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Rory Gardiner's Webpage

22, Jun, 2010

Tuesday 22nd June 2010


The days seem to slip quickly by between website entries.  It is hard to find time to write with so many new things beginning in our lives. 

Rory and Sam are settling into the class routines at Inglewood Primary.  Rory enjoys the opportunity to work all the boys in his class, it goes a long way towards making him feel as though he fits in.  He is still having ½ - 1 day off per week due to fatigue.  Rory finds the long lunch breaks (one hour) hard to occupy.  He is reluctant to move away from the class room into the playground.  It is becoming an issue we will have to address.  The school has implemented a Perceptual Motor Programme (PMP) which consists of a series of activities designed to stimulate the children’s brains, while they exercise.  It is similar to the programme Rory gets from Therapist Ian Hunter and is great for Rory (as well as the other children) but when you get three classes of middle team children in the hall, and the boys are obsessed with speed, noise and impact, it becomes the complete opposite.  It is something we are all working on improving.  Sam played soccer for Inglewood Primary against Fitzroy Primary (New Plymouth) this afternoon.  They lost 3-1 (Sam scored two goals but one was unfairly disallowed).  Nana and Poppa, and Rory and I went along to support him.  He misses playing with his team in Whangarei, and was frustrated playing with a team which wasn’t cohesive or experienced.  One new aspect at school is the REACH programme (Respect, Expect, Achieve, Communicate, Hau Ora).  Every Monday morning there is a school goal, and the children write how they are going to achieve it.  The Year 4 (and above) children also write an individual goal.  On Friday the children assess whether they have met the goals.  Last week both Sam and Rory met their goals and received a 3 point REACH voucher (highest value).  These were placed in a draw and both their names were drawn out so they got a $2 credit at the school canteen.  The school photos arrived in the mail from Dargaville Primary this week and both boys were delighted to see them (I will scan them and put them on the web when I get a chance).  They had their school photos for Inglewood Primary last week so Sam will be in two photos this year (Rory was absent on the day of the photos so will only be in one).  There was a bit of a surprise for me at school.  One of the Teacher Aides sons was diagnosed with medulloblastoma (the same type of brain tumour as Rory, although he only had one tumour) when he was five.  He is now 10 post- treatment (aged 15).  She and I have had a brief chat and I am looking forward to further conversations. 

Sean seems to be settling into work at TRC.  He went out night shooting in South Taranaki last week with some of the other Pest Management Officers and they shot 60 hares!  We took possession of the house in Inglewood last Friday (complete with a bottle of wine and a gift basket from Harcourts).  Nana and Poppa Honnor helped us clean it from top to bottom on Saturday (although it was left in good condition), and on Sunday we moved 90% of the gear in (with the extra assistance of Uncle Guy).  It was a cool showery day and after six hours we were all pretty knackered.  The house is full of furniture and boxes, and there is little room to move.  We hope to shift the final load from storage, and spend our first night there, on Saturday.  Last week I had an ultrasound screening test (with a blood test) to estimate the risk of a genetic abnormality with the baby.  I am considered high risk as I am over 35 years old.  The baby was 8cm long and we could see it pretty clearly; its face, profile, hands and fingers, legs and feet, and spine.  We were all captivated.  It was the first time Nana had seen a baby on an ultrasound.  I have been relegated to maternity jeans and trousers as my tummy is sticking out and I can’t bear to have anything tight around it.  It takes some getting used to!   

I have been organising Rory’s return to Starship on the 27th and 28th and July.  He will be having a battery of tests; endocrinology (growth hormone .... he is as short as the shortest Year 3’s in his class), MRI (of his brain to check for cancer), audiology, a raft of blood tests, audiology (hearing) and a Neuro-psychology appointment.  I will be flying to Auckland with Rory.  It will be the first time I will have been to a clinic appointment with the Oncologist alone following an MRI.  I am a little frightened.  If the news is good it will be a huge relief, but if there is bad news it will be hard to hear alone.  Rory received a neat surprise in the mail this week, two handmade beads (bumblebee, cupcake with sprinkles) to add to his Beads of Courage from Lesley McIver at Glitz Art Beads in the Nelson region (www.glitz.co.nz ) who we met at the Great NZ Craft Show (thank you very much).