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Starting Over

User
Posted 24 Jun 2014 at 18:56

For those that have followed the conversation Mick's day of Reckoning I decided it was now appropriate to have a new thread so Mick's story can stay as it was,  a detailed account of one very brave Man's battle against this horrid disease.

The friends we made through this forum have helped all my family to get through the last year, many will be lifelong friends and frequently involved in our lives going forward.

I will remain actively involved with the Newark gang and continue to meet up with anyone I can in my travels and at Leicester and London every year. Many thanks to Simon and Vanessa ,Brian and Leslie, Chris and Shirley, Paul  and of course my beloved SS Julie who all came along to Mick's last hoorah and helped to give him a fitting send off.

It was a very unusual service and a true celebration of Mick's life just as he wanted it to be, we had a Humanist celebrant Andrew Key who was amazing. He helped me to bring together many highlights of Mick's life and a lot of the humour that was the Man himself. My brother Jed paid tribute by reading a set of limericks he had written (10 of them) he got a very deserved round of applause for his wit and appreciation of all that was my Man, Karen and Mark's Dad and Joshua's Grandad.

Mick's entry music was my uber talented Nephews arrangement and playing of Bring me sunshine, his music in the middle was the Shadows riders in the sky (albeit much to my shock a rather disco version that would have brought a very wry smile from Mick) His going out music brought many smiles and comments. The Monkey song from the Disney film of the Jungle Book it was a huge family favourite.

His message for the day were the words spoken by Captain James Kirk in Star Trek 2 The Wrath of Khan.

"How we deal with death is at least as important as how we deal with life"

Over 100 people attended and many came back to our village pub for the start of the wake. The football and 5 o'clock deadline to leave the restaurant for people to enjoy a lovely meal on a summers day, saw a lot of people make their way home. However a group of 25 or so came back to the house and we carried on reminiscing and drinking whilst Mick's great friend Alan cooked an awesome BBQ which was enjoyed by everyone. Many piled into the lounge to watch the woeful England Uruguay game. The celebration of My fabulous, brave and very much loved Husband Mick's life went on into the early hours. We have raised over £1000 for our local hospice who looked after Mick so  professionally in the last weeks of his life. Thank you to all who donated so generously.

RIP Michael John Orr I love you now and always and will think of you every day for the rest of my life whilst  thanking  my lucky stars that we had 24 amazing years together.

 

xxx

Mandy AKA Mo

User
Posted 17 Jul 2014 at 10:05
So here i am 45 days or just over 6 weeks since I lost my woderful husband Mick.

Lots of people ask me every day 'how are you holding up?'It is a good question which taken literally could be asking if i had become a bank robber ...well let me tell you about how different Banks can be when dealing with the death of a loved one especially when that person is the first named on a joint account or the primary on a credit card.

No names here just general information.

Credit cards...as Mick was primary on the two we had they had to be stopped immediately the balance owing became frozen so no interest added both allowed about 10 weeks for settlement from the 'estate'

We always paid in full every month so i just cleared them but nice to know they give you breathing space.

Fortnately i had an incident several years ago when i was refused a $ pre paid card, this baffled me a)I was not aware of any credit issues in my name and b) this was for a pre paid debit card

So i followed up on it. It transpired i did not have a bad credit rating i just diid not have one at all!

I had no history with no loans, no mortgage etc. The remedy was to go to my bank and they set me up. With a credit card. I used it every now and then to keep it active. This card became my lifeline when all others had to be frozen. I could not have managed without it.

Joint current accounts ... should be easy take in or send death certificate and everything changes to sole name. Some banks actually insist on you makinng an appointment for this but most will deal with it sensitiively and on the spot.

Sole accounts ..current or savings and joint savings can get a bit more tricky, bigger the bank the higher the figure they allow before asking for probate ( i innocently thought that a mirror will where I was sole executor and beneficiary would mean that probate would not be neccessary) generally speaking anything below 10k or where 'your half' is less than 10k is dealt with sans probate.

Online or telephone banking for joint accounts be sure you both have registered and are able to acccess joint accounts.I uused to use Micks which got blocked as soon as the bank was advised.big mistake!

All in all we had been well prepared however if we had big savings we would not have known about probate so if you have it may be wise to split them across different institutions.

Anyway just one of the many subjects where pre planning can help even if it seems a morbid task.

As for me I am holding up pretty well, i do have bad days and nearly every day something happens that gives me a weepy moment but i get through evrything with the support of my wonderful friends and family.

Mandy Mo

Xxx

User
Posted 02 Oct 2014 at 22:21
After just over 10 days at our holiday Condo in Lake Buena Vista I started to feel really lonely and too far away from friends and family. Thankfully two girlfriends of mine came to stay last weekend, Leda is Stephanie's Mum, Mick and I cruised with them regularly and we see them often. They visited Mick in Hospice the week before he passed away. They are great friends and did a fantastic job of cheering me up and getting me through another weekend.

Monday morning I flew up to Atlanta Georgia having changed my plans by bringing everything forward a little, I was greeted at the airport by Joy and her youngest daughter Ellie, back nto the arms of "family" strictly not true but after 12 years of close friendship and being in the O'Fee family I consider them to be my family as well

We had a wonderful weather forecast for Wednesday 1st October and as everyone could be here we decided to scatter Mick's ashes today. Karen and all our family and friends at home knew the time would be about 7pm Uk time so that they could join in virtually.

We had a short delay for Robert to deal with an errant snake which had strayed into the pasture from the woods but we had a short ceremony of scattering his ashes under the big oak tree, toasting Mick with a glass of champagne (scotch for Robert and OJ for Ellie) we all gave him some of our drink and Robert read a poem he had written about his friend. It was witty, funny and very moving.

So now I can truly say Mick's journey has come to an end

RIP wonderful man Michael John Orr

who passed on June 2nd 2014

XXX

Mo

User
Posted 08 Jul 2014 at 22:14

Firstly Carol what a lovely reply yes that was me that thanked you.

 

Mandy Mo my SS,

As you say bitter sweet, this is going to sound weird, but you have been in my thoughts constantly for the last 2 days, so much so that I was going to ring yesterday and then I had a drama and couldn't ring . (I will explain when I ring you)

Driving to the service, didn't you realise that he was there.

Seeing Karen in her wedding dress, he smiled from ear to ear he was there.

Watching you give her away, so very proud he was there.

You thought that you were the loudest cheerer, no you just didn't hear  him he was there.

He stood beside you when you said the speech, he was there.

As for cooking the BBQ well I am sure you know what he was saying because he was there.

watching the twins playing with Shyla, he was there.

He wouldn't have missed that day, he was there.

He is in your heart and in your memory , he is always there.

Lots of love my SS.

BFN

Julie X

 

NEVER LAUGH AT A LIVE DRAGON
User
Posted 24 Jun 2014 at 22:53
Brilliant post Mandy.

Mick was a much loved husband, father and friend and had a wonderful life, if caught short by this drafted disease. His persona would not be, let's mourn and be sad, but remember and be glad. Luckily, that is your style.

We are here if you need us, you know the number. You are some hell of a person, and my dear friend made in awful circumstances. But hopefully a forever friend.

Karen was a delight and Mick would have been so proud, keep your head up as he would have wanted.

Big love

Allison xxx

User
Posted 01 Mar 2015 at 00:59

Good for you Mo.

You have done so much along the way for another. And you continue to help and support others.

Good for you and long may your progress continue.

atb

dave

User
Posted 04 Apr 2015 at 09:41
Oh Mo

I have been thinking about you since I read your post yesterday what can I say sometimes words aren't enough wish I could give you a big HUGG .

I know you are a strong woman but please let the tears fall you need to let it all out.

As for all the things you need to sort out it's to early Mo Julie Lynn Si will help you when its time.

As for talking to Mick and he dosent answer back I know that feeling .

When you mentioned the tee shirt made me think about Eric's his was WIFE FOR SALE.

I know how much you are hurting right now and it wont go away anytime soon but somehow we manage to cope.

Thinking of you .

Carol xx

I know you have family to talk to about what the new normal should be but sometimes they are to close. thats why I said the girls will help you with this sorry Si for calling you one of the girls.

Edited by member 04 Apr 2015 at 10:27  | Reason: Not specified

User
Posted 11 May 2015 at 22:56
Here I am again that woman who said this thread should be just about finished .... obviously not as satrting over is actually a lot longer process than I thought it ever would be.

I have just had the most amazing weekend, those who know me on FB will already have seen this but I just felt sharing it on here would offer a little more ecouragement to others. Ironically I always thought these posts would help other widows but several men have told me they also give reassurance to them for reasons that are not always so obvious.

Anyway I have to say that 1 year ago I could not have envisaged myself walking 1k let alone running so to complete the 5k color dash with Family Scott was a bit of a triumphant moment OK we were not fast but we finished about halfway down the 2500 strong field. I slowed us down having had minor surgery to remove a suspect mole from my groin just 10 days earlier. The run meant so much to me that I pleaded with the surgeon to do whatever she could to give me a fighting chance of being able to take part. She removed it and then proceeded to use plastic surgery skills to pack it and stitch it very neatly and with tiny little stitches. They were removed on the Wednesday before the run with the nurse telling me it was incrediby neat and would not scar. I did think to myself who the heck would ever notice in a place wehere the sun doesn't shine? maybe she thought i had a day job in something a lot more saucy than working as a volunteer in our local hospice !! Biopsy results will be in some 2 -3 weeks later, they are obviously not too concerned so neither am I, I have learnt not to worry about things I can't change.

That brings me on to the post event BBQ for those lovely people who came to the showground or offered moral support from nearby on a cold, windy and slghtly overcast day and yelled us all through the finish line covered in powder paint, wearing muticolour tutus and sporting our own art work T shirts. The twins had done theirs with personal tributes to Mick, things they had remembered like playing Os and Xs with him, his yellow and red stripey sock monkey and a cruise ship as well. Brought a lump to my throat and a tear to my eyes.

Due to the inclement weather we redesigned my longe/dining room by bringing randomly selected furniture indoors , well, I have to add here I didn't I was busy grilling outside under the verrandah whilst sipping a little chardonnay and putting the world to rights with Julie aka Trevor Boothe. The A team managed to make a 16 seat dining suite complete with tablecloths and individual place settings (very impressive) whist others helped me with cullinary matters.

We ate pretty well and all chatted away happily. Countryboy55, 99 or whatever vintage he is this week led the clearing up team and they did a fabulous job. There was not a dish left for me to wash the next day big thanks for that.

Definitely doing this again next year, I slept that night dreaming of a sub 30 minute time in bright glorious sunshine. Our hospice will be 600 quid better off for our efforts and thanks to all of you here who contributed alongside famiilies and friends. Latest figures from the hospice are that a staggering 150k has been raised already.

