I still feel like I'm picking up the pieces of my life. There are times when I almost feel caught up, like I'm back in the groove again, but they're pretty rare. Most of the time I still feel like I'm playing some sort of catch up game.

I understood this 10ish months ago. I'd taken two or three months out of my life before she died to help look after her and be with her as she got worse. After that there was all the busy-ness random admin and worrying that came with her being dead. But it's nearly been a year. I don't get why it is I still feel like this. Surely I should have picked up all the threads of my life by now? I keep wondering if it can possibly be normal. Well, for values of normal anyway.

Gaaaaah.
lizziec: (toys - Giraffe)
We went on holiday to Norfolk this year, to this beautiful cottage called "Remus" in Larling, through this brilliant company who let holiday cottages in five locales, despite being called "Best of Suffolk" ;)

I was pretty excited about going, but didn't realise how much I really needed to get away from everything after the year we've had so far. And I really did need to get away, and feel miles better for having done so.

Day One - Friday 3rd September - Travelling and settling in )

Day Two - Saturday 4th September - Relaxing in the cottage )

Day Three - Sunday 5th September - Bure Valley Railway and Great Yarmouth )

Day Four - Monday 6th September - Banham Zoo (featuring Giraffes) )

Day Five - Tuesday 7th September - The world's most disappointing Toy and Model Expo and England's only Whisky distillery )

Day Six - Wednesday 8th September - IWM Duxford )

Day Seven - Thursday 9th September - Norwich )

Day Eight - Friday 10th September - Home again (with a stop at Bluewater en-route) )

It was really good to be away, but it was quite nice to get home again.

The fantastic news, and a good way to round off our holiday, is this was our last holiday in which I had to do all the driving, because on Monday, Ben passed his driving test first time \o/ (though this does mean I now have to share the car ;))

This entry was originally posted at http://lizziec.dreamwidth.org/414937.html. There are currently comment count unavailable comments on the original entry.
lizziec: (toys - Giraffe)
We went on holiday to Norfolk this year, to this beautiful cottage called "Remus" in Larling, through this brilliant company who let holiday cottages in five locales, despite being called "Best of Suffolk" ;)

I was pretty excited about going, but didn't realise how much I really needed to get away from everything after the year we've had so far. And I really did need to get away, and feel miles better for having done so.

Day One - Friday 3rd September - Travelling and settling in )

Day Two - Saturday 4th September - Relaxing in the cottage )

Day Three - Sunday 5th September - Bure Valley Railway and Great Yarmouth )

Day Four - Monday 6th September - Banham Zoo (featuring Giraffes) )

Day Five - Tuesday 7th September - The world's most disappointing Toy and Model Expo and England's only Whisky distillery )

Day Six - Wednesday 8th September - IWM Duxford )

Day Seven - Thursday 9th September - Norwich )

Day Eight - Friday 10th September - Home again (with a stop at Bluewater en-route) )

It was really good to be away, but it was quite nice to get home again.

The fantastic news, and a good way to round off our holiday, is this was our last holiday in which I had to do all the driving, because on Monday, Ben passed his driving test first time \o/ (though this does mean I now have to share the car ;))

This entry was originally posted at http://lizziec.dreamwidth.org/414937.html. There are currently comment count unavailable comments on the original entry.
lizziec: (Granny's garden bee)
We went on holiday to Norfolk this year, to this beautiful cottage called "Remus" in Larling, through this brilliant company who let holiday cottages in five locales, despite being called "Best of Suffolk" ;)

I was pretty excited about going, but didn't realise how much I really needed to get away from everything after the year we've had so far. And I really did need to get away, and feel miles better for having done so.

Day One - Friday 3rd September - Travelling and settling in )

Day Two - Saturday 4th September - Relaxing in the cottage )

Day Three - Sunday 5th September - Bure Valley Railway and Great Yarmouth )

Day Four - Monday 6th September - Banham Zoo (featuring Giraffes) )

Day Five - Tuesday 7th September - The world's most disappointing Toy and Model Expo and England's only Whisky distillery )

Day Six - Wednesday 8th September - IWM Duxford )

Day Seven - Thursday 9th September - Norwich )

Day Eight - Friday 10th September - Home again (with a stop at Bluewater en-route) )

It was really good to be away, but it was quite nice to get home again.

The fantastic news, and a good way to round off our holiday, is this was our last holiday in which I had to do all the driving, because on Monday, Ben passed his driving test first time \o/ (though this does mean I now have to share the car ;))
lizziec: (toys - max at work)
Just to let you all know, that the funeral directors sent Phil a total of how much money was donated in mum's name to Macmillan nurses. The final total was £385. There was also £70 given to Phil and I in cash that we will be forwarding to Macmillan in mum's name shortly. That means that £455 of good for Macmillan Nurses, and the people who use them, has come from this, and that is something that offers some comfort for me. Thank you to everyone who donated.

ION I saw Toy Story 3 over the weekend and it was awesome and lovely and beautiful and I would see it again even if I did spend a good deal of time in tears. Go see it!
lizziec: (toys - max at work)
Just to let you all know, that the funeral directors sent Phil a total of how much money was donated in mum's name to Macmillan nurses. The final total was £385. There was also £70 given to Phil and I in cash that we will be forwarding to Macmillan in mum's name shortly. That means that £455 of good for Macmillan Nurses, and the people who use them, has come from this, and that is something that offers some comfort for me. Thank you to everyone who donated.

ION I saw Toy Story 3 over the weekend and it was awesome and lovely and beautiful and I would see it again even if I did spend a good deal of time in tears. Go see it!
lizziec: (toys - max at work)
Just to let you all know, that the funeral directors sent Phil a total of how much money was donated in mum's name to Macmillan nurses. The final total was £385. There was also £70 given to Phil and I in cash that we will be forwarding to Macmillan in mum's name shortly. That means that £455 of good for Macmillan Nurses, and the people who use them, has come from this, and that is something that offers some comfort for me. Thank you to everyone who donated.

ION I saw Toy Story 3 over the weekend and it was awesome and lovely and beautiful and I would see it again even if I did spend a good deal of time in tears. Go see it!
lizziec: (Default)
Horrible awful dream in which ben died in a fire after running in to a building to rescue children. Woke up full of adrenaline, shaking and breathing very fast. It was horrible - really, really horrible.
lizziec: (Default)
Horrible awful dream in which ben died in a fire after running in to a building to rescue children. Woke up full of adrenaline, shaking and breathing very fast. It was horrible - really, really horrible.
lizziec: (Default)
Horrible awful dream in which ben died in a fire after running in to a building to rescue children. Woke up full of adrenaline, shaking and breathing very fast. It was horrible - really, really horrible.
lizziec: (me - mummy and little lizzie)
We had mum's funeral today, and we couldn't have had a nicer day for it, weather wise. It was the kind of day mum would have loved, and she would have been extremely gratified and touched that so many people came to show their love and care for her by coming to say goodbye to her.

The funeral directors, a local firm called W A Truelove and Son were amazing, and made the day go very smoothly. We arrived everywhere exactly on time, never too early or too late. Mum was carried into church by a mixture of family and friends (Ben, foo, my uncle Allan, Duncan [mum's partner], Mark F and Giles), which was lovely. I held it together more or less until we got into the church and found just how many people there were (the church really was packed with mum's friends from all sorts of places, even my Auntie Joan, who we've not spoken to for years, and my cousin Mandy [ditto] came) and ended up crying through most all of the introduction and the first hymn.

