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“What worked yesterday doesn't always work today.”
By Andrew Hill 12 Jan, 2018

Hi

When I look back over the last 4 months I have experienced every possible emotion.

From the thought I was going to die and not see some very important family milestones at one end of the spectra to the absolute relief / pleasure of walking unaided outside. These have without doubt been the most challenging months of my life thus far and I look back and thank each and every person that has asked about me, visited me, and cared for / about me. Avelia could not have expected this when she married me less than two years ago but she along with my children have been amazing especially when they were in a state of shock and panic, please keep the support coming over the next few weeks.

You do really find out who does care at times like this and for the few people who, for whatever reason just got on with their lives and have not been in contact at all, I am sure you had your reasons to not be in touch, even if I can't comprehend them ….

On the whole I am nearly there, well as far as I can expect to be on the recovery road.

Fatigue is much improved and all that remain as ongoing issues are a face that the LHS has a numb sensation but is normal in appearance, this is likely to be permanent and some muscle issues in my knees which the Physio is slowly sorting. I am also getting some counseling on how to cope with the major change I have experience to my life.

The big question is if I am fit enough to return back to work, this will be decided over the coming weeks by my employers, I feel I am and have still got loads to offer.

Christmas was a quiet but busy time, I saw all my children and their partners, Father Christmas arrived on time, with a lot of help from Amazon Prime. Stress levels were quite high at times but unbelievably the tree and decorations stayed up till twelfth night.

I have occupied myself by setting up my train sets again and am pleased to say one of the sets is fully functional again for the first time in 4 years.

The next few weeks are going to be both very anxious and stressful for me as I try and determine what route the remainder of my life will take. I am sure whatever the outcome we will make it work and adapt accordingly, all I ask is to be treated like Andy Hill and not Andy that has had a stroke.

In most ways I am as I was if not just a little slower but still faster than most.

I trust 2018 is both prosperous and rewarding for you all but remember to work to live and not live to work.

A

By Andrew Hill 16 Dec, 2017
Well let's have a go at capturing the events of the last few weeks, when i have neglected my duty as a blog composer.
On the medical front I have had numerous appointments, whilst the professionals are very talented people i believe there is a conspiracy going on. My reason for thinking this is quite simple, it does not matter which member of the caring profession it is they all have the same message, which is:
You are doing marvelously well, such determination (I can take this praise)
You must slow down and soften your goals / ambitions
Rest more.
Do not be so hard on yourself.
And in fairness this is just what friends and the amazing Mrs Hill have been saying as well.
Over the last few weeks I have discovered more of the extent of what happened on that awful night in September, I must be one of the luckiest people around to be where I am now after a short period of time, I could so easily, at best be paralysed or worse. This puts everything into perspective especially when i get despondent about a bit of Fatigue.
I have a few important appointments in the next few weeks but with a fair wind, I am aiming to be able to return to work in some capacity sometime in January.  Lots of debate still to be had on what that capacity actually is but whatever it is will be  a major milestone in the rest of my life.
On a non-medical front, Siôn & Siàn came to stay for a couple of days which was great.  She is quite obviously pregnant now.
I have been pottering  around doing bits around the house and on the computer, trying to manage my energy with some elements of success. 
I am in fact bored to tears!  And for those of you that know me well, you will be staggered to know not only have we got a Christmas tree (see pic) but all Christmas cards are written and sent (if you don't receive one in the next few days, tough!) and all presents ordered and delivered (thank you Amazon!), with still more than a week to go.  What is worse, I find myself listening to Christmas music around the house on the newly set up revised sound system.  I think this stroke I've had has done a lot more damage than the medical teams are prepared to tell me ;-) 
Phillip (step-son) appears to have buckled down at school and got both a good report and good feedback at parents' evening.  
Laura (step-daughter) has obtained a part-time job at Next which is already offering substantially increased hours.  She also managed to obtain a musical bursary from the local church choir which we can spend on enhancing her musical coaching.  She also managed to get Distinction in Grade 8 screeching (sorry, singing).
I will be seeing Liam & Kirsty along with their respective partners over the festive period which will be very nice. 
Apart from that we have nothing really planned except more rest for myself. 
That's all for now.  Have fun and remember that Christmas is a time for family and friends and you never know when this opportunity may be taken from you, so enjoy it while you are able.
A


