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Six months ago the consultant took us into a small room and laid out the facts that she knew at the time.  She explained GBS, what it does to the body, what we could expect, the best and worst case scenarios (with an emphasis on the latter).  But she couldn’t answer the one question we wanted answered more than any other.  How long?  With GBS it’s impossible to say she told us.  Will Jennie be back home for Christmas?  Maybe.  But given her age, the severity and speed of the onset we left with the feeling that she would bet against it.  We wouldn’t.  Home for Christmas was to be Jennie’s goal.

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Jennie’s wish to spend Christmas Day with her family has come true. She has now been out of hospital for two weeks and readjusting to a near normal life after such a horrid experience of being literally struck down with GBS almost 6 months ago.

“Oooo, you do look well” vistors say as they’ve dropped in over Christmas.  Her speech is getting better, she can walk with a stick, she can eat by herself.  But there is  still a long way to go.  Walking any distance is hard and climbing steps is a still distant goal.  She has difficulty in holding a knife and fork and eating anything but the most soft of foods is impossible (she did manage Christmas dinner chopped very finely).  Flashbacks to the nightmares and hallucinations in the hospital upset her; keeping this blog has been useful as a historical record to set her mind straight as to where she was.  Her immune system remains fragile, we must hope that she avoids any complications.  A trip to the dentist revealed that there were no real problems with her teeth as indicated in the last blog.

With physio at home now a distant promise, a Wii Christmas present should be some form of motivation. Carers arrive every morning at 7 am to wash and dress Jennie, and we are very grateful for this service.

But this post today should be all about Christmas Day which Jennie enjoyed immensely. The eagerly looked forward G&T was unfortunately not to her liking but a small sherry or two certainly made up for this.  She confounded exectations and did what we dreamed of, she spent Christmas day at home in the company of her husband, two sons and grandchildren.

Jennie writes

After a long blog break, things have moved quickly. A real treat this weekend as the Hospital has let me go home on the basis that I return in time for tea on Sunday. What is even better is that I will be discharged from Rehab on Monday. All mobility aids have been delivered to the new house my husband bought while I was in hospital.

Luckily I am quite happy with our new home. My mobility is improving with the aid of a Zimmer frame but my hands only just about grasp a teaspoon to feed myself. My swallow, jaw action and speech normality have still a long way to go before I am able to eat and speak as before. The treatment I received at the hospital was first class, the physios working me hard to get me mobile. I now need action on my upper limbs and help with my grip and shoulders. After almost 6 months of minimal dental hygiene, I fear a spate of tooth extractions, although hopefully the current course of antibiotics will cure the underlying infection. This is one aspect of GBS which is not covered in the text books…