Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Time for a break

Hi all


Now that Ja z has started writing again I thought I might take a blogging break!!! Ill be back in a couple of weeks!!!

Check out Jasmines Blog  http://treacytravels.blogspot.com/

Bye for now

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

Happy Birthday Phoebe

Well its been 3 years today since beautiful Phoebe was born. I remember the day really well, probably better than Caitlin and Molly's day purely because Phoebe took a little longer than the other girls. But lets not go into to many details!!!!

Sandy and Luke came up for the long weekend so we were able to have a real party with family on Sunday, Phoebes latest fad is Pirates so Jaz put together a great pirate ship cake along with other Pirate treats and we all stuffed ourselves on fairy bread and cake!!

Jaz has had her ups and downs. Her vision hasn't been the best which makes her feel awful. We went back to hospital on Saturday morning as she could hardly see and after a few hours they decided to put her back on the nasty steroids.They seem to give her relief fairly quickly but after only a few days her vision is troubling her again so its off to the doctors again tomorrow.


To finish I thought Id post a few pics of little P. We all love her to bits. Being the youngest she holds a special place in all our hearts. Its amazing to see how far she has come in 3 years!!








Saturday, 1 October 2011

Back in Hospital

After all that good news last week poor old Jaz ended up back in hospital.

After suffering a terrible headache along with other side effects I took her into hospital on Sunday and she was operated again on Tuesday. A build up of brain water or cerebrospinal fluid was causing terrible pressure in her head (Hydrocephalus).

I want to thank our friends Lisa and Paul who stepped up and looked after the kids while I visited Jaz. Her operation went well and I was able to bring her home yesterday. Our Oncology Nurse who has become my hero this year has said it will take at least 4 weeks for the fluid levels to reduce back to a comfortable level.

Jaz seems a little beaten since the operation, it is very hard to stay optimistic and positive when things like this keep happening. Bloody tumours I curse the day (my birthday last year) our GP rang and broke the news.

In 2 months time Jaz will have another MRI. Its pretty key in the grand scheme of things, will the tumour be smaller (result of Radiotherapy), the discolouration on her cerebellum I hope will be confirmed as a consequence of radiotherapy and will the new drain created by this weeks operation be functioning as it should be. I hope that someone out there gives us a break and lets us have the Christmas that we deserve.

Crikey I've been a bit grim and I apologise. Ward 83 "Neurology Ward" is a tough place to visit and certainly puts life in perspective! Apart from Jaz we are all pretty healthy and have more than we really need. Things could be a lot worst.

Thats it from me its time to watch the English take on the Scots in a Northern hemisphere slug out. If we are lucky one of them might even score a try!!!

Well done Tonga

Go the Warriors!!! and thanks GB for the postcard :)

Mark

Friday, 23 September 2011

The What ifs!!


Its been another huge couple of weeks on the home front testing our little family unit to the limit.
Poor old Jaz has been pretty sick, double vision with lots of fatigue and headaches. After a stint in A&E. Oncology decided to bring forward her routine MRI Scan. A couple of days later we received a call from our Oncology Nurse. That's when the "what ifs" came to haunt us.

Isn't it funny how we torture ourselves with worst case scenarios? I'm not going to go into the details of Jasmines results but to be fair they sounded pretty awful. Our meeting with the specialist to discuss her MRI was another 10 days leaving us both together and as individuals to create some pretty scary what ifs!!

Where do we live? When will this thing beat her? How will we cope? Will I ever see my girls grow up? Should we move close to family in Christchurch? What will I do for a job? Christchurch doesn't seem to offer much should we just stay here??
Life seemed pretty grim based on one phone call and one persons opinion combined with our imagined worst case it was hard to imagine a life together going forward.
The appointment finally arrived on Wednesday 1.40pm. With the girls at school and daycare Jaz and I headed into the city early and enjoyed lunch, shopping and a brief visit to the Art centre. For 2 hours Jaz and I enjoyed being us, we shopped laughed and enjoyed the freedom that comes from not having kids. Normality until we entered the hospital grounds then the fear, what ifs and tears started again.

The appointment was delayed 30 minutes while they discussed her scan and then the moment came. How would they tell us? What if.......? The Specialist was the nicest guy, very calming one of those Doctors that respects and understands his patients. But the words that came out of his mouth didn't make sense? Jaz was crying and then asked "did you say the tumour is dying"? "yes, but things can change and we need to continue treatment with regular MRIs until we are sure you are safe" "its early days and there is still a blood supply, the battle isn't over but we are heading in the right direction!"
All of a sudden the what ifs had changed from negatives to positives. We might have a future and Jaz has a great chance of getting better.