I slept so well I was late getting going for the next big adventure .. off for Sunday lunch at a riverside pub in Newark with the Scott family and Karen (for those that do not know Karen was widowed 2 months after me and was married to the legendary TopGun aka Barrington Newman)

Another wonderful afternoon and Tommy came too (TGs teddy) I so wish I could post just a photo or two on here the food was amazing and the company matched it too. Thanks Si for everything.xxx

I am so very blessed to have such an incredible group of friends from this forum, my own family and frends do a wonderful job of looking out for me, but this group understand in a different way one only we can understand.

Those that came this year are all already invited for next .. if more come and the weather is bad we may be having a garage party!!

My thanks go to SiNess and family, Countryboy, Brianissac and Lesley, TrevorBoothe and family and Yorkhull for making Saturday so special and to Siness and family and Karen for the same things on Sunday. Also to everyone who sponsored our efforts on saturday.

You are all special people.

Roll on MOTS

xxx

Mo

Edited by member 11 May 2015 at 23:01  | Reason: Not specified

User
Posted 12 May 2015 at 15:24

What a great post Mo.http://community.prostatecanceruk.org/editors/tiny_mce/plugins/emoticons/img/smiley-smile.gif

 

It's so good to see you doing so much and having fun doing it after all sadness of the past year.

 

Your pole will be fitted in the conservatory/restaurant at the MOS on Saturday, around 6pm, in good time for the hordes to arrive for their evening meals and usual madness.

 

LOOKING FORWARD TO SEEING YOU PERFORM!http://community.prostatecanceruk.org/editors/tiny_mce/plugins/emoticons/img/smiley-smile.gif

 

You're some woman!

 

 

 

George

x

User
Posted 30 May 2015 at 20:51

We believe in you too; that's what friends do. Not a new life but a new normal - Mick would be so very proud of you x

Edited by member 30 May 2015 at 20:52  | Reason: Not specified

"Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards." Soren Kierkegaard

User
Posted 30 May 2015 at 22:07
New normal has always been the way I have seen my new life. The old life is never forgotten, but there is a different life there, a purpose which seems missing in the early days resurfaces.

Well done, take care, Janet, x

User
Posted 02 Jun 2015 at 08:44

One year ago today i was dashing over to Lincoln to say goodbye to a dear friend.

Ness just posted this on facebook and i thought i would share it here

"A day tinged with joy and sadness today. 8 years ago I married a wonderful man who loved me completely, regardless of my faults and failings, (of which I have many) and who accepted that he wished to spend every day from that day fwd with me. To be someone's first love is special, but to be their last is priceless. And that is why it is so poignant, not only for me and Si but because a dear friend lost her soul mate and husband exactly 1 yr ago on our wedding anniversary. Today we can look bk at our wonderful memories, but also toast a very special man who meant the world to his family, especially his wife Mandy Amanda and daughter Karen x x x"

So tonight we will be out for a lovely meal and a few drinks to remember this great guy, Mo will have to play the O & X with the girls.

There will be memories and laughter and a few tears and i am sure Mick will be looking down saying That,s my girl.

Thinking of you today Mandy

Si x

Don't deny the diagnosis; try to defy the verdict
User
Posted 19 Jun 2015 at 00:16
So once again I find myself sitting here on the eve of the annual Mill on the Soar Leicester weekend actaully getting colly wobbles about going.... stupid really as I have been looking forward to it this year for ages. Last year it was just after the most amazing funeral service for Mick.

I can think back to all those who came, the lovely summer day, the pub wake and watching England play Uruguay in the world cup (badly) with the BBQ at my house until the small hours happy in the thought that Mick had an amazing send off. Then I think of Karen and I arriving at Leicester emotionally raw and wondering if we had done the right thing by coming... answer.. definitely it was the event that marked my starting over.

This year several more amazing people will be missing, Topgun aka Barrington Newman, Pete Wilshire, John Sherwood and although previously unable to make it to leicester Eric (weewifie) and Neil (Zarissa) we will all be thinking about you along with anyone else who has lost the fight against PCa either this year or in the years gone by.

This is one amazing community, I have met people through this forum that have changed my life and many who have helped me and my lovely step daughter Karen through a most difficult year. I thank every one of you

xx

Mo

User
Posted 19 Jun 2015 at 11:14

No Mandy don't Wobble your Collies up that pole that could be a disasterhttp://community.prostatecanceruk.org/editors/tiny_mce/plugins/emoticons/img/smiley-embarassed.gif.

I have been thinking of you today and I know that once you get there you will have a lovely time , have an extra glass from me and give everyone a hug from me. Take loads of pics so I can see everyone. Sadly I won't be able to be there as you all ready know the puppy situation has been a huge disappointment to say the least. The only surviving puppy needs my constant attentionhttp://community.prostatecanceruk.org/editors/tiny_mce/plugins/emoticons/img/smiley-embarassed.gif.

So advice from me is be careful up that pole, avoid any stray sheep and stay of the Harley but most of all have a great time.

BFN

Julie X

 

NEVER LAUGH AT A LIVE DRAGON
User
Posted 20 Dec 2015 at 22:36

Happy anniversary Mo - I am sure Mick would be so proud of how you have conducted yourself in the last year, no wallowing or self-pity. Take care xxx

"Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards." Soren Kierkegaard

User
Posted 02 Jun 2016 at 19:05

Although time may move on, no one ever forgets.

I hope that for you, and others who have lost a loved one, that the memories are sweeter now, and more often fond memories, rather than sad.

dave

Do all you can to help yourself, then make the best of your time. :-)
User
Posted 24 Jun 2014 at 18:56

For those that have followed the conversation Mick's day of Reckoning I decided it was now appropriate to have a new thread so Mick's story can stay as it was,  a detailed account of one very brave Man's battle against this horrid disease.

The friends we made through this forum have helped all my family to get through the last year, many will be lifelong friends and frequently involved in our lives going forward.

I will remain actively involved with the Newark gang and continue to meet up with anyone I can in my travels and at Leicester and London every year. Many thanks to Simon and Vanessa ,Brian and Leslie, Chris and Shirley, Paul  and of course my beloved SS Julie who all came along to Mick's last hoorah and helped to give him a fitting send off.

It was a very unusual service and a true celebration of Mick's life just as he wanted it to be, we had a Humanist celebrant Andrew Key who was amazing. He helped me to bring together many highlights of Mick's life and a lot of the humour that was the Man himself. My brother Jed paid tribute by reading a set of limericks he had written (10 of them) he got a very deserved round of applause for his wit and appreciation of all that was my Man, Karen and Mark's Dad and Joshua's Grandad.

Mick's entry music was my uber talented Nephews arrangement and playing of Bring me sunshine, his music in the middle was the Shadows riders in the sky (albeit much to my shock a rather disco version that would have brought a very wry smile from Mick) His going out music brought many smiles and comments. The Monkey song from the Disney film of the Jungle Book it was a huge family favourite.

His message for the day were the words spoken by Captain James Kirk in Star Trek 2 The Wrath of Khan.

"How we deal with death is at least as important as how we deal with life"

Over 100 people attended and many came back to our village pub for the start of the wake. The football and 5 o'clock deadline to leave the restaurant for people to enjoy a lovely meal on a summers day, saw a lot of people make their way home. However a group of 25 or so came back to the house and we carried on reminiscing and drinking whilst Mick's great friend Alan cooked an awesome BBQ which was enjoyed by everyone. Many piled into the lounge to watch the woeful England Uruguay game. The celebration of My fabulous, brave and very much loved Husband Mick's life went on into the early hours. We have raised over £1000 for our local hospice who looked after Mick so  professionally in the last weeks of his life. Thank you to all who donated so generously.

RIP Michael John Orr I love you now and always and will think of you every day for the rest of my life whilst  thanking  my lucky stars that we had 24 amazing years together.

 

xxx

Mandy AKA Mo

User
Posted 26 Jun 2014 at 18:16

So my first tips on starting over are as follows...

1) book a holiday, after the last twelve months of no holidays and many disappointments and not being able to get Mick onto cruises etc. It has become my number 1 task . So my delightful Brother (he of the exceptional Limerick talent) and his wife have asked me to go and stay with them in France at St Philbert  Sur Lieu at the very bottom of the Loire and at the start of the Vendee. Mick and I went to stay with them 2 years ago and had a wonderful time so it seems fitting that I should take the plunge and go again. I love my Brother deeply and his Wife and family too,  so it will mean that I have terrific emotional support for this first holiday without Mick. 

Then and only then think about number 2.

2) Do not rush into any massive clear out of personal effects. Mick has a garage full of tools, power tools, and other stuff I do not even know the names of let alone what they do. How many of these things will I ever need? how many of them could be sold to raise more money for our Hospice?  He was also a gadget man, so there are things plugged into our TV that I dust every week but have no idea what they actually do ...could do with borrowing a teenager or two ! I do not know where to start on clothes, Mick was not the shopper .. I was so it is all my fault there are enough clothes (many still with labels on) to open a Men's outfitters.

Help is at hand for 2) My friends are going to help sort out all the gadgets and work out what I need and will actually use,  surplus can be taken to a car boot or something (enter Karen the avid car booter) Karen and I are going to write an inventory of all the workshop items and then get an expert opinion on what to do with those. Finally when I feel ready and up to it we will sort all the clothes ... some can be taken direct to the hospice shop and others can be given to friends and family. The majority will be given to third world countries or war zones via various charities.Once again any money raised from selling all the saleable stuff will go to our local Hospice.

Think that is enough of my ponderings on this subject for a week or three ... one of these days I will write up on some of the things that people can do in preparation for the inevitable, things that Mick had done to make all of the difficult stuff so much easier for me. Too raw just yet but soon maybe after that first vacation ??

Best wishes to all my super friends on this forum

XXX

Mandy Aka MO

User
Posted 08 Jul 2014 at 20:46
What a lovely post I am sure you stepped into Micks shoes and filled them them from top to toe. Its hard to fill all the things that Dads want to do giveaway daughters first grandchild .I know Eric is sad that he wont be hear for Carolann she told him I dont have a man and for grandchildren I think when you told me about the birds and bee's I will need one .

It is nice to see you still updating your thread and hope you are copeing even although things are still very raw for you .

I hope I can be half as strong as you have been.

Sending our best wishes to you and family.

Carol Eric

User
Posted 17 Jul 2014 at 20:26
Hi Mo,

Thank you for taking the time to pass on these tips. I, when told that I was terminal hopefully went ahead and put everything in place at least financially to help Karen when the time comes. I have even ordered my "bespoke " coffin to my own design which of course will remain a secret until the day dawns (or in my case doesn't).

Sounds morbid but Karen and I had quite a laugh over the various ideas, enough to say we ended up on a military theme.

As I say thank you for putting down the rights and wrongs of what loved ones have to go through and I do echo your remarks about most agencies , banks etc. are generally most helpful.

Also if you want a weepy moment then damn well have one, didn't comment before ( too spaced out) but so glad Karen's day went so well.

