I was asked to call St Georges hospital first thing yesterday morning, the day before my ablation procedure to see when they wanted me to attend in preparation. As I said before I was reluctant to attend the night before if I didn't have to. What I wasn't prepared for was being told on the phone that weren't any beds available and to call back later. I asked what if there aren't any beds later? They said the procedure would be cancelled. WHAT? Oh my goodness. I felt sick. I said it can't be cancelled I have been waiting for this for months and my life depends on it. That might sound extreme but it's true.
I was asked to call back an hour and half later and when I did I was transferred to the junior consultant who reassured me and said don't worry I will ensure you get a bed. I told her I was going to have my vaccination injection at the London Clinic that afternoon. She said to go straight from there to St George's in Tooting.
Gulp. I kind of thought they would say that. I knew that if I didn't go I wouldn't get a bed. So I rearranged my travel arrangements slightly and quickly packed a bag for staying overnight at hospital. I caught a taxi to the train station and hopped on a train London bound.
Pete reassured me and said that he would drive down later with my bag, save me carrying it. Perfect.
I felt very floopy and unsettled. The fact that the bed wasn't a certainty made me feel sick. For a short while I thought oh dear god, what am I going to do if it's cancelled? Then I thought... No. I will be having the procedure. They will have to throw me out of hospital. Grrrr.
I got to the London Clinic in quick time and the service there was impeccable. Well you would expect it to be for the charges incurred. The doctor was happy with the state of my current vaccination sites, which have healed up really well in the last week. They decided that I should have half the dose than before and that it will now be done monthly.
Almost within half hour the site which is about an inch from the other two had already affected them. A hard lump has come up right next to the second site. Very strange but curious. It's currently very hot and itchy.
I got to St George's, the Oncology ward and it was complete bedlam. The Churchill in Oxford is busy but this place was, well awful. Mess everywhere. The toilets in a right state and I was told as expected that there was no bed available and that I was to wait. In the mean time they would take bloods.
I sat and waited for a few hours and then asked if I could venture outside and sit in the fresh air. It was so hot and stuffy I felt like I was being infected with everyone else's germs.
Off I went and waited for Pete to arrive. The problem was the traffic was terrible and it took him two and half hours... Poor boy. By that time it was 7pm and I was back in the ward which had now quietened down. I was told by the very flustered junior consultant that they were going to try and free up a bay which was currently being occupied by men, which needed to be cleaned. They decided that it would be better for me to be on that ward in case there were difficulties after the procedure. Ok, I thought that sounds great.
All during that time, I had been contacting Prof D, Dr Gonsalves and anyone else that would listen. I figured I'd get on their cases to ensure they got me a bed! I had a few replies and they all said they were sorry but there was no private wing at St George's and that unfortunately that is how it is at this hospital.
By 7.30pm Pete arrived and we were told to go out for a while. I had a plan. Let's go off site and have a tasty dinner. I had seen a great little bistro on my way to the hospital. We weren't disappointed. We ate more than enough. I figured if I was to be nil by mouth from this morning I may as fill myself up now!
We got back to the hospital ward at 9.30pm and were told that they hadn't moved the men from their ward and that I was to go where there was a bed available- across the hospital in another ward.
A nurse took us on a ten minute walk and we arrived at the Amyland ward. A ward for geriatrics, people with Alzheimer's and rheumatoid arthritis. My heart sank when we walked in. The hospital is old and the lady opposite was clearly not with it and was crying and asking the nurse where she was over and over again.
I unpacked and got settled in and walked Pete to the door at the end of the ward... I so wanted to go home. I was told to try and sleep but that was never going to happen. Not because I was worried but because of the old lady across from me. She called out for Ivy, Edna, Maria and anyone else she could think of. She asked for forgiveness, the need for a poo and so much more. The whole bay was kept awake all night. Seriously I wish they would give her something to sedate her. Bless her. It just made me think, I don't want to get that old! Which is ironic since I am doing my best to stay alive for many decades to come! So weird. I kept thinking what is this trying to teach me? I came up with nothing.
At 5.20am I decided I would have a shower and eat something before I was told be nil by mouth. The nurses here are lovely and I have since had an ECG and have a catheter fitted with IV fluids on a drip. The procedure is due this afternoon.
That's the only details I have.
I am seriously missing Prof Harris and the Churchill hospital right now. That hospital rocks compared to this. It's chaos here. I will forgive everything providing the ablation goes to plan.
I just hope I can go home quickly. I will never heal here. I won't get sleep, I feel like I will catch every bug under the sun, especially when I am greeted by sick and faeces in the toilets on my very first visit to the loo...
Pete has been amazing as always and has insisted he will be here when I wake up. It's such a gruelling car journey. It's not necessarily far it's just horrible on those particular roads.
So here I am sitting on my bed, feeling very spaced out due to no sleep and a little bit anxious. I hope it doesn't hurt too much. I want to go home!!