Category Archives: Family

About family & family issues.

He is all of 13 Years Old…

Yes, he is! My boy is now a teen! i am the mother of a teen! i’m in denial, which is why this post is a whole 1.5 weeks late…

He chose to celebrate it with 3 of his friends at the Laser Arena in Basel. He would have invited more, i think. But our car could only take that many 13-year-olds.

The guy who did the walk-through was really nice and friendly. When we got there, we were the only group playing laser tag. The rest of the groups were playing paintball. It was only for the last of our 3 games that the boys played with another group.

Here are some pictures:

 

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Top: The boys in their gear, fierce, right? ;), Middle: The playing field, Bottom: The score sheets.

 

 

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The happy teen with his load of presents… there is actually still a couple waiting for him in Singapore.
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Last but not least, our traditional birthday shot!

syc

 

A Fall, Two Breaks, One Surgery…

Happy New Year!! It’s 2017!

Now i had debated with myself a few times whether or not i should blog about this, since it is sort of in the past, it happened in the year gone by… but i decided that such an incident needed to be recorded in some way.

So i am going to be looking back at nine days before the Christmas of 2016. It was Friday, 16th December 2016.

i had almost finished grocery shopping and was going to meet my friend for our usual weekly writing session when my mobile rang. It was not a number i immediately recognised. i picked up and heard the familiar voice of my boy’s teacher.

She asked where i was and if i could sit down. Then she told me not to panic, that Tobias had fallen in gym class and she had to call the ambulance, which was on its way. She didn’t think it was serious but said i should meet them at the hospital.

i finished up the shopping, left a message for my friend and headed to the hospital. i arrived at the ER and asked about Tobias but he had not been brought in yet. The lady even kindly checked with the private pediatric practice within the hospital. i was told to wait.

While waiting, i overheard a triage nurse say Tobias’ name. i stood outside her door till she was off the phone with the ambulance. She had already seen me at her door, even before she got off the phone. She immediately identified me as Tobias’ mother and directed me to the private pediatric practice because that is where she directed the EMTs to bring Tobias.

i texted my friends to be praying while i waited. It was 9.30am.

When Tobias arrived, at about 10am, he seemed rather oozy, which the EMT said was due to the pain meds. His teacher was with him and she was very kind and supportive. His forearms were in splints. The pediatrician came in and had a looked. When he lifted Tobias’ right arm up, i knew it was broken.

i found out, from the EMT’s description, how it happened. Tobias was in gym class, on the rings, he dismounted, fell backward and put his arms out behind him to break his fall. The ENT said it was a very classic fall and break.

We were sent for an x-ray. One of the nurses from the practice accompanied us throughout. Then i was shown the x-ray by the pediatrician, which showed that both Tobias’ arms were broken. He told us that he had already spoken to the head of orthopedics at the hospital, who was experienced in treating such injuries in children, so we were sent back to the ER to await admission paperwork and treatment.

While we waited in a treatment room in the ER, we had a variety of doctors and nurses come by. The first was the second in charge of ortho, who explained what was going to happen. Then a nurse came in to put in a drip line. Another brought more pain meds. Then the anesthesiologist.  Then another member of the ortho team. Finally, at about 1pm, we were transferred to the ward to await surgery which was scheduled at 5pm.

 

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Waiting for surgery…

 

My dear friend came and sat with Tobias in the ward so i could go home with the groceries and get some overnight stuff together. Thank you my dear… again.

We ordered our meals (my dinner and our breakfast and lunch) from the hospital menu. More pain meds were given. We got to chat with Tobias’ roommate, an older gentlemen, who seemed to have been in hospital for a while. Tobias’ teacher rang to find out what was happening and was devasted that both his arms had broken. She was surprised at how calm i sounded. i was strangely calm and i attribute that to the many prayers prayed on our behalf by dear friends. Thank you.

The surgery was delayed by an hour. i was allowed to walk him down to surgery. Then i went to pick Walter up from the train station. He was coming back from a business trip.

i picked up a few more things at home and he dropped me off again at the hospital before heading to his company’s Christmas event. There was no point in both of us staying at the hospital, waiting.

The nurses were very nice to keep aside my dinner for me and they served it to me at the little table where visitors usually sat and had a chat/tea with the patients.

A little after 8pm, the surgeon rang the ward and told me all had gone well and that Tobias would be wheeled to recovery soon. An hour after that, the recovery nurse called and said i could come down and sit with him.

 

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Post-surgery…

 

At about 10pm, we were back in the ward. Walter then came by and visited quickly (he was only allowed in for a short time) before heading home. i spent the night sleeping in an armchair with a footrest, next to Tobias’ bed. The nurses were very apologetic that there was no bed available for me and found the most comfortable chair they could for me, one which could lean back a bit, along with pillows and two blankets.