Service sheet is here by the way.

After the hymn, I read the tribute which Phil and I had written together, and managed to keep it together enough to read it, though my voice kept breaking whenever I looked up and saw how many people were there for mum, so I tried to keep my eyes on the paper.

The tribute )

My uncle David (mum's brother) read the bible reading, and then Ben read the poem, which is Long Distance II by Tony Harrison, which I have posted here before, but I'll post it again for completeness.

Long Distance II by Tony Harrison )

The vicar (a lovely man, Mick Hough, who was miles better than the vicar we had at the same church for our wedding [his sermon involved homosexuals and protestants in ancient corinth]), used the poem as a way to launch into his address, which was beautiful, and talked about the finality of death for those left behind, but the hope for the next life and resurrection.

The service at the cemetery was very short and nice (and very well attended again), but seeing mum lowered into the ground was very hard, and so was putting a handful of earth in actually. After that we mingled for a bit (during which the mormon in attendance asked if we minded if he consecrated the grave "for your dad's sake" - we said he could, because honestly it doesn't matter to me either way, but I'm kind of pissed he invoked daddy*) before making our way back to the house to collect the car so we could meet everyone else at the pub near the church, where everyone mingled some more and talked about mum, which was nice in a different kind of way to the rest of the day. Once again, everyone was utterly amazing.

The pictures of the flowers are here (sorry, most of them are sideways as I uploaded them before I realised, then ran out of energy to fix them. Maybe I'll get around to it at a later date). There aren't many because we requested family flowers only, with donations to go to the Macmillan Nurses through the Undertaker who will collate them. The flowers we did get were stunningly beautiful though, and very mum I thought. The flowers from Phil and Ben and I are in the middle of this photo:



The ones to the left are from the Overal side of the family (dad's family), the ones to the right are from the Walker side (mum's side).

That's it, I think. Or at least it is for now. I'm pretty tired, but suffering from lack of arsedness to actually go to bed...

lizziec: (me - mummy and little lizzie)
We had mum's funeral today, and we couldn't have had a nicer day for it, weather wise. It was the kind of day mum would have loved, and she would have been extremely gratified and touched that so many people came to show their love and care for her by coming to say goodbye to her.

The funeral directors, a local firm called W A Truelove and Son were amazing, and made the day go very smoothly. We arrived everywhere exactly on time, never too early or too late. Mum was carried into church by a mixture of family and friends (Ben, foo, my uncle Allan, Duncan [mum's partner], Mark F and Giles), which was lovely. I held it together more or less until we got into the church and found just how many people there were (the church really was packed with mum's friends from all sorts of places, even my Auntie Joan, who we've not spoken to for years, and my cousin Mandy [ditto] came) and ended up crying through most all of the introduction and the first hymn.

Service sheet is here by the way.

After the hymn, I read the tribute which Phil and I had written together, and managed to keep it together enough to read it, though my voice kept breaking whenever I looked up and saw how many people were there for mum, so I tried to keep my eyes on the paper.

The tribute )

My uncle David (mum's brother) read the bible reading, and then Ben read the poem, which is Long Distance II by Tony Harrison, which I have posted here before, but I'll post it again for completeness.

Long Distance II by Tony Harrison )

The vicar (a lovely man, Mick Hough, who was miles better than the vicar we had at the same church for our wedding [his sermon involved homosexuals and protestants in ancient corinth]), used the poem as a way to launch into his address, which was beautiful, and talked about the finality of death for those left behind, but the hope for the next life and resurrection.

The service at the cemetery was very short and nice (and very well attended again), but seeing mum lowered into the ground was very hard, and so was putting a handful of earth in actually. After that we mingled for a bit (during which the mormon in attendance asked if we minded if he consecrated the grave "for your dad's sake" - we said he could, because honestly it doesn't matter to me either way, but I'm kind of pissed he invoked daddy*) before making our way back to the house to collect the car so we could meet everyone else at the pub near the church, where everyone mingled some more and talked about mum, which was nice in a different kind of way to the rest of the day. Once again, everyone was utterly amazing.

The pictures of the flowers are here (sorry, most of them are sideways as I uploaded them before I realised, then ran out of energy to fix them. Maybe I'll get around to it at a later date). There aren't many because we requested family flowers only, with donations to go to the Macmillan Nurses through the Undertaker who will collate them. The flowers we did get were stunningly beautiful though, and very mum I thought. The flowers from Phil and Ben and I are in the middle of this photo:



The ones to the left are from the Overal side of the family (dad's family), the ones to the right are from the Walker side (mum's side).

That's it, I think. Or at least it is for now. I'm pretty tired, but suffering from lack of arsedness to actually go to bed...

lizziec: (me - mummy and little lizzie)
We had mum's funeral today, and we couldn't have had a nicer day for it, weather wise. It was the kind of day mum would have loved, and she would have been extremely gratified and touched that so many people came to show their love and care for her by coming to say goodbye to her.

The funeral directors, a local firm called W A Truelove and Son were amazing, and made the day go very smoothly. We arrived everywhere exactly on time, never too early or too late. Mum was carried into church by a mixture of family and friends (Ben, foo, my uncle Allan, Duncan [mum's partner], Mark F and Giles), which was lovely. I held it together more or less until we got into the church and found just how many people there were (the church really was packed with mum's friends from all sorts of places, even my Auntie Joan, who we've not spoken to for years, and my cousin Mandy [ditto] came) and ended up crying through most all of the introduction and the first hymn.

Service sheet is here by the way.

After the hymn, I read the tribute which Phil and I had written together, and managed to keep it together enough to read it, though my voice kept breaking whenever I looked up and saw how many people were there for mum, so I tried to keep my eyes on the paper.

The tribute )

My uncle David (mum's brother) read the bible reading, and then Ben read the poem, which is Long Distance II by Tony Harrison, which I have posted here before, but I'll post it again for completeness.

Long Distance II by Tony Harrison )

The vicar (a lovely man, Mick Hough, who was miles better than the vicar we had at the same church for our wedding [his sermon involved homosexuals and protestants in ancient corinth]), used the poem as a way to launch into his address, which was beautiful, and talked about the finality of death for those left behind, but the hope for the next life and resurrection.

The service at the cemetery was very short and nice (and very well attended again), but seeing mum lowered into the ground was very hard, and so was putting a handful of earth in actually. After that we mingled for a bit (during which the mormon in attendance asked if we minded if he consecrated the grave "for your dad's sake" - we said he could, because honestly it doesn't matter to me either way, but I'm kind of pissed he invoked daddy*) before making our way back to the house to collect the car so we could meet everyone else at the pub near the church, where everyone mingled some more and talked about mum, which was nice in a different kind of way to the rest of the day. Once again, everyone was utterly amazing.

The pictures of the flowers are here (sorry, most of them are sideways as I uploaded them before I realised, then ran out of energy to fix them. Maybe I'll get around to it at a later date). There aren't many because we requested family flowers only, with donations to go to the Macmillan Nurses through the Undertaker who will collate them. The flowers we did get were stunningly beautiful though, and very mum I thought. The flowers from Phil and Ben and I are in the middle of this photo:



The ones to the left are from the Overal side of the family (dad's family), the ones to the right are from the Walker side (mum's side).