Love and remember,

Life is for living

Barry (alias Barrington )

Edited by member 17 Jul 2014 at 20:28  | Reason: Not specified

User
Posted 30 Jul 2014 at 20:06
Some good tips Mo. Having been there a few times, I have found that the easiest thing is to draw some money out of the joint account before notifying them of the death. It helps to know your partner/father/friend's PIN number or make the transfers whilst the person is still alive (with their knowledge of course) - there is quite a lot of expense in those first few days & weeks and when my brother died, we weren't able to access his account for many months.
"Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards." Soren Kierkegaard

User
Posted 01 Aug 2014 at 19:41
Stage 1 of my first solo holiday in 26+ years.

Packing for just me in one carry on bag was easy peasy no gadgets,tools or other "essential" man things. I actually set off ten mins ahead of schedule amazing!

The journey to the airport hotel started off well first 150 miles in two and a half hours no shouting from Dora the satnav either. Only 40 miles to go so I breeze past the services no need for a wee stop. Then I hit the M25 and spent the next 2 and a half hours crawling,stopping,crawling and stopped. Now I really wish I had gone for a wee when I had the chance. I arrived at the hotel abandoned the car and hobbled cross legged to the loo .Mick was up there saying ha ha told you a million times a wee in time saves serious embarrassment!

Next hurdle dinner for one. I was shown to a table the size of a small drinks tray somewhere at the back of the restaurant, oh well at least it was near the kitchen. A rapidly served and eaten meal, so keen to watch the commonwealth games I stood at the bar to get a drink. A succession of men were served and I was beginning to think I might actually be invisible. I tried coughing holding my money up nada ,nothing so I resorted to leaning over the bar and collaring the barman literally, oh sorry he said I thought you were waiting for someone. GRRR.

Finally got my wine and closed stage one of my adventure.

User
Posted 23 Sep 2014 at 19:12
So here I am sitting in our Condo in Lake Buena Vista Florida, into my second week of a 5 week epic.

For anyone every contemplating taking your loved one's ashes abroad to be laid to rest be aware of the Jobsworth piece of inhuanity I had to deal with at Manchester airport. I had been meticulous in gaining all the correct paperwork, carrying Mick's ashes in a purpose built bio degradble cardboard tube, packing them along with the paperwork into a carry on bag that meets all airlines specifications. So what could possibly go wrong? At check in the lovely lady from Vorgin gave me a spcial security pass to fast track through a massive queue for security. She also told me to gain the attention of one of the security staff ahead of the scanners to explain what I was carrying so that they could deal with me appropriately.

I did just that and spent the next 10 minutes trying to explain to a young head phone toting gum chewing chap who had limited command of the English language to start with. I tried to explain what was in my bag but he just told me to stop stressing and whacked the whole thing into the scanner and proceeded to shoo me to go through the dreaded x ray tube myself, now no laughing at this point please....the underwiring in my bra set the scanners off (at least that was what the lady said as she frisked me and waved her weirdy wand thing over me) so I move along to hopefully be reunited with my handbag and carry on bag AKA Mick. Neither item was at the collection point so a mild panic started to set in as you might imagine. Finally another less young and thankfully not gum chewing chap looks my way and summonses me to the end of the collection point where my handbag sits untouched but my carry on bag has been virtually dismantled. "What is this" he says pointing at the tube .. my Husband's ashes and I have the necessary paperwork right here I reply .. why didn't you report these before screening he challenges, well actually I did to your colleague over on the other side but he did not seem to understand me at all.

OK now I am going to have to swab them and check it is what you have said ... at this pont I asked if he could have just a little more respect and perhaps we could continue somewhere out of the public area like that little cubby hole over there although by now I was visibly crying so probably not forming coherent words. After a further 2 or 3 minutes of prodding and poking, swabbing etc the whole opened carry on bag and its contents was shoved back at me together with my handbag to repack. I started to put things together and was told in a very officious tone you can't do that here move over to that table over there. Oh you mean the one in the cubby hole that I wanted to go to in the first place. By now I was past crying and almost into a rage I felt Mick urging me to pick him up and whack the guy over the head but I resisted. Laughably my Humira injections for my Rheumatoid arthritis attracted no attention at all maybe I should have crackeed one of them open and stabbed him with it!

anyway the flight was great have to say Virgin Atlantic did a really good job of looking after me cusomer services had informed them the reason for my trip and they could not have been more helpful.

Arrival at Orlando and I did the usual mad dash to immigration, Mick always made us sit near the plane exit so we could be first off and virtually run there so I did the same this time. I was first in line and through in minutes when I collected my bags I looked back to see a queue of Disneyesque proportions so it had been worth the dash.

Collected my car a Nissan Rogue (hope that was not how I was meant to drive it) anyway I remembered Si telling me that he had done his bit by giving Mick a very smooth ride to the airport so now I just needed to ensure that I did not frog leap all the way to the Condo. Actually t was a piece of cake, I enjoyed driving so much I spent the next 2 days driving to all my favourite stores to shop till I dropped.

Friends and family of friends arrived on Wednesday, lots of hugs and tears initially but then 4 days of fun and laughter.

Now I am solo again still with Mick's ashes which stay with me until stage 2 of the trip next week when I go to see my lovely friends in Georgia.

Feeling quite lonely but managing to keep busy with my Understanding the genetics of cancer course and getting ready for the new one with Paul Yorkhull which starts soon.

My lovely caring daughter Karen is in touch daily (as are many of my friends on this forum) she had coffee with Karen Newman a couple of times last week whilst on holiday in Weymouth. so life really does go on it is just tough sarting over

xxx

Mo

Edited by member 23 Sep 2014 at 19:15  | Reason: Not specified

User
Posted 28 Feb 2015 at 22:34
Well it has been over 4 months since I last posted on here, I did say that I probably would not post on this conversation any more so why the change of heart?

I guess the answer is that much has changed in that time with several significant dates passing by without any major emotional traumas. They do not go buy unnoticed but are just quietly acknowledged with no big fuss. That and having time on a home alone saturday to reflect.

I am lucky as I have met some amazing people through this forum, friends who call me regularly who send me messages and heaven forbid even share things with me on Facebook, which I use in a very limited capacity! I have those who I see at Newark and other get togethers like MOTS and the Flyer. There are Ladies that lunch and some of us who go out for a night on the town in London. There are a few very special friends that I speak to most days and they are the ones that have helped me, guided me and in some ways encourageed me to take new things firmly in my grasp. You all know who you are and I want to say thank you to you all, every time I do one of these personal posts they are for you, because of you. I try to wait for you all to have no issues or news but it rarely happens so here goes.

I have done a few college courses, started working at our local Hospice, I go to the gym almost every day and really enjoy seeing myself getting fitter and stronger physically. I have rediscovered my love of writing and if I wake up to a bright sunny day I rush to get dressed and outdoors so that I can make the most of it.

I still get a lot of comfort from trying to give a little support when it is needed or asked for here on the forum, after all without this I would not have survived the last 21 months or more.

I have also had some interesting challenges on the DIY front (I use this term apprehensively on this forum for obvious reasons) I have fixed a faulty door latch and lock on my house bathroom door, painstakingly soaked and scraped wood chip wallpaper from my kitchen walls, redecorated several rooms, taken down some horrid strip lights from my now wood chip paper free kitchen and put new lights up (well my neighbour who is a retired electrician insisted on taking over here in case I electrocuted myself) and I have disguised some awful bathroom tiles and made them look less like they belonged in Hyacinth Bouquet's bathroom.

The latest challenge was to cure a dripping tap, this was a little tougher than I first thought as it seems those washers that I recall from student digs days have gone, however armed with an assortment of adjustable spanners and other sundry tools, accompanied by a you tube video showing me step by step what to do I plunged in (metaphorically speaking as it was only a small sink not a hot tub or anything)

I did have some anxious moments when I had the mains water off and everything in pieces all over the floor. Would I actually remember what came from where and would it all work when I had finished? Were the spare bits I had the right ones etc etc.

It took me a while and the utterance of quite a few words I had forgotten I knew but much to my relief it worked I DID IT ! I celebrated by going back to an old habit and ritual, I left the en suite door open when I went to bed that night for the first time in weeks, no Chinese water torture and what joy I could get up in the night without turning on all the lights take a measured 3 paces through the open door turn 90 degrees right and sit (I don't even have to remember to put the seat down every time either) to go into what happened after this would be TMI.

So I am full of it, Bravado that is, I really do not like the gas fire and surround in my lounge and never have " She cannot be serious" I hear you say and "Call the midwife" (oops wrong programme) "Call Dom or anyone else who can stop Mo" so I am pre- empting your cautions and I promise I will get a proper gas man in when I get to the part of taking the old fire out and putting the new one in... I Promise

So thanks to all my friends here on the forum I am sure I would never have dreamt of trying some of these things if it had not been for you all.

Who's strap line is Onward and Upwards? hope they do not mind me borrowing it just for this one post

Onward and Upwards

xxx

Mo

Edited by member 01 Mar 2015 at 09:23  | Reason: Not specified

User
Posted 28 Feb 2015 at 23:22

Mo,

I so admire the way you have handled everything.  It's been such a difficult time for you and you are a shining example that life does go on even after the worst happens.

You have been so supportive to so many here, I am so grateful for all the help and kindness you have shown me.

Thank you, Mo.

Steve x

User
Posted 01 Mar 2015 at 14:02

Well done Mo.

I can do a bit of DIY, I have practically always re-wired the plugs in this house and I always do the decorating.
It's housework I hate !!

Glad it's all falling into place for you.
My sister is in a similar situation to you, her husband having passed away in July.
She was never into anything physical that needed doing and has surprised herself with how much she just has to get on with and do, from painting fences to using a screwdriver.
She even has a little sewing machine now and has started practising on that.

We can't control the winds - but we can adjust our sails
User
Posted 01 Mar 2015 at 14:40

You are an inspiration, Mo. Respect!

Paul

Stay Calm And Carry On.
User
Posted 01 Mar 2015 at 23:22

Unfortunately, there are a few morons around who care nothing for the law, manners, or any form of pleasant social interaction. It was your misfortune to come across them today, They won't be giving you a 2nd thought now, so forget about them and continue doing the good you are.

Just think of the smiles you put on so many faces with your support on this forum and and in your other guises.

 

Paul

Stay Calm And Carry On.
User
Posted 01 Mar 2015 at 23:23

OH SS, I was just about to reply to your earlier post when I saw your latest post. You are one very strong and lovely lady it doesn't matter whether you are fixing taps , landscape gardening D.I Y ing or just being you, you are  what can I say if Si is superman then you must be wonder woman although to me you will always be my SS.

some times in life we come across complete Ars@@les and sometimes this happens when we are feeling low and vulnerable at these times it affects us deeper and we take it more to heart but one day these very people will experience pain and loss and when they do as we all will at some point in our lives, the old saying and I am not religious DO UNTO OTHERS AS YOU WOULD DO TO YOURSELF is something that I live by .

I will ring you tomorrow , stay strong they are just youngsters with no care for others .

