Saturday, January 10, 2015

January 2015 - The last 6 months

I thought I had better give an update on the Hawke Happenings over the last 6 months.

Stuart finally bit the bullet in September to have the long expected back surgery that has been impending for the last 4-5 years.  After a visit to the spine specialist in Brisbane the surgery day was booked for November 20th.  We flew to Brisbane and straight to the Wesley Hospital where he was admitted and operated on that afternoon.  After 8 hours surgery all lying on his stomach he eventually came out and for the next 10 days was up and walking (sorry) struggling to walk) but in incredible nerve pain in both legs, until the surgeon ordered a scan to show that the metal cage they had put around his spine had collapsed and they had to go back to surgery.  The first surgery was just over 8 hours resulting in a 12 inch scar on his back, and the second 10 days later was for just on 4 hours and he came back with a matching scar on his front only half the length.

We had a fight to get him out of hospital as what was to be a 7-10 day stint in ended up being a 33 days stay in hospital, getting him out on the 23 December, just in time for Christmas.

He is walking with a walking frame and has little strength in his back and legs but physio aren’t concerned and say he is on track.  We are looking at about 3-6 month recovery time frame.

Christmas was a great occasion with Stuart’s sons in from Clermont and up from Brisbane and Tracy, Tony (partner), Ryan and Joe up from Central Queensland.  We had a  Wonderful Christmas Lunch at Kylies and Peters house with a very traditional Christmas with all the frills, drinks, games and a trophy.  We then went over to Kathy’s for a lovely Christmas tea to top off a very memorable day.  As this may be our last Christmas at home for a while I will have to live on the memories.

As Stuart wasn’t quite mobile, Kylie and her family kindly allowed us to stay at her place for the few days before Christmas and the week following and then we were back to the Caravan Park.  With so many staying at Kylies, us included, our very good friends Jenny and John Varady kindly moved the van from the Park round to Kylies so Tracy and Tony could sleep in it, then came back and returned it to the Park again last Sunday.

This year I have officially retired with the contract to cater to Boarders at Whitsunday Anglican School finished.  An end to an era and a very happy 18 years seeing a lot of great kids come through our dining room.  We can now consider heading further afield and hope to be in southern climes for Christmas this year, with the hope to go west next year.

Our first scheduled stop will be Lightening Ridge for the Opal Festival where we will catch up with friends we met whilst in Tasmania.  From there, who knows.

To all our family and friends, we wish you a very happy New Year with the hope to catch up with all of you somewhere down the track.

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