We have tortured ourselves for weeks and now after one meeting we feel like all of that hard work is starting to pay off.
One thing I have learnt from this experience is the importance of having positive people around you and the person suffering their battle. Dealing with death is tough and can be very lonely, watching the world go by. Instead of living it feels like you are just existing. Getting through the days until the next appointment or scan. So receiving an email or text makes a huge difference. They dont have to be in the same town or even country. Just knowing that there is someone else out there batting for your team makes it all a little easier.

Have a great weekend go the All Blacks and the Mighty Vodafone Warriors!!!

Mark

Saturday, 10 September 2011

Spring

Well the Rugby World cup has started with a hiss and a roar. The ABs blundered passed a passionate Tonga and Scotland were pushed hard by Romania. Already it seems that this competition will be close and I cant wait to wear a patch in our couch over the next 7 weeks!

Spring has arrived in Auckland, the temperatures seem so much warmer and we have almost dusted our shorts off. I went for a run this morning and marvelled at the beauty we currently live in. Arkles Bay looked amazing, it was like a mirror and so peaceful. We are very lucky to live in such a place. If we do decide to relocate from here Im sure we will all be very sad.
The kids are great and growing fast, the girls seem to enjoy life up here in sunny Whangapararoa!!

Jaz continues to fight the fight. On Tuesday she had her first MRI since radiation therapy. To be honest the results werent as great as we expected with more details to follow when we attend a meeting with the Specialist in 10 or so days. So the mood is a little sad but as always we truck on. We have no real choice.
So thats really about it from me Fiji is about to take on Namibia so its time for me to wrap up another enrty.

Be safe

Mark



Thursday, 1 September 2011

:)

Its been another busy week for us all so I really dont have the time and a lot of motivation to write alot in this blog.

I had to take Jaz to the Dr again, bloody virus has knocked her for 6 she just doesnt seem to have alot of energy right now. But the tablets she is on now seem to have made some difference. I do miss friends and family back in Canterbury now more than ever. its been a challenging year. But it could have been a lot worst!!!! My Mum and Dad keep in regular contact and Jaz recieves pleanty of texts from her family in Rangiora which has been more than a blessing.

Well thats about it for me. To finish here is the link to Jasmines blog. She finally felt well enough to post another update.

Good on you babe xx

Wednesday, 24 August 2011

Jaz

Hi all

Its been well over a week since my last blog, simply because I haven't had the time. Poor old Jaz has been pretty ill. Falling victim to a nasty virus effecting her middle ear. We spent a day in hospital last week for tests including a CT scan.
Thankfully the CT scan showed no other tumours or bleeds but unfortunately they could not offer any quick fix advising lots of sleep and rest.

To top it off on Saturday morning her vision reverted back to post operation horizontal double vision. A real blow that has knocked my poor wife for six. She is so sad it breaks my heart. It was only a few weeks ago she was driving and between us we shared the school drop offs and shopping. Giving her the independence she deserves and me the freedom to work full time just like the old days.
Now she struggles to function with low energy and buggered vision. To say it wasn't fair would be an understatement

But tomorrow we have a follow up appointment with the Ophthalmology department which has been incredible timely so fingers crossed  they can reassure Jaz and shed some light on the problem.

All the best

Mark


Monday, 15 August 2011

Tyson

Today has been just one of those days. Poor old Jaz has been unwell with an ear infection and after spending most of the weekend in bed I took her into the Doctor first thing this morning. She received reassurance that her upset balance and nausea was not a result of her brain tumour but more likely to be an infection deep in the ear. We both automatically feared the worst! But thankfully it was all quite normal and she has since spent the rest of the day asleep in bed.

To say that we are both a little hypersensitive would be an understatement!

Jaz did mention last Thursday  that our lovely boy Tyson was ill. Well after a long battle he was put to sleep this afternoon as his kidneys were showing no sign of recovery.  It was an incredibly hard decision to make but Im thankful I was there to comfort him during the end.


Tyson and Lucy about 12 months old
Tyson helping Jaz hang out the washing - 12-24 months old
Jaz and I adopted Tyson and Lucy about 15 years ago, well before kids so we are both very fond of them. They have been through numerous flats, houses and even a relocation from Christchurch to Auckland. Not forgetting the girls Tyson and Lucy have always been there sharing the couch, cot or bed.






