That's it, I think. Or at least it is for now. I'm pretty tired, but suffering from lack of arsedness to actually go to bed...
lizziec: (Stargate SG1 Daniel Jackson)
As I posted earlier, mum died this morning at just gone 10am. It wasn't a huge shock. I mentioned in previous entries that she had got dramatically worse over the weekend, and yesterday afternoon during visiting hours Phil and I tracked down Fiona, the Macmillan nurse to see what was actually going on, as we hadn't seen an actual doctor who would tell us anything since the beginning of the previous week.

Fiona said she was shocked at how much worse mum was yesterday than she had been on Friday, and confirmed what I already felt - that we were looking at an extremely short period of time, probably just a few days. Fiona felt that mum would probably gradually slow down her breathing and fall into a coma and gradually stop breathing. She said we could stay at the hospital if we wanted, but that she felt we needed proper rest and that it would happen regardless of where we were - even if we just went to get a cup of tea, and so Phil and I decided that we would go home at the end of visiting hours. If were looking at a situation that could go on for days then we wanted to be fresh enough to deal with it. And in the condition that mum was in on Monday evening when we left, we knew it would be a strain. Her breathing was more laboured again than it was on Sunday, and her tongue had stopped working. She tried to say lots of things to me and Phil when we arrived, the only period she was really awake for, but unfortunately we couldn't understand any of it apart from our names. And that it was lovely when we wiped a cold flannel across her very hot face.

Fiona felt that the deterioration in mum's condition was caused by the fact that the tumour had grown so large that it was 1) causing swelling in her throat, making breathing difficult, and 2) pressing on the nerves and muscles that controlled mum's tongue, which is why it was we were struggling to understand anything she said.

As I said, when we left on Monday night it was clear we were looking at days at the most. I was worried we were looking at hours, but deciding there was nothing more we could do at the hospital, we came home.

We'd not been home long when the nurse looking after mum last night (Tidings) called and said that in the short time we'd been gone, mum was worse and that we should thing about coming in. We had dinner, and headed in, supported by my auntie Pat and uncle Allan. She was worse, and when we got there, Tidings told us that though mum was calmer, she had spent a good deal of time calling my name. We all sat around her bed and talked to her, and around her, and recalled memories of our childhood and the lovely times that we had had. All the while her breathing got worse and worse. She was also in a good deal of pain, the first time she's really been in pain since she was admitted to hospital on 29th April. They gave her a top up booster of morphine, besides what was in her syringe driver, but it didn't really seem to help much with her pain. Meanwhile she was sweating profusely, and we tried to keep her cool with wet flannels. After a while she rested more, Pat and Allan went home, Phil first dozed on the floor (to the horror of a nursing assistant), and then in the day room, where said horrified nursing assistant insisted that he move to, and I dozed fitfully in the chair next to her bed, waking every 20 mins or so to reassure her that she was ok, we were ok and that it was ok for her to let go if she wanted to, because we would be looked after. I tried to keep touching her arm and hand, though she kept withdrawing them to posture against her chest, which I think was a pain response.

We left her at about 7am. She seemed quieter, and though her breathing was a little worse (it had got steadily worse through the night), she was cooler and seemed to be in much less pain. We decided to go home and get some sleep, and come back at around 1pm.

So we left her, after telling her we loved her and we'd be back later. Came home, ate a little and fell into bed. Was woken at about 10:10 by a call from Fiona telling us that mum had died just a short time before. They had washed her and put her in a comfortable position and she had looked much easier. Even her breathing was a little better. A nurse was still with her, and Fiona had just gone away for a little while, and in that five minutes she'd simply stopped breathing. Fiona said that it was a very peaceful end.

She asked if we wanted to see her, and said we could hold her hand if we wanted to. We wandered down to the end of the ward, and she opened the door. And there mum was. And it was awful. I've never had such spontaneous tears as I had then. Immediately the door opened and I saw mum they started. She looked peaceful, yes, but she didn't look like my mummy. And seeing a body without seeing breathing is strange and odd and not nice. I couldn't touch her. I don't think I can bring myself to see her again after the funeral home lay her out. I'm almost regretting seeing her like that because I can't get the picture out of my head. But at the same time, if I hadn't seen her, the last image would have been of her in dreadful pain and discomfort. That image is still with me, in fact. I'm crying as I write this. I don't know which I would rather have. But I have them both, and I really hope that soon I can stop fixating on those awful thoughts of her and see her as she was most of the time. Fuck Cancer. It wasn't supposed to be like this. She was retiring in a year and going to have a huge party. And now she never will. I checked my irc logs. You know, it was less than four months, barely over three, from start to finish? First symptoms of tingling in February. It's barely May now and she's dead. Fuck cancer. Fuck it right in the ear.

Most of the rest of todoay has been a bit of a blur. Everyone's being awesome. So awesome that I don't know how I'll thank them, ever. We've called people, organised various things, and know which funeral home we'll be going with. I've picked an outfit for her. We've even sorted through a few of her physical posessions (though only her shoes, and toiletries). Tomorrow we're going to sort out the paperwork at the hospital, and then go and register the death with Wandsworth registry office, which is the district that St Georges falls in. After that we're heading to the Funeral Home, a local company called WA Truelove and Son, to start sorting out the funeral.

Bleh. Today was exhausting and hard in its own way. But I think last night, when she was in pain and crying and struggling for every breath that was hardest and worst. Possibly the hardest and worst night of my entire adult life.

Finally, ben signed mum off IRC tonight. It makes sense but feels awful.

20:47:49 -!- typo [typo@dm-11449.pok.me.uk] has quit [Exit: fuck cancer]


Sorry for the brain dump. Needed to get it out before I could sleep, and before I forgot it all.

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer filtered
lizziec: (Stargate SG1 Daniel Jackson)
As I posted earlier, mum died this morning at just gone 10am. It wasn't a huge shock. I mentioned in previous entries that she had got dramatically worse over the weekend, and yesterday afternoon during visiting hours Phil and I tracked down Fiona, the Macmillan nurse to see what was actually going on, as we hadn't seen an actual doctor who would tell us anything since the beginning of the previous week.

Fiona said she was shocked at how much worse mum was yesterday than she had been on Friday, and confirmed what I already felt - that we were looking at an extremely short period of time, probably just a few days. Fiona felt that mum would probably gradually slow down her breathing and fall into a coma and gradually stop breathing. She said we could stay at the hospital if we wanted, but that she felt we needed proper rest and that it would happen regardless of where we were - even if we just went to get a cup of tea, and so Phil and I decided that we would go home at the end of visiting hours. If were looking at a situation that could go on for days then we wanted to be fresh enough to deal with it. And in the condition that mum was in on Monday evening when we left, we knew it would be a strain. Her breathing was more laboured again than it was on Sunday, and her tongue had stopped working. She tried to say lots of things to me and Phil when we arrived, the only period she was really awake for, but unfortunately we couldn't understand any of it apart from our names. And that it was lovely when we wiped a cold flannel across her very hot face.

Fiona felt that the deterioration in mum's condition was caused by the fact that the tumour had grown so large that it was 1) causing swelling in her throat, making breathing difficult, and 2) pressing on the nerves and muscles that controlled mum's tongue, which is why it was we were struggling to understand anything she said.

As I said, when we left on Monday night it was clear we were looking at days at the most. I was worried we were looking at hours, but deciding there was nothing more we could do at the hospital, we came home.

