Rory Gardiner's Webpage

27, Aug, 2009

Thursday 26th August 2009


Sometimes I feel totally over whelmed with everything which is going on in our lives, no matter how much I do, or how fast I go, there is always more, and more, and more.  Things change in the blink of an eye.  They often have a flow on effect further down our lives, and I have little control over any of it. 

The feeding pump seems to have a mind of its own and goes off at least once every night.  I can't remember the last time I had a night of continuous sleep.  Rory had a blood test this morning at Dargaville Hospital.  His platelets were high enough for chemo to start (over 75) but his neutrophils weren't (they were 0.8 and needed to 1.5).  Numerous phone calls later between myself, Julie the Paediatric Nurse at Dargaville Hospital, Carol and Dr Stephen at Starship, a decision was made for Rory to have a GCSF injection this afternoon to try and boost his neutrophils.  He is going to have a blood test at midday tomorrow to see if this has been successful, if not he will have further injections on Friday and possibly Saturday, accompanied by follow-up blood tests.  Rory will likely be re-admitted to Starship on Sunday after lunch for cycle number 2.  Rory was pleased to have a few more days at home, but not thrilled about having needles stabbed into his thigh. 

After our visit to the Hospital we called in to meet Brenda Crawford for the first time.  Brenda came into our lives via Trudi and for some reason has taken us under her wing, continuously shocking us with her giving.  It is hard to constantly be on the receiving end from people, particularly those who start out as strangers, so I was feeling a little daunted and overwhelmed at meeting Brenda.  But I didn't need to worry, it was nice.  I wish there had been more time to sit down and talk, but our ship has a speed of its own at the moment.  Brenda again loaded my arms with home cooking to help fill our freezer, and some moisturiser to stop me becoming a dried out brittle leaf from the hospital air conditioning and the continuous hand washing.  It was very much appreciated.

Rory and I headed south to Ruawai to watch Sam play soccer in an inter-schools tournament.  The sides were a little unbalanced so the game was reduced to 15 minute halves.  Dargaville Primary won 8-0.  Sam scored a goal, but wasn't very fired up.  I enjoyed spending time on the side line with Whaea Danielle, their coach, who was very relaxed and fair about the match.  On the way home Rory and I called in to the Neuman-Horne's.  Tracey had made Sean another meaty casserole, and gave us some home grown vegetables and home made icecream (thank you Tracey).  Tracey is an earth mother and I am constantly impressed with the way she lives her life.  I always return a bit more conscious about how we live, and our impact on the environment.  Sean also came home with treats, having picked up some soup from Dianne and Riccardo at Whangarei District Council (thanks guys).  We are certainly going to be eating well for the next couple of weeks.  When Rory and I picked up Sam from school he had a huge egg on his forehead between his eyes.  He said someone threw a gum nut at him.  I was pretty concerned but he seems ok. 

In amongst it all Sean and I have sold our house.  It went unconditional on Tuesday.  It has been a decision of mixed emotions.  We moved to the Kaipara in 2006 because I took a job with DoC.  It didn't work out, and toward the end of 2007 we put the house on the market and I took a job with Whangarei District Council.  Both Sean and I have been commuting across to the east for work for almost two years.  In the past three months we have had two written offers which fell through.  When this latest offer was made I don't think either of us thought it would come to fruition.  When it did we went back and forwards over whether to accept it.  We love living in the Kaipara, we love the wild places and the fantastic people.  We all feel at home.  Since Rory's diagnosis we have been swept into a warm embrace by the community, and they have held us up during the most difficult time of our lives.  Leaving is heart wrenching.  If Rory hadn't become sick I think we possibly would have stayed, but it has gotten too tough.  We are too far from work, from family, and from a hospital, plus we are under increasing financial pressure.  Selling the house, and staying with Sean's parents for a while, will really help us out.  But I'm not sure how we're going to say goodbye.  We are sweeping it aside for now, it is in the too hard basket for all of us. 

Tuesday went by without too much fuss, I almost got through the unpacking by the time Sean returned home.  Nana and Poppa Honnor called from Hawaii to check on Rory. 

On Wednesday Sam went back to school and Rory and I spent the morning at home.  We had a visit from our neighbour Iris Fremlin who brought over some oranges and toys to entertain Rory.  Julie the Paediatric Nurse at Dargaville Hospital called to check on Rory and arranged for him to have his blood test in Dargaville instead of Whangarei so we wouldn't have to make the long drive.  The lab was able to provide the analysis within an hour.  At midday Rory and I called in to Dargaville Primary to watch Sam participate in kapa haka.  The tutor Chance had the boys delivering a rousing Nga Puhi haka.  I was very impressed.  I said to Rory their wairua makes them proud, and fierce and strong.  When the going gets tough he needs to remember the haka, and know he has it inside him also.  Rory enjoyed visiting his friends Kody, Pete, and Adam at lunchtime.  We left school to make a few leap frog visits.  We saw Jason at Hunting and Fishing.  Rory and I think his hair has grown back faster than anyone else after the Kina cuts.  We called up to Dargaville Intermediate to see Nana Morrison who had some treats for the boys.  Both Sam and Rory were surprised and thrilled to be spoilt (thank you Margaret).  Plus a short stop at Trudi's before we picked up Sam from school to see her beautiful new platinum blonde hair.