Sunday, 20 October 2019

Discovering new skills

These past two and half weeks I have had to teach myself to be patient. This is definitely not one of my strengths and even typing this one handed is testing my patience! But above all I now have a new respect for others, especially amputees. Two and a half weeks ago I had a thumb reconstruction which turned out to be more than that as the surgeon discovered a radial nerve neuroma that had to be removed as well. Having already had surgery on both my shoulders I was prepared for some discomfort, but I have to say this has been right up there on the pain scale! But messages and visits from family and friends has been lovely and the flowers always bring a smile......
 We even had little Wade helping with the chores I have not managed to is such a delight when they enjoy the mundane things in life at this age!.......

When I had the first cast taken off just over a week ago I was shocked by the length of the wound down my thumb into the wrist but I've 'softened' the image so it is less gruesome (!!), and I now have a lovely blue cast for 3 more weeks instead.....
 But my goodness the respect I have for those who have lost the use of their arms or hands is immeasurable! Try putting the back of your earring on with one hand....and why are some buttons on shirts so jolly tiny??!! But for me it is temporary but poor Larry is having to do little Wade's nappy changes, pick him up and generally do it all.......and for a few more weeks yet!.....
 Beau and Maisie continue to grow so very fast too. Beau did well at his recent grading test.......
and during the holidays Maisie was responsible for caring for the kindy stick insects including hunting for the right leaves to eat..........
 As I discover new ways of performing everyday tasks with one hand I have a sense of frustration as I am missing my stitching so much.....the irony of all that is that using one's hands is probably what caused all the problems in the first place! But the front garden is now full of spring colour and we can't wait to see the rose arch in full bloom very soon......

 It is funny how being stopped in your tracks makes you spend more time thinking. For the last year or so we've been contemplating a house move looking for a slower pace of life. We spent 26 years in one home and have had two moves in the last 8 years.....this time in our current home for almost six of those eight. I've been obsessively watching the real estate and we've done lots of trips looking, but yesterday we came to realise the cost of moving and getting the same beautiful home we have now would not be financially sound. While we may not have the best postcode or the nicest street we have spent so much on this current home with new furnishings, an outdoor pergola and the garden has been transformed to make it "ours". We love our current home and we've seen nothing in comparison that would not give us more debt and when one reaches their mid 60's maybe it is time to rethink.......

 So while enjoying a coffee outside yesterday Larry and I made a big decision to just stay put. The money it would cost to move (especially the costly stamp duty), could be used to update the 10 year old kitchen and maybe even some double glazing might block out the traffic, the barking dogs and some of the neighbourhood noise! There are so many little rambling corners out the back that we would miss and packing it all up and starting again did fill us with dread......

and we need to see a few mores seasons of growth on the ornamental pears!....
 So I am sorry to those friends who thought we were coming to live closer (Rosie, Penny, Mandy!)...we are only 40 minutes away! Before my surgery I knew I had to finished Wade's 2nd birthday quilt and I am so pleased I did as his birthday is just 10 days away. I used a quilt as you go method and appliqu├ęd all the circles by machine through all the layers (and I did not need to fuse them), and then enjoyed hand quilting more circles in a variegated thread (I can't wait to get back to that!) It is an 'I spy' quilt full of all the things Wade loves and is reversible with a panel on the back.....

 While speaking of quilts I was touched to receive an email recently from Bronwyn in New Zealand with a photo of a version of my 'Dublin' pattern that she enlarged and made into a quilt for her daughter and son in law who live in Sydney. What a fabulous quilt and I hope the new owners are happy.....thankyou for sharing it Bronwyn x
I hope it is not another 3 weeks before I manage to get to the blog again.....I guess by then I might have more than one hand working.....and maybe the brain might be working a little better too following this little story - I've been visiting the hairdresser more often than usual (because one of the things I can't do well is my hair!!), and during the week we got all the way there and I discovered I still had my slippers on!!! How jolly embarrassing but I am always good for a laugh and maybe if I tap those heels together Dorothy might take me to her Wizard of Oz and speed up my healing! Take care x


  1. so sorry for that cast being on for awhile yet! it looks so painful. I totally understand your decision to not move - it is so costly and when one gets in their mid 60's to take on more debt because of a house is just not always feasible. I know someone in their mid 70's that just sold their house and bought a much larger home and really I think it was crazy - but then maybe they have a lot more money than I know of - I can't even think of taking on a larger mortgage with being retired and have to be content to be where we are. I do hope your hand heals soon and will be working just fine after therapy is done - best wishes to you

  2. dearest Michele, wishing you a speedy recovery, as you will be sewing and creating very soon.
    love the story of the "ruby slippers"..which certainly do not look out of place with your snazzy pants!!

