Day to day musings of a cat minder/ sitter in North Tyneside and Newcastle upon Tyne . For details of services go to http://www.catminders.biz

Welcome to CatMinders

Welcome to CatMinders

Sunday, 20 December 2009

Sanctuary Weekend ..Not quite

Friday morning ... wake spookily early . Interesting shapes in the room- little overnight bags half packed- we are off at lunchtime to Ambleside in the Lakes for a weekend of luxury in a cottage on a hill with log burning stove , several large bedrooms and a huge garden . Alice is coming too though under strict instructions not to sleep on the beds or climb about on the sofas. Greycotes, Ambleside - a stunning holiday cottage in the heart of the English. I will finish my Christmas shopping , or , in some cases , start it . And , there is more . D has booked me , Nat and her friend into a spa for the day on Saturday . We have chosen our treatments . All we need to do is wake up on time . Day Spas Lake District, Day Spa Cumbria, Health Spas Lake District, Spa Day Pa

Why then am I awake so early ? D is sitting bolt upright in bed and looks unhappy . He is hunching forwards . To cut a long story short , after an hour or so , I am clad in bathrobe , dripping wet , hair wrapped in towel , and he is not arguing when I suggest calling an ambulance . This cannot be happening . I say to myself . " Dialling now . I am dialling 999 " And it is true , I am now dialling 999 and I notice from some other part of my being that on my mobile phone as I dial 999 a little red ambulance appears on the screen . How fascinating is that ?
A man asks me a lot of questions and wants to speak to the patient who is now out of action . We follow his instructions and Nathalia mixes aspirin in the kitchen and we open the front door to the ambulance crew. Again I watch from afar as they press against the staircase as Alice bounds past them . These are people who have been bitten by dogs , I think to myself . She is friendly , I say . they press on , to look for the patient .
They lead him to the ambulance and suddenly , he is gone .
I dress . Nathalia fills my bag with water , a kit kat , hands me D's coat , and tells me she will take care of the dog . How did she know about the water and the kit kat ? Many hours later , I am overcome with gratitude.
I drive slowly to the hospital , assuming I will find him cross in A and E , keen to get off for the weekend .
I look around for him and am ushered through to the admissions suite .
I announce my name . I am shown to the Relatives Room, where the doctor will come and find me . I sit . Nothing . Ten minutes elapses. I stare into space . I start to wonder . I stand and begin to wander out into the area beyond . I do not want to be in the Relatives Room . I want to see him and to be on our way thank you . I want this to be over . It was me who suggested coming here , maybe I made a mistake and I should have let him stay at home ? I want to see him now .. why I am diverted to this room ?

The doctor appears and asks me to follow her and fires questions at me ... I am led through into a Rescuscitation room . I feel slightly odd myself when I see him . He is on a trolley hunched forward , not the same person I last saw at home . I am asked " Is this how he usually looks ? Is this his usual colour ? "
Not at all , I say ... he is far paler . Someone brings me a chair quickly but I dont sit . They are trying to manipulate his veins but to no avail . Many tests are done.
We are there from 8 am until 4pm . He is seen by four consultants . The diagnoses change by the hour . Morphine does not seem to help with his pain . It is hard to watch , hard for me to witness , unbearable for him to suffer and a challenge for the medics who cannot work out what is going on .
Eventually he is moved to an Emergency Care Unit .
Still in pain . Still not much further forwards as regards a diagnosis .
But we have seen the NHS at its best in mobilising tests and in the levels of care offered by staff .

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