Happy New Year

If you’re in England, you will already be celebrating the New Year and singing through Auld Lang Syne, where the words “should auld acquaintance be forgot and never brought to mind” is particularly poignant and significant for me this year.

There are still a few more hours until I will be singing this tune to Will, here in Peru. We have the traditional yellow garlands that they use here and although the town has been very quiet all day, you can feel the anticipation for the symphony of illegal fireworks in the purple-pink summer skies.

Nurse Cesar is with him all night, giving his expert care and attendance until shift change tomorrow evening, and he will witness me and Denise singing Auld Lang Syne to him at midnight!

And ther’s a hand, my trusty friend,
And gie’s a hand o’ thine;
We’ll tak’ a cup o’ kindness yet,
For auld lang syne.

Wishing you a happy, loving and prosperous 2017.

If you need the lyrics for the whole of Auld Lang Syne, here they are!

Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
And never brought to mind?
Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
And days of auld lang syne?
And days of auld lang syne, my dear,
And days of auld lang syne.
Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
And days of auld lang syne?

We twa hae run aboot the braes
And pu’d the gowans fine.
We’ve wandered mony a weary foot,
Sin’ auld lang syne.
Sin’ auld lang syne, my dear,
Sin’ auld lang syne,
We’ve wandered mony a weary foot,
Sin’ auld ang syne.
We twa hae sported i’ the burn,
From morning sun till dine,
But seas between us braid hae roared
Sin’ auld lang syne.
Sin’ auld lang syne, my dear,
Sin’ auld lang syne.
But seas between us braid hae roared
Sin’ auld lang syne.

And ther’s a hand, my trusty friend,
And gie’s a hand o’ thine;
We’ll tak’ a cup o’ kindness yet,
For auld lang syne.
For auld lang syne, my dear,
For auld lang syne,
We’ll tak’ a cup o’ kindness yet,
For auld lang syne.

We’ve done it!

I am so happy to be able to declare that we have raised $6,959 as of just now! That’s $459 over our goal.

THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!

WE DID IT!

I now have all the flights paid for with some left over towards the weekly care.  A huge thank you to everyone who has donated towards this flight campaign. I’m very moved and will be able to give Will the great news personally.

Over 80%!!!

Wow! This is such good news especially at Christmas time.  Thanks to some generous supporters who contributed over the last couple of days, we are now at 81% with a few more days to go.

Will had a comfortable day with the family and is looking healthier and stronger with every feed. I am really looking forward to seeing him on Saturday and bringing in the New Year and telling him that we “got the goal”!!

With all the sad news of so many people dying this Christmas, including some mutual friends in England, I am so grateful to all of you for helping to keeping his fighting spirit alive.  He has had a remarkable journey and 2017 will be a continued adventure.

Your efforts are truly love in action.

In memory of Tony Ingleby, our dear friend, who passed on Christmas Day.  May the Source be with you.

Happy Christmas

On this festive day, I trust you are with family and friends and enjoying both full hearts and bellies!

Thanks to your support, we are now at 75% of our goal and Will is spending today with his new ‘family’, being comforted and well fed.  I cannot thank you enough for helping me to get him this far with the New Year to look forward to back in England.

From the whole of his care team we wish you a Merry Christmas – Feliz Navidad!

 

Over 70%!

We are doing well!  With just under 30% to go, I know we can get there 🙂

I can report from Lima that Will is keeping awake for longer during the day and sleeping better at night so this shows me he is more comfortable and gaining strength.  He certainly look that way from this video from yesterday.

The team is doing an amazing job bolstering his morale and really attending to him like he was in a private clinic in Switzerland! This is what is needed to have him strong enough and alert enough to travel the huge distance back to Gatwick.

We are going to be making arrangements for the pick up at Gatwick once we have a definite destination, which could take until the first week of January to sort out.  Meanwhile, it looks like we will have additional help from a charity who saw his appeal on BBC Midlands and want to help us out. Those details will also be sorted out in the first week of January.

In the meantime we are still in need of anything you can give to ensure we have enough to get through until then. All the money has gone to flights so we are now on the weekly care budget of $500 per week, for the next 4 weeks.

It’s Christmas in two more sleeps!  Wherever you are, may the spirit of Christmas be deeply treasured in your heart and shared in your smile.

Don’t stop now!

Happy Solstice day, the day when the “sun stands still” and we have our shortest night in the northern hemisphere.  We begin our journey towards longer days and shorter nights but for Will it will be the opposite.

I know that last minute Christmas presents are likely to dominate the rest of this week (I haven’t even started my shopping yet!) but with just 10 days to go all we need is an average of $245 a day before the time clock gets down to zero.

There is still much to organise in England and Chris Marchington and I are working out the details of which hospital he goes to, how we get an ambulance to the aircraft side and where he goes to after that.  In Lima,  our focus is on making sure he is gaining muscle mass and stays free of infection and giving him round-the-clock care.  Someone who is unable to move by themselves has to be turned and repositioned every 2 hours as well as changed, fed, exercised and allowed time to sleep.

As I mentioned, I will be there for New Year’s Eve, which for most of you will be in the early morning, so hopefully when you wake up and put the coffee on I can post a few pictures and claim that we have got our goal.

4 more sleeps until Christmas!