By Andrew Hill 26 Nov, 2017
Hi
A very strange week
Took days to recover from my London adventure last weekend that just proved to me i am not as advanced in my recovery as I thought.
Had a visit from the nurse on Monday when i was not at my best but she was very pleased with me, Had a full blown assessment on Wednesday which went very well and i am on target for all my goals.
I have done very little this week but relax and catch up.
It was Avelia's birthday on Friday, I am not allowed to say how old but think of Heinz, we went out for a nice lunch on Thursday on our own and then we all went for a Pizza on Friday teatime, gosh I spoil them.
I have had no visitors this week but we did nip to Jill and Jim's last night which was very nice,
Only a very few messages as well this week which is a shame as I enjoy getting messages.
Started to set up my train set as I think this will be very therapeutic going forward.
The football was anything but enthralling this week so all in all quite a dull week
early to bed for me today and lets hope the coming week is a bit more entertaining than the last one
A

By Andrew Hill 18 Nov, 2017

Hi, better late than never….

Yesterday was a funny day, I slept till 9.30 then had breakfast and slowly loaded the car with loads of rubbish for the tip. It took ages and nearly killed me, good job the boss was at work.

Back inside for a quick rest then on PC for half an hour before I made a sandwich and then bed for a couple of hours.

I was rudely awakened by the sound of a trumpet lesson downstairs, then Avelia took me to hospital via the tip, perhaps she should have disposed of me there, to hand my heart monitor back in.

Home for a nice tea, then watch an hours TV with Mrs H, then it was bed for me.

I am still improving on the tiredness front but by golly it is taking some managing but still feel confident about my time line with respect to getting back to work. Sorry guys I will be back.

It is very difficult as when I get up in a morning, I feel like a fraud and that I should be at work, but by 11.00 am I am totally knackered having done little. But I am on the mend that is the main thing.

Today is an important one for me as we have a long standing invitation to a 70th Birthday party, whilst I am aware I can’t go for long, I am determined to show my face, this will be hard as it is an evening thing and I am normally in bed before it starts, so I will be going to bed this afternoon just to give myself a fighting chance, I hope it comes off as it will be another milestone achieved as it will involve the use of public transport.

3 months ago, I could not begin to imagine that these things. that we all take for granted, would become such important challenges to me.

Avelia is teaching this morning and Laura has got a trial shift at Next, do they really know what they are getting, she will do very well if she puts her heart in to it, which I am sure she will. But they don’t do clothes my size so what use is their staff discount though she does see it as a major plus.

What I would give to be that age again.

This morning, I am going to potter and measure for some new blinds for the conservatory windows and then we will have totally eradicated the “Gothic” look in there that was left by the previous owners…

I am really missing interaction with people and can’t wait to continue my rehabilitation which hopefully, after a very busy medical week, next week,  will involve me introducing this knackered body back into a bit of public life. I just have to get rid of my self conciseness that I do not appear normal, if I ever was, as the left hand side of my face is still numb and has dropped a little, it is worse when tired, also I tend to shuffle a bit, again when tired. I know very minor things, but these are the things that are on my mind, they will hopefully continue to improve. When very tired I occasionally also dribble slightly from the LHS of my mouth, I suppose this is just like a normal Saturday night for most people.

Hope you all have a great weekend.

A

By Andrew Hill 16 Nov, 2017
Hi
A good day all in all, but not a lot to report.
Some very kind comments and messages from a wide variety of people after last nights blog, thank you.
Up early undid all the wires attached to my body and got showered, miraculously i got them all back in the correct places so looks like I wont get shouted at tomorrow at hospital. Came down had breakfast then started messing about on the pc and doing yet more DVD's, Then started on setting the hardware up so I can stream the DVD's around the whole house. I must be so bored.
Our friend Jill came for coffee which was great and we discussed all things teenagers and compared different methods of discipline, I personally still think flogging is the best.
Avelia and I then nipped into Leighton Buzzard for a couple of errands and picked up a sandwich for lunch.
After that it was more messing about and then a former work colleague, Phil Alexander, came to see me, It was great to see him and catch up on the old times and people past and present. Yes Mr Phil Sharp you were discussed at length...
Thanks Phil A for making the effort to call it was a very nice afternoon

A quick snack tea and I am sad to say that two visitors in one day has tired me out.
A

