For a week now. I didn’t want to arrive with a drumroll, because I couldn’t believe I would really make it home. The Persian doctor (I am just guessing that he is Persian, he never told me) returned from his holidays. While he and Professor Kotz had been away, a very kind doctor had seen me daily. But the kind doctor had not been present at my operation and so was unwilling to come to conclusive decisions about how I was doing. What he could see was that after my second operation, my wound was weeping a lot. Which raised the possibility of infection. I was given two types of antibiotic to be on the safe side. We met daily and each day he dressed my wound. My wound was not visibly healing, it was getting no worse, but the lack of visible progress was a concern.
And then the Persian doctor returned and saw me immediately. Telling me, with a smile, a week ago today “You can dress the wound at home and you have enough experience to notice if it is getting worse. If it does, call me and come back. If it starts to improve, say so, because we want to know.”
It is exactly a week since I arrived home. I broke my journey in Budapest and arrived home at night to hear the snuffle of sleeping children. I slipped in and collapsed gratefully into a bed that smelt of home. The next morning brought school and nursery and so I was on waking up duty. My children hugged me gently and excitedly admired the strange new pillow that supports my arm. All was well. All is well.
I am on antibiotics and slowly pushing my boundaries back into normality – my normality. At the moment my wound is not weeping, but this blissful state is fragile, I know it can change from one day to the next and I must be ready for that.
I would like to share two beautiful things:
One is this picture, painted and donated to my appeal by Andrea Bánffi-Benedek,which hangs on my wall to remind me of all of you who have enveloped me in love and care over these last weeks.
The other is an exchange of emails with a doctor from the AKH. A week ago on Sunday while I was waiting at the Wiener Privatklinik for my dressing to be changed, in breezed a doctor so full of life and energy. She was in a hurry and it took me a moment to place her familiar face in the unexpected surroundings of the Wiener Privatklinik, but then it clicked. I sent her an email to say how grateful I had been for all that she had done for me. She operated on me once under local anaesthetic and I found the experience moving and uplifting. (I know that sounds strange.) I thanked her for that. And yesterday, she replied: I should let her know when I am next in Vienna. We should meet. She would like to discuss if there is any other way she can help me. I was touched. I had thought that IF she replied it would be to thank me for my kind words. That she suggested not only that we meet, but that she would like to discuss whether she can help me was an unexpected blessing.