We had been on holiday recently and had been having a fantastic time. We had stayed on a farm and Oscar had been using his Upsee which had meant he’d been able to look at all the animals and stroke Maisie the sheep dog.
The farm had a giant trampoline and we had laid Oscar on it and gently bounced him up and down and he shrieked with laughter. The sun had been shining and we had managed to get to the beach and build sandcastles and feel the sand between our toes.
Then on the third evening of our holiday my mobile rang…
‘That’s somebody medical’ I said to my husband, Neal. I knew just from looking at number that flashed up.
At the same time I was thinking, ‘Can we not even have a week off?’ Although, in fairness they wouldn’t have known we were on holiday. When I was answered I was greeted by an automated message telling me that Oscar had an Orthopaedic appointment the following Monday and to confirm ‘yes’ or ’no’ that we would be attending.
This was news to me.
We had only had an orthopaedic appointment recently and I knew nothing about this appointment, so I hung up.
‘Who was that?’ Neal asked.
‘Apparently, Oscar has an Orthopeadic appointment next week, but I don’t know anything about it. I will have to ring the hospital tomorrow and check.’ I explained.
An hour later my mobile rang again.
This time I was greeted by a person, not a machine.
The voice on the other end of the phone was very polite and apologetic about ringing but wanted to know if we would be attending the appointment.
‘I do not know anything about this appointment.’ I explained. ‘I was going to ring the hospital tomorrow and check that it was correct.’
‘Well, now that I’ve told you about this appointment, will you be attending?’ the person on the other end of the phone asked smartly.
‘Yes’ I confirmed before I got really mad.
In the meantime, we had realised that Oscar had been for an x-ray on his hips about two weeks before we went on holiday.
‘It must be something to do with that, the x-ray must have shown something up.’ I said to Neal.
‘You don’t know that, it’s probably just a mistake and they shouldn’t be seeing us.’ Neal replied.
But, it was too late. The worry had already set in.
What had the x-ray shown? How was this going to affect Oscar? Would he need an operation? My mind went into overdrive. When you have a disabled child you are constantly worried, you have appointment after appointment and medical jargon thrown at you. It can be exhausting.
That’s why we had looked forward to having our holiday so much. Just a little respite from the norm but we should have known it was too good to be true.
Do you successfully balance your career with your caring responsibilities?