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15 June 2009

Posted by DMC on 15 June 2009 in Diary |

An early morning start for another geriatric golf day. I managed to walk the course without too much difficulty. Too chilly for the kilt. In any event it looked like rain so how to protect against a soggy skirt?

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16 June 2009

Posted by DMC on 16 June 2009 in Diary |

Sadly England were knocked out of the World Series, by the West Indies, last evening in a rain interrupted match.

I do believe my hands are getting weaker. I’m still managing to shave lying down but need both hands on the razor. Also can still manipulate my electric toothbrush, but only just. How long will it be before ’my lovely’ will have to do both for me?
The interesting thing is that it seems to me that my right hand is weaker than my left although it’s the other around with my arms. Whether this is because I constantly use the right-hand rather and the left I shall have to ask at my forthcoming quarterly assessment. I know the right-hand is getting much worse – it goes like jelly – and it can take several minutes controlling it on a stiff piece of card containing the daily crossword puzzle. Only then, once it is in position can I actually scrawl in the answers.

Alice already has to fill in my cheques for me and indeed sign them. I had better not fall out with her otherwise I might find my account cleaned out!

The occupational therapist has kindly fitted some rather hideous plastic caps onto our bathroom taps. The ones on the X shaped heads work well but the lever caps on the round headed taps are a little awkward.

All of this gradual weakening means that the possibility of me being able to go to China to deliver my annual course of lectures, in October, is probably receding fast. Obviously I will know better in early July after my assessment but to be honest, lovely people though they are, they don’t seem to have much idea about timescale. The standard explanation, usually given, is that everyone is different so it is virtually impossible to say how fast one will go downhill and in what direction. Of course, they can take an educated guess, and are usually prepared to do so if pressed. This guess may be reasonably near the mark, but I am still not convinced however that they could not be far more scientific about the whole process and do what I came up with in the early stages of my diagnosis: that is to carry out weekly, or monthly checks with scientific instruments, grip handles, strengthen levers etc. – which I know are available – and from that be able to plot some sort of ‘slope of deterioration’. These checks could be carried out by the patient, or their carer, at home, provided the equipment was made available. Even if the results were wildly different with every patient then they should question why, and perhaps ultimately be able to draw some conclusions from the differences.

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17 June 2009

Posted by DMC on 17 June 2009 in Diary |

Toenail day at the Community Hospital. A nice podiatrist who unfortunately confines herself to feet. The local doctors’ surgery do not wish to know about fingernails which I certainly cannot manage myself but I am fortunate that Alice is prepared to have a go. Having said that I’m going to try to find out what would happen if I didn’t have this option. I believe the Red Cross or Help the Aged offer some sort of service.

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18 June 2009

Posted by DMC on 18 June 2009 in Diary |

To of my oldest friends came to lunch in the garden today, Geoffrey and Jessica Hanscomb, both in their 90s and in splendid form. I am supposed to be Geoffery’s executor but it looks more likely to be the other way around.

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21 June 2009

Posted by DMC on 21 June 2009 in Diary |

The World 20/20 Finals at Lord’s today. The English ladies won comfortably. Sadly our men were not in the final, cheated by the weather and Duckworth Lewis. However Pakistan put up a great show and beat South Africa who were the favourites.

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22 June 2009

Posted by DMC on 22 June 2009 in Diary |

Another beautiful summer’s day and walk around at the geriatric golf meeting. I managed the 18 holes with regular rests on my shooting stick.

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25 June 2009

Posted by DMC on 25 June 2009 in Diary |

I am due to have my quarterly MND assessment on 2 July when I will finally be able to make up my mind whether I am likely to be fit enough to go to China and give my lectures in October. It all depends how much further my hands and arms weaken in the meantime. I noticed, particularly in bed last night, what difficulty I was having pulling back the bedclothes. I had to use a combination of closed fists and elbows. Also, getting up from the floor following my morning exercises, the only way I can now manage it is to get onto my elbows. Strangely enough my right hand is now more useless than the left but the arms are the other way around.

Feeding is OK as long as the food is cut up, I can use a spoon. Most drinking is through a straw as most glasses are too heavy for me, although I can still cup a wine glass. Driving is fine in my automatic as I can still curl my fingers.

My greatest fear is getting locked into a public lavatory – in the train or in someone’s offices. Locks with a circular knobs are the worst.

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