Tuesday, May 05, 2009

May 5, 2009

I can hardly believe this is my 200th post on Charlie's blog! How time flies. It's mad to think that he was only two and a half when I started writing, just over three years ago.
Not much news really - we had a lazy Bank Holiday weekend, and Charlie enjoyed pottering around the house and garden. I'm attaching a pic of him on his new swing, just to add a bit of colour!

We should have a busy few weeks ahead - Mum and Dad's move is STILL imminent (You know what they say about 'a watched kettle never boils'? I think the same principle applies to solicitors and estate agents.) Everything seems to be going pretty slowly, but things are still moving, so hopefully it shouldn't be too long now - especially because Dad is back at the hospital on the 12th to find out what's happening next.

Charlie has a number of birthday parties coming up, plus we should be going to a Children's Heart Federation event up in Birmingham later this month. Among other things, they're organising a sports day for heart kids, which should be great - Charlie will be able to join in with sports with other children who get a bit puffed like he does, so the races will all be at a pace he can cope with.
He's very philosophical about his limitations when it comes to exercise, (I keep telling him that I've always been rubbish at sports, and I've got all four chambers of my heart!) but it'll be nice for him to have some experience of team sports without feeling that he can't keep up.

Then it's half-term at the end of the month (I'm liking all these holidays so close together!) and then a week or so later, we're off on our hols!

There was a big feature about Charlie and Little Hearts Matter in our local magazine this month, which was nice.
The lady who publishes the magazine lives in our road, and wanted to give a full-page feature to LHM... with Charlie and Pete as the local angle!
She's a very kind lady, and has already donated the profits from a number of events she has organised to LHM. I've scanned the page in, so if you click on the picture you should just about be able to read it!

Charlie is due for his usual outpatient check-up at the hospital here in Cardiff sometime this month, although we haven't had the letter to tell us when the appointment is yet.

He's doing brilliantly at the moment, but I always start feeling a bit sick in the run-up to his appointments... more so now that his Fontan surgery is getting ever closer. We still have no idea when the surgery will be, but I imagine it won't be much longer before we have some more information. Part of me thinks it will be easier once we know, so we can start planning, but a bigger part of me doesn't want to know at all, so I can keep burying my head in the sand and pretending it's not happening.

Chas knows he'll be having his heart fixed again before too long, and is remarkably ok about the whole idea. He asked me yesterday how long he'd be staying in hospital, and was unphased when I said it would probably be a few weeks. He was also pointing out where his heart is, and was asking me why his scar runs down the middle of his chest, rather than over the top of his heart. I explained that the middle of his chest is easier for the doctors to get into because of how his ribs grow, and he was quite happy with that.

We've always been very honest with Chas about what the doctors will do, and what will happen when he's in hospital.
However, when he asked me exactly how the doctors will open his chest, I have to admit that I felt total honesty wasn't the best policy, as the thought of scalpels and such bring me out in a cold sweat - never mind a bright five-year-old.
So we've just told him that his scar is like a special zip, and that only doctors know how to open it with their special tools. Because, as Charlie told me, 'If everyone knew how to unzip my chest, I'd be walking around with my heart and my lungs hanging out all the time!' (Oh the joys of a child who knows all about internal organs!! Heaven help me when we hit the 'birds and bees' talk!)
He asked if the doctors had to take his heart out to fix it, and I said no, they'll just add a few new bits of piping to make it work differently, and more efficiently. 'Oh, I see,' says Charlie, 'Kind of like mending a radiator then.'
Out of the mouths of babes, eh! Needless to say, I'll keep all of you bloggy friends updated as soon as we have any news.

I think I've mentioned before that our neighbour, who's a nurse, brought a load of 'proper' hospital equipment for Charlie to play with before he had his cardiac catheter last year. So he's got dressings, syringes, canulas, latex gloves, blood phials and an oxygen mask, amongst other things in his toy medical kit.

He was playing with his medical stuff the other day, and pulled out the oxygen mask - 'Wow, look at this!' he said. 'It's just like John Lumic's! I can wear this and be like the Cyber Controller!' (For the uninitiated among you, John Lumic is the character in Dr Who who made the Cybermen, who also wears an oxygen mask!)

Although this made Pete and me laugh, I have to admit that I'm grateful for anything that can turn Charlie's hospital experience into something even vaguely positive. If I can encourage him to keep an oxygen mask on by telling him he looks like John Lumic, you can bet I'll be doing it!

Talking of Cybermen - just wait until you see the fancy dress costume Charlie's wearing to his friend's party on Saturday! Pictures will be forthcoming!!
Back soon.

PS I've put a new widget on the sidebar for 'followers' (it's down at the bottom on the right hand side) This lets Charlie know who's reading his blog... and you know how much he likes to know who's visiting! Also, if you have your own blog, and sign up to 'follow' Charlie's, it means any new updates will appear in your Blogger Dashboard (or Google Reader) so you'll get a heads-up when he's got something new to tell you! So why not click on the widget and sign up to follow Charlie-boy's blog - he's a bit miffed that it only looks like he's got two friends so far!

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