We'd not been home long when the nurse looking after mum last night (Tidings) called and said that in the short time we'd been gone, mum was worse and that we should thing about coming in. We had dinner, and headed in, supported by my auntie Pat and uncle Allan. She was worse, and when we got there, Tidings told us that though mum was calmer, she had spent a good deal of time calling my name. We all sat around her bed and talked to her, and around her, and recalled memories of our childhood and the lovely times that we had had. All the while her breathing got worse and worse. She was also in a good deal of pain, the first time she's really been in pain since she was admitted to hospital on 29th April. They gave her a top up booster of morphine, besides what was in her syringe driver, but it didn't really seem to help much with her pain. Meanwhile she was sweating profusely, and we tried to keep her cool with wet flannels. After a while she rested more, Pat and Allan went home, Phil first dozed on the floor (to the horror of a nursing assistant), and then in the day room, where said horrified nursing assistant insisted that he move to, and I dozed fitfully in the chair next to her bed, waking every 20 mins or so to reassure her that she was ok, we were ok and that it was ok for her to let go if she wanted to, because we would be looked after. I tried to keep touching her arm and hand, though she kept withdrawing them to posture against her chest, which I think was a pain response.

We left her at about 7am. She seemed quieter, and though her breathing was a little worse (it had got steadily worse through the night), she was cooler and seemed to be in much less pain. We decided to go home and get some sleep, and come back at around 1pm.

So we left her, after telling her we loved her and we'd be back later. Came home, ate a little and fell into bed. Was woken at about 10:10 by a call from Fiona telling us that mum had died just a short time before. They had washed her and put her in a comfortable position and she had looked much easier. Even her breathing was a little better. A nurse was still with her, and Fiona had just gone away for a little while, and in that five minutes she'd simply stopped breathing. Fiona said that it was a very peaceful end.

She asked if we wanted to see her, and said we could hold her hand if we wanted to. We wandered down to the end of the ward, and she opened the door. And there mum was. And it was awful. I've never had such spontaneous tears as I had then. Immediately the door opened and I saw mum they started. She looked peaceful, yes, but she didn't look like my mummy. And seeing a body without seeing breathing is strange and odd and not nice. I couldn't touch her. I don't think I can bring myself to see her again after the funeral home lay her out. I'm almost regretting seeing her like that because I can't get the picture out of my head. But at the same time, if I hadn't seen her, the last image would have been of her in dreadful pain and discomfort. That image is still with me, in fact. I'm crying as I write this. I don't know which I would rather have. But I have them both, and I really hope that soon I can stop fixating on those awful thoughts of her and see her as she was most of the time. Fuck Cancer. It wasn't supposed to be like this. She was retiring in a year and going to have a huge party. And now she never will. I checked my irc logs. You know, it was less than four months, barely over three, from start to finish? First symptoms of tingling in February. It's barely May now and she's dead. Fuck cancer. Fuck it right in the ear.

Most of the rest of todoay has been a bit of a blur. Everyone's being awesome. So awesome that I don't know how I'll thank them, ever. We've called people, organised various things, and know which funeral home we'll be going with. I've picked an outfit for her. We've even sorted through a few of her physical posessions (though only her shoes, and toiletries). Tomorrow we're going to sort out the paperwork at the hospital, and then go and register the death with Wandsworth registry office, which is the district that St Georges falls in. After that we're heading to the Funeral Home, a local company called WA Truelove and Son, to start sorting out the funeral.

Bleh. Today was exhausting and hard in its own way. But I think last night, when she was in pain and crying and struggling for every breath that was hardest and worst. Possibly the hardest and worst night of my entire adult life.

Finally, ben signed mum off IRC tonight. It makes sense but feels awful.

20:47:49 -!- typo [typo@dm-11449.pok.me.uk] has quit [Exit: fuck cancer]


Sorry for the brain dump. Needed to get it out before I could sleep, and before I forgot it all.

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer filtered
lizziec: (Stargate SG1 Daniel Jackson)
As I posted earlier, mum died this morning at just gone 10am. It wasn't a huge shock. I mentioned in previous entries that she had got dramatically worse over the weekend, and yesterday afternoon during visiting hours Phil and I tracked down Fiona, the Macmillan nurse to see what was actually going on, as we hadn't seen an actual doctor who would tell us anything since the beginning of the previous week.

Fiona said she was shocked at how much worse mum was yesterday than she had been on Friday, and confirmed what I already felt - that we were looking at an extremely short period of time, probably just a few days. Fiona felt that mum would probably gradually slow down her breathing and fall into a coma and gradually stop breathing. She said we could stay at the hospital if we wanted, but that she felt we needed proper rest and that it would happen regardless of where we were - even if we just went to get a cup of tea, and so Phil and I decided that we would go home at the end of visiting hours. If were looking at a situation that could go on for days then we wanted to be fresh enough to deal with it. And in the condition that mum was in on Monday evening when we left, we knew it would be a strain. Her breathing was more laboured again than it was on Sunday, and her tongue had stopped working. She tried to say lots of things to me and Phil when we arrived, the only period she was really awake for, but unfortunately we couldn't understand any of it apart from our names. And that it was lovely when we wiped a cold flannel across her very hot face.

Fiona felt that the deterioration in mum's condition was caused by the fact that the tumour had grown so large that it was 1) causing swelling in her throat, making breathing difficult, and 2) pressing on the nerves and muscles that controlled mum's tongue, which is why it was we were struggling to understand anything she said.

As I said, when we left on Monday night it was clear we were looking at days at the most. I was worried we were looking at hours, but deciding there was nothing more we could do at the hospital, we came home.

We'd not been home long when the nurse looking after mum last night (Tidings) called and said that in the short time we'd been gone, mum was worse and that we should thing about coming in. We had dinner, and headed in, supported by my auntie Pat and uncle Allan. She was worse, and when we got there, Tidings told us that though mum was calmer, she had spent a good deal of time calling my name. We all sat around her bed and talked to her, and around her, and recalled memories of our childhood and the lovely times that we had had. All the while her breathing got worse and worse. She was also in a good deal of pain, the first time she's really been in pain since she was admitted to hospital on 29th April. They gave her a top up booster of morphine, besides what was in her syringe driver, but it didn't really seem to help much with her pain. Meanwhile she was sweating profusely, and we tried to keep her cool with wet flannels. After a while she rested more, Pat and Allan went home, Phil first dozed on the floor (to the horror of a nursing assistant), and then in the day room, where said horrified nursing assistant insisted that he move to, and I dozed fitfully in the chair next to her bed, waking every 20 mins or so to reassure her that she was ok, we were ok and that it was ok for her to let go if she wanted to, because we would be looked after. I tried to keep touching her arm and hand, though she kept withdrawing them to posture against her chest, which I think was a pain response.

We left her at about 7am. She seemed quieter, and though her breathing was a little worse (it had got steadily worse through the night), she was cooler and seemed to be in much less pain. We decided to go home and get some sleep, and come back at around 1pm.

So we left her, after telling her we loved her and we'd be back later. Came home, ate a little and fell into bed. Was woken at about 10:10 by a call from Fiona telling us that mum had died just a short time before. They had washed her and put her in a comfortable position and she had looked much easier. Even her breathing was a little better. A nurse was still with her, and Fiona had just gone away for a little while, and in that five minutes she'd simply stopped breathing. Fiona said that it was a very peaceful end.

