cripples

Life, ed sheeran wrote us a song

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So, recently I was driving and ed sheerans latest song came on the radio, thinking out loud. As I listened I enjoyed it, and the lyrics clicked into place. I then realised mr sheeran had written this song for my partner and I.

And this is why..

Ed Sheeran – Thinking Out loud

When your legs don’t work like they used to before
(Her legs no longer work so well, she’s a cripple after all)
And I can’t sweep you off of your feet
(My backs gone, so I have no chance of sweeping, plus with her bad legs she’s far more of a deadweight)
Will your mouth still remember the taste of my love
(Little miss codeine breath)
Will your eyes still smile from your cheeks
(She does get some beautiful dimples when she smiles)
And darling I will be loving you ’til we’re 70
(About right, I retire- assuming I go back to work) at 71 so I’ll likely die around 70)
And baby my heart could still fall as hard at 23
(This ones a rhyming number, not literal, I was about 25 when I met her, but five doesn’t rhyme so well)
And I’m thinking ’bout how people fall in love in mysterious ways
(Oh yes they do- “I love pus”)
Maybe just the touch of a hand
(It was more the touch of her fart on my hand, but that doesn’t translate well to a chart topping song)
Oh me I fall in love with you every single day
(She’s such a grump I really need to)
And I just wanna tell you I am
So honey now
Take me into your loving arms
Kiss me under the light of a thousand stars
Place your head on my beating heart
I’m thinking out loud
Maybe we found love right where we are
(It’s a chorus, mostly about falling in love, and she does occasionally sleep on my chest)
When my hair’s all but gone and my memory fades
(My hairs thinning, and my memory isn’t exactly what it was, she’s constantly grumping about things that have slipped my mind. I’m sure the line was hairs overgrown, which it also is)
And the crowds don’t remember my name
(My time as a carer for my partner restricts my time out in public, I’m out of any public eye)
When my hands don’t play the strings the same way, mm
(I played, now I don’t, I can’t play as well as i used to once upon a time)
I know you will still love me the same
(Somehow despite her grumping she still does)
‘Cause honey your soul can never grow old, it’s evergreen
(Given her fast ageing body it’s only fair to think something will stay youthful)
Baby your smile’s forever in my mind and memory
(Some things don’t fade from memory, special things)
I’m thinking ’bout how people fall in love in mysterious ways
Maybe it’s all part of a plan
(Im still convinced we were together as a part of some plan she had to make babies)
I just keep on making the same mistakes
Hoping that you’ll understand
(Yep, I do, normally forgetting about things she’s expecting me to remember)
But baby now
Take me into your loving arms
Kiss me under the light of a thousand stars
Place your head on my beating heart
I’m thinking out loud
That maybe we found love right where we are, oh
(Ah la la, la la la, la la la, la la la la)
So baby now
Take me into your loving arms
Kiss me under the light of a thousand stars
Oh darling, place your head on my beating heart
I’m thinking out loud
That maybe we found love right where we are
Oh maybe we found love right where we are
And we found love right where we are

No real comments can be made about the rest, except to say, despite everything I do love her.

