Stop The World

One of the blogs I have recently started to follow is The Kitchens Garden from Cecilia, a New Zealander now happily living in the US.  Her post today brought back memories of another time and place in my life.

Haven’t we all had a “Stop the world I want to get off” moment at some time in our lives?  Well mine was some 26 years ago – way back in 1986.  It was a beautiful summer morning a couple of weeks before Christmas in Blenheim in the South Island of New Zealand.  My dashing (well by then not so dashing or so young) young Scotsman was in hospital recovering from  a burst, undiagnosed duodenal ulcer.

As was my wont, I arrived at the hospital shortly after 8am to be greeted by the nurses with a strained smile.  By this time we were all on first name terms as he had been in the hospital for some six weeks, and I thought their strained greetings very odd.  I was also concerned because a couple of days before when I arrived, my husband wasn’t in his room and I discovered that they had punctured a lung while carrying out some procedure or other.  Of course at the time, I did know what the procedure was but it has taken itself off with so many other things over time.

Well, when I arrived at his room husband was sitting up in bed reading the daily newspaper.  He too looked a little strained I came in and so I asked the reason.  His response, after telling me to take a seat, was that our son had been admitted to hospital the night before with appendicitis. As we hadn’t a phone at the time (see Paradise, Phones and Phrustration) my son’s girl friend had called the hospital to pass on the news.

Now in other circumstances, I would have taken this in my stride.  But just then…  Not only was my darling in hospital in the South Island of New Zealand, but my Mother was in hospital in London, England and my Father in Law was in hospital in Dunoon in Scotland.  And now my son was in hospital in Wellington in the North Island of New Zealand.

That was really a “Stop The World” moment for me.  Fortunately, my son’s operation was straight forward and he was released on the same day as my husband was released from hospital.  And as my daughter had arrived home from London having been summoned by her brother, we managed a happy Christmas with the whole family in one place.

“Said Mr. Smith, “I really cannot
Tell you, Dr. Jones—
The most peculiar pain I’m in—
I think it’s in my bones.
Said Dr. Jones, “Oh, Mr. Smith,
That’s nothing. Without doubt
We have a simple cure for that;
It is to take them out…..”
From Bones by Walter de la Mare
1873 – 1956 English poet, short story writer
and novelist.

And now I am off to a mid-winter Christmas dinner.  Well it’s hard to take the turkey, ham and all the trimmings on a brilliant summer day.

Christmas dinner

Google image

Happy Christmas to you all

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13 responses to “Stop The World

  1. Oh my…stop the world, indeed….how overwhelmed you must have felt!

    • Oh yes and so cut off from the world. However, all of them recovered, My darling lived for 12 more years, my Mother for 10 and my Father-in-Law for 6. My son I hope will live for many more years. 🙂

  2. Just when we think it can’t get any worse…it does.

  3. What a horrible “stop the world” day that was for you Judith, but glad things improved so the whole family could be together. You inspired me to look at the kitchensgarden blog and of course, your recommendations are always spot on and I am now following. Also just watched the film, The Way, with Martin Sheen. Wonderful! Thank you!

    • Thanks Dor. It was a horrible day but I guess we all have at least one of those in our lives. Glad you like both the film and Cecilia’s blog.

  4. It certainly sounds like it wasn’t a good day for you then, but an extra Christmas day in the middle of July sounds like a wonderful idea. Have a great time. 🙂

  5. Wow, Judith. I do not blame you. I would have asked the world to stop, too. I am glad it was still a Happy Christmas.

    • As I said it all turned out well in the end. Son is still thriving, husband lived another 12 years, mother for 10 and father in law for 6. So we were lucky to have had them and to have been part of their lives.

  6. Pingback: How Lucky Am I? | I choose how I will spend the rest of my life

  7. Hard to imagine so many family members in hospital at the same time! That would truly be a taxing experience.

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