By Andrew Hill 15 Nov, 2017
Hi
Apologies for the break in blogs but I needed a rest as it was becoming a little stressful finding things to include.
However here is a quick catch up.
Sunday saw the  children go to their dad's, Avelia played the last post at the local church, I am totally amazed that no one from the church discussed with her when to play etc and that no one talked to her, I suspect she will not be as ready to do it again next year, manners cost nothing. When she returned we went  out for lunch, the food was excellent but we were surrounded by screaming children that did not do my blood pressure any good, there was also a Christmas fair on which was very poor if I could even get interested, Christmas does not start in my view until December 24th, but most of you know that I am the original Scrooge.
Monday saw a visit from Ian, from work, in a formal capacity as well as that of a true friend. We discussed my route back to work and agreed timescales and actions etc, it was good to have the discussion just amazed it has taken so long for any formal contact. 
A huge Tesco shop was delivered in the afternoon which took some considerable time to put away.
On both of these days i did little else but rest and go to bed early. I am still improving daily but not at the pace of the last month which is understandable, I have just got to come to terms with it.
Yesterday was a very big day for me, I had a hospital appointment to have a heart activity monitor fitted, this was funny as the first monitor they fitted would not recognise the heart  (No comment required)
 The device is painless just uncomfortable with wires dangling down my chest especially when sleeping. I have this on until Friday.
After this we went out for a snack at a local garden centre again more Christmas stuff.
Then home and a walk to the Dr's to pick up my prescription then to the chemist and back home.
By which time I was absolutely shattered, so it was early to bed again.
Up sharpish this morning did a few bits and bobs around the house and spent some more time on the DVD's, then into the garage to finally finish off the tidy etc, though I say it myself it is immaculate and now looks like a true workshop, I think I will invite a few friends round and have a formal opening ceremony.
I have mentioned the husband of one of Avelia's friends before, John S, he has a great knack of recognising when I am down / struggling and always send a simple but very appropriate message, He was spot on again yesterday with his timing, thank you John.
My children have been anxious over my recent mood but very funny with it, Kirsty, utter concern and sympathy, Siôn again utter concern but with the attitude of "you have had a major incident it will take time, deal with it", he is of course correct, I do wish all three of them were nearer.
Avelia continues to be a star especially as she had had a terrible heavy cold.
I made a sausage casserole for tea which seemed to go down well.
That just about brings you back up to date.
A
By Andrew Hill 11 Nov, 2017
A poor nights sleep, but then I had slept most the afternoon.
Came downstairs about 7.30 am, and decided it was time to strip the computer down put an extra card in it and then add the additional storage disk in it that it so desperately needed. Took the side of the unit and wondered whether I was being sensible when you see all the neat delicate parts that make it work and I am about to perform "open Heart" surgery on it with shovel like hands... Then the dilemma, is that card fully pushed in or should I push harder etc.
Anyway 30 mins later, no swearing cover back on, Boot up PC and all is well it has found the new drive and I have loads of available space again. I am a genius.
Then it is a discussion with Mrs H, not heated but definitely quite warm, I want my hair cutting, I kook like a scarecrow, The barbers is 300 yards from home, I want to go on my own, she wants to come with me.
I say a 57 year old having to go to the barbers with his wife., is not correct. After much discussion I go alone, I get my hair cut and get home in one piece albeit my legs did feel just a bit weak on the way home. That must make me a big boy now.
Spent a bit of time trying to sort out more bits of Mrs. H's website, getting there slowly and so far she has done a great job.
Then there was the usual 30 mins of children madness which as always was avoidable.
Bed then for an hour or so whilst Avelia went for a walk to "get some fresh air" I think this really means get away from me.
Whilst in bed the phone goes and it is our friend Jim who is warning me he is on his way to see me, a good hour spent chatting with Jim then Avelia is off to hear Laura in a concert.
I spend half an hour pottering and completing this for today
A

