Saturday, October 21, 2006

Am very proud of myself today, as thanks to a small amount of determination combined with huge lashings of desire to buy pretty new things plus an overly zealous mother to fuel it all, I went on my first shopping excursion today, yay! I was really quite nervous. Lungs are having a fair bit of trouble coping still, so whereas before I would just use 2litres of oxygen I am often having to whack my O2 up to as high as 8litres to calm little lungs down (clearly they have become far to diva like in their ways). This factor makes me a tad nervous to go anywhere too far from my concentrator, as the tiny portable cylinders I have don’t last very long at all, plus it takes no end of blood sweat and tears to actually coax the company to give you more than 3 at a time. It is those damn “what-ifs” which can creep in if you aren’t careful; what if I get really breathless and can’t run my cylinder as high as my machine to give me some relief? What if we get stuck somewhere due to traffic/roadworks/landslide/carnival procession or similar and my O2 begins to run low? Not so much of a problem when the O2 is simply perking me up and making breathing easier but at the moment breathing doesn’t just become slightly hard work, but rather almost impossible without the support.

Luckily the desire for pretty things has been building slowly but consistently over the last week or so, until (as I predicted and hoped it would) it significantly surpassed anxiety caused by the what-ifs. Feeling quite good lung wise and emboldened by thoughts of beautiful shoes, me Abby and my mother set off in the car and parked down a quiet road thanks to my little blue badge (I still get such strange looks when we pull up in a disabled bay, which I take as a compliment as the nasal specs clearly aren’t that prominent for people to be scowling at me as I wave merrily back at them). Even with the promise of shiny new things, it took quite a lot of push mentally to actually go, as it is just so much easier to put it off indefinitely; oh I am not quite feeling up to it, plus it will tire me out, etc etc. The sun was out and the sky a gorgeous deep blue as we set off with me in Denzel (my wheelchair) towards the shopping centre. It is all such a strange sensation still, cars roaring past, people pushing and chatting loudly, rushing around going about their daily business. I felt like a five year old as not only was I quite nervous, I was acutely aware of how helpless I am and completely reliant on someone else - normally I can at least maneuver Denzel around a bit on my own using my arms but I cant do that at the moment. Being out and about in the town again was strange, but nice, nice to be reintroducing myself back to normality. Also every time I face something I feel nervous about it boosters me with confidence, as I feel the nerves gradually subside, and I can add that as another accomplishment in the “Emily 1, CF 0” game which I am determined to keep playing. Tiny accomplishments are the way forward.

We headed straight for H&M as my mother most sensibly reasoned that just incase I want to return home after 10 minutes we should start with our favourite shop. I found some gorgeous bits and pieces (sensible trousers which I did need canceling out the beautiful but not quite so necessary tops, necklace and earrings also purchased). I wouldn’t say I was on edge all the time, rather having to work quite hard not to be, and not to keep thinking about breathing and potential breathing related problems. For example when looking for sensible trousers, my right lung got bored and decided to amuse itself by creating random stabbing pains in the top lobe, roughly where my 4th collapse was. Repressing the overwhelming urge to panic I decided to try and work out the new price of items which were labeled with markings such as “70% off”. This distraction technique worked a treat (predominantly because that is maths sadly beyond my capabilities) and the panic subsided leaving just the stabby pains, which on realizing I wasn’t about to rush home shrieking also began to die down. It is nerve-wracking and it is hard, but what frightens me more is the idea that my teeny battered lungs will prevent me from doing the things I love, and I will not let that happen, not yet. Emily 1, CF 0.

Brimming with new confidence and pleasure at having convinced lungs to temporarily comply, I demanded that we wheel in the direction of a shoe shop, and purchased the most beautiful shoes in the whole world ever (also known as glorious-but-completely-impractical-not-to-mention-unnecessary shoes). Thank god for Denzel, because I can’t walk in them. I have decided that they will become permanently attached to my feet and I shall refuse to take them off, even when in hospital. I have included a picture here for your delight and delectation, also because the money funding this shopping spree was kindly raised by some wonderful friends and family who attended a concert organized as a fundraiser for me when I was in hospital. So as well as boring things such as reimbursing family for some of the car parking fees accumulated (Chelsea & Westminster council took over £1000 from my family in car parking costs over the 11 weeks) here’s the evidence that your money is going on slightly more attractive vital necessities, which are so very essential for life. Hurrah for fabulous shoes!
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livvy said...

Beautiful shoe's lovely lady! Enjoy them - flash them off at every available opportunity! And Woo and triple Woo for nice shopping spree - great therapy. xx

DJ said...

So pleased to hear that you're out and about, Em. Denzil is doing you a great service! Love the shoes, too. You should take them to hospital with you so you can click your heels together and magically be transported home!


Anonymous said...

