Wednesday, 9 December 2020

Still Counting

December 2020:  still counting

When she read my last blog, my wife, Lorraine, complained that I should call it not “Living with heart failure”, but “Gardening with heart failure.”    Fair comment, will try to do better. My message was :  with heart  failure you could still do important things you always did, you just had to learn how to do them m differently and more slowly.

            One way I do things differently and more slowly is climbing stairs.  I could do this, but my, it was hard work, and a long period of shortness of breath awaited me at  the top.  So I took the plunge and bought a stair lift.  Not as straightforward as I expected.  I tried a local company; they had  good salesman, but what a price!  Tried a different one, another great sales spiel, quoted the best part of  £4,000, for a straight stair lift, without  problems.  Tried a third, decided to haggle hard.  Eventually got an offer for just over £2,000, from a reputable firm.  Accepted this as so much better than the other offers, though I suspect I could have got a better deal if I had persisted, though doubtless sacrificing some quality and reliability.  Still I have had a year’s use of the stair lift, not a hint of trouble;  costly but I am so glad we bought it. 

            The vaccine has brought welcome hope towards the end of a difficult year.  Being over 85 and “clinically extremely vulnerable” is sobering, but a small consolation is we shall be among first to receive the vaccine.   A  lot of patience is required, and a lot more hibernation, but there is the prospect of a holiday and most important, seeing my lovely family again – and the opportunity to catch up on long overdue hugs. 

            So, another year, a difficult, often depressing year, has gone by.  I am a little more breathless on exertion, a little slower, more easily fatigued, but still going, more or less independent, and still COUNTING. 


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