Wednesday, 8 October 2014

Well, finally...

It is Wednesday, October 4th 2014, and I'm finally back online with my own internet after nearly 13 months without proper access and 5 months since being able to post here.

What a time it's been. Seriously.

Back in October of 2013 we sold our house and moved in with my wife's parents in the heart of Cardiff. Sadly in November of that year we lost my wife's father. The day before his funeral I was admitted to hospital for a shoulder operation, and after that the real stress test began.

We were all still in a state of shock at my wife's father's death. Ann, my wife's mother was in mourning and having to deal with the added stress of us living there, plus the family over from the US. It was, to say the least, surreal.

In order to break away from having to suffer a Christmas at home minus Timothy, husband and father, my wife and her sister took Ann away for the Christmas period so as not to be faced with a constant reminder of the situation. I stayed in the house to look after Darcy and our two cats, plus I couldn't travel due to my shoulder.

Whilst they were away it was then, after a visit to my doctor that I had a scare regarding my prostate - apparently it was 'enlarged' on the right side. My doctor couldn't say why or what it was, so I went down on a list to see a consultant at the Heath Hospital. But this might take a couple of weeks. So I waited. I watched the usual Christmas shows on TV, but my mind was distracted. I do, however, have a strong mental 'anchor' for that time - it happens each Christmas and nearly always with a certain film/program I might see. This year (last year now) it was the film classic, 'Casablanca' with Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman.

But, everything turned out fine as the specialist discovered all was normal upon examination. Just a bit of added stress I could have done without.

The year rolled by and I returned to work - nothing much else happened except issues with both my knees. Fast forward: doctor sends me to see a specialist about my knee issues. I get scanned. Turns out I have tears in both knees in the medial meniscus and wearing down of the cartilage. It transpires that my tibial bones are slightly bowed, causing increased pressure on the medial (inner) parts of my knees.

The consultant recommends I have a double arthroscopy followed by a high open medial osteotomy of the left leg - to be followed by the same procedure for my right leg approx 9 - 12 months later.
And below is me a couple of hours post surgery - apologies for the stupid look on my face, but I'm pretty much boosted on pain relief and oxygen.

Sept 10th 2014 - me post-op, and as high as a kite.
Copyright © 2014 - Mark Kelly.
So, currently I'm at home - oh yes! I forgot to mention: on the 6th September 2014, we moved into our 'new' home, a lovely 1950s building that had be left empty for nearly 4 years, but it was in amazingly good condition internally considering. So the build up to my op was a mad rush to get things moved out of storage and into the new home - as usual, the solicitors dragged their feet to the very last minute (on the seller's part). By the end of that day my knees were in bits.

But we had two great guys helping out: my long-time buddy, Neil, a.k.a. 'Cat', (long suffering) friend of 26 years, and my new buddy and work colleague, Jeremy, a really genuine person and all-round nice guy.

So now I'm off work recovering for 12 weeks, walking on crutches with zero-minimal weight bearing on the left leg and feeling extremely frustrated at not being able to move boxes into the loft, wash the windows, tend the garden, etc, etc. I've only slipped and fallen twice. Painful experience as my automatic reaction was to stop myself by placing my left foot down - not a good idea when your bone has been sliced, screwed and awaiting  the healing/knitting process. Though, as you can see below, the leg is looking good, albeit, still feeling tight on flexing due to the 6 inch plate screwed to the bone beneath the scar.

Healing nicely, but not liking the 'dissolvable' stitches under the skin
- I think I'm slightly allergic to them hence the redness.
Copyright © 2014 - Mark Kelly.

So that's me up to date and back online. I always seem to be apologizing for my lack of posting here, but I think this time round I've had some justifiable reasons.

With regards to Ann and my wife's family, there are still moments of weeping and sadness, but it is tempered with all the fond memories, happy times, jokes and frustrations we shared with Tim when he was alive and head of this family. Always missed, but never forgotten.


  1. Good to see you back Mark. Quite a year you've had to endure but hopefully better times ahead.

    1. Cheers Mike. Life is what it is, but hey, it could be worse. Always good to have you drop by - and good to see you going strength-to-strength. Ever an inspiration when popping over to your blog and seeing what you're up to. Keep it up, bud :)

  2. you have had a whirl-wind of events... sending out the good vibes for a few quiet months ahead... move extra slow and always look behind you.

    1. Jeremy - many thanks. Slow is all I'm about at the moment, and not out of choice.

      Appreciate you stopping by ;)

  3. Good to see you're back, sorry to hear you and your wife have had to go through such a difficult time, hopefully things will start brightening up for the both of you. Take care, heal properly, and sending you all positive vibes as well.

    1. Elise,

      So lovely to have to drop by and thanks for the vibes :) - always welcome. Hope things in France are going well and life is being good to you and especially your writing.

  4. Nicely written post. Thanks for sharing it with us and I'm sorry for the passing of your Father-in-Law. Life is just too darn short, that's for sure.

    Congrats on the new place.

    1. Hey, Whisk :)

      Yes, life is just that - too short. But hell, grab it while you can, eh? Great to see you here, I shall be doing the rounds very soon ;)