Hello and Welcome to Deb’s World
It’s the last Friday in the month so that means it’s time for our monthly linkup party all about our Word of the Year (WOTY). Join my co-hosts Jo, Sue and Donna and share your WOTY progress with us all.
Gift is my WOTY and it’s proving to be another great word helping me to focus on the gifts in my life.Deb
We’ve been planning our trip to England (from Australia) to see our daughter and her family, including little Dottie who will turn 3 while we’re there, since biting the bullet and booking the trip back in March/April.
We last saw them in January 2020 before leaving for the bushfires at home and prior to Covid hitting the world. Dottie was born very early at 25 weeks in August 2019, and when we left in January 2020, she was a few months old, still on oxygen and so tiny – we definitely thought we’d be back sooner than this!
But planning this trip has been so different. The international borders were closed, we couldn’t leave Australia without permission from the Government, planes weren’t flying and restrictions for entry into many countries were devastatingly hard but understandable.
The risk of being sick beforehand has been paramount despite us taking all precautions with vaccinations, masks and distancing. We have tried to be careful at all times.
Once the borders were opened we let things slide for a while before I just had to start planning our trip. Once we’d decided to go it all happened very quickly. But the time has slowly passed – oh so slowly! I’m normally excited and can’t stop talking about our impending trip, making plans and this time it’s been so different, wondering if it will really happen.
Recently, our children and grandchildren, in different states of Australia, contracted Covid on the same day (how weird is that?) and then it went through their families one by one every few days. We had plans to see family in Canberra before flying out but those plans were put on hold due to a new wave of the virus. Worrying about our family has been on our minds as you can imagine.
Then out of the blue I developed an eye condition on our last full weekend at home. I had had a gritty feeling in my eye for a few weeks and was using drops which helped a bit but on Saturday things went pear shaped. I went to the local chemist, as there were no doctors available in town, and he told me it looked like a ‘growth’ and suggested I get it looked at as soon as possible. No doctors in town over the weekend though. I sat at home all that Saturday with my stomach churning and my blood pressure rising not knowing what I was dealing with. Would I even be able to travel in 10 days time? I was a mess.
I repeated these words to myself over and over again – I’m not in pain, I’m not bleeding and I haven’t lost my eyesight. My eye was ugly, red, gummy and oozing and looked far worse than it felt. I didn’t know how serious it was, if it was something to be overly concerned about and if it would stop me travelling.
On Sunday morning I couldn’t stand it any longer and asked my husband to take me to the local hospital Accident and Emergency, despite not knowing what they could do for me. I didn’t feel like it was emergency and didn’t want to waste anyone’s time, when there were so many worse things going on in the world.
The Gift of the public health system
From that moment things started looking up (no pun intended). The nurses were so caring and understanding. They reassured me that I wasn’t wasting their time and eyes are important to get looked at. They took my blood pressure and other vitals and as expected my BP was sky high! That might have created an emergency on its own. As no doctors were available in town they rang the on-call doctor who then linked them with the ophthalmologist registrar at the large regional hospital 100km away – on a Sunday!
After sending them a photo of my eye, which I still haven’t been able to look at, he asked me to go to Wagga so he could see me. He also reassured me that there was no reason why it would stop me from travelling – phew. My BP went down straightaway!
We popped home to get a few things just in case we might have to stay and then drove to Wagga Wagga missing a few phone calls from the lovely ophthalmologist letting us know he was delayed but would see us as soon as possible. Did I mention caring!
When we arrived at Emergency I was approached by a nurse asking if I was Debbie (I had an eye patch on so it might have been a giveaway) to let me know the doctor was delayed. They couldn’t have been more helpful.
When we saw Dr Alex he was caring and compassionate and explained to me that what I had was quite normal and would clear up in time, with cream and antibiotics. He did a few things to my eyes, wrote a report and basically put us at ease. We scheduled an appointment for the following Friday in his rooms, in case it needed to be ‘cut’ off and we drove home again. I was feeling much more relaxed by this time and although the next few days my eye remained unsightly, it didn’t worry me as much as before. Luckily by the time Friday rolled around it had shrunk to a more reasonable size and no cutting was required!
