For someone who’s supposed to be taking things easy, it’s been hard work getting up at 7.30am every morning and commuting to Harefield for bloods and a quick how-do-you-do with the docs.  That said, it’s a good deal better than being stuck in there right now – no matter how much fun the nurses claim they all have on Christmas day.

The last couple of days have been great fun, mixed with a little bit of hardship here and there.  On Sunday I went for another walk, this time with the whole family in tow, but the freezing fog which had descended on the lake pushed my new blowers a little too hard and left me in quite a bit of pain, until I managed to warm my muscles back up in a nice hot bath later on – thanks to my wonderful bro for identifying the problem.

Although it was hard work and it hurt afterwards, it is still so rewarding to be able to wrap up warm and go out for a walk in the kind of conditions which would have had me refusing to open a window a month ago, let alone set foot outside.

I’m still requiring quite a bit of rest – sleep at night isn’t coming terribly easily as my chest is still pretty sore, which means that daytime naps are a must if I’m to be in any shape to do anything other than sit on a sofa trying desperately to not let myself fall asleep.

Today I was – I think – officially discharged from Harefield.  Although I’d been sent home and ordered back everyday for bloods, they were still holding a bed for me should my infection markers decide they wanted to play silly b***ers and start jumping all over the place again.  After seeing the fabulous Dr Carby and his wonderful team today (big shout out to Verhana and Ari) they are happy that they don’t need my bed any more and are going to give it to someone more in need – yippee!

I am still having a few issues with my immunosuppressant levels.  The drug I’m on – Tacrolimus (or Tac, as it’s known in our house) – seems to be working well for me, but since they put me on the oral antibiotic to fight the infection that was starting to brew the levels have been all over the place.  Apparently it’s not very common, but I do always like to stand out, as we all know perfectly well by now.  The upshot of that is that while they’re happy for me to have a day off for Christmas Day, I’ll need to go back Boxing Day morning for more bloods and probably at the same time in the morning for the rest of the week.  As has been said before, though, it’s a whole lot better than being in there!

As I sit and write this, preparing for bed on Christmas Eve there seems so much to reflect on: the past couple of Christmases which I’ve questioned as to whether they’d be my last; the joy being felt by not just my family but all my extended family and friends and loved ones at the gift I’ve been given; the pain that must be being felt by the family of my donor, for whom this Christmas will undoubtedly be one of their hardest ever.

Christmas, lest we forget, is all about the birth of Jesus and it seems fitting that I’m nestled in the warmth of my family to celebrate my emergeance into new life thanks to the generosity of one single person and their family.  Whatever you may believe, whoever you may pray to, this is the closest thing to a miracle I’ve ever witnessed.

May you all have a wonderful, happy, safe, warm and loving Christmas – and as you sit down to enjoy the best parts of the day, take a moment to spare a thought for those less fortunate than yourselves.

Merry Christmas, one and all.

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