Sunday, 10 February 2013

You Gotta Roll With It

Yesterday was a day of ups and downs but I am glad to say I appear to be coming out of my doldrums at last.

The downer was receiving my new debit card, reading the expiry date of 2016 and realising that I'm likely to expire first. A strange feeling but one I have to get used to. Since going onto the transplant list, on 21st December 2012, 153 fellow transplant patients have died waiting. It is a sobering thought and one that has to be addressed. Starting tomorrow ITV launches it's Organ Donor Campaign and several of my fellow transplant patients will be taking part to emphasis why putting yourself up as a donor is so important. So look out for Kath and Stacie next week and please, sign up.

The ups were far more numerous. First and foremost I had both my babies with me as Laurence joined us for lunch and watched some of the rugby with me. I do love seeing them both together, it makes me feel as though I have my family back.

Then there was the shock and joy of Wales beating France in the rugby. I don't know what our neighbours thought as I jumped up and down, screaming with joy, before the PH kicked in and necessitated a quick suck on my oxygen.

The final triumph was in my baking. For the first time ever I baked a cake that didn't come out of the oven resembling a biscuit. This cake was light and fluffy and such a surprise I just stood there looking at it. It tasted even better than it looked and Peter remarked that he'd never known me to bake like this before. I'd asked for a book on successful baking for Christmas and was given one, no doubt in the faint hope I's stop giving everyone indigestion. Obviously it worked and I will be trying a different recipe next weekend.

This morning I was downstairs feeding the cats when the phone rang. 0930 in the morning would have been too early for anyone I know to ring, unless there had been a disaster, so I froze listening as Peter answered it. As he didn't come hurtling down the stairs with a look of panic on his face I concluded that the call wasn't for me and got on with the job in hand.

My reaction surprised me somewhat because up to now I've jumped every time the phone rang at an unusual time. My rather more relaxed approach is obviously better for the nerves and the blood pressure but I felt a note of sadness that I no longer 'expect' it to be Papworth. It's not that I've given up hope at all, I think it is just that I've come back down to earth and realised that the chances of getting a call is a lot less likely than I first hoped. Maybe this is a good thing as the disappointment lessens with time and you just roll with the punches.

I'm back to work tomorrow and once again not looking forward to it.

I don't know why I've become so negative towards my job recently. I used to love what I did and actually looked forward to the day but the atmosphere has changed and we are no longer the close knit little group we used to be. I am now working with a lot of people whom I don't know and who do not know me. I get stared at when I come into the room with my oxygen and, I hate to say this, but I see pity in their eyes. The people I used to work with never pitied me, they just accepted things because they walked the path with me, these new people have just walked into the situation and really don't know what to make of me.

I see curious looks and a few brave souls have asked about my condition. I don't mind this I rather they ask openly than gossip behind my back so I've answered their questions openly and honestly. What really scares me most though is that I'm working with new supervisors and I wonder how much they have been told. Do they know that I can take extra breaks if I'm unwell, not that I ever do? Do they know I have to be escorted out of the building as soon as the fire alarm goes off and not stay at my post until the last minute like everyone else? I know all this sound stupid but it makes me uncomfortable and, I have to say it, unsafe.

I'm sure things will settle down and soon everyone will know all they need to but I fear I'm in for an uncomfortable few months.

In the news the horrific story of a baby having it's fingers bitten off by a fox.

Naturally there are calls to have the fox shot and the hunting lobby are citing this as a reason to make fox hunting legal again. Well although I can understand the sentiment there is a world of difference between the urban fox and the country fox.

The urban fox has lost it's fear of humans and has grown in numbers due to the rich pickings on our city streets. Who can blame it for wanting an easy life and we encourage this by our behaviour. We litter out streets with half eaten food, mostly chips, burgers and kebabs, rather than put our rubbish into secure bins. We see these animals as cute and encourage them into our gardens by feeding them. And in extreme cases make pets out of them.

The country fox has a much harder life. It is terrified of humans, and with good reason, and has no chance of getting fat and lazy. The country fox has to live on it's wits, hunting is how it gets it's food, and then only if it is lucky. They are persecuted by farmers or anyone who keeps live stock.

So by comparison the urban fox has a much more comfortable life than it's country bumpkin cousin. The urban fox will get a better death too, not the terror of hearing dogs coming after you, or the exhaustion of running miles to escape. The urban fox will be dispatched with a quick bullet, it will not feel the pain or terror as it is ripped apart, taking minutes to die. Urban foxes need to be controlled but what has happened should not mean the the blameless country fox should also pay in the the most hideous way imaginable.