During the last year, I've talked a lot about my experiences, what I've had to face and my recovery. But the side of the story that isn't told in this blog is that of my wife's. She isn't really that bothered about telling it either, blogging wouldn't be her style and in fact we haven't spoken that often about how she felt during the period of a year ago. So unless Deb decides otherwise, her story will remain largely untold.
It is all too easily overlooked how our loved ones cope with a worrying situation like ours, that they have to just get on with life and still do the things that need doing. Deb is certainly someone who does "just get on" with stuff. On reflection, the person affected, having the operation, being in hospital has somewhat of an easier deal....or at least that is the way I'm looking at it now. I was the one with all the different things happening, things to take my mind off what was about to happen. I lay in a hospital bed with all sorts of unusual things happening, blood tests, xray's, ECG's, blood pressure, life in a busy hospital ward (D Neuro)....not very pleasant in the moment, but a diversion away from what was coming up (an operation). But my wife, sat at home on her own with our dog for company, still needing to cook meals, go to work and run the house but all the time knowing a loved one is not well and that can't have been easy. We have talked about her point of view of the whole thing, and in some ways it was very different to mine. She could see how worried I was, of course I was trying to hide it...a pointless task trying to hide emotions from a loved one, it never works. Then the 2nd time I was in hospital when I was arguably a lot more ill than after my operation - that time I had no clue how ill I was, because of course I was pretty ill! Deb however saw in graphic detail just how ill I was and having chatted a bit about it, it was clear how frightening it was for her. I regret not having paid more attention at the time, but it's done and dusted now and it all worked out in the end.
Today was another anniversary, the day the Wessex Neuro Surgery department in Southampton general hospital rang me up and "invited" me to go for surgery. We had a busy day in the garden on the 25th May 2013, it was a bank holiday weekend, and the weather was lovely. We had grand plans to turn the garden around, we had been a bit behind sorting things for one reason or another. We were sat watching telly having had the traditional Saturday evening pizza dinner when the phone rang. It was a Southampton number and the first thing that popped into my head, was "it's the hospital". I don't know why I thought that, because I had no reason to, but I think I just knew. I didn't realise they were going to say "come in tomorrow", I was thinking more along the lines of "you've been referred to us by Dr Kar in Portsmouth, come in for an appointment to see the surgeon and discuss"....but of course they were highly unlikely to do that on a Saturday evening were they! So sitting there dazed and confused on a bank holiday Saturday evening, it dawned upon us both that I was going to have an operation, my very first operation. My very first brain operation on my very first tumour.