BFN

Julie X

NEVER LAUGH AT A LIVE DRAGON
User
Posted 02 Mar 2015 at 06:06
Hi Mo,

Really sorry this happened to you. I used to be on the road a lot (on average about 60,000 miles a year) and unfortunately, this does happen once in a while.

I always try and stick to the speed limit particularly in urban areas and have often been abused because of that. I've seen some awful driving over the years.

It's difficult not to think why is it that horrible people seem to get away with behaviour like that while the nice people, who've never done anything wrong, end up facing what we, on this site, have to face in our lives. Life can be so unfair at times. The worst things seem to happen to the people who least deserve it.

All you can do is to try and put it out of your mind as soon as possible. Why should people like that ruin your day. I try and think of something that makes me happy. Can be difficult at times though.

Take care.

Steve

User
Posted 02 Mar 2015 at 09:25

What a lovely long post, then that horrible one, we feel for you Mandy, road rage is something we could ALL do without but when you are on your own then you are vulnerable, take care keep calm and carry on! [even without the registration number the police could still act with vehicle make, model, colour, where seen and exact time so they could then follow it on CCTV]

Well done for you DIY skills, and, yes, Julie is right, Wonder Woman!


Hugs and best wishes from Chris and Shirley. xx

User
Posted 02 Mar 2015 at 16:50

http://community.prostatecanceruk.org/editors/tiny_mce/plugins/emoticons/img/smiley-cool.gifhttp://community.prostatecanceruk.org/editors/tiny_mce/plugins/emoticons/img/smiley-cool.gifhttp://community.prostatecanceruk.org/editors/tiny_mce/plugins/emoticons/img/smiley-cool.gif

Stay Calm And Carry On.
User
Posted 26 Mar 2015 at 08:16

Mo I have only recently become acquainted with you online but you appear to be a generous , humorous and brave woman. Life is certainly not how you would have planned if but you are moving forward in a positive way. Good luck to the new you and thanks for all your positive ,reassuring posts. Georgina

User
Posted 26 Mar 2015 at 08:29

Hi Mo,

I know how tough these last few weeks have been for you, but you are such a strong person i knew you would come out the other side.

We are all missing you here, have a great holiday but why is it always five weeks, why cant you have two like everyone else http://community.prostatecanceruk.org/editors/tiny_mce/plugins/emoticons/img/smiley-innocent.gif

Keep up with the training ready for our color run. (not me http://community.prostatecanceruk.org/editors/tiny_mce/plugins/emoticons/img/smiley-innocent.gif)

Si, Ness and the twins xxxx

Don't deny the diagnosis; try to defy the verdict
User
Posted 26 Mar 2015 at 13:01

Glad to be of assistance SS just don't forget my skirt and coconuts.http://community.prostatecanceruk.org/editors/tiny_mce/plugins/emoticons/img/smiley-smile.gif X 

BFN

Julie X

Edited by member 26 Mar 2015 at 17:08  | Reason: Not specified

NEVER LAUGH AT A LIVE DRAGON
User
Posted 26 Mar 2015 at 19:38
Hi mo

Have true admiration of how you are off by yourself to America. You may be travelling alone but I am sure your mick will be very near you in spirit.

Have a fabulous time.

Lesley x

User
Posted 26 Mar 2015 at 19:43
Mo

You still have Hawaii to look forward to. I wish I was coming with you my dear friend. Brave and simply fabulous, that's our Mo.

With love

Allison xxx

User
Posted 01 Apr 2015 at 03:23

Good to hear about your adventures, Mo. Particularly as it is 3 am turned here in UK and a bad cold is stopping me sleeping. It feels very quiet in the house so to read about your activity is quite up lifting. I have been on my own for so many years now I take it for granted. Your journey reminds me how difficult it is to adjust to that life when you have had such a sustained and wonderful partnership with the unforgettable Mick. I find travel on my own exciting and anxious at the same time and know that conflict is there for you. Your deep inner strength and determination sees you through it and you will remain a beacon of hope for others in your situation.

Don't overdo the exercise though and create health problems for yourself. Be measured in that as you are on holiday and should be doing holiday things too. Always good for the forum to hear good news stories and you help others so much it's good to hear you helping yourself to new vistas.

User
Posted 03 Apr 2015 at 01:22

Mo,

I'm so sorry to hear of your sad news.  I find it really hard to find the right words to say.  You have done so much to help others on this site in spite of having to cope with the loss of Mick.  You don't deserve anymore heartache.  I wish I could take your pain away.

We're all here for you.

Steve

xxx

 

User
Posted 03 Apr 2015 at 04:02
Mo , words from me may not help but I am sorry that you have had to bear so much pain. Life is difficult to understand that is for sure. The sound of the ocean seems to alway help me get things into perspective I hope this helps you also. You have some big decisions to make soon. Starting over must be a daunting prospect but you are a strong, resilient woman by all accounts. Take it easy and I am sure you will decide wisely . At 57 you have many, many more years of life to look forward to and I wish you well. Cheers Georgina
User
Posted 03 Apr 2015 at 10:00
My sincere condolences Mandy, on the loss of Jen, I can only imagine how hard this is being so far away, even harder than if you were here and could at least do something. It's been a rough ride for you, the year of Mick's illness was traumatic in the extreme and now this. I know you didn't really want to make this journey to the States but it does sound as though, despite this latest sadness, it has given you the opportunity to mull over ideas for what is next for you. You are a dynamic, amazing, wonderful person, articulate and kind but never patronising, you have a great future ahead, you have so much to give and are still young enough to do it. I totally agree about waiting a year before making any big decisions, as you know my sister made hers in haste and came to regret many of them. Time may not heal but it can give perspective.

My dear friend, I hope you can feel this hug from across the ocean blue.

Allison xxxxx

User
Posted 03 Apr 2015 at 10:19
Mo

So sorry to hear of your loss, thinking of you.

Thanks. Chris and Dawn

User
Posted 03 Apr 2015 at 10:53

As I said further up, we are only a heartbeat away from you. I am a great believer that the really dreadful hand is only given to the people strong enough to bear the load. This is a tragedy for everyone involved but knowing something of you, I worry that you will come home and move straight into that 'supporting everyone else' role that has been your default for so long.

As for the other stuff, let it wait Mo. I am pretty sure we will all mull it over together at MOTS.

You are on my mind x

"Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards." Soren Kierkegaard

User
Posted 03 Apr 2015 at 21:17

Mandy Mo,

What a time you are having , life can be so very hard and Jen's death coming so soon after Mick you have barely been able to draw breath before you have been knocked down again. I know that you will get through this but I also know this is another blow before you have properly dealt with Mick's passing.

I know that you are heading to Atlanta at least there among family you can allow your thoughts and feelings to come to the surface. As you said you can sit awhile at Mick's tree , he won't be able to answer you but I am sure he will hear you. I think this will make you feel a bit more at peace. 

As for making your new decisions don't rush yourself , I think that you maybe needed more time anyway and this is why you felt low at the thought of change. I read somewhere once that the first stage of grief can be anything up to 5 years and I would agree with that . Not that I am suggesting you should wait 5 years because you will be at least 36 . http://community.prostatecanceruk.org/editors/tiny_mce/plugins/emoticons/img/smiley-wink.gif

We all care and are thinking of you, you are one special lady . I will never understand why some people can sail through life with no trauma, nothing out of the ordinary happening and others just seem to get one knock after another. 

Stay strong SS , sit with Mick for a while and let the love from all of us wash over you.

BFN

Julie X

NEVER LAUGH AT A LIVE DRAGON
User
Posted 03 Apr 2015 at 21:41
I am so sorry to hear of the death of your sister. Please accept my sincerest condolences.
User
Posted 03 Apr 2015 at 23:06

Hello Mo,

So sorry about Jen.

dave

User
Posted 04 Apr 2015 at 09:05
I am in the air now on my way to Atlanta, amazing I can access the forum from here when so many have had problems on terra firma.

I am so grateful for all the wonderful and supportive messages from everyone both on here and via email or fb it means more than any of you will ever know.

There has to be a post mortem on Wednesday but the coroner has given my family permission to go ahead with the funeral arrangements so I am now trying to get flights sorted out so that I can get home in time.

Just wanted to let you all know how much I appreciate you.

Xx

Mo

User
Posted 04 Apr 2015 at 11:03

Carol, you pop up every so often with exactly the right thing to say. What can we do to persuade you to one of our get togethers sometime? I would love to give you a hug x

"Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards." Soren Kierkegaard

User
Posted 04 Apr 2015 at 11:41

Hi Mandy,

I have always said to Ness when i have gone http://community.prostatecanceruk.org/editors/tiny_mce/plugins/emoticons/img/smiley-cry.gif follow your dreams and the memories will follow you X

But going back part-time, if that is London forget it http://community.prostatecanceruk.org/editors/tiny_mce/plugins/emoticons/img/smiley-cry.gif

Carol, after 30 months on HT you got it right, i feel like one of the girls http://community.prostatecanceruk.org/editors/tiny_mce/plugins/emoticons/img/smiley-cry.gif

Safe journey Mo will talk when you are settled in again.

XXXX

 

Don't deny the diagnosis; try to defy the verdict
User
Posted 04 Apr 2015 at 12:45

Dear Mandy,

We were so shocked and saddened to hear of the tragic loss of your sister.

More sorrow for you to bear, and our hearts go out to you.

Thinking of you now, knowing that you will stay your positive strong self, even if your heart is breaking again.

But let those tears flow if they want to, please.

 

So so sorry Mo.

 

 

Sincere condolences,

 

George, Lynn & Katrina

xxx

User
Posted 04 Apr 2015 at 13:12

Mo

The people who know you and those who don't have rallied as usual. But you need to take heed of their advice. It's less than a year since this awful disease took Mick and now this awful blow.

As others have said you have thrown everything into supporting others. Perhaps now is the time to reflect but not to make any rash decisions.

Thinking of you and hopefully you can feel all the virtual arms reaching out to give you hugs

Take care

Bri x

User
Posted 04 Apr 2015 at 21:06
Dear Mo, sorry to hear your sad news. And I can imagine how difficult it is to be so far from home.

Interesting to hear Julie say it can take up to five years to find our new normal. I know I read when my first husband left me that it takes between two and five years to become the person we will be after any life changing event. As later this month it will be five years since I lost Mike I can look back and see how I have adapted my life to suit my needs, and with time it has been so much easier and straightforward. I imagine you will tackle your choices in a similar way and find a purpose that suits you.

Looking back I can say for me if I was unsure of an important decision I needed to make, where I could I waited until the answer came to me, and it did. Of course some decisions had to be made but little is irreversible or results too dreadful and there are lovely people around to offer advice and support. And I have done so much I would never have done, finding strength along the way, although giving in to tiredness when it has come along. Memories have become comfortable, I have got used to silently talking to Mike, often making decisions I know he would have suggested, somehow we just know what they would suggest, don't we? Initially feeling a little guilty if I chose a path he wouldn't have done, and smiling triumphantly when it worked! Learning from it when it didn't too.