Yippeeee, Emily 10, CF 0 :D I love the shoes but won't they be a tad uncomfortable in bed ;)
Fluffy hugs
Jax xxx

frizzymum said...

Retail therapy in every sense! Well done you - and luurrve the shoes!

Kat said...

Ooh, lovely shoes! So glad you had a good day and managed to get lots of essential (ish) shopping done! :) Lots of love and hugs xxx

Anonymous said...

ohhhhhhhh Emily shopping!! :D

Lovely shoes bet you felt like Cindarella? you will go to the ball!:D well somewhere nice to show off those posh snazzy shoes!

Been wondering how you doing and wait for your updates :D

(((hugz))) Elaine & Rach & family xxx

Anonymous said...

Hi Emily,

Good to hear that you've managed to get out today. Love the new shoes.


Alice said...

So fun for you Em, really pleased you are spreading your happiness to the shops now! Such pretty shoes too.
love you

Anonymous said...

Glad you managed to over come yourself and let your mum take you shopping and by the sounds of it you had a great time to.. So a abig yay for you.. Hope its put a big smile on your face and I bet you get a big smile evry time you look at those shoes

xx Sandy xx

Anonymous said...

Glad you managed to over come yourself and let your mum take you shopping and by the sounds of it you had a great time to.. So a abig yay for you.. Hope its put a big smile on your face and I bet you get a big smile evry time you look at those shoes

xx Sandy xx

Nicola said...

As the shoe queen I think it is my duty to give them a rating of beautifulness,and they are definitely a 10 out of 10.I hope they make you feel a little better,and when you are feeling down or anxious just look at those beautiful shoes and tell yourself that they are your "shoes of salvation" lol.

Stay strong sweetie,I'm sending even more Jimmy Choo

Anders said...

Nice shoes! To be honest they aren't something i would wear, or at least something i wouldn't openly admit to want to wear on a public accessible website.:p

Keep the fight on Em. Your blog always puts a smile on my face, your silliness and stupidness brings joy to my world;)That's a compliment - honest!:p

Jac said...

Well at least with those shoes when you are in hospital and want to go home, you only need click your heels together 3 times chanting "theres no place like home". Magical.

love and higs
Jac x

klics04 said...

love the shoes Emily, when you want the tan to go with them let us know we will be here in Cyprus to help. kevnles

Michele said...

Glad you got out and about and did the girlie thing and went shopping.Love the shoes just think when you have your transplant you will be able to walk everywhere with them on. Of course shopping and buying lovely shoes is the best medicine.

Take care

Sazzle said...

Em, those are gorgeous shoes!! Hoorah to you getting out shopping again, here's to more essential girly outings and trips..

Love you loads


Diana said...

Hi Emily - I've been following your progress and keeping fingers and thumbs crossed for you. You write so well, it makes me laugh and cry and brings back so many memories of waiting. I'm glad you're home and not only shopping, but keeping your toenails painted. Wishing you lots of luck and hope the call for the transplant comes soon - I've been so incredibly lucky with my heart and lung transplant, having had four amazing years, and wish I could pass on some of my luck to you. Keep shopping, keep hoping, Diana xx

Lizzie said...

Oooooohhhhh Shopping!!! So glad the O2 was up to the task of supplying excitment breaths for those pretty shoes. Sooo pretty :-) They definately look hard to walk in though so good job Denzel takes that burden! hehe
Lizzie xxx

Cory said...

As a guy, I do not envy shoes like that that seem so hard to walk with. But they do look pretty on you in your pic of your tootsies. And pink just rocks the world. Even I know that!

Julia said...

Hi Em,
So glad you've decided to start spending that money - retail therapy works wonders!Everyone deserves some luxuries, you more than most, so plan the next spending spree and enjoy!!
Much love

jen said...

So great to see you out and about doing the things you love!!

Gorgeous shoes too :)

Keep smiling, and shopping!

Lots of love,
Xx Jen xX

Simba said...

Ooooh what gorgeous, gorgeous shoes. YAY for shopping and consumerism but most of most of all, YAY for persistent and fantabulous Emilyness. HURRAH indeed. xxxxxxxxxx

cory said...

Kina'll be released on Thursday. Wonder what shoes she'll be sportin'!


swissfriend said...

Hi Emily,

what really beautiful shoes - they are definitely made for dancing so hurry up and get better. Glad you gave your little lungs a talking to - it works well, doesn't it, once you refuse the panic. Just firmly telling your lungs to behave every time they play up should control their antics.

Sorry I was out of touch - short stay in hospital with potentially fatal illness, which obviously wasn't fatal as still around and back at work feeling better than ever. You can't kill a bad things........ Didn't stop thinking of you all the time.

Chin up, feet up ( to rest them from the shoes) and get well quickly.