smiley faces‘This is like normal life, isn’t it?’ A few hours of chat, laughter, conversations about every-day-like topics: carefree, unworried, light-hearted, young. What a difference that must have made to Pádraig: no beeps, no bells, no trollies. Just plain, simple, lovely, creative conversations, full of energy and enthusiasm, as only young people, and those young at heart, can have them.

There have been friends with Pádraig almost every day for the past weeks and months, and if you check out the calendar you’ll see that this will continue. His friends come a long way, and they stay for days. A nurse said that in her many decades of work she has never seen anything like it. ‘If I got sick, you could count the number of visitors I’d get on your two hands – it’s really amazing what’s going on here’, she said, and then she corrected herself: ‘one hand would actually do to count the people that would visit me’. I tell her that it wouldn’t be different in my case, and how happy Pádraig must be to see that his friends, the one thing he values more than anything else in his life, are staying with him, and go through all this trouble to be with him and show him their support.

imagesIt’s easy to loose perspective if you are spending months on end in a hospital, a lot of that time in ICUs. Days disappear in a haze. This couldn’t be 11 January?! What ever happened to Christmas, the New Year, the ‘holidays’?? The idea I had of ‘normality’ has morphed into something completely different from what it was six months ago. Only when I am reading up on a condition or a procedure do I realize that what is happening to Pádraig is far from ‘normal’. A prolonged stay in an ICU is not normal. The number and kind of operations he has had are far from normal. Being in bed and in a coma for more than six months is not normal. This serious and prolonged lung trouble is not normal at all. His vulnerability is not normal either. What would be ‘routine’ in the case of a healthy person becomes high-risk in his case. But because he is the young, strong fighter that he is, and because he has the support of so, so many friends who believe that he will be able to pull through all of this in the end – he is overcoming all the obstacles put in his way, and he keeps fighting.

Today, all the ‘figures’ were wrong and troublesome: heart, breathing, temperature – yes, postoperative stress, a  reaction like that in the case of an infection, bound to disappear over the next 12-24 hours, but still high. It’ll be all right tomorrow. All right.

Today’s German Music Tip
Glasperlenspiel, Freundschaft (2012). Techno (if this is ‘techno’) is not really my kind of music, but it’s not a bad song, especially if you’re dancing to it. The lyrics are a bit ‘in your face’ but nothing wrong with that either.
What’s hot
What’s cold
Today’s worries
The German word/phrase/verse of the day

Twitter: @forPadraig