Looking forward to catching up at the MOS in June.

Take care, Janet

Edited by member 04 Apr 2015 at 21:08  | Reason: Not specified

User
Posted 04 Apr 2015 at 21:23

Mo, I am also adding my condolences on the loss of your sister.

As a fellow 57 year old I empathise with your feelings about where to go now and what to do. There have been times I havn't wanted to go on anymore but I have my dogs and they motivate me to get up and keep going. It is like making a life for myself that I have to have rather than the life I want which is with Neil which I can't have. I send you my love as always,

 

Fiona. x

User
Posted 04 Apr 2015 at 23:08

Hi Mo,

FWIW, Where to go now, what to do, decisions that if they have to be made, should be made so that they can be undone if necessary.

atb

dave

User
Posted 06 Apr 2015 at 20:28
Thinking of you Mo, Take care.

Lesley xx

User
Posted 06 Apr 2015 at 21:20
Mo, I am always saddened to read of anyone's troubles on this forum, you have had too many in too short space of time, my condolences to you. As for the future you will come to the right decision for you at some stage and only you will know when that is. Kev

Dream like you have forever, live like you only have today Avatar is me racing in the Sahara April 2018

User
Posted 06 Apr 2015 at 22:48

BIG HUGS Mandy, hope it all sorts itself out.


Chris and Shirley xxxx

User
Posted 09 Apr 2015 at 17:39

Sorry to hear this news Mo, but at least it is not a health issue for you or your family to be worried about moving forward.

atb

dave

User
Posted 09 Apr 2015 at 17:45

Mo, I am so sad for you; the trauma of a sudden loss is sometimes made all the worse by the need for a post mortem. You are in my heart - safe journey home x

"Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards." Soren Kierkegaard

User
Posted 10 Apr 2015 at 08:58

Pneumonia , at least you know have answers to what happened although the very thought of a post mortem is dreadful . My one thought when I heard this is I don't think she would have suffered in any way. When Trevor had it at Xmas by the time the ambulance arrived he was totally out of it. 

Come home safe , thinking of you every day.

BFN

Julie X

NEVER LAUGH AT A LIVE DRAGON
User
Posted 17 Apr 2015 at 22:36

Sorry to read that the funeral "was awful" beyond expected.

But, wanted to say, we all have problems, and in the big scheme of things some more serious than for others. But, the problem that WE have to deal with is still significant for each of us, and therefore not at all tiny or insignificant, and still needing to be dealt with. You may not post here any more? Maybe you are too far along your journey from "starting over"? Maybe you are now "moving on" or "making progress"?

Life IS for living. Mo - LIVE yours!

atb

dave

User
Posted 17 Apr 2015 at 23:22

SS as Dave says moving on, slowly but certainly moving forward yes with set backs but moving on. Life can only be lived going forward it doesn't have a reverse button. Will you post on this thread again ? Never say Never that's one of my mottos . Thank you so much for my goody bag (delivered by Si) . My Turtle is just magical I love it.

I know you have to go at everything full throttle , it wouldn't be you to do it any other way.

So looking forward to seeing you I will have the kettle on. X

BFN

Julie X

NEVER LAUGH AT A LIVE DRAGON
User
Posted 18 Apr 2015 at 09:56

You sound so purposeful and goal directed which is really great. There will be times when you need to stand back and see how far you have come but it feels as if you can now move on to new horizons which must be exciting and scary in equal proportion. You are such a great support for others and a source of inspiration it is so important to draw on that support yourself when you need it.

Looking forward to meeting up soon.

User
Posted 18 Apr 2015 at 11:34
Mo

Keep posting if you can, you're such an encouragement to us all and have a great deal of wisdom and experience to pass on.

Arthur

User
Posted 18 Apr 2015 at 14:04
Oh Mo

What good positve positive posts from your friends on here.

3 steps forward then 2 steps back dealing with what ever is thrown at you.One step at a time is good and positive yoir doing fine at your own pace and still have the time to care about others with the PM you sent me yesterday.

Will get back to you soon Mum's being extra special today she is hard work sometimes.

Carol x

User
Posted 30 May 2015 at 20:13

So glad to you hear you sounding so upbeat My SS, you have been in my thoughts constantly because I know how close we are getting to the first Anniversary. So much can happen in a year and yet how we can all be brought back in an instance to where we started. Loads of love as always you are getting there , with set backs yes but you are getting closer to the top of that mountain. Keep going Mandy keep going.

BFN

Julie X

NEVER LAUGH AT A LIVE DRAGON
User
Posted 30 May 2015 at 21:03

Hi Mo,
Glad you enjoyed your holiday. The concluding words of your post " I never thought I would or could say this but Life is Good, different yes, but still good", are words that I hope my wife will be able to say if I predecease her.

Barry
User
Posted 30 May 2015 at 21:04

Mandy,

Not only are you an inspiration to all of us I know that you are an inspiration for Mick. You have been so wonderfully determined to create as Lyn says a new normal without ever forgetting the trauma just under a year old. I will be thinking of you on Tuesday and I know you will cope and prosper!

User
Posted 30 May 2015 at 23:06

Mo

Really pleased you enjoyed your cruise and are able to enjoy your new life. It must be a really difficult step to take, so well done.

Paul

Stay Calm And Carry On.
User
Posted 31 May 2015 at 00:10

Hi Mo,

Welcome Home.

Steve x

User
Posted 31 May 2015 at 08:31

Hi Mo,

good to know all went well

atb

dave

Do all you can to help yourself, then make the best of your time. :-)
User
Posted 31 May 2015 at 08:39

Welcome home from me too. Really glad the holiday went well. I'm sure Mick was watching and glad for you.

Best Wishes

Sandra

We can't control the winds - but we can adjust our sails
User
Posted 31 May 2015 at 09:45

Sending my love,

 

Fiona. x

User
Posted 02 Jun 2015 at 07:36
Hi Mo,

Thinking of you today.

Steve x

User
Posted 02 Jun 2015 at 09:21

hi mo

you are the strength some of us draw from

happy memories today

 

run long and prosper

'pooh how do you spell love'

'piglet you dont spell love -you just feel it'

User
Posted 02 Jun 2015 at 09:52

Hi, Mo,

Adding my love and thoughts,

 

Fiona xx

User
Posted 02 Jun 2015 at 15:33

thinking of you today Andyxx

User
Posted 02 Jun 2015 at 18:26

Mo

No matter that you have gotten on with your life so marvelously, today will bring back memories of all shades. Thinking of you, as I am sure you are of Mick.

Paul

Stay Calm And Carry On.
User
Posted 02 Jun 2015 at 18:52

In our thoughts Mo...can't believe it's a year ago

Take care

Bri

User
Posted 02 Jun 2015 at 20:25
Thinking of you today, Janet, xx
User
Posted 02 Jun 2015 at 20:48
Such a tough day for you Mo, I know you are resilient and forward thinking, but I just wanted to let you know I'm thinking of you today of all days.

Lots of love

Allison xxx

User
Posted 02 Jun 2015 at 20:56

M

Lots of love Chris & Dawn, see you soon.

User
Posted 02 Jun 2015 at 21:37
Gosh

got quite a lump in my throat ... just got in from a lovely meal with Si,Ness and the twins really to celebrate their wedding anniversary but also to raise a glass to Mick. Such amazing friends I am so lucky to have them close by.

I would like to say a huge thankyou to everyone for your lovely messages today, If I was clever like Si I would copy the post I put on my own FB page today. The basic message was for people who knew Mick wherever they are in the world to think of one thing that he did that made them laugh or smile and hold that thought for today. That has prompted some lovely pictures, funny stories and a whole day full of happy memories. I am not hurting today just thankful to have such amazing friends and family

THANK YOU

The support this forum has given me over the last 2 years (according to my profile I joined on 3/6/13) has been invaluable. I hope I can give some of that back in trying to help others.

xxx

Mo

User
Posted 02 Jun 2015 at 21:50

XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

BFN

Julie X

NEVER LAUGH AT A LIVE DRAGON
User
Posted 04 Jun 2015 at 09:36
Hi mo

Sorry, a little late but wish to send my love to you. To a very special person who is so giving to others on the forum.

Lesley xx

User
Posted 19 Jun 2015 at 03:17

Don't wobble your collies - we are getting there on Friday evening to give you a hug.

"Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards." Soren Kierkegaard

User
Posted 19 Jun 2015 at 08:40

Mandy you deserve the physical version of the cyber hugs you are always offering others.

Go and get them and give out some more of your sage advice in person.  http://community.prostatecanceruk.org/editors/tiny_mce/plugins/emoticons/img/smiley-smile.gif

All the best

Sandra

We can't control the winds - but we can adjust our sails
User
Posted 04 Jul 2015 at 22:51

We've birdwatched for years Mo.
We have the gear, the expensive binocs, the telecope etc. We thoroughly enjoy it BUT we can never remember what birds we are looking at.
It must be an age thing.
We've even been on a proper course which was great but the memory, ah well it ain't was it was.
Still, it gets us out into the country and waterways.

We can't control the winds - but we can adjust our sails
User
Posted 20 Dec 2015 at 20:35

Aww Mo
You're a rock to us all. Le Mont St Mo !
You obviously have some amazing close friends on here who have shared your trials and tribulations. It's a great place for all. I can only offer heartfelt warmth to you and thanks for some very needed support at times.
A bit of a cliché maybe but 2016 is your year. A new start but the important memories in your pocket xxx

If life gives you lemons , then make lemonade

User
Posted 20 Dec 2015 at 20:39

I know it's no consolation but I hope the memories of the 24 years give you a lift, not the last bit obviously but you shared an amazing love and nothing can change that.

A whole year without your Mick. His memory will never fade for you and in his absence you've made new ones.

Well done you

We can't control the winds - but we can adjust our sails
User
Posted 02 Jun 2016 at 08:34
Thinking of you today Mandy

Lots of love from us all xx

Don't deny the diagnosis; try to defy the verdict
User
Posted 02 Jun 2016 at 12:14
Hello Mo

You are in my thoughts today.

Carol x

User
Posted 02 Jun 2016 at 16:03

Mo

Lots of love to you, we will raise a glass tonight. 

Love Chris and Dawn

User
Posted 02 Jun 2016 at 16:15

Thinking of you today

Best wishes

Rosy x

User
Posted 02 Jun 2016 at 18:31

Sending my love and thoughts today for you, Mo. xxx

 

Fiona.

User
Posted 02 Jun 2016 at 18:47
XXXXX

BFN

Julie X

NEVER LAUGH AT A LIVE DRAGON
User
Posted 02 Jun 2016 at 20:22
Mandy

thinking of you Mandy, can't believe two years have gone by. Time is relentless.

Love

Allison xxx

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Posted 24 Jun 2014 at 21:05
Hi Mo,

What a lovely posting, there isn't much I can say except to say it was an honour to meet you and Karen. My ribs are still in tact despite all the cuddles.