Life, cripple holidays

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So, she’s done it again. Gone mental with a whole host of ‘little’ trips away to visit people I don’t need to, or attend events I don’t want to.
First up is this weekend, a ten hour round trip to Great Yarmouth to attend a babies birthday party. Yes they’re her ‘friends’ (in as much as someone you’ve met on the internet and never actually met can be friends), yes it’s nice to celebrate a babies birthday, yes she needs- as a cripple- to get away, but it’s a hell of a long drive, the baby isn’t going to know or care if she’s there, and getting away is one thing, a long exhausting drive is another.
Now, of course we’ll make a holiday of it, we have a guest house booked and it’ll be a nice opportunity to have a few drinks and have some fun, but I do have some concerns about next Tuesday. She’s a grump at the best of times, add in the exhaustion of a holiday and all that driving, plus the fact it’s the grandparents from my side looking after the kids- and by extension the house- and it’s all sounding like a mega breakdown and super strop coming my way on Tuesday. Oh and she’s got a busy week next week too so it can only get worse (and grumpier)
Another trips booked in at the end of the month to Belfast for the boys birthday. This ones a slightly more acceptable one, there’s family there after all, but it’s still an exhausting amount of travel and stress to get there. And typically she is incapable of just taking it easy, she’s booked a game of thrones tour, a trip to Bangor, a night out, something else too plus she hasn’t even considered the boys birthday celebrations, but no doubt the final plan will involve lots of exhausting stress for her (and by extension me).
September is mercifully free of trips away, but there’s still time for her to find something, before we hit October and she’s planned a trip to Nottingham. This time she’s going without me, and leaving me in charge of the children. I’m happy enough to do this, though without the car it’s tougher. I’m more concerned about her, again it’s a trip to see internet friends, with a mega drive and planned drinking- something she doesn’t do too well at the best of times. So it’ll be a few days of work for her followed by a long drive, some drinks and a late night and then a long drive home. She’ll have an early night on the Sunday before I get grumped at on Monday.
November again another trip planned. To Manchester for some dental conference. Again, she’s planned a short break around it, but it’s still a mega drive, followed by three days of seminars and lectures whilst i stroll around the city waiting for her to finish. She has got some tommy Tiernan tickets for us whilst we’re there which should be good, but again it’s another late night for her. This trips made doubly stressful because her parents are coming to mind the house and kids, despite it being their wedding anniversary and having to cancel their traditional holiday away with each other (as much as they love the kids, babysitting isn’t the same thing).
December hits and at the moment we haven’t got anything planned, Christmas will of course bring it’s own problems, and we may end up visiting my family, but a normal stress free holiday would be nice.
January will see another trip to Belfast, no doubt just as crammed with activity, before Easter time when she’s talking about a weekend in London, which given last times exhaustion can only cause grumpiness.

Sooner or later I’m going to book myself a holiday away just for some peace and quiet. I’ll probably be no more than a few miles from home in a quiet hotel with a decent bar.

Life, bringing a cripple home

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So, another cripple post. Im fast approaching that magic number of 137 so my partners going to need something to read. At least something she might have some interest in reading.
So today’s is the next step, bringing her home. After a month of hospital she was finally allowed to return to us. She was excited and we were happy about it, it had been an intense month of working, driving, looking after two kids and having nanny around. Nanny being there was an immense help, but it also added it’s own complications because she’s insistent on spoiling the kids at every opportunity. Not that that’s bad- it’s a grandparents right- but it makes parenting so much harder.

So my partner comes home and hobbles in to be met by ecstatic children. Things weren’t easy, we had a combination of my partner feeling useless about being essentially useless, combined with her stubbornness and insistence on doing things and overdoing it, plus her natural ability to fall out with her mum at every opportunity. It’s strange, they clearly love each other but just wind each other up far too much. Honestly I’m sure it’s an equal thing, but I see my partner getting grumpy more often so I can see how it escalates to tears.
Things changed massively, especially once nanny returned home. At times I was left with essentially three children as my partner just couldn’t do a great deal. This increased her feelings of frustration about being ‘useless’ which shortened her temper and made her snappier. Especially when she overdid it (see stubbornness) and was exhausted. I was struggling at this point as work was taking a lot of my energy and attention and becoming more stressful, whilst the most Important thing – my family- was getting all that I could spare with regards energy, attention, time.
Things then got harder as money became tight, because I was working the state benefit support was minimal and we were left to work it out. As it stood once rent and bills were paid from my wages I was left with £30 to spend. This is before petrol, food, additional bills. And also before leisure spending. It reached a point where my partner was using online selling sites to sell something in order to free up a few quid to buy some vegetables for dinner. At this point out savings disappeared, followed by our overdrafts.

It was a tight time, but we managed, somehow things picked up and we coped. My partner was able to return to work which of course brought extra money in- though childcare costs of course ate into money too. The sacrifice there was my partners energy, she was exhausted by a days work which made her more frustrated and wore her out, so she wasn’t able to do much. This in turn frustrated her and there was a vicious cycle.

Through all of this I felt helpless. I wasn’t able to increase the money coming in, the money that was wasn’t enough and I didn’t have the energy to do enough to look after my family to the level they need and deserve. Helplessness is a strange feeling, Iv never really felt helpless, there’s always a solution, always something that can be done. But not this time. And it was a damaging thing. As Iv mentioned in another post I’m always right. There’s a certain confidence/cockiness/arrogance that comes from that, but this knocked my confidence. Made me feel like I didn’t have the answers, I couldn’t provide solutions, wasn’t able to look after those around me. The effects of that I’ll cover in a future post.

