Monday, 12 March 2012

The Fur Is Flying

Had a bit of a scare again yesterday. I suddenly became very breathless and had a coughing fit that resulted in me spitting up a bit of blood. I remained fairly breathless throughout the day and my peak flows dropped  but this morning I'm fine again. No idea what it was but if it happens again I'll be taking myself off to the doc's.

I did watch the England/France match and stand corrected on something I wrote in my last blog. The outcome of this match really didn't matter in the end because France drew with Ireland and so were not going to get the Grand Slam anyway though they still could win the championship. The match was messy with neither side covering themselves in glory. For a while it looked like England would walk it but the French pulled back and in the end England won by only two points. Now all eyes will be on the Millennium Stadium next Saturday and you won't be able to get me off the settee with a crow bar.

Something else to look forward too next weekend is the start of the Formula One racing season. As usual I'll be backing the Brits and will be hoping that Jenson Button can win another title. Unfortunately half the races will not be shown live on the BBC because of some deal done with Sky. I don't really see that as much of a problem as long as I stay away from news channels until I get to watch the highlights. As I work some Sundays this is second nature to me as I often had to record races to watch when I got home so it won't really be any different.

It was really warm yesterday so I spend half an hour in the garden tentatively pulling weeds from my herb garden. Most of the herbs seem to have survived the winter, with one or two exceptions, but the garden desperately needs some TLC. I am now hoping for some more warm, dry days so I can get out there and do what's needed, with a little help of course. It was nice to see all the buds on the trees and bushes, another few weeks and I should have a riot of colour again.

In the news a high court has ruled that a man with 'locked in' syndrome has the right to continue his fight to seek protection for any doctor willing to help him end his own life. This man is totally paralyzed and has been for sometime and the only way he can end it all is by getting someone to administer the drugs for him. His argument is that doctors, like vets, should have the power to end the suffering of patients who have no chance of recovering from their condition. This is something I have thought for a very long time however recent events have made me less sure of my stance.

Recently there have been two stories in the paper of long term coma patients suddenly coming around. One man was in a coma for over ten years. If doctors were allowed to end the lives of patients 'with no chance of recovery' this man would have been dead years ago. Even more horrifying is that both coma patients could hear what was being discussed at their bedsides. Imagine hearing someone discussing ending your life and not being able to do anything about it. How horrendous would that be? So my thoughts now are that I do hope doctors are given this power but are only allowed to use it if the patient themselves are of sound mind enough to request it.

At present doctors are allowed not to help a patient live if a 'Do Not Resuscitate' or DNR instruction is put in their hospital records. This instruction is guaranteed to have been put in the records on the patients orders while they were still of sound mind and deemed not under any undue influence. I see no reason why people with progressive illnesses cannot have a similar instruction added to their records so that when the illness reaches a certain point the medical staff can put them out of their misery. Of course it won't be that easy. Patients can and will change their minds and of course there are the relatives wishes to taken into consideration. At the moment a person can sign as many donor cards as they can get their hands on but the relatives always get the final word and bizarrely the relatives wishes will always override those of the dead person's. This is going to take some working out and lots of safeguards put in place to prevent people being bumped off just because they are old and an inconvenience or a drain on resources.

Spring seems to have suddenly hit the cats. They are both moulting furiously leaving little piles of fur wherever they go. The annual battle for the position of top cat has also begun and they cannot pass each other without lashing out. They are both unusually active and instead of sleeping the day away they are now in and out of the cat flap like yo-yo's. Experience says they will revert back to their normal docile, lazy selves come April but until then I'll have to put up with living in a hairy war zone and give up wearing anything black.