  3. I always love that you can find the silver lining in discomfort and pain Michele. Your outlook is so practical and grounded. My 30yo kitchen doesn’t have all the magic new fittings but I make it work. I accept that as things age, sometimes it is easier to go with it or to adapt it to suit. I shut bedroom doors in my rambling old house. I don’t clean them; they’re closed till needed( except to store quilt overflow stuff) but I’m a firm believer like you, that at some point we need to appreciate the beautiful things around us and accept what We cannot change. Your houses Michele are always home once you settle in, decorate and garden and your photos are gorgeous... William would be proud of the beauty and function you select for use your home. When you stop looking for something better, or updating and improving; to live in the moment, then the little things, like waiting for the rose arch to bloom.... and being there to enjoy it, becomes important and is a secret I believe of being content. I have to turn off wifi to do that and discipline myself! A week in the Flinders ranges recently reminded me so well that I lose hours of my life “looking” on the internet. Your children and grandchildren are blessed to live nearby; something that money can’t buy and something that we don’t and probably won’t have. But accepting the inevitible and hugging Larry that bit tighter is a reminder that whatever address or mansion or friendship group you have, that it is worth nothing if the heart is lonely or unhappy. Fall asleep in that gorgeous wicker garden chair and soak up the sun. Before long, the hand will recover, you’ll be back to scrubbing the wc, hanging out washing. Doing the bills and yearning for a quick sun drenched nap. I’m good for a coffee, visit or whatever, but know you are surrounded by so many friends. Francie and I took Jan to the art gallery on Friday, to compensate for her not visiting. Hugs Julie
    I have

  4. Great post Michele, and great thinking process. Ditto to everything Julie has said so well above. xxxx

  5. Hi Michelle as always your blog is a pleasure to read.
    Even the icky part.
    I was an orthopedic RN in a private practice for 8 years (in a life so long ago) and I know wounds and surgery etc. You have been suffering. I think our hands are so important in our lives. I know you are grateful for every little thing now. Even writing this blog must have been difficult, but maybe also a joy for the progress.
    Grand children are a blessing. Yours are adorable. I have 4 grand girls and they make us happy.
    Very well thought out contemplations on the move. Hubbs and I are in the same "boat" except we do not really love our house. haha. But, it is the "big house" from raising the kiddos, and the layout and everything about it is so practical. Right now, it needs a handful of repair work (roof, driveway, some structural ailments) but we will sit tight. My daddy is 95 and I moved him and mom all the way over here from Annapolis Maryland (I am in Northern Virginia, far west of the cesspool) and now I am taking care of my sweet daddy. Life has been bumpy but we are close and that is what is really the best. Family and friends
    God Bless you dear friend

  6. Good luck with the slow recovery Michele, such a pity that it is still painful, I do hope that improves quickly. Moving house is such a expensive upheaval I completely understand your big decision. Especially if the house is going to suit you as you "age in place"....sorry I know its not a fun subject but as a nurse you know the reality of how it goes! I think staying and enjoying the beautiful home you have created is a great idea and double glazing will definitely help with some of the noise. Otherwise you might want to look up the local by laws on barking dogs...tedious but all the neighbours will be thinking the same thing!

  7. Oh Michele. How awful for you. Hope you heal well and get back to your wonderful stitching soon.

  8. I was so sad when I saw your arm and heard of the surgery. God Bless You in recovery and you will be back at quilting and enjoying those grandchildren in no time. That is my prayer for you. Your house is lovely.
    I don't have barking dogs but crowing roosters no matter what the time is.
    Love, Margaret in Texas

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Thankyou for dropping by and sharing in my journey. And thanks especially for your lovely comments….I may not always respond (especially if there is no email address) but please know you are appreciated x