The girls and I went and spent some time with Tyson before he had to leave us. The big fella was so pleased to see us and managed a good strong purr appreciating all the love we could give him. I wanted to thank the team at the Whangapararoa Vet Clinic for the love care and empathy shown through Tysons stay.

Here are some of the pics I took of our last visit with Tyson
Caitlin and Tyson

Phoebe and Molly - Phoebe and Tyson had a love hate relationship!

But regardless of their differences he was still pleased to see her

Good bye to a good mate



Tuesday, 9 August 2011

Happy Birthday

Well it was my birthday yesterday and as I had to work all day and late into the night my wonderful girls organised celebration's that started on Saturday night.
 Jaz made an amazing cake that we all enjoyed
The All Blacks demolished the Wallabies!

video
Molly and Caitlin put together a little video that made me proud to be their Dad and after gifts and a run on Sunday morning we headed over to the city via Devonport on the ferry. Jaz had booked lunch at the Grand Harbour for the best Yum Cha in the city. Jaz fairly well covers it in her blog Treacy Travels please check it out. The girls had a great time eating in the busiest restaurant I have ever seen!!! We tasted all kinds of dishes and even little Phoebe found a dish she liked.
To say I was spoilt would be an understatement!!!! Thanks girls and also to everyone via phone, mail and Facebook for all the birthday wishes :)


Happy birthday to me!!!

Phoebe discovers deep fried squid and Molly loves sweet and sour pork

Phoebe Tiger!





Tuesday, 2 August 2011

Big week


 Well its been an action packed week or so since my last blog and I'm almost well and truly back at work full time thanks to Jasmine who has started driving again. It means that together we can share the load with the school drop offs.

This has made a huge difference to my life, all of a sudden I don't have to be everywhere for everyone and can concentrate on my job rather than trying to balance childcare and work.

Last week I went away to Wellington for 3 days attending a Bunnings staff training expo. It was great to get away but I did miss the girls a lot. Wellington was bloody cold, I had forgotten how lucky we are in Auckland with the weather. I have certainly softened since living up here!
While I was away Phoebe had her first dress up day and disco at Daycare last week and Jaz put together an Angelina Ballerina costume, Angelina is a cartoon character on the kids channel. She was very excited getting up at 5.30 in the morning. Thankfully I was in a nice quiet motel room hundreds of kms away!!!

 On Sunday we decided to take the girls to the Auckland caged bird show. Bloody noisy but the kids really enjoyed it. Phoebe and I made the local - paper click on the link to see our photo Auckland Times
I was blown away by the competitiveness of the breeders. I managed to listen in on a conversation between two elderly gentlemen and if they had been in another room you would have thought they were talking about champion thoroughbred race horses!!!
We finished the day at one of my favourite Japanese restaurants. I love the fact that our kids have always enjoyed sushi. Phoebe is especially funny to watch as she enjoys the rice and nori (seaweed wrap) but dislikes any of the centre.So Molly is always on hand to clean up any food surplus to requirements. An arrangement that seems to work pretty well. 
So as you can see we have all been pretty busy made all the easier because of Jaz and her courage to get on with life, she has always been the glue that keeps us together motivating us to do things as a family so I wanted to say thanks Jaz. We all love you so much. X
Have a great week

Mark

Friday, 22 July 2011

My girls

 Last weekend Jaz took a couple of photos of the girls and I. To be honest I'm not a huge fan of my photo being taken and because of that we don't have a lot of photos of the girls and I, so she struck while I was in the mood!
When I look at these photos I feel so proud of what we as a couple have achieved so far in our lives together. Houses and cars along with all the other material stuff is great but our kids will always be our greatest achievement. My girls are beautiful and the apple of my eye and I'd be the first to admit that this year has been pretty tough for them as most of my focus has gone on Jasmine and her recovery. Its only now 6 months after her operation that we are starting to plan and do things together as a family. Simple things like visiting the park or the beach have been like a breath of fresh air.
We all look forward to the weekends now and instead of sitting around home we are out exploring again!
As another weekend approaches the prospect of more rain  looms so its off to the Mall tomorrow for a bank appointment and may be a visit to the movies. Molly wants to see Cars 2! Which took me by surprise but should be a lot of fun!

Go the All Blacks

Mark