She asked if we wanted to see her, and said we could hold her hand if we wanted to. We wandered down to the end of the ward, and she opened the door. And there mum was. And it was awful. I've never had such spontaneous tears as I had then. Immediately the door opened and I saw mum they started. She looked peaceful, yes, but she didn't look like my mummy. And seeing a body without seeing breathing is strange and odd and not nice. I couldn't touch her. I don't think I can bring myself to see her again after the funeral home lay her out. I'm almost regretting seeing her like that because I can't get the picture out of my head. But at the same time, if I hadn't seen her, the last image would have been of her in dreadful pain and discomfort. That image is still with me, in fact. I'm crying as I write this. I don't know which I would rather have. But I have them both, and I really hope that soon I can stop fixating on those awful thoughts of her and see her as she was most of the time. Fuck Cancer. It wasn't supposed to be like this. She was retiring in a year and going to have a huge party. And now she never will. I checked my irc logs. You know, it was less than four months, barely over three, from start to finish? First symptoms of tingling in February. It's barely May now and she's dead. Fuck cancer. Fuck it right in the ear.

Most of the rest of todoay has been a bit of a blur. Everyone's being awesome. So awesome that I don't know how I'll thank them, ever. We've called people, organised various things, and know which funeral home we'll be going with. I've picked an outfit for her. We've even sorted through a few of her physical posessions (though only her shoes, and toiletries). Tomorrow we're going to sort out the paperwork at the hospital, and then go and register the death with Wandsworth registry office, which is the district that St Georges falls in. After that we're heading to the Funeral Home, a local company called WA Truelove and Son, to start sorting out the funeral.

Bleh. Today was exhausting and hard in its own way. But I think last night, when she was in pain and crying and struggling for every breath that was hardest and worst. Possibly the hardest and worst night of my entire adult life.

Finally, ben signed mum off IRC tonight. It makes sense but feels awful.

20:47:49 -!- typo [typo@dm-11449.pok.me.uk] has quit [Exit: fuck cancer]


Sorry for the brain dump. Needed to get it out before I could sleep, and before I forgot it all.

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer locked
lizziec: (me - mummy and little lizzie)
Mum died in hospital today, at just gone 10am. The hospital kept her as comfortable and free from pain as they could, and the staff were fantastic. In the end, she just stopped breathing. We saw her after and she looked very peaceful. Details of the funeral to follow at a later date for those who are interested.
lizziec: (me - mummy and little lizzie)
Mum died in hospital today, at just gone 10am. The hospital kept her as comfortable and free from pain as they could, and the staff were fantastic. In the end, she just stopped breathing. We saw her after and she looked very peaceful. Details of the funeral to follow at a later date for those who are interested.
lizziec: (me - mummy and little lizzie)
Mum died in hospital today, at just gone 10am. The hospital kept her as comfortable and free from pain as they could, and the staff were fantastic. In the end, she just stopped breathing. We saw her after and she looked very peaceful. Details of the funeral to follow at a later date for those who are interested.
lizziec: (toys - efelant and lion)
Mum definitely worse today. She's stopped eating and drinking, though they're nourishing and hydrating her through the NG tube. She was confused, and had spent part of the morning shouting at the nurses and trying to get out of bed - by the time visiting hours started they had someone sitting in the doorway making sure she didn't get out of bed. When she wasn't trying to get out of bed, or thinking she needed to go to the toilet when she didn't she was asleep and barely responsive when she was (where before when she was asleep she would respond). The one time she was got out of bed, she kept her eyes shut the entire time. Her breathing is noisy and towards the end of visiting hours she would stop for a few seconds at a time, though it improved a little towards the end of the evening. When we left, the ward had sorted out a person whose sole job for the night was to sit with mum, though I don't know whether it was because they were concerned about her breathing, or her attempts to get out of bed, or both.

After today my gut feeling is the same, if not more reinforced. We're not looking at very long at all I think. A couple of weeks at most. Though, she wasn't expected to make it past last weekend, so I may be proven wrong. Time will tell I think.

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer filtered
lizziec: (toys - efelant and lion)
Mum definitely worse today. She's stopped eating and drinking, though they're nourishing and hydrating her through the NG tube. She was confused, and had spent part of the morning shouting at the nurses and trying to get out of bed - by the time visiting hours started they had someone sitting in the doorway making sure she didn't get out of bed. When she wasn't trying to get out of bed, or thinking she needed to go to the toilet when she didn't she was asleep and barely responsive when she was (where before when she was asleep she would respond). The one time she was got out of bed, she kept her eyes shut the entire time. Her breathing is noisy and towards the end of visiting hours she would stop for a few seconds at a time, though it improved a little towards the end of the evening. When we left, the ward had sorted out a person whose sole job for the night was to sit with mum, though I don't know whether it was because they were concerned about her breathing, or her attempts to get out of bed, or both.

After today my gut feeling is the same, if not more reinforced. We're not looking at very long at all I think. A couple of weeks at most. Though, she wasn't expected to make it past last weekend, so I may be proven wrong. Time will tell I think.

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer filtered
lizziec: (toys - efelant and lion)
Mum definitely worse today. She's stopped eating and drinking, though they're nourishing and hydrating her through the NG tube. She was confused, and had spent part of the morning shouting at the nurses and trying to get out of bed - by the time visiting hours started they had someone sitting in the doorway making sure she didn't get out of bed. When she wasn't trying to get out of bed, or thinking she needed to go to the toilet when she didn't she was asleep and barely responsive when she was (where before when she was asleep she would respond). The one time she was got out of bed, she kept her eyes shut the entire time. Her breathing is noisy and towards the end of visiting hours she would stop for a few seconds at a time, though it improved a little towards the end of the evening. When we left, the ward had sorted out a person whose sole job for the night was to sit with mum, though I don't know whether it was because they were concerned about her breathing, or her attempts to get out of bed, or both.

After today my gut feeling is the same, if not more reinforced. We're not looking at very long at all I think. A couple of weeks at most. Though, she wasn't expected to make it past last weekend, so I may be proven wrong. Time will tell I think.

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer filtered
lizziec: (animals - badgers)
Had a lovely surprise the other night (Thursday) - foo and rah brought Ben up to me, which was amazing. They also brought benji to see me and we all ended up going for dinner after visiting hours, which helped recharge my spoons a little. Ben's heading back to Canterbury, and work today, but it's been amazing to have him around in the meantime. I don't know how I'll ever thank everyone for how amazing they're being.

Mum's still hanging on, but definitely getting a little bit worse every day. The doctors have put a nasogastric tube in to feed mum that way as she can't swallow any more. Any food she tries to eat gets spat back out again, and liquids just dribble out when she next opens her mouth. It's pretty grim to be honest. The downside to the feeding tube is that mum's finding it difficult to breathe with it in. The tumour is blocking off her left nostril, so she can't breathe through it and she can't have the tube up there, so they had to put it up her right nostril, which blocks that off as far as breathing goes. She's now breathing through her mouth only, which is somewhat complicated by the fact that she's now not producing enough saliva making her mouth incredibly dry. She's been prescribed some artifical saliva which has solved the problem somewhat, but it's another indicator of how much worse she's getting.

On the upside, she's off the insulin sliding scale now, and back on metformin, though a liquid version that's put in via her NG tube as she can't swallow. She's still on an IV for fluids though, due to the fact any drink she has comes straight out.

What's most distressing is how confused she was last night. I was hoping it was just because she'd been pulled around a lot yesterday - the NG tube going in, down to XRay to check it was sited correctly, (incidentally, I went there with her and was allowed to stay while they did the XRay and, despite everything, it was pretty cool), back to her room and then getting shuffled around in bed, having the feed connecting and having some trouble breathing, or at least thinking she did.