I know Mick won't mind me signing off as usual as it really is so apt for you and what your dear lovely man would want

Life is for living

Barry ( alias Barrington )

User
Posted 24 Jun 2014 at 22:38
It was an honour to attend Micks last hoorah Mo and was very fitting, the monkey song (I wanna be like you) was brilliant, made you want to get up and dance down the isle, oobidoo! Playing it on You tube as I write this :)

Good to see you and Karen Saturday, hope you got sufficiently squiffy

Speak soon

Bri x

User
Posted 24 Jun 2014 at 22:44
A lovely, inspirational post Mandy. Lovely to meet you in Leicester, and look forward to meeting you again, love Janet
User
Posted 24 Jun 2014 at 22:53
Brilliant post Mandy.

Mick was a much loved husband, father and friend and had a wonderful life, if caught short by this drafted disease. His persona would not be, let's mourn and be sad, but remember and be glad. Luckily, that is your style.

We are here if you need us, you know the number. You are some hell of a person, and my dear friend made in awful circumstances. But hopefully a forever friend.

Karen was a delight and Mick would have been so proud, keep your head up as he would have wanted.

Big love

Allison xxx

User
Posted 25 Jun 2014 at 17:16
Hi Mo, What an honour it was to be able to celebrate Mick's passing with you, your family and friends. We look forward to seeing you at Euston and Leicester next year, together with all the others. Keep up the good work, for it will be a task, but a good one helping others with their battles. You are blessed with good stalwart friends, so here's hoping we too can meet up at Newark again sometime with the crew. God Bless everyone, with our love Chris and Shirley

PS. I am feeling so much better, it was an inspiration to see you all at Leicester. Thank you.......

User
Posted 26 Jun 2014 at 18:16

So my first tips on starting over are as follows...

1) book a holiday, after the last twelve months of no holidays and many disappointments and not being able to get Mick onto cruises etc. It has become my number 1 task . So my delightful Brother (he of the exceptional Limerick talent) and his wife have asked me to go and stay with them in France at St Philbert  Sur Lieu at the very bottom of the Loire and at the start of the Vendee. Mick and I went to stay with them 2 years ago and had a wonderful time so it seems fitting that I should take the plunge and go again. I love my Brother deeply and his Wife and family too,  so it will mean that I have terrific emotional support for this first holiday without Mick. 

Then and only then think about number 2.

2) Do not rush into any massive clear out of personal effects. Mick has a garage full of tools, power tools, and other stuff I do not even know the names of let alone what they do. How many of these things will I ever need? how many of them could be sold to raise more money for our Hospice?  He was also a gadget man, so there are things plugged into our TV that I dust every week but have no idea what they actually do ...could do with borrowing a teenager or two ! I do not know where to start on clothes, Mick was not the shopper .. I was so it is all my fault there are enough clothes (many still with labels on) to open a Men's outfitters.

Help is at hand for 2) My friends are going to help sort out all the gadgets and work out what I need and will actually use,  surplus can be taken to a car boot or something (enter Karen the avid car booter) Karen and I are going to write an inventory of all the workshop items and then get an expert opinion on what to do with those. Finally when I feel ready and up to it we will sort all the clothes ... some can be taken direct to the hospice shop and others can be given to friends and family. The majority will be given to third world countries or war zones via various charities.Once again any money raised from selling all the saleable stuff will go to our local Hospice.

Think that is enough of my ponderings on this subject for a week or three ... one of these days I will write up on some of the things that people can do in preparation for the inevitable, things that Mick had done to make all of the difficult stuff so much easier for me. Too raw just yet but soon maybe after that first vacation ??

Best wishes to all my super friends on this forum

XXX

Mandy Aka MO

User
Posted 26 Jun 2014 at 20:27
Hi Mandy,

I know that you will not wish to clear Mick's things out in undue haste, but I have a problem , and you may be able to help me?

I am desperately in need of a "virtual 13amp" fuse. Can not get one anywhere for love nor money and believe me I have tried!

If you have one I would pay you £50 and you could add that to the "pot"? You can email it to me so there would be no postage costs involved. I will download it and drool.

dave

User
Posted 26 Jun 2014 at 20:48
Also a sky hook? Eh Dave! Great to hear you are having a holiday Mo its so important you relax and take stock and doing it with family will be fabulous.

Can't help with the tools its not my bag either but there will be lots of stuff which will remind you of. Mick and they will become good memories over time.

Look forward to the holiday snaps!

User
Posted 26 Jun 2014 at 21:45
Dave i found one of those special 13 amp fuses and have messaged it to you, not quite the blanket Others would go for but very appropriate in the circumstances.

Payment will be greatly appreciated and the Hospice woud say so too.

Rock on

Xx

Mo

User
Posted 26 Jun 2014 at 23:15

Mandy Mo , My SS,

What a brilliant idea to start this thread, hints tips and advice for us lady's going forward, this is such a good idea.

As for the man tools, well I can't offer any advice or indeed name any of them. I didn't realise until with Trevor's trips to hospital and I have had to do MANY DIY jobs that I name all of them as thingy's , I say to the boys go to the barn and get the thingy with the red handle. They then come back with a garden fork, of course I then say NO not that thingy, it has got a red handle with a sticky out thingy at the top shaped like a sixpence. They then came back with a screwdriver and a twenty pence piece.http://community.prostatecanceruk.org/editors/tiny_mce/plugins/emoticons/img/smiley-surprised.gif

Just to prove a point I don't have a clue what Dave and Paul are talking abouthttp://community.prostatecanceruk.org/editors/tiny_mce/plugins/emoticons/img/smiley-surprised.gif.

I have got to build a basketball stand and hoop at the weekend, I hope the instructions include diagrams and thingy's.

I can always remember my Mum after my Dad passed and she was a strong lady she had run her own business for thirty years, about 4 months after he had passed she rang me in tears because the fuse had blown on the kettle, in hind site her tears where about the loss of my Dad not about the fuse and how he had been there for over forty years to take care of her and the fuses.

Mo I hope your trip to visit Jed is therapeutic , restful, and energising. Take time for you, surround your self with love and your family and of course lots of good French Food and copious amounts of French wine.

BFN

Julie X

NEVER LAUGH AT A LIVE DRAGON
User
Posted 27 Jun 2014 at 10:42

Brilliant idea for a thread, Mo. I always thought Dave's 'Planning the End Game ' was a good one too, could do with equivalent for wives and partners.

What most frightens me is the level of grief I will experience when Neil has gone, I have always found change and loss terribly hard to cope with since childhood and I am fed up of people and animals I love dying. One positive is I am seriously considering another collie pup in the future, the dogs have always been my salvation and I plan to get back to travelling, competing and camping over at Competitive Obedience shows like I did years ago. My retirement present to myself a year ago was a VW T5 converted with bed, storage and inbuilt dog cages. Have I used it to camp in yet....no !

Neil has loads of gadgets too, keeps talking of getting rid of them but easier said than done, then there are the tools ! Luckily we re-homed a four foot long ex military generator recently but such a damn shame as Neil loves all these things and hoards him. I am thinking of you and hope the holiday goes well,

 

Love Fiona.

User
Posted 01 Jul 2014 at 22:49
Just a quickie to let you know I had a lovely afternoon and evening with Si Ness and the twins. Si cooked a yummy tea and then we had a pint while we waited to meet up with Ness to go and watch the girls in their school production based on the lion king. For a primary school group it was amazing and made me laugh, cry and see how incredibly proud Si and Ness are of their girls and rightly so.

Incredibly therapeutic thankyou so much dear friends xxx. Mo

User
Posted 02 Jul 2014 at 00:25

There's nothing like children to ground you and bring you smiles in even the hardest of times. So glad you had a lovely time and also that Si is still looking after you. I am really looking forward to getting you all over in the school holidays and the girls can have some puppy cuddles.

Lots of love SS

BFN

Julie X

NEVER LAUGH AT A LIVE DRAGON
User
Posted 02 Jul 2014 at 22:26
Mo, I can't remember whether you go to France before I get back but have a wonderful time. There will be lots of memories there for you which will no doubt make you laugh and cry in equal measure. Take care xx
"Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards." Soren Kierkegaard

User
Posted 03 Jul 2014 at 02:49

Lyn I get there just as you are coming home I think, have a great time too.

Julie SS we are all looking forward to coming over sometime soon. I will reply to your e mail probably later today, as you might notice I am having one of those nights when sleep evades me, much less frequent now but they do still happen. 

xx

User
Posted 08 Jul 2014 at 19:29
Wish i was clever like Siness, then i could post a picture on here of Karen in her wedding dress yesterday she looked stunning. A wonderful day with just a few close friends including Si ,Ness and the girls in the evening. The girls played with Shyla until she was exhausted!

Lots of tears annd emotion on a bitter sweet day that had been planned so that Mick could give his only daughter away. Sadly that was not possible so i stepped in and covered all his roles, reassurer of how beautiful she looked, driver to the service, giver away ,loudest cheerer at the end, driver home, toast master and BBQ chef for 20 or so.

Mick would have been very proud of his two ladies.

Many congratulations Karen and Mark may your happiness last forever.

Xxx

Mandy Mo

User
Posted 08 Jul 2014 at 20:46
What a lovely post I am sure you stepped into Micks shoes and filled them them from top to toe. Its hard to fill all the things that Dads want to do giveaway daughters first grandchild .I know Eric is sad that he wont be hear for Carolann she told him I dont have a man and for grandchildren I think when you told me about the birds and bee's I will need one .

It is nice to see you still updating your thread and hope you are copeing even although things are still very raw for you .

I hope I can be half as strong as you have been.

Sending our best wishes to you and family.

Carol Eric

User
Posted 08 Jul 2014 at 22:14

Firstly Carol what a lovely reply yes that was me that thanked you.

 

Mandy Mo my SS,

As you say bitter sweet, this is going to sound weird, but you have been in my thoughts constantly for the last 2 days, so much so that I was going to ring yesterday and then I had a drama and couldn't ring . (I will explain when I ring you)

Driving to the service, didn't you realise that he was there.

Seeing Karen in her wedding dress, he smiled from ear to ear he was there.

Watching you give her away, so very proud he was there.

You thought that you were the loudest cheerer, no you just didn't hear  him he was there.

He stood beside you when you said the speech, he was there.

As for cooking the BBQ well I am sure you know what he was saying because he was there.

watching the twins playing with Shyla, he was there.

He wouldn't have missed that day, he was there.

He is in your heart and in your memory , he is always there.

Lots of love my SS.

BFN

Julie X

 

NEVER LAUGH AT A LIVE DRAGON
User
Posted 08 Jul 2014 at 23:09
Mo sorry for popping in on your thread just to tell Julie you are a wee bizzem reading your reply to Mandy made the tears roll down my face what a heartfelt post to Mo that Mick was with her and his daughter on their special day what a lovely thought and I think they would have felt him there.

