The Wrath of Karma

I’m unable to visit my dad in the hospice with the rest of the family until this afternoon. The consequence of Karma, in her infinite wisdom, decreeing my past misdemeanours warrant a current existence of two close family members with incurable illness.

I’m unsure what’s caused Karma’s wrath, but I’m beginning to regret stealing segments of our Ian’s Terry’s Chocolate Orange at Christmas in 1973. The righter of wrongs can be a cruel mistress, however in her defence she’s giving me a break next Thursday so I can get a hair cut and a bikini wax…… Incidentally, the bikini wax was a joke!……. I couldn’t get that booked in until the following Thursday.

Anyway, this morning I’m using the hand sanitiser of the Bexley oncology unit in Leeds, instead of my recent palm cleansing chum at Wakefield Hospice. I’m unaware if one cleanser is more performant than the other; the only difference I can tell is in its delivery into the hand. The NHS facility has a manual delivery mechanism, whereas the hospice’s sanitiser is projected hand-ward with sensory trigger.

I realise the hand cleaning information of two West Yorkshire medical establishments is unlikely to ever be of any use to you, unless you ever take part in a hand sanitiser time and motion study. However, is it not re-assuring to know the guy writing this has spotlessly clean hands?…… Or at least he did have until he touched his laptop keyboard.

My journey to Bexley is with my wife Karen. A scheduled appointment for her four weekly treatment, which forms part of the strategy attempting to contain her numerous tumours.

Earlier my sister made me aware (from the hospice) that, despite showing little sign of consciousness for three days, our dad was still with us. He must be exhausted bless him as in conjunction with his body valiantly combating it’s gradual closing down, Mally’s not had any sustenance for days.

The head of our brood has not been fully pain-free for over twelve months. A dreadful time for the proud Yorkshireman, during which he’s undergone a month of radiotherapy, a major operation followed by 30 days in Leeds General Infirmary (LGI). The family are now at the point where we yearn for Mally’s liberty from his year long suffering and discomfort.

I start this segment of the narrative in the hospice after dropping Karen at home following her treatment.

While I was at home briefly I had to chase one of the neighbourhood cats from my front lawn. It has a habit of defecating on my grass, but luckily I’d caught it just before it started and it fled with the copy of the Sun he’d been reading. It’s a really smug cat, who is so confident in it’s hunting skills it makes no effort to clandestinely stalk it’s prey. In fact when it chases mice and birds it arrogantly adorns a hi visibility jacket!

On arrival here at the hospice I sanitised my hands at the sensory triggered dispenser. I’m so impressed with this little machine I was thinking of taking it home in my bag. However, on reflection, I’d dread to think what Karma would inflict of me as retribution for stealing from a hospice. Especially, when you take into account what surreptitiously stealing five Terry’s Chocolate Orange segments off my brother resulted in!!

My dad is still with us at this point (early Tuesday afternoon). He’s 20 hours more fatigued and his breathing is shallower than when I left here yesterday evening. A time when I was able to tell him a few personal thoughts, and stroke his hair while we listened to Sinatra….. He was unconscious throughout, however for the first time for a while his face displayed a look of peace and serenity. A small crumb of comfort from a large cookie jar of distress.

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