Thursday, 27 January 2011

If only an apple a day kept the doctor away...

Thanks for all your kind comments yesterday, you caring Planetarians. It seems the Blue (and Red, Yellow and Purple!) Books evoke strong responses in people! That post also stirred up some memories for me which I want to share, just to give some context to my last post. Just keeping on the health theme, if only the old maxim were true 'that an apple a day keeps the doctor away'. Joshie eats so many apples, he should never be sick. Alas, that hasn't proven to be the case.
Mind you, we've had a *relatively* good run lately (I've learnt it's always relative on Planet Baby - absolutes are rare occurrences!). Not like the horror run we had two winters ago. Reading this now makes me smile. Living through it did not! See if it makes you wince.

On 3 August 2008, I wrote the following comment on Sacha Molitorisz's brilliant (but sadly defunct - wander on over for a read of the archived posts) blog Who's your daddy?

In the past fortnight, our family has had:

       * tonsillitis;  

       * hand, foot and mouth disease;

       * croup;

       * two glue ears;

       * two blocked grommets;

       * mild hearing loss;

       * regrown adenoids and enormous tonsils all requiring surgery soon;

       * a night of 40°C fever;

       * a very bad cold with a streaming nose that pooled all over the sheets;

       * conjunctivitis (twice);

       * a swollen gland puffing up half my face in excruciating pain;

       * a bad cold (me);

       * and a bad cold (my husband).

All of this was accompanied by: 
* one child's usual night waking for a breastfeed every two hours and crying in between (given illness, we were unable to attend the Tresillian five day residential stay, for which we had been on the waiting list for months) to try to break the night feeding habit);
* my other child's loud snoring due to a blocked nose and enlarged tonsils; and
*my husband's loud snoring (the possibility of sleep apnoea is being investigated).
When I'm having a bad day, I remember that hideous time and feel a little better!

It meant seeing our kind, patient and reassuring GP 8 times in 14 days. Just picture that, waiting with a sick infant, a sick toddler and a sick Certain Mother in the waiting room until we could be squeezed in. Often, the wait was up to an hour. While surrounded by other anxious parents and fractious toddlers. At witching time, no less! Hmm, just *picturing* it now is giving me the heebies!

Just as well our kind GP fitted in sick children no matter how full her day was and bulk-billed for the pixies. Another angel of mercy to help me. 

All of this meant even more sleep deprivation - a post topic for another day. I can hear the collective sigh of Planetarian parents out there now ☺. And the worry, the endless worry, not to mention the continual wiping (and suctioning with Fess Little Noses) of snotty noses (I love it when the pixies learn how to blow their own noses. Who would have thought that something so simple could take years to master?). Let alone queuing at the pharmacy to get the prescriptions filled while jiggling around a fractious, unwell infant on my hip whilst making sure my unwell toddler didn't run out the door into oncoming traffic! Ah, the things we parents do.

So, in answer to Simone's query on my last post, having been through all that (and more) since we arrived on Planet Baby, I now (finally!) am learning to relax a little more about the pixies' health. And I count my blessings that we have private health insurance and brilliant medical support.

Oh, and in answer to all your empathetic comments, our dear family friend, whom I've known my entire life, bravely succumbed to cancer last night. From start to finish, it was all over in 6 months. From having no idea whatsoever that anything was wrong to being riddled with it. 

I'm in shock and feeling bereft. Long-buried childhood memories are flooding back. I need to sleep. I hope to speak to his daughter (one of my closest friends) tomorrow. And then his wife, my godmother. After receiving *that phonecall*, I'll now have to have *those conversations*. I hope I can find some comforting words. And now to bed - eek! So much for my bloggy rehab...


  1. Hi sweetie! I am sorry to hear about your friend. I have two friends/moms struggling with that terrible disease too. I've often felt we have had everything listed in our pediatrician's handbook. Both my kids are home feeling poorly today - I think I'm catching it too.... XOL

  2. Jane I am so sorry to hear the news. It is never easy to deal with loss.

    Take good care and come see me when you can...

    Art by Karena

  3. Oh my miss Jane! I truly hope you had loads of sleep last night and it's given you strength. Sometimes life just seem to hand you too much at a time. Send little gifts of sleep and joy your way today!

  4. dearest Jane I and sending hugs from afar ....
    this is never an easy time - just having you around or hearing your voice will be a comfort to them no doubt best le xox

  5. I agree with le. The words will come but the comfort will simply be you.

  6. Our health is our most precious and priceless asset. So, dear Jane, take care of yourself and, I also agree as above, knowing you are there for your friends will be their comfort. gxo

  7. So sorry to hear about your friend Jane.It is scary to think how fast things can go downhill. Big hugs to you xx

  8. Woah Jane I was exhausted reading that list of ailments; nothing worse than sleep deprivation I relate, although not with that many things going on too.
    Sorry for your loss, and your friends family. I think just being there and touching base to say I love you alot, and listen is all that's required. No remedy for heart break either unfortunately.