By Andrew Hill 10 Nov, 2017
Well up again nice and early did nothing really till the children had gone to school and Mrs H to work.
Then proceeded to change the handle set on the bathroom door.
This would normally take 15 mins tops, it took at least two hours today but the result is good.
Spent most last night trawling Google about symptoms / after effects etc and whilst my findings explain a lot it also tells me i have made phenomenal progress thus far, I still have a fair way to go and it is unlikely to be at the pace of the last few weeks.
Still I have so much to be thankful for as I have been spared any major lasting disability.
At the risk of repeating myself I find it amazing at how soon I tire, I wake with all the energy I had six months ago and by 10.00 am I am shattered.
I  went to bed around midday today and Mrs H woke me to say that a family friend was coming to see me, it was then I realised it was 3.00 pm. Keith popped round for about an hour, it is about 4 weeks since he saw me, and it was good he commented on my improvement.
I have been pottering on the PC ripping more DVD's and my full "Only Fools and Horses" collection is now digital. still days of work to complete the entire collection of DVD's, at least it does not stretch me. the new Hard Disk to enable me to complete the task arrived today so I guess that might just be the weekend's challenge to install that without breaking the PC.
Siôn and Siân moved out of their house today into a flat in Walton Le Dale (Preston) whilst they wait for their new house to be finished. poor Siân well pregnant and all this upheaval. They are worse than I was when I first got on the property ladder this is their 5th house / flat in 6 years. it is good to see them having a goal in life and he is very much like his Dad, he has an idea and just goes for it, just very sad I was unable to help on this occasion.
Again some nice messages from people over the last 48 hours, it is amazing who does message and the people that you thought might have kept in touch have infact stayed away (no criticism they probably find the situation difficult or do not wish to appear to be putting pressure on me by keeping in touch).
I had a questionnaire from the NHS today asking me for my opinion on the Early discharge support team, This must be the first survey that I gave top marks to all questions and can honestly say money could not buy their care / knowledge and patience, very well deserved especially as those that know me well would agree that I can be a tad awkward at times.
I can tell I am getting better as I am going stir crazy at times with boredom where as I few weeks ago I could just sit / lie down and look at the four walls for as long as i wanted.
Well at least there is no football on this weekend so I should be able to have a good go at managing my stress levels.
Interesting, on speaking to my children this week, as you may be aware the oldest and the youngest are both school teachers and this week is the first week back since half term, both have said, " only 6 weeks till we break up again" It must be great to love your job...
Avelia has taken Laura for an interview / chat at the local Parish church and on the way back is getting me chips and curry for tea, please do not tell the health professionals as I would be in severe trouble.
When  I have fully recovered, I need to treat Mrs H, she has been amazing these last 8 weeks and I am 100% sure I would have given up the fight but for her, she still has the trials and tribulations of 2 teenage children to contest with as well as me and I have been Known to be a bit obtuse occasionally.
Well it's weekend so cherish the time with your loved ones, remember that time is precious.
All for now
A.
By Andrew Hill 08 Nov, 2017
Again up very early, but all was well, Did quite a few jobs around the house, and then spent some considerable time ripping DVD's on to the Home network
Also spent a long time trying to establish best way of upgrading my PC with minimum fuss. Did not make a decision, which is most unlike me as I usually  have an idea and just go for it, not sure I like having this different approach to life and the extra time to think first.
A fantastic email last night from Paul S, really thoughtful and great to  have an update from him.
Had a shower around lunchtime then made some lunch as Avelia had deserted me and I had to fend for myself
A bit of housework and then it was more time on the DVD's before a lie down for an hour, Yes Ms Wardle I do listen.
A nice rest and then a visit from Paul Mc from work which was an hour very well spent and left me in good spirits.
Avelia returned just as Paul was leaving so I started making tea as she was teaching again later.
A nice lamb mince with rice and veg, then a quick game of FIFA with Phillip ( i am still totally useless at this game)
Now it is time for bed. again I am tired and whilst not appearing to have done much I have not stopped all day.
All in all a good day and I am putting my head on my pillow tonight well back on track to beat anything that this life can throw at me.
keep the messages coming they really do help me.
Thanks

By Andrew Hill 07 Nov, 2017
Don't think I have ever felt so tired as I do this evening, and today is is a different kind of tiredness, IE physical / joint weakness as opposed to the usual total exhaustion I have been experiencing. At least I am beginning to understand my body and how it is behaving.
Started by an early rise breakfast and empty the dishwasher etc
Then on the computer for a while.
I have started to rip all my DVD's, I think it is going to be a very big job, 10 done 405 to go also I have discovered the software I downloaded on Sunday to rip the DVD's is an illegal copy, and the vendor is refusing to refund my money, he has obviously  not come across Mr Hill before, but I am sure he will see the error of his ways. All for £20 but it is the principle , the site is Gamers247, so be warned.
Helped Avelia get some winter clothes out of the attic then assembled a very small workbench.
Took Avelia into Leighton Buzzard for lunch, and stopped at Homebase and Tesco on the way home.
Back home for a little pottering in the garage and on the computer then some tea nad now I think I ouhgjt to listen to my body and the boss (Mrs H) and go to bed,
Nite.
A
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