Bitterness. Bitterness is a strange one. Several times Iv been asked if I feel bitter. Bitter about the disability. Bitter about the effect it had on me. Bitter it’s changed how my life works. But I don’t know, I don’t feel bitter. Of course there are moments of anger, disbelief, even denial about the situation, but no bitterness. It happens, it would be better if it didn’t, or of it at least happened to someone else (selfish? Yes, but tough). Maybe there is some bitterness deep down but I don’t think it’s surfaced, or even really had an impact, there’s been far too much to worry about without it.

Life, gaining a cripple

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So, here it is. Finally, all you fake followers that have been fake reading my blog have been waiting for it, so here it is.

How did my partner become a cripple.

Firstly, I should reassure you that cripple is her term, not mine.

About a year ago, i got a call at work from my partner, who’d put her back out lifting one of the children, I head home to help her and that’s where we start.

I should also point out that my partner can be a bit of a hypochondriac, always fearing the worst, the worst case has to be the obvious case. And she’s had a bunged up nose pretty much everyday since we met. Unfortunately, she does also get genuinely ill a lot too so it’s hard to be sure when it’s real or not

So I head home to find her in tears in bed where she’s essentially crawled.

this is a common one, she’s a sleepy nap loving person, but to find her in tears normally means pain, or exhaustion

After a little time of pain and pain relief wearing off, she asks to go to hospital, so we load up the car and get her there. She limps in through the front doors and i take the kids home

I’m not an arse, the kids were due dinner and bed

had I known how serious it would be then of course there’s no way she’d have gone in alone

I’m busy for a while feeding and bedding the kids, when she tells me it’s getting worse and the doctors are keeping her in.

still no real worry for me, it’s Sunday night,

Cue probably the most unsettled night of my life, with two constants,

1. The girl in every hour or so clearly worrying about mummy, only to be retucked in and reassured she’ll be home soon

obviously I wasn’t going to tell a 4 year old the truth (not that I knew much), by the end of the night she was expecting to be disappointed “what can those doctors be doing with mummy still, don’t they know she has to come home for breakfast”

2. Constant updates from my partner as things develop. I say develop, in reality it’s the opposite, her legs were numbing, she couldn’t feel her feet and couldn’t poo.

her not pooing actually sounds like relief to me

The hospital decided she needed a scan, but because it was urgent and their department wasn’t going to be open until 9am the next morning she would be blue lighted across the county (literally across the entire county) to be scanned there and then.

first point of worry, it’s serious enough to start spending resources on her

This I gather was a traumatic experience for her, she was indeed blue lighted south, in a bumpy ambulance

this can’t have helped

As it happens, she got the scan after 9am so there was no need to move her. I visited her in time to be told she was going to be transferred back.

no pain relief on this one, so even more traumatic

Next up is a visit from a neurologist to see my partners now completely immobile lower body, fully catheterised and deep vein thrombosis socked up.
He transfers her to his hospital

She then spends a month ‘glued to the bed’

this is how she explained it to the girl, who seemed to accept this happily.

I say happily, clearly she was terrified, but her behaviour the whole time was incredible, and then she had nanny looking after her so it probably seemed more exciting without mummy

The major worry point for me was a day I planned to take the boy to see her for the first time in about a week, she was excited of course, but the hospital parking was a nightmare, the entire hospital has a set visiting time, so for an hour each day there’s a queue up the road to get parked in the most ridiculous car park in the world.

We couldn’t get parked and this upset her a lot, clearly the fears of a lifetime of not being able to use her legs was hitting her.

I got parked, I risked a ticket parking infront of a building site entrance because there was no way she wasn’t seeing the boy that day

After that month I wake up to a text saying “my legs work,” she was able to stand, to fold her legs, and she wasn’t having to use a commode to poo

this was a major issue for her

A couple of weeks later she was home, I had a cripple to cope with and care for.

Ok, so not much real information for you there, but bear with me, there will be more to come