Carol

User
Posted 09 Jul 2014 at 00:34
Well done, Mo. You have done Mick proud. Your posts are always so full of emotion.
Stay Calm And Carry On.
User
Posted 09 Jul 2014 at 00:41

Carol,

.

What is a Wee bizzem? I have got wee pokie now, not sure but I think I have heard Billy Connolly say it .

BFN

Julie X

NEVER LAUGH AT A LIVE DRAGON
User
Posted 09 Jul 2014 at 13:30

There is no more to add, Carol & Julie what lovely posts, it was a privilege to be there.

Si x

 

Don't deny the diagnosis; try to defy the verdict
User
Posted 17 Jul 2014 at 10:05
So here i am 45 days or just over 6 weeks since I lost my woderful husband Mick.

Lots of people ask me every day 'how are you holding up?'It is a good question which taken literally could be asking if i had become a bank robber ...well let me tell you about how different Banks can be when dealing with the death of a loved one especially when that person is the first named on a joint account or the primary on a credit card.

No names here just general information.

Credit cards...as Mick was primary on the two we had they had to be stopped immediately the balance owing became frozen so no interest added both allowed about 10 weeks for settlement from the 'estate'

We always paid in full every month so i just cleared them but nice to know they give you breathing space.

Fortnately i had an incident several years ago when i was refused a $ pre paid card, this baffled me a)I was not aware of any credit issues in my name and b) this was for a pre paid debit card

So i followed up on it. It transpired i did not have a bad credit rating i just diid not have one at all!

I had no history with no loans, no mortgage etc. The remedy was to go to my bank and they set me up. With a credit card. I used it every now and then to keep it active. This card became my lifeline when all others had to be frozen. I could not have managed without it.

Joint current accounts ... should be easy take in or send death certificate and everything changes to sole name. Some banks actually insist on you makinng an appointment for this but most will deal with it sensitiively and on the spot.

Sole accounts ..current or savings and joint savings can get a bit more tricky, bigger the bank the higher the figure they allow before asking for probate ( i innocently thought that a mirror will where I was sole executor and beneficiary would mean that probate would not be neccessary) generally speaking anything below 10k or where 'your half' is less than 10k is dealt with sans probate.

Online or telephone banking for joint accounts be sure you both have registered and are able to acccess joint accounts.I uused to use Micks which got blocked as soon as the bank was advised.big mistake!

All in all we had been well prepared however if we had big savings we would not have known about probate so if you have it may be wise to split them across different institutions.

Anyway just one of the many subjects where pre planning can help even if it seems a morbid task.

As for me I am holding up pretty well, i do have bad days and nearly every day something happens that gives me a weepy moment but i get through evrything with the support of my wonderful friends and family.

Mandy Mo

Xxx

User
Posted 17 Jul 2014 at 11:13
Hi Mo

Thank you so much for this, it is very helpful to know this stuff and I can relay it to John, who wants to ensure that things go smoothly (in that respect) when the time comes.

I haven't been on the forum much, I must admit I am slightly knocked for six at the moment after three and a half years of people becoming friends and then they are gone, it has been too much for me. But, a break from the forum is no bad thing and I have had a relatively Pca free time, which has been nice.

You are a lovely person, who is a very capable woman, though all those flipping tools do my head in too. I keep looking at our double garage and wondering what e heck it loll is in there. Wonderful news on Karen and on her marriage, what a fantastic thing to happen, it was a little sunshine and as Julie says, Mick will have been present.

Big hugs

Allison xxxx

User
Posted 17 Jul 2014 at 13:10

Great post, Mo and such a help to someone like me who will inevitably have to face what you have gone through. Neil's children are executors of his will, we do not have joint accounts, so hoping this will spare me some of the practicalities, I had enough with Mums death a few years back, getting probate, clearing her house and so on. I have already started planning something of a life for myself, as to whether it works out, who knows, but it helps me now !

Sending love to you as always, you are one strong lady !

 

Fiona.

User
Posted 17 Jul 2014 at 20:26
Hi Mo,

Thank you for taking the time to pass on these tips. I, when told that I was terminal hopefully went ahead and put everything in place at least financially to help Karen when the time comes. I have even ordered my "bespoke " coffin to my own design which of course will remain a secret until the day dawns (or in my case doesn't).

Sounds morbid but Karen and I had quite a laugh over the various ideas, enough to say we ended up on a military theme.

As I say thank you for putting down the rights and wrongs of what loved ones have to go through and I do echo your remarks about most agencies , banks etc. are generally most helpful.

Also if you want a weepy moment then damn well have one, didn't comment before ( too spaced out) but so glad Karen's day went so well.

Love and remember,

Life is for living

Barry (alias Barrington )

Edited by member 17 Jul 2014 at 20:28  | Reason: Not specified

User
Posted 18 Jul 2014 at 15:48
TG how do you do it? Commenting annd helping others whilst fighting on your own front line.

I guess it just helps me to pen down experiences that may be useful. Next time i intend to post about teavelling solo first time in 26 years.xx

I applaud you for taking time to get your wishes planned it helped me loads when Mick did so much too.

Always sending you hugs

Xx

Mandy Mo

User
Posted 30 Jul 2014 at 20:06
Some good tips Mo. Having been there a few times, I have found that the easiest thing is to draw some money out of the joint account before notifying them of the death. It helps to know your partner/father/friend's PIN number or make the transfers whilst the person is still alive (with their knowledge of course) - there is quite a lot of expense in those first few days & weeks and when my brother died, we weren't able to access his account for many months.
"Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards." Soren Kierkegaard

User
Posted 31 Jul 2014 at 14:18
Mo you never cease to amaze me with your heart, caring and practical approach to the things thrown at you.

Very good tips and advice and so helpful to others. Hope in your doing these amazing things it's also helping you through too.

Take care of yourself

Veronica

User
Posted 01 Aug 2014 at 19:41
Stage 1 of my first solo holiday in 26+ years.

Packing for just me in one carry on bag was easy peasy no gadgets,tools or other "essential" man things. I actually set off ten mins ahead of schedule amazing!

The journey to the airport hotel started off well first 150 miles in two and a half hours no shouting from Dora the satnav either. Only 40 miles to go so I breeze past the services no need for a wee stop. Then I hit the M25 and spent the next 2 and a half hours crawling,stopping,crawling and stopped. Now I really wish I had gone for a wee when I had the chance. I arrived at the hotel abandoned the car and hobbled cross legged to the loo .Mick was up there saying ha ha told you a million times a wee in time saves serious embarrassment!

Next hurdle dinner for one. I was shown to a table the size of a small drinks tray somewhere at the back of the restaurant, oh well at least it was near the kitchen. A rapidly served and eaten meal, so keen to watch the commonwealth games I stood at the bar to get a drink. A succession of men were served and I was beginning to think I might actually be invisible. I tried coughing holding my money up nada ,nothing so I resorted to leaning over the bar and collaring the barman literally, oh sorry he said I thought you were waiting for someone. GRRR.

Finally got my wine and closed stage one of my adventure.

User
Posted 01 Aug 2014 at 20:10

Hi Mandy,

You have a great trip and hope the french weather is good to you.

The girls and Ness all send there love.

See you soon

Si xx

 

Don't deny the diagnosis; try to defy the verdict
User
Posted 01 Aug 2014 at 22:30

Hi Mandy Mo my SS,

Have a relaxing holiday and take time for you, this is a new adventure a little daunting and no doubt emotional . Just a few tips.

No 1, Never travel on the M25 with a full bladder.http://community.prostatecanceruk.org/editors/tiny_mce/plugins/emoticons/img/smiley-embarassed.gif

No 2, Tips for getting served at the bar, always wear red stilletoes and have a fake £50 note in your hand.http://community.prostatecanceruk.org/editors/tiny_mce/plugins/emoticons/img/smiley-embarassed.gif

No 3, Never ask for a table for one, always a table for 2 and pretend you have been stood up.http://community.prostatecanceruk.org/editors/tiny_mce/plugins/emoticons/img/smiley-embarassed.gif

It's time to start healing.

Lots of love

BFN

Julie X

NEVER LAUGH AT A LIVE DRAGON
User
Posted 02 Aug 2014 at 07:21

Loved your post Mandy. What a spirit you have.

Re: motorways and stops. Always always take advantage. Did what you did on the way to my mother's once.

Got held up and by the time I arrived I was crying at the front door yelling "Get out of the way" as soon as the door opened

Learnt my lesson that day.  

Enjoy your well earned break. If Mick's had a chuckle at your expense then he'll also be watching to make sure you get the break you deserve.

Have fun. http://community.prostatecanceruk.org/editors/tiny_mce/plugins/emoticons/img/smiley-cool.gif

Sandra

We can't control the winds - but we can adjust our sails
User
Posted 02 Aug 2014 at 11:46
Have a great time Mo, it must be a daunting experience but don't forget the joys of holidaying by yourself too. I have been doing it for years. In no particular order:

1. You choose what you do and when

2. You choose the restaurant and the food and the wine

3. If you are tired and feel unsociable you can go to bed

4. You are in charge of loo stops

5. You choose the music on the radio etc

Seriously, I find travelling alone a reflective time and this will no doubt be the case for you as you try and make sense of the nonsense of the last few months. When you are alone you can be reflective which I think helps us to move forward, to make some sense of the world around us.

Most of all just enjoy!

User
Posted 02 Aug 2014 at 22:57
Mo,

I know the need to find the loo so we have both the Sainsbury and Tesco store guide books, they are some years old as they don't print them now, and a portable urinal in the car, after years of coaches, when the loos were not built in, you get used to seeing where they all are, and now we are older, and more decrepit, we have a RADAR key and booklet of points of use. It is even harder abroad but every café and restaurant can't refuse your usage of facilities but may make a charge if you don't buy.

Enjoy your break, come home refreshed!

Chris

User
Posted 14 Aug 2014 at 13:28
Flight stage went fine a little late departing but I arrived straight into the huge embraces of my lovely brother jed and his wife Jo. Whisked off through the country lanes from Nantes airport to St Philbert sur grand lieu about 35 mins away. French countryside glorious with sunflowers and maize as high as the sky very rural in this part of Loire Atlantique and just a short car ride to get into the vendee and all that amazing seafood.

My little Mobile home was fabulous clean, bright and very pretty. I knew I was going to like this much beter than staying in the little hotel that Mick and I stayed in 2 years ago.

First 3 days and I was taken on some lovely bike rides across the canals and marsh tracks in the tip of the Vendee. 5 miles trial day one, 15 miles day 2 and 25 miles day 3, I am a lot fitter than I thought !

We stopped for coffee at little country bars most of which were in tiny port villages my Brother seems to know everyone in this part of France!

Food everywhere was awesome and so reasonable, Oysters collected that morning 8 for 3 euro (not my cup of tea due to my iodine allergy but my brother loves them) Interesting enough he does not agrree that they are th food of love so no rushing out to get hundreds as a substitute for Cialis or Viagra.

I ate a lot of Langostines and moe goats cheese than I should and naturally we drank wine everywhere after all we were on the bikes!