60% achieved

We are on target for today with 60% of the goal achieved so thank you for making a huge effort these last few days.

With just over $2,500 to go, I know we can get our goal before the time clock runs out!  I want to be able to go down to Lima with all the flights booked, paid for and celebrate the New Year with him the day I arrive.

Thanks to a friend of mine here in Mill Valley who has allowed me to put the 2 business class flights and the return leg in economy on her credit card, I have been able to secure the tickets on the proviso that I will pay that off with the rest of the money raised.  The total for that was $4,710 so if we keep this going I will be able to pay her off in a few more days.

So, as of now, I can confirm that he will be leaving Lima on January 18th and arriving in Gatwick on January 19th.  Let’s get the last of the money needed to achieve the goal!

The total amount needed is for flights and critical care and we are spending about $500 a week on increased feeding with higher quality food, oxygen and round the clock one-on-one nursing attention – much more than was available at the care home.  The next few weeks are critical for him as he regains strength, maintains blood oxygen levels and hydration in the summer heat.

You saw Jorge yesterday, so today you are seeing nurse Maria, attending to Will this morning, sporting one of his favourite shirts.

I had a FaceTime call with him this morning and he looked straight into the camera and I think he understood the news that he was going home on the 18th, although he is unable to let us know with certainty what he is hearing and understanding.  He is getting stronger and squeezing Denise’s arm with his other hand so there are signs of progress.

We are busy arranging things in the UK for his pick up and transportation to a hospital and will have more details on that as and when. I will keep you informed.

Let’s do this!

Half way there!

We are within a few dollars of getting half way to our goal, thanks to one large donation from one of Will’s old friends.  But we are still needing a final push to get all of the tickets booked and confirmed.

And then there is the daily care he is getting from visiting nurses to ensure that he is healthy enough to get on the flight and survive the 14-18 hours he will be in transit.  This involves the IV fluids, a greater number of feeds and supplements and the cost of the special bed we have hired for the weeks he is there.

We are at a nail-biting delicate stage of being committed to flights which will be non-refundable and keeping him fit to fly before the departure date, so this momentum must be kept going.

Here he is getting another of his morning feeds from a visiting nurse. He will get much more attention here than in the care home as there was only a couple of technicians spread between 11 people.  This will be more costly,  but it is necessary to give him the best chance for enduring the journey and arriving in England safely.

Please keep him in your loving thoughts and prayers over Christmas and New Year.

A restful night

Will’s through his first night and he slept well.  He is on an IV to keep him hydrated in this heat and is also on oxygen as his blood oxygen levels were low yesterday.

He looked wide eyed in the ambulance yesterday, wondering where he was going, but Denise was with him and holding his hand all the way, reassuring him he was going to a lovely place for the next few weeks.

His heart rate was normal so it didn’t seem to upset him and the ambulance volunteers really took care of him.

We had to get many bottles of IV for the week ahead so that he can keep up on his fluids so part of the donations go towards that and his food and visiting technicians, who helped set up the room.

He looks relaxed and comfortable and is responding to Frances with his eyes when she talks to him. Some Christmas decorations are being put up to give him a sense of the season but that may be an odd association given that it’s so hot!

The feeding tube is now in his mouth because it was a little difficult to get it through his nose as before but it may be more comfortable being able to breathe through both nostrils after having that tube in there for the past 8 months or so.

We have a ways to go to get all the flights needed and keep him in supplies so thank you to everyone who has already donated and if you are still on the fence or continuing to save up some pennies, donate as soon as you can as the faster we get the funds the quicker I can book the flights.

Let’s push that thermometer to 40% by tomorrow morning. I want to book at least his and Frances’s seats tomorrow.

31% On target!

We have got just over the target for today.  Well done 🙂 and thank you!

We are getting sooooo close to be able to buy the important business class tickets for Will and Frances, (the nurse) and then continue raising funds for the return trip in economy and the round trip in economy for Denise.

And today I have an announcement that will warm the heart for the season, as Frances has kindly offered out of the blue to care for him at her home in a quiet, cool, private room over the Christmas period until he gets on the flight.

Will’s bed and clean room.

He will be with a loving family for Christmas Day and will see in the New Year with his new friends and dedicated carers. I will be there by the morning of Dec 31st and will post a ‘family’ photo for New Year’s Eve.

We will still have the physiotherapist coming in to exercise him, and have had a consultation with a nutritionist to target increasing his muscle mass and weight.  The doctor who attended the tracheo removal is aware of where he will be and will come in whenever necessary after an initial check up when he arrives.

Oxygen and aspirator at the ready

The care home has done a good job to keep him going but the care team felt that is was time to give him the attention he needs to prepare him for the transition home. We want him in good shape, good spirits and without any infections now that the temperature is soaring in Lima and the air quality deteriorates.  As you know, his chest is prone to infection so we want to keep that clear for the flight and fatten him up with high quality food. He’s not quite ready for pie and chips but I think he appreciates good organic greens and protein.

Here’s Frances already making up food for his arrival this afternoon. It will be a busy kitchen for the next period especially over Christmas.

We will have pictures of Will in place by tomorrow and keep you posted on his progress.

As soon as I have the flights booked, I will inform you of the date and expected time of arrival back in England. And I can’t do that without your continued help and generosity.  Thank you all.