According to the nurse though, mum was confused again this morning. Last night she kept trying to get up to go to the toilet for a wee even though we kept reassuring her that she had a catheter in. She also kept tugging on the ng tube and towards the end was getting even more confused. She was worrying about the electricity board (why?), saying "he has two assistants" (no idea who has two assistants), and telling me how scared she was.

Being me, and incredibly pessimistic I was expecting the call last night because of that and slept pretty badly.

Mum is still here though, but according to the nurse still trying to get out of bed to go to the toilet. I'm hoping today's visit isn't like yesterdays because I'm not sure I could stand it. It was really really bad. I could handle her dying far better if it didn't feel like she was losing her marbles too. And I don't think it's just the drugs (the nurses pretty much said that if it was the drugs the confusion would have come up before, as she's been on the same combo of drugs for over a week now). Honestly I don't think she's got much longer. I may be being really pessimistic. I'm sure I am. But things just feel really bleak right now.

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer filtered
lizziec: (animals - badgers)
Had a lovely surprise the other night (Thursday) - foo and rah brought Ben up to me, which was amazing. They also brought benji to see me and we all ended up going for dinner after visiting hours, which helped recharge my spoons a little. Ben's heading back to Canterbury, and work today, but it's been amazing to have him around in the meantime. I don't know how I'll ever thank everyone for how amazing they're being.

Mum's still hanging on, but definitely getting a little bit worse every day. The doctors have put a nasogastric tube in to feed mum that way as she can't swallow any more. Any food she tries to eat gets spat back out again, and liquids just dribble out when she next opens her mouth. It's pretty grim to be honest. The downside to the feeding tube is that mum's finding it difficult to breathe with it in. The tumour is blocking off her left nostril, so she can't breathe through it and she can't have the tube up there, so they had to put it up her right nostril, which blocks that off as far as breathing goes. She's now breathing through her mouth only, which is somewhat complicated by the fact that she's now not producing enough saliva making her mouth incredibly dry. She's been prescribed some artifical saliva which has solved the problem somewhat, but it's another indicator of how much worse she's getting.

On the upside, she's off the insulin sliding scale now, and back on metformin, though a liquid version that's put in via her NG tube as she can't swallow. She's still on an IV for fluids though, due to the fact any drink she has comes straight out.

What's most distressing is how confused she was last night. I was hoping it was just because she'd been pulled around a lot yesterday - the NG tube going in, down to XRay to check it was sited correctly, (incidentally, I went there with her and was allowed to stay while they did the XRay and, despite everything, it was pretty cool), back to her room and then getting shuffled around in bed, having the feed connecting and having some trouble breathing, or at least thinking she did.

According to the nurse though, mum was confused again this morning. Last night she kept trying to get up to go to the toilet for a wee even though we kept reassuring her that she had a catheter in. She also kept tugging on the ng tube and towards the end was getting even more confused. She was worrying about the electricity board (why?), saying "he has two assistants" (no idea who has two assistants), and telling me how scared she was.

Being me, and incredibly pessimistic I was expecting the call last night because of that and slept pretty badly.

Mum is still here though, but according to the nurse still trying to get out of bed to go to the toilet. I'm hoping today's visit isn't like yesterdays because I'm not sure I could stand it. It was really really bad. I could handle her dying far better if it didn't feel like she was losing her marbles too. And I don't think it's just the drugs (the nurses pretty much said that if it was the drugs the confusion would have come up before, as she's been on the same combo of drugs for over a week now). Honestly I don't think she's got much longer. I may be being really pessimistic. I'm sure I am. But things just feel really bleak right now.

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer filtered
lizziec: (animals - badgers)
Had a lovely surprise the other night (Thursday) - foo and rah brought Ben up to me, which was amazing. They also brought benji to see me and we all ended up going for dinner after visiting hours, which helped recharge my spoons a little. Ben's heading back to Canterbury, and work today, but it's been amazing to have him around in the meantime. I don't know how I'll ever thank everyone for how amazing they're being.

Mum's still hanging on, but definitely getting a little bit worse every day. The doctors have put a nasogastric tube in to feed mum that way as she can't swallow any more. Any food she tries to eat gets spat back out again, and liquids just dribble out when she next opens her mouth. It's pretty grim to be honest. The downside to the feeding tube is that mum's finding it difficult to breathe with it in. The tumour is blocking off her left nostril, so she can't breathe through it and she can't have the tube up there, so they had to put it up her right nostril, which blocks that off as far as breathing goes. She's now breathing through her mouth only, which is somewhat complicated by the fact that she's now not producing enough saliva making her mouth incredibly dry. She's been prescribed some artifical saliva which has solved the problem somewhat, but it's another indicator of how much worse she's getting.

On the upside, she's off the insulin sliding scale now, and back on metformin, though a liquid version that's put in via her NG tube as she can't swallow. She's still on an IV for fluids though, due to the fact any drink she has comes straight out.

What's most distressing is how confused she was last night. I was hoping it was just because she'd been pulled around a lot yesterday - the NG tube going in, down to XRay to check it was sited correctly, (incidentally, I went there with her and was allowed to stay while they did the XRay and, despite everything, it was pretty cool), back to her room and then getting shuffled around in bed, having the feed connecting and having some trouble breathing, or at least thinking she did.

According to the nurse though, mum was confused again this morning. Last night she kept trying to get up to go to the toilet for a wee even though we kept reassuring her that she had a catheter in. She also kept tugging on the ng tube and towards the end was getting even more confused. She was worrying about the electricity board (why?), saying "he has two assistants" (no idea who has two assistants), and telling me how scared she was.

Being me, and incredibly pessimistic I was expecting the call last night because of that and slept pretty badly.

Mum is still here though, but according to the nurse still trying to get out of bed to go to the toilet. I'm hoping today's visit isn't like yesterdays because I'm not sure I could stand it. It was really really bad. I could handle her dying far better if it didn't feel like she was losing her marbles too. And I don't think it's just the drugs (the nurses pretty much said that if it was the drugs the confusion would have come up before, as she's been on the same combo of drugs for over a week now). Honestly I don't think she's got much longer. I may be being really pessimistic. I'm sure I am. But things just feel really bleak right now.

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer filtered

Mum update

5 May 2010 11:45 pm
lizziec: (owl)
Mum's still with us, and a bit better than she was, though in critical condition. If you want to send cards or anything you can either send them to the house (contact me for an address) or to the hospital:

mum's name
Florence Nightingale Ward
St James' Wing
St George's Hospital
Blackshaw Road
Tooting
London
SW17 0QT

The hospital request that if you do send something there you put a return address on it, in case they can't get it to the patient.

Mum update

5 May 2010 11:45 pm
lizziec: (owl)
Mum's still with us, and a bit better than she was, though in critical condition. If you want to send cards or anything you can either send them to the house (contact me for an address) or to the hospital:

mum's name
Florence Nightingale Ward
St James' Wing
St George's Hospital
Blackshaw Road
Tooting
London
SW17 0QT

The hospital request that if you do send something there you put a return address on it, in case they can't get it to the patient.