  9. Oh Jane, so sorry to hear about the passing of your friend - it must be so sad for you and devistating for his family (Is it the man who's boat you were on when you broke the news of your engagement to you family?).

    Remember him fondly, laugh and cry and reminisce with his daughter and know that it is an inevitable part of life! Thinking of you!

  10. So sorry for your loss Jane, sending you lots of hugs.x

  11. I'm so sorry to hear about the passing of your family friend x

  12. My gosh, you have had a bad trot. I hope you are pumping those pixies full of multivitamins and keeping everyone in a military type routine to preserve some sanity. If only I was closer I would pop over with warm chicken soup and a huge box of tissues. Take care dear Jane. Deb

  13. Sadness for the loss of your dear friend, Jane. I can't believe what a dreadful fortnight you've had and now this. Sometimes it's all a bit too uphill for our heavy hearts to cope with. x

  14. So sad for you and your family...take care and get some rest lovely Jane. x

  15. Gosh Jane, I'm so sorry for your loss. What a sad time for you. Take care xx

  16. I am so sorry for you Jane. I hope you have managed OK today. Hoping you got lots of hugs. Unfortunately my 'this week or next' turned into today for my family friend. It is such a sad time and so I send you a very understanding hug )-:

  17. oh hon...we DO need that virtual vino don't we!

    firstly - so sorry for your loss...and that of your long & many memories flooding is a difficult time for you all...6 months is just not a fair's the blink of an eye...
    it very quickly puts life into sharp perspective doesn't it....
    thinking of you so far away...

    & tale of 2008 has my eyes watering with exhaustion & emotion...gosh i know that combination {in some capacity} as do many of us poor old mother-nurse-household MD's...... 5 year old has me awake everynight still and this morning at breakfast i told her that if we couldn't sort this out i'd have to go and live in a hotel for a week till i was awake times of exhaustion i can tell horrendous lies!!

    melissa xxx

  18. Such a timely post as I sit here with my sick little 2 year old on my lap and roam blogland between her vomits! It's never nice, but somehow it does feel better to know you are not alone.

    So sorry to hear that you have lost someone special. Thinking of you.

  19. Dear Jane, so so
    sorry to hear about
    your friend ~ what
    a jolting reminder
    of how quickly life
    can change. My hubby
    has been very ill for
    nearly a month {!} with
    flu but finally got
    the right meds and is
    turning the corner. Your
    post made my head spin.
    You can take on the world
    after a health season like
    the one you write of ~ WOW!
    Seriously, if you can make
    it through that, the world
    is your oyster!! Here's to
    healthier days ahead and the
    strength to make all of those
    calls. Sending you warm
    thoughts and prayers.
    xx Suzanne

  20. Hi Sweetie, I'm not going to hold you up much longer, you need your rest, thinking of you, be strong and watch your health. Big hug, Maureen xx

  21. Ahh Jane...thoughts, prayers and hugs for you from the other side of the world. xo Cathy

  22. Oh, Planetarians. You're such a compassionate lot. I really appreciate all your support. It's most comforting. The power of words never ceases to amaze me. Thankyou *so* much.

    No, Ange, but close. That was my godfather. This was my godmother's husband. A gentler and kinder soul you'd be hard-pressed to meet. Not sick a day in his life. Then all over within 6 months.

    You're a darling, Deb. Thank goodness all those medical horrors happened two years ago. Facing them now would not be *ideal* (fabulous euphemism).

    And Linda, I'm so sorry you're sharing a similar burden as well. We've both had better weeks.

    Miss Melissa, you're such kindness personified. Yes to the vino. Yes to carpe diem and yes to the despicableness of sleep deprivation!

    Thanks, Emma, and I hope your household is a little healthier today.

    Sweet Suzanne. You never fail to send me some comfort from your cold climes far away. Thankyou, my friend. Yes, I was quite glad I kept that little reminder of that horror fortnight - I wouldn't believe it if I hadn't written it down!

    J x

  23. So sorry for your loss. The big C is a tough one. It is devastating and brutal.

    Your friend is at peace now darling xox

  24. Thanks so much, LLCAOBT. That's so true - it was a painful end so I'm relieved he's now at peace. J x

  25. Oh Jane, how devastatng for you and your family. My thoughts are with you. Much love, Emma xx

  26. Thanks, Sweetie. I appreciate your compassion. J x


Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts, you gorgeous soul. You've just made my day! J x

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