Constance, Charity and an Angel…


This isn’t my usual crafting post.

I have been on an unexpected holiday care of the National Health Service after I dislocated and broke my ankle (in two places) when I fell at home. I wasn’t participating in anything exciting such as ‘Extreme Crochet’ or ‘High Speed Knitting’- I was simply in a hurry to get to the phone.

The story started when mum was rushed into hospital causing her to miss going on holiday. I was on standby to go and look after her when discharged; bag packed and ready to go I was busy printing off some documents regarding her holiday cancellation when the phone rang. Next moment, crunch! That’s it! Thankfully Tom was at home. Ambulance called- busy, they sent an ambulance car: ah yes, we do need an ambulance (you really did not need to be medically trained to see this was the case).

Pumped full of morphine I passed out on gas and air whilst they put on a vacuum splint. First step. Next was to get downstairs… did I mention I was in a bedroom? This was achieved by me bottom bumping down whilst one of the paras held my leg. Our stairs have a return and they had not been able to get the chair up, let alone down with me on it!

A trip to A & E in the back of an ambulance. Chris was with me by now. Straight into resus where the real ‘fun’ began. They had to manipulate my ankle TWICE to get the dislocation corrected. First time there were many meaningful looks between the staff since there was no circulation getting to my toes which had turned a fetching shade of purple… serious stuff. I was put  under using ketamine- a most unpleasant experience- tunnel of death vision and all that- who on earth would do that as recreation?!

After x-ray the consultant reported to me that he was ‘despondent’ as it was not in a good position; it needed to be done again. Hell! I replied I too was despondent and that he had better get on with it but under no circumstances using ketamine thankyou very much! Drug of choice this time was propofol which I was told is soya based at which point I beamed as if they knew me…much more my style! Hey an alpro trip! Thanks Joe! Anyway, imagine being all wired up and ready for action with a team of 7 waiting to work on you… in goes the anasthetic… no effect…. more….no effect….more…. should I be feeling it by now? Yes Jill. More…more…. there she goes. A sea of faces disappeared .


Apparently I was the talk of A & E for two reasons- my spectacular dislocation and two part break and for being the woman resistant to the drugs! I was later told they assumed this was something to do with my body’s reaction to the drugs because of my Lupus. I also learnt that propofol was Michael Jackson’s drug of choice.

Days later on my way to surgery I had an interesting discussion with the anesthetists about it just before I was put under for my op.

I am not going to give you a blow by blow of the rest of my 10 day sojourn ( sigh of relief) but like other significant events in life it has caused me to reflect on human nature and our amazing capacity for resilience. I spent time on three different wards in all where I encountered aptly named nurses called Charity and Constance and a hospital chaplain called Mr Angel (I kid you not) and many other amazing people who like me were there due to accidents that had resulted in broken limbs. A fall whilst taking out rubbish, a slip on the stairs, a trip whilst walking the dogs- nothing other than people getting on with their lives. What amazing women one and all. Instant camaraderie and deep empathy for the pain both emotional and physical.


Bespoke shower wear on the NHS

On ward 7 we caused havoc one night when the end of Kate’s bed fell off (just before midnight) and I woke with a blood curdling scream, when the staff arrived (at break neck speed) three of us were crying with uncontrollable laughter. I was told at that point my surgery was cancelled for the day! Did I care?!


Ingenious ice pack

Home now. Recuperating. Not quite stir crazy- yet. Ankle plated and pinned; staples coming out next week, plaster on for a further 4. No weight bearing at all in this time then gradual. Oh how I appreciate the love and care of friends and family.

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A nod to October which is Lupus Awareness month.

I was recently told I have osteopenia in my hips and osteoperosis in my spine after  a routine DEXA scan because of the Lupus. The orthos were clear this is why the break happened so easily and severely. Damn! I won’t be jogging again but I will be back on my bike this side of Christmas.


Thanks mum

Good news though: I can still pick up my needles and my crutches!


Annie and Clarabel

PS Mum out of hospital and doing well, being looked after by other members of the family. Sorry mum x

PPS Hats off to the NHS.


Author: onoodlesstitchcraft

An erstwhile teacher who has taken a new path due to illness and returned to an earlier existence exploring her artistic and creative skills of stitchcraft. My oldest son laughs and says I am as mad as a spoon, qualifying the comment that I am not like other middle aged mothers... well hurrah for that! So what do I do? I love to cook, I am never without a craft project or a few on the go, I love my garden, walking, nature and the environment. I am a magpie for vintage patterns and love colour. I get pleasure from creating and giving to friends. I have a rabbit! I ride a bike and recycle... Drink too much tea and like nothing better than to lunch with friends. Snuggling up on cold winter nights is essential. I like the theatre; musicals and dance in particular. Amongst my favourite films are Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, Singing in the Rain and Fried Green Tomatoes. I love to read anything from Crime thrillers to classics (love Wuthering Heights) or biographies about inspirational people. I hate sexism or racism and disingenuous people. I value friendship and above all else my family.

11 thoughts on “Constance, Charity and an Angel…

  1. So sorry to hear about your broken ankle. Enjoyed your telling of it though. Hope you get better soon.

  2. It is my mission to do just that! Nothing to jeopardise my recovery x

  3. Ow, that sounds sore!
    I love the nominative determinism you found in the hospital! 🙂

  4. You poor thing! Get well soon. 🙂

  5. Good grief!!!!!! You sound in good spirits but you’ve really been though the mill! I expect to see lots of completed projects over the new few weeks. No slacking!
    Seriously though, wishing you a smooth recovery. Having been laid up once myself for 4 months with a car accident, slow and steady wins the race. Much love x

  6. Thanks Lucie! Good grief indeed. You have to laugh; the hospital stay was surreal. At home it is all a little mundane as you must know. I am sat doing lots of making but my brain seems to have been a little addled by the experience so that even simple projects are a challenge. I will however be posting as and when I complete things! Just off to phone the Red Cross about the loan of a wheel chair! Wagons roll…

  7. Resilience indeed. Hats off to you for handling everything with humour and grace and gratitude. xxxxxxx If I was closer I’d come round with a plate of parkin and we’d scoff and crochet for hours.

    • Oh that would be so lovely! The mention of parkin takes me back to bonfire night as a child. Yay for the north west of England! Time spent in your company with cake and crochet would be a super recovery remedy. I am at least able to ‘carry on crafting!’ Well set up with flasks, water, goodies, laptop, phone. television, netflix, laptop and baskets of yarn etc etc so no need to get fed up… Chris is proving to be a very conscientious nurse for which I am very grateful! I am not always chilled and calm about my current predicament I can tell you but try not to wallow since I will recover!

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