Tralee Life Life In An Irish Town


The Current Normal

This Sunday has been a lazy one. Not that we got up late or anything or even that the weather has been such that you wouldn’t venture out. No, just a lazy Sunday afternoon in springtime. Freddie sitting up on his mother’s lap, hands under the chin, right hand supporting the chin, left hand supporting the right. A typical Freddie pose.


After lunch, which wasn’t that long after a big breakfast, Freddie decided he wanted a nap. This used to be a regular thing, in fact during some bad periods, he’d spend more time napping than awake, the poor man. Friday afternoon he looked for one for the first time in a long time and we just presumed that a seizure was on its way. He wasn’t showing any signs of the aura he usually gets with the onset of a seizure such as ‘the confusion’ or ‘feeling dizzy’ which are the usual indicators. Friday was a big day as it marked two seeks since the last seizure. It has been a fortnight completely free of anything, no jitters, no jerks, no frontal lobe five seconders, no nothing. So when he felt tired during the day, actually twice during the day, we feared the worst. But thankfully, nothing happened, he just had two little snoozes and carried on as normal.


Much to our relief.


The same happened yesterday, no ill effects and we got through the day. However, at about 6.30pm he told me he needed to lie down, as he felt dizzy. This was the first mention of anything in over two weeks and made me think that Friday’s naps were part of a build-up. He lay down on the couch and Lisa gave him his medicine a bit earlier than usual. After about a half-hour of a nap he woke up…


“I’m fine now,” he announced. He looked it too and he demolished his dinner with gusto.


The evening carried on as usual, a fight with his mother about going to sleep was a good sign that all was well. The two went off to bed bickering like an old couple of forty years standing. That made Ruby and I laugh, so the evening finished on a high. About twenty minutes later, my phone rang, it was Lisa, I got a fright. Thankfully, it was only a request for Freddie’s Incredible Hulk magazine; he wanted it beside the bed so he’d know where it was. I laid it down beside King Kong who had gone up earlier with the elderly couple. When he rose this morning he put on his glasses, took King Kong in one hand and the magazine in the other, and headed off down for breakfast.


The fact we’ve had such a quiet week, in fact two weeks, has had a wonderful effect on the house. We’re not constantly checking Freddie, we worry a little less, a fraction less not much more, but at least life gets a bit easier for a while. The constant state of high alert is very stressful and its nice to get away from that for a while. The one benefit of me being around the house more often is that it gives Lisa some break from the Freddie watching. The downside for Lisa is that she has to put up with me around the house more often…


Its important to stress that though we’re off code super red on Freddie watching it doesn’t mean we can afford any complacency. Lisa is still very much on the lookout for her little man and we still expect the worst at all times.


This week we’ve been working on trying to get Freddie back into education. The plan is to have everything in place for when he’s up to it, the way the wheels of bureaucracy move so slowly we don’t want to leave anything to chance. Lisa has been on the phone to the various departments involved and it won’t be easy to get the help we deserve, but a lot of people are pulling in our direction.


On Wednesday, I got the call we’ve been waiting for, maybe dreading a bit as well. Dr Shahwan wants us back inTemple Streetnext Sunday, all things being equal. It will be for a week of educational and psychological assessments and on the Friday a PET scan. There was no mention of the results from the last week in the hospital; we presume that Dr Shahwan will go through those in person. I’m guessing that he wouldn’t have ordered the PET scan unless he thought it worthwhile but who knows…


On Friday evening, Lisa’s cousin Jillian called over for dinner. As usual she was filled in on all that has been happening by Freddie and the chat was flowing. After dinner, he pulled out his sketchpad and showed her the frogspawn he’d drawn earlier in the week. Jillian asked what they were and got the full story on the life cycle of the frog, from eggs being laid to adult. Jillian was much impressed by his knowledge and asked where he’d learned so much…


“Oh, from Mr Bean,” Freddie answered, as it was the usual place for information…


It’s just amazing what Freddie can pick up from the most unusual of sources.


Our man certainly does things his way.


Posted by John Verling

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