Mum update

5 May 2010 11:45 pm
lizziec: (owl)
Mum's still with us, and a bit better than she was, though in critical condition. If you want to send cards or anything you can either send them to the house (contact me for an address) or to the hospital:

mum's name
Florence Nightingale Ward
St James' Wing
St George's Hospital
Blackshaw Road
Tooting
London
SW17 0QT

The hospital request that if you do send something there you put a return address on it, in case they can't get it to the patient.
lizziec: (MASH - Hawkeye Trapper bromance)
Well the good news, that I truly did not expect to be writing over the weekend, is that mum is still with us, and in some ways far stronger that we would or could have dared to imagine. For example, she managed a shower yesterday. She is, however, still on what Fiona, the brilliant Macmillan nurse calls a knife edge. She's still not really stable.

We know a little more about what is going on now. Mum has an infection which is making it hard to control her blood sugar, and has been on IV antibiotics for it since she was admitted on Thursday. The antibiotics haven't knocked it out so they started her on a second antibiotic today. They don't know where the infection is though, so obviously that makes it hard to treat. There is a possibility, though I don't know how actually likely it is, that the infection is being caused by the tumour itself (that part of the tissue of the tumour has died and become necrotic - that is, it's rotting away in her head). As of now it is just a theory though.

I think I mentioned the arrhythmia before. It's Arterial Fibrilation, and it is at least under control at the moment.

In her current condition they would not be able to start radiotherapy, and until she is more stable they're certainly not talking about transferring her from St Georges to anywhere, even the Royal Marsden, and are even further away from discussing her discharge.

Mum is a little more awake at the moment than she was over the weekend, which, given how sick she was on Friday will probably not surprise anyone. She also gets tired very easily - just sitting up for 10 mins means she has to sleep for the next hour. The fact that she is more with it and even able to sit up is the silver lining. Here is the cloud.

The tumour symptoms have and are continuing to get much worse. There's a constant nasal discharge, and the numbness and weakness in her face is getting worse. She can barely bite or chew (which is the reason why the doctors are probably going to put in a feeding [NG] tube tomorrow), and when she drinks, most of the liquid comes out again, though because of the numbness she isn't aware of it. The deafness in her left ear is worse, and her right eye is bulging out more. We've been told that the biggest danger of mum dying imminently comes from the fact that the tumour is wrapped her carotid artery. Apparently this could weaken the wall of the artery and lead to a massive bleed, the only upside to which is that it kills pretty painlessly and immediately.

Because mum is so unstable still, Fiona, the brilliant Macmillan nurse, is sorting out a low cost solicitor that they apparently use all the time at the hospital, to come out and help mum sort a will and a power of attorney, so no matter what happens and when, we're covered.

Mum is having good days and bad days, mood wise. Today has been pretty bad. She's been moved to a side room on the same ward and is convinced that she's dying and noone has told her. Which isn't true, as i) she isn't dying in the sense she means it - she's still critical but she was much more obviously about to die on Friday, or Saturday or Sunday, and ii) we have told her everything we know, and whether or not she remembers it, the doctors have too. The reason they've moved her is to make it easier for her to sleep and easier for us to be with her. She's also talking about having the cats put down because "let's face it, I'm not going home again." When I said that whether or not that was true we liked and would care for the cats she looked at me like I was lying, pulled a face and ignored me for a bit.

Like I said, she was having a bad day.

On top of all of this, I'm becoming increasingly aware that I am running out of mental health spoons. Thanks to Ben being so supportive I went into mum's illness with quite a stockpile built up, but I'm becoming aware that I'm nearly out. I'm getting tired out more easily, and getting irritable and bad tempered for no reason, and overreacting to small irritating situations.

This is not good, but I don't really know how to remedy it. Going home to Canterbury would probably help, but if time is very short, I don't want to spend anywhere else - I'm spending visiting hours (all of them) at the hospital, and should she die, I don't want to be in Kent. Being in Coulsdon is already quite far enough from the hospital.

When at mum's (as opposed to the Hospital), other stuff has to be done - Phil and I divide this between ourselves, and ignored this stuff for several days when the danger was most - but it takes time and spoons to do. However, if we were to ignore this stuff we'd end up with no clean clothes, cutlery/crockery or floor/workspace. On top of everything, I'm not sleeping very deeply because part of me is expecting the phone call.

I'm starting to feel the depression again, and the anxiety (though not badly yet, just I'm aware of them). And that's stressing me out even more. I don't want to backslide, but I don't know how to not.

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer filtered
lizziec: (MASH - Hawkeye Trapper bromance)
Well the good news, that I truly did not expect to be writing over the weekend, is that mum is still with us, and in some ways far stronger that we would or could have dared to imagine. For example, she managed a shower yesterday. She is, however, still on what Fiona, the brilliant Macmillan nurse calls a knife edge. She's still not really stable.

We know a little more about what is going on now. Mum has an infection which is making it hard to control her blood sugar, and has been on IV antibiotics for it since she was admitted on Thursday. The antibiotics haven't knocked it out so they started her on a second antibiotic today. They don't know where the infection is though, so obviously that makes it hard to treat. There is a possibility, though I don't know how actually likely it is, that the infection is being caused by the tumour itself (that part of the tissue of the tumour has died and become necrotic - that is, it's rotting away in her head). As of now it is just a theory though.

I think I mentioned the arrhythmia before. It's Arterial Fibrilation, and it is at least under control at the moment.

In her current condition they would not be able to start radiotherapy, and until she is more stable they're certainly not talking about transferring her from St Georges to anywhere, even the Royal Marsden, and are even further away from discussing her discharge.

Mum is a little more awake at the moment than she was over the weekend, which, given how sick she was on Friday will probably not surprise anyone. She also gets tired very easily - just sitting up for 10 mins means she has to sleep for the next hour. The fact that she is more with it and even able to sit up is the silver lining. Here is the cloud.

The tumour symptoms have and are continuing to get much worse. There's a constant nasal discharge, and the numbness and weakness in her face is getting worse. She can barely bite or chew (which is the reason why the doctors are probably going to put in a feeding [NG] tube tomorrow), and when she drinks, most of the liquid comes out again, though because of the numbness she isn't aware of it. The deafness in her left ear is worse, and her right eye is bulging out more. We've been told that the biggest danger of mum dying imminently comes from the fact that the tumour is wrapped her carotid artery. Apparently this could weaken the wall of the artery and lead to a massive bleed, the only upside to which is that it kills pretty painlessly and immediately.

Because mum is so unstable still, Fiona, the brilliant Macmillan nurse, is sorting out a low cost solicitor that they apparently use all the time at the hospital, to come out and help mum sort a will and a power of attorney, so no matter what happens and when, we're covered.

Mum is having good days and bad days, mood wise. Today has been pretty bad. She's been moved to a side room on the same ward and is convinced that she's dying and noone has told her. Which isn't true, as i) she isn't dying in the sense she means it - she's still critical but she was much more obviously about to die on Friday, or Saturday or Sunday, and ii) we have told her everything we know, and whether or not she remembers it, the doctors have too. The reason they've moved her is to make it easier for her to sleep and easier for us to be with her. She's also talking about having the cats put down because "let's face it, I'm not going home again." When I said that whether or not that was true we liked and would care for the cats she looked at me like I was lying, pulled a face and ignored me for a bit.

Like I said, she was having a bad day.

On top of all of this, I'm becoming increasingly aware that I am running out of mental health spoons. Thanks to Ben being so supportive I went into mum's illness with quite a stockpile built up, but I'm becoming aware that I'm nearly out. I'm getting tired out more easily, and getting irritable and bad tempered for no reason, and overreacting to small irritating situations.