The next morning, Tobias woke up in good spirits and realised that he would not be able to play games for a while and he was upset that he might not be able to open his Christmas presents. i assured him it would be fine. We washed up and then breakfast was served.

A doctor came in to check his bandages. Then the surgeon came in, checked and said we could go home this afternoon. The second in charge then came in with discharge papers and meds prescription. Then it was lunch.

While we were waiting for the nurse to come and remove the drip line, Tobias’ teacher came to visit and even brought a gift, audio books. It was very thoughtful of her. She said in all her 20 over years of teaching, this was the first time she had to call for an ambulance.

After Tobias’ drip was removed, we paid for my meals and went home.

So it has been 3 weeks now. We have had his initial post-op bandages changed to a much slimmer one, which has helped with the mobility of his hands. In 2 weeks, we go to the surgeon to see if the bones have healed nicely. If so, then the wires will be removed and he will out of the casts.

 

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Casts with his friends’ signatures on them…

 

With casts on both arms and being allowed to only lift the weight of a glass of water, Tobias needed help in almost everything. We also saw serious bruising on his left arm which needed daily massages for a number of days to get rid of the blood pooling from the surgery site.

All along this journey, people have been kind and helpful and patient. i thank you all for your love, care and concern. Tobias’ friends and teachers have also been wonderful; being patient and helpful, getting their mums to text to ask how he was, visiting on their way to and from school.It has been a trying few weeks in which we had to have lots of patience. But the light at the end of the tunnel can be seen and we pray for full recovery.

It has been a trying few weeks in which we had to have lots of patience. But the light at the end of the tunnel can be seen and we pray for full recovery.

Do pray along with us. Thank you.

syc

Autumn Holidays 2016…

i know this is an extremely belated post. We have been back at school for 4 weeks now. i have tried a few times over the last few weeks to get this post written but somehow it never happened. So this week i decided that it has to be written and it got moved to the top of the ‘to-do’ list.

Our autumn holidays was the first 3 weeks of October and while it was not as exciting as last year’s, it was still fun-filled and we managed to do a fair bit.

In the first couple of days, we focussed on getting some housework done. Tobias then went off with one of his best friends to a nearby waterpark, Bernaqua, for an afternoon. The next day, we met up with some friends from Niderwalden at the Toni Zoo for lunch and a lovely walk around the small but well-kept zoo.

One of the highlights was the Foxtrail! We did this scavenger hunt type game around the city of Bern. We did have rather high expectations after reading great reviews. But it was a bit of a let-down. A few of the instructions were not well written, so we got confused and turned around quite a number of times. The helpline was not as helpful. But i think it was because this was originally meant to be worked out in German and being English-speaking meant we understood the instructions differently. We had also expected to learn more about the city as we chased the “fox”. However, there was little write-up to learn from at all. What was expected to take us 2.5 hours, took us 3.5 hours. Oh my, my feet were nearly falling off.

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Top Left: One of the clues, Top Middle: This tunnel took us ages to find, Top Right: Another clue, Bottom: Such a lovely view of the Aare!

It was not a great experience but it was not all that terrible. We did see parts of Bern we would otherwise never venture into and walking along the river was lovely. i can see that it can be quite fun for an adult group of close friends. But we had children with us so such long walking times with very little rewards of learning or anything else made it difficult to justify the costs.

After all that walking, we took it easy and took in a movie the next day. ‘The Secret Life of Pets’ was a great movie and we loved it. Even in German, the story came through nicely as did the funny bits.

As it is our tradition, every year in the first week of October, we attend the Suisse Toy Fair! This year saw us spending more time in the electronic games section (E-games) and it is no surprise as this has been the trend. There was even an entire hall devoted to LAN gaming! Tobias has said he might try and see if he can register for entry for that next year… hmm… this mama doesn’t quite like that idea.

Tobias had a great time in a pallet gun game. He had to queue for about 45 minutes but he thought it was worth it. And it did look like loads of fun.

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Top Left: LAN Gaming, Right: Trying out VR, Bottom Left: Pallet Gun Game

We also put in some practice in our squash game. And watched yet another movie, ‘Miss Peregrin’s Home for Peculiar Children’, which we absolutely loved! Definitely going to get the book!

In between all that, Tobias cooked a dinner of stewed meatballs and a breakfast of healthy blueberry donuts. We also painted our dining area wall a bright sunshine yellow!

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Stewed Meatballs for dinner, they were yummy!
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Delicious Breakfast!
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Our spot of sunshine in the house 😉

On top of that, we hosted 3 guests; Tobias’ best friends stayed for a night, another friend who just had an operation came to stay for a night too and another friend stayed one night as well.

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i took one of our guest on a walk on top of Weissenstein, the mountain behind our place. We were well-rewarded, don’t you think?

So as you can see, we were busy those 3 weeks in October!

syc