My niece and her lovely children arrived on the Wednesday shattering peace and tranquility so the last 3 days were spent at the seaside and in museums. The museum of the Vendee was fascinating, I had no idea how badly the poor French farm workers were treated by the aristocrats during the revolution, a very moving visit.

I missed Mick every single day and cried many of the late evenings just a little and on my own but I passed the first solo expedition arriving back at Gatwick an hour late, finding the car and driving through to Swindon to stay with friends. Met Allison on the Monday for lunch which was lovely. Now home and starting to plan the next trip with a little more confidence.

xxx

Mo

User
Posted 14 Aug 2014 at 13:37
Well done Mo and welcome home. We know that area well and I can just picture you cycling across the marsh paths; I should think that Mick was watching over you and willing you to have a good rest in the company of people who love you.

My mother-in-law (Stan's wife) has taken rather longer than you to start picking up the pieces, so much so that we were all starting to despair, but has just amazed us by taking herself off camping to France for a month! At last text message she had made it across the Alps into Italy .... as you say, the first time is the most scary and sad but once done, it's done.

Now on to your next new adventure at the hospice I think?

Love Lyn x

"Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards." Soren Kierkegaard

User
Posted 09 Sep 2014 at 21:56
The last few weeks I have been thinking about others on the forum, their sadness, fears and just occasionally smiling when somebody has a great review with their Onco or Urologist. It has also been the first 2 weeks of my venture into adult education. The future learn course on the genetics of cancer has started, I have just completed week 2 along with a few others here on the forum. It is not basic or simple it is very technical and quite challenging for me, but I am finding it fascinating. My second foray into this new me starts next week with the course being run by Sheffield University in conjunction with PCa UK. Both of these will keep me mentally active during my first transatlantic trip in almost 18 months.

Si Superman is taking me to the airport he really is my hero, in a way he is taking Mick too, for I am setting off on the journey to lay Mick's ashes in his chosen place, by the lake at our friends beautiful 10 acre home in Georgia USA. The horses and his best buddy Riley (heinz 57 rescue dog) will be there and so will the amazing O'Fee Buchanan family who have been friends since forever ago. Mick loved the old house and had watched the new one going up in its place wishing like crazy he could have been there to help.

I just hope all the paperwork I have is in order and that there are no issues at Security, customs or immigration. I also have to sort out title deeds for the share we have in a condo in Florida, ironically we had been looking at options on that just before Mick was diagnosed. US Inheritance laws are very different to ours and you cannot will USA property in a UK will. I just hope I am strong enough mentally to cope with the process that involves.

My last few days on this trip will be going to our friends wedding in Las Vegas, Mick and I introduced them to each other innocently 4 years ago and despite the fact one lives in California and the other in London they have figured everything out for a new life together in California. Mick was supposed to be playing a key role at the wedding so provisions have been made to honour that fact, again I hope I can be a tough cookie although I suspect I will not be alone if I cry.

I am also hiring a car for some of the trip sounds so basic who would think that is a big deal, In the 25 years MIck and I have been going out there I have never driven ..well golf buggies, tractors and farm vehicles excepted. I have never driven an automatic car and never driven on the wrong side of the road. Only because Mick loved driving and I was more than happy to be chauffered around. So for me it is quite an epic milestone.

So I guess in terms of small steps when starting over this is actually like 110m high hurdle just hope I can get through the journey without knocking any jumps over.

In the meantime may all your journeys be smooth ones and I pray that there are more occasions when I can smile or laugh at your postings than those that provoke sadness.

xxx

Mo

Edited by member 09 Sep 2014 at 21:57  | Reason: Not specified

User
Posted 10 Sep 2014 at 01:27

It is, in the words of our American friends, an awesome undertaking and you have such amazing resilience and guts you will get through the difficult bits and shine and enjoy the experience. I wish you well and look forward to th stories on your return. Will see you on the course online (by the way there is still time for people to join. its Sheffield Hallam University and is entirely online)

Good luck Mo, way to go!

User
Posted 10 Sep 2014 at 06:08

Agree with Paul mo...A very emotional journey but hopefully one that will ultimately give you some satisfaction and pleasure having fulfilled one of Micks final wishes

Take care
Bri xx

User
Posted 10 Sep 2014 at 20:33

My SS Mandy Mo,

What a trip, this is going to be very emotional for you but as you have said before this is a place that you and Mick love . It is very fitting that this is the place that Mick chose.

Have a wonderful trip. Come back with some new stories of your adventure and of course lots of pics.

Lots of love

BFN

Julie X

NEVER LAUGH AT A LIVE DRAGON
User
Posted 10 Sep 2014 at 22:18
Mo

That trip will be emotional and wonderful and a real challenge all at the same time. Knowing you, you will ace it.

Looking forward to hearing all about it on your return.

Safe journey dear friend

Love Allison xxx

User
Posted 23 Sep 2014 at 19:12
So here I am sitting in our Condo in Lake Buena Vista Florida, into my second week of a 5 week epic.

For anyone every contemplating taking your loved one's ashes abroad to be laid to rest be aware of the Jobsworth piece of inhuanity I had to deal with at Manchester airport. I had been meticulous in gaining all the correct paperwork, carrying Mick's ashes in a purpose built bio degradble cardboard tube, packing them along with the paperwork into a carry on bag that meets all airlines specifications. So what could possibly go wrong? At check in the lovely lady from Vorgin gave me a spcial security pass to fast track through a massive queue for security. She also told me to gain the attention of one of the security staff ahead of the scanners to explain what I was carrying so that they could deal with me appropriately.

I did just that and spent the next 10 minutes trying to explain to a young head phone toting gum chewing chap who had limited command of the English language to start with. I tried to explain what was in my bag but he just told me to stop stressing and whacked the whole thing into the scanner and proceeded to shoo me to go through the dreaded x ray tube myself, now no laughing at this point please....the underwiring in my bra set the scanners off (at least that was what the lady said as she frisked me and waved her weirdy wand thing over me) so I move along to hopefully be reunited with my handbag and carry on bag AKA Mick. Neither item was at the collection point so a mild panic started to set in as you might imagine. Finally another less young and thankfully not gum chewing chap looks my way and summonses me to the end of the collection point where my handbag sits untouched but my carry on bag has been virtually dismantled. "What is this" he says pointing at the tube .. my Husband's ashes and I have the necessary paperwork right here I reply .. why didn't you report these before screening he challenges, well actually I did to your colleague over on the other side but he did not seem to understand me at all.

OK now I am going to have to swab them and check it is what you have said ... at this pont I asked if he could have just a little more respect and perhaps we could continue somewhere out of the public area like that little cubby hole over there although by now I was visibly crying so probably not forming coherent words. After a further 2 or 3 minutes of prodding and poking, swabbing etc the whole opened carry on bag and its contents was shoved back at me together with my handbag to repack. I started to put things together and was told in a very officious tone you can't do that here move over to that table over there. Oh you mean the one in the cubby hole that I wanted to go to in the first place. By now I was past crying and almost into a rage I felt Mick urging me to pick him up and whack the guy over the head but I resisted. Laughably my Humira injections for my Rheumatoid arthritis attracted no attention at all maybe I should have crackeed one of them open and stabbed him with it!

anyway the flight was great have to say Virgin Atlantic did a really good job of looking after me cusomer services had informed them the reason for my trip and they could not have been more helpful.

Arrival at Orlando and I did the usual mad dash to immigration, Mick always made us sit near the plane exit so we could be first off and virtually run there so I did the same this time. I was first in line and through in minutes when I collected my bags I looked back to see a queue of Disneyesque proportions so it had been worth the dash.

Collected my car a Nissan Rogue (hope that was not how I was meant to drive it) anyway I remembered Si telling me that he had done his bit by giving Mick a very smooth ride to the airport so now I just needed to ensure that I did not frog leap all the way to the Condo. Actually t was a piece of cake, I enjoyed driving so much I spent the next 2 days driving to all my favourite stores to shop till I dropped.

Friends and family of friends arrived on Wednesday, lots of hugs and tears initially but then 4 days of fun and laughter.

Now I am solo again still with Mick's ashes which stay with me until stage 2 of the trip next week when I go to see my lovely friends in Georgia.

Feeling quite lonely but managing to keep busy with my Understanding the genetics of cancer course and getting ready for the new one with Paul Yorkhull which starts soon.

My lovely caring daughter Karen is in touch daily (as are many of my friends on this forum) she had coffee with Karen Newman a couple of times last week whilst on holiday in Weymouth. so life really does go on it is just tough sarting over

xxx

Mo

Edited by member 23 Sep 2014 at 19:15  | Reason: Not specified

User
Posted 23 Sep 2014 at 19:47

Good to hear you are surviving Mo and not surprised at the ups and downs, it's bound for happen but you will find the strength to carry you through. I am not amazed but absolutely appalled at your treatment at the airport. Total lack of respect and it must have been heart breaking. Still you got Mick there and you will lay him to rest, an epic journey for both of you.

Look forward to seeing you online soon on the course.

User
Posted 23 Sep 2014 at 20:04

Hi Mo,

I was shocked to read about your ordeal at Manchester airport.
That was absolutely shameful.

But I was relieved you kept your indomitable spirit, and that everything improved for you once you took off.

If ever there was a 'real trouper'..... : )


Looking forward to seeing you again soon,

Warmest wishes always,

George

User
Posted 23 Sep 2014 at 22:32

Mo you are such a brave inspirational woman. I so admire your spirit. It is shocking what you had to go through at the airport. I hoe the rest of your trip goes well

best wishes

Lorraine x

User
Posted 24 Sep 2014 at 00:53

I think Mick will have had a good chuckle from wherever he is watching over you. If it is any reassurance to others, we had none of this horrendous treatment when we took ashes to Australia; we tucked the tube into the small suitcase and carried the paperwork on us but it wasn't even noticed.

Take care of yourself xxx

"Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards." Soren Kierkegaard

User
Posted 24 Sep 2014 at 15:09

Good luck Mo, give someone a hat and "jobsworth" doesn't bear thinking about, well done for making it so far !

Chris.

User
Posted 24 Sep 2014 at 22:15

SS,

I know how difficult you are finding this trip it must be full of so many memories for you and the realisation of why you are there. I know it was Mick's last wishes but you can always change your mind and bring him back to England. Si won't mind an extra passenger.

A good friend of mine (Debbie ) she won't mind me using her name has her Mum's ashes in the lounge, she always says she is deciding where to sprinkle the ashes and she hasn't made up her mind yet. In reality she hasn't found the right place in 5 years and finds it impossible to say the last goodbye.

You are strong and you will get through this, next week surrounded by old friends will be easier.

One last thing to say, Jolly hockey sticks.http://community.prostatecanceruk.org/editors/tiny_mce/plugins/emoticons/img/smiley-smile.gif

BFN

Julie XXXXXX

NEVER LAUGH AT A LIVE DRAGON
 
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