The actual name of what I have is: Pyogenic granuloma secondary to chalazion triggered by blepharitis – in other words I’ve had a stye in the past and my body has gone into overdrive to heal itself and produced lots of gunk which has spilled over my bottom eyelid in a worm like globule (my words). Although it doesn’t hurt, it is annoying and my eye feels gritty and wet. I can ‘see’ the blob although it doesn’t affect my vision. I’ve got some cream and antibiotics for 8 weeks which will do the trick. I’m just so pleased it didn’t happen on the plane!
The greatest wealth is health.
It just goes to show you never know what is around the corner and you shouldn’t ignore symptoms like grittiness, gumminess of the eyes and that emergency wards are for all types of concerns. I’m so glad I went when I did and am now on the mend. And to think I was more worried about catching Covid before going overseas!
We shouldn’t take our health for granted!
I actually rang the local hospital a few days later to pass on my thanks to the staff involved and they were thrilled to get some positive feedback – maybe they don’t get a lot of people calling to say thanks.
It’s weird how things happen and might I say, very stressful too. In the past week, 3 of our family members (including me), living in 3 different states of Australia have been to 3 different hospitals for various issues – not Covid related either. One was me with my eye issue, my daughter in Brisbane had a severe vomiting bug (plus Covid at the time), and had to be taken by ambulance to be checked over and just yesterday I took my daughter in Canberra to the doctor, then to hospital with appendicitis. She is having surgery today which means I won’t see her again before we leave on our trip. Just a week or so before that our granddaughter in England was taken to hospital with a severe vomiting virus. This has been a very stressful time as we prepare to leave the country but thankfully they’ve all received good care and are on the mend. Do you sometimes wonder what you’ve done to deserve a run of bad luck?
My Gifts so far this year
It’s been a great way to look for the GIFTS in the everyday with my WOTY:
- June saw me enjoy the Gift of Sunshine
- May was all about the Gift of daughters and birthdays
- April had me enjoying Gifts that keep on giving
- March had me asking the question ‘Is it even a Gift if you buy it yourself?’
- In February I celebrated Gifts in all shapes and sizes
- January I was just getting started with the Gift of GivingI
- In early January I announced my WOTY GIFT for 2022
So now I am finally able to get excited about our trip!
The Gift of Travel is ahead of us, even in these strange and uncertain times it is possible to feel optimistic. I had a massage last week and my therapist told me I had to stop worrying about everyone and everything and to concentrate on my own health. Wise words!
I’ve also used this time to focus on my packing and have committed to taking carry-on only for our month away!
Thanks very much for stopping by and for making me smile. I always appreciate your visits and your comments 🙂
You can find my co-host’s WOTY posts here – we’re hoping you can join us! If you have a Word of the Year and have written a post about it, this is the place to share.
- Jo from And Anyways
- Donna from Retirement Reflections
- Sue from Women Living Well After 50
You’re invited to our link party! So what’s it all about?
This year I’m joining co-hosts Donna, Jo and Sue, to provide a link party for anyone who also wants to write a monthly update to help keep the focus on their WOTY. We’re hoping you can join us.
What: 2022 Word of the Year Link Party #2022wotylinkparty
When: Last Thursday of the month PM (Northern Hemisphere)/ Last Friday of the month AM (Southern Hemisphere). The link will be open for 3 days so you’ve got plenty of time to join.
Why: To encourage us all to keep the focus on our chosen WOTY.
Where: Link Party, Blog, Blog Comments, Instagram or other Social Media.
Who: This linkup is open to everyone.
How: You can share in the comments, with a blog post, or on other social media of your choice. Include the hashtag #2022wotylinkparty so that we can find you and include your link in our posts. Whichever way you choose to share, don’t forget to leave a note in the comments so we can find you.
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A tragic accident at age 17, resulting in a Bravery Award from the Queen, didn’t deter Debbie from travelling the world. A young retiree, after being made redundant from her 22 year career managing education programs in a men’s correctional centre, she now loves reading, blogging, riding her ebike and a good cup of tea! Also known as Granny Debs to her 4 grandchildren.
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