This is not good, but I don't really know how to remedy it. Going home to Canterbury would probably help, but if time is very short, I don't want to spend anywhere else - I'm spending visiting hours (all of them) at the hospital, and should she die, I don't want to be in Kent. Being in Coulsdon is already quite far enough from the hospital.

When at mum's (as opposed to the Hospital), other stuff has to be done - Phil and I divide this between ourselves, and ignored this stuff for several days when the danger was most - but it takes time and spoons to do. However, if we were to ignore this stuff we'd end up with no clean clothes, cutlery/crockery or floor/workspace. On top of everything, I'm not sleeping very deeply because part of me is expecting the phone call.

I'm starting to feel the depression again, and the anxiety (though not badly yet, just I'm aware of them). And that's stressing me out even more. I don't want to backslide, but I don't know how to not.

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer filtered
lizziec: (MASH - Hawkeye Trapper bromance)
Well the good news, that I truly did not expect to be writing over the weekend, is that mum is still with us, and in some ways far stronger that we would or could have dared to imagine. For example, she managed a shower yesterday. She is, however, still on what Fiona, the brilliant Macmillan nurse calls a knife edge. She's still not really stable.

We know a little more about what is going on now. Mum has an infection which is making it hard to control her blood sugar, and has been on IV antibiotics for it since she was admitted on Thursday. The antibiotics haven't knocked it out so they started her on a second antibiotic today. They don't know where the infection is though, so obviously that makes it hard to treat. There is a possibility, though I don't know how actually likely it is, that the infection is being caused by the tumour itself (that part of the tissue of the tumour has died and become necrotic - that is, it's rotting away in her head). As of now it is just a theory though.

I think I mentioned the arrhythmia before. It's Arterial Fibrilation, and it is at least under control at the moment.

In her current condition they would not be able to start radiotherapy, and until she is more stable they're certainly not talking about transferring her from St Georges to anywhere, even the Royal Marsden, and are even further away from discussing her discharge.

Mum is a little more awake at the moment than she was over the weekend, which, given how sick she was on Friday will probably not surprise anyone. She also gets tired very easily - just sitting up for 10 mins means she has to sleep for the next hour. The fact that she is more with it and even able to sit up is the silver lining. Here is the cloud.

The tumour symptoms have and are continuing to get much worse. There's a constant nasal discharge, and the numbness and weakness in her face is getting worse. She can barely bite or chew (which is the reason why the doctors are probably going to put in a feeding [NG] tube tomorrow), and when she drinks, most of the liquid comes out again, though because of the numbness she isn't aware of it. The deafness in her left ear is worse, and her right eye is bulging out more. We've been told that the biggest danger of mum dying imminently comes from the fact that the tumour is wrapped her carotid artery. Apparently this could weaken the wall of the artery and lead to a massive bleed, the only upside to which is that it kills pretty painlessly and immediately.

Because mum is so unstable still, Fiona, the brilliant Macmillan nurse, is sorting out a low cost solicitor that they apparently use all the time at the hospital, to come out and help mum sort a will and a power of attorney, so no matter what happens and when, we're covered.

Mum is having good days and bad days, mood wise. Today has been pretty bad. She's been moved to a side room on the same ward and is convinced that she's dying and noone has told her. Which isn't true, as i) she isn't dying in the sense she means it - she's still critical but she was much more obviously about to die on Friday, or Saturday or Sunday, and ii) we have told her everything we know, and whether or not she remembers it, the doctors have too. The reason they've moved her is to make it easier for her to sleep and easier for us to be with her. She's also talking about having the cats put down because "let's face it, I'm not going home again." When I said that whether or not that was true we liked and would care for the cats she looked at me like I was lying, pulled a face and ignored me for a bit.

Like I said, she was having a bad day.

On top of all of this, I'm becoming increasingly aware that I am running out of mental health spoons. Thanks to Ben being so supportive I went into mum's illness with quite a stockpile built up, but I'm becoming aware that I'm nearly out. I'm getting tired out more easily, and getting irritable and bad tempered for no reason, and overreacting to small irritating situations.

This is not good, but I don't really know how to remedy it. Going home to Canterbury would probably help, but if time is very short, I don't want to spend anywhere else - I'm spending visiting hours (all of them) at the hospital, and should she die, I don't want to be in Kent. Being in Coulsdon is already quite far enough from the hospital.

When at mum's (as opposed to the Hospital), other stuff has to be done - Phil and I divide this between ourselves, and ignored this stuff for several days when the danger was most - but it takes time and spoons to do. However, if we were to ignore this stuff we'd end up with no clean clothes, cutlery/crockery or floor/workspace. On top of everything, I'm not sleeping very deeply because part of me is expecting the phone call.

I'm starting to feel the depression again, and the anxiety (though not badly yet, just I'm aware of them). And that's stressing me out even more. I don't want to backslide, but I don't know how to not.

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer filtered
lizziec: (animals - giraffe hug)
Most of you know mum has been diagnosed with a large cancerous tumour in her nasal cavity, stretching back a long way, wrapping itself around mum's carotid artery and causing a number of highly unpleasant symptoms, all of which led mum to be admitted to hospital yesterday, somewhat unexpectedly.

When we went to visit mum it was clear she was much worse than she was yesterday - hooked up to a heart monitor, nasal oxygen and several different lines and things going in to her - also looking weaker than yesterday and much sleepier.

Long story short, when the doctor saw me and Phil she said there was a good chance that mum won't live through the weekend, and in the end, after a good deal of discussion, we agreed to a DNR (Do Not Resuscitate) order.

While we discussed all of that, my bag was stolen from next to mum's bed, where I'd stupidly left it when the dr came to talk to us, which meant I spent an hour or so that I could have spent with mum searching for my bag, reporting the theft and cancelling my cards. That was an hour I couldn't spend with my critically ill mum, and if she dies tonight I really don't know how I could ever forgive the person who took it.

We've spoken to mum. She knows about and agrees with our decision. She wasn't upset or surprised, at least, not that we could see. We said all we wanted and needed to to her, and she said what she wanted and needed to, to us. From that point of view we are incredibly lucky, but it was one of the hardest things I've done in my life. She said she didn't want us to stay, and so we came home, but I can't sleep right now.
lizziec: (animals - giraffe hug)
Most of you know mum has been diagnosed with a large cancerous tumour in her nasal cavity, stretching back a long way, wrapping itself around mum's carotid artery and causing a number of highly unpleasant symptoms, all of which led mum to be admitted to hospital yesterday, somewhat unexpectedly.

When we went to visit mum it was clear she was much worse than she was yesterday - hooked up to a heart monitor, nasal oxygen and several different lines and things going in to her - also looking weaker than yesterday and much sleepier.

Long story short, when the doctor saw me and Phil she said there was a good chance that mum won't live through the weekend, and in the end, after a good deal of discussion, we agreed to a DNR (Do Not Resuscitate) order.

While we discussed all of that, my bag was stolen from next to mum's bed, where I'd stupidly left it when the dr came to talk to us, which meant I spent an hour or so that I could have spent with mum searching for my bag, reporting the theft and cancelling my cards. That was an hour I couldn't spend with my critically ill mum, and if she dies tonight I really don't know how I could ever forgive the person who took it.

We've spoken to mum. She knows about and agrees with our decision. She wasn't upset or surprised, at least, not that we could see. We said all we wanted and needed to to her, and she said what she wanted and needed to, to us. From that point of view we are incredibly lucky, but it was one of the hardest things I've done in my life. She said she didn't want us to stay, and so we came home, but I can't sleep right now.

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