New Beginnings …New Adventures

Published December 29, 2016 by goshgurl95

In my last post you may have noticed I said I needed to change an appointment to a school half term and that I now may not be able to continue down the surgery path for this moment in time or any time soon .The reason for that is also the biggest reason as to why I have been so quiet on my blog ,Facebook page and twitter lately.That’s not to say I haven’t been wanting to tell you all but I just wanted to wait a while until things were settled and everything.

 

No I am not pregnant nor have I had a baby before anyone gets that idea .I am still very much single and a baby is certainly not on the cards anytime soon.

 

Most of you will know that I work for a fast food chain , mcdonalds .. Well Saturday 29th October  after having a lot of issues at the store and with the management in particular , to the point I had to go up to head office in April to report two members of the management including my business manager due to things they said about me which were highly offensive and unprofessional. Being  falsely accused of a lot of things without them being looked into properly, not being appreciated , always being expected to stay on without being asked or any noticed, scheduled outside of my availability, and genuinely not being happy in my job.To the point I would come home and cry most nights, I would dread getting up to go to work, whilst driving to work I would be thinking about turning round and coming home, purely because I knew what I would be going into and facing day after day.I often pulled into the car park and wanted to drive straight back out and I would sit in my car until the last possible minute before going in.Purely because my job made me so desperately unhappy.

 

So on that Saturday 29th October I finally walked in on my day off and handed my notice in , and told my manager I would be leaving on Monday 31st.I was supposed to give two weeks notice,however due to our store closing for refurbishment and my manager wanting us to all relocate to another store  in London which would have taken me a lot longer to get to work and I was still expected as a drive to stop off at our store to collect other staff and give them a lift to and from .I had already booked those five whole weeks off because I was not happy with the idea of doing so, and also because I was already so deeply unhappy in my job anyway I didn’t see what good it would do if I relocated for those few weeks.I had already been offered a transfer in April although I felt it shouldn’t be me that was made to move , so opted to have the time off unpaid. So I told my manager to take my 2 weeks notice out of the five I was  taking off unpaid..

 

I had kept the fact I was leaving a secret for a good few weeks before handing my notice in as I had applied for a new job and had gotten the job a week after I went for the interview ,I had waited to tell McDonald’s for a couple reasons:

  1. They had messed me around A LOT
  2. They never told me my schedule until the last minute
  3. I wasn’t seeing eye to eye with my boss anyway over everything that had happened
  4. I wanted to wait until the new job was definite
  5. I wanted to wait until all the paperwork and contracts had been signed

 

My boss already knew I was leaving ,as I’d had to put down an employment reference so had put down one of the managers I got on well with , and she had emailed asking my boss if it was OK for her to do it etc .So he was already aware I would be going even before I had said anything, but in honesty it made it so much easier and straight forward to do.He basically just said to me was I leaving because of the issues between us, which I partly was but also wasn’t I mean I had wanted to leave for quite some time , however if I hadn’t found another job I would have had no choice but to stay there , as I wasn’t about to just leave with no job to go to or anything like that.He actually apologised to me , which was the first time he had actually done that, I honestly hadn’t expected that , well not this late on anyway .I expected some sort of apology at least in April , rather than just all the awkwardness, avoiding me, speaking through me to other people , shutting doors on me etc. BUTTT HE SAID SORRY and it took me by utter surprise.He told me he would get the other manager to complete the reference that day, as I had explained to him that I had signed the contracts and everything and they were just waiting on that.

I had staff saying they didn’t want me to go but also saying to me I was doing the right thing in going and even had customers saying well done when they realised I was handing my notice in and complaining about the company, even though I had never met them before.I actually walked out those doors crying.. crying tears of relief and happiness knowing it was finally coming to an end.

 

I was sooo happy going in on that Monday knowing I was on an early shift (out side of my schedule availability) but hey and just knowing it was the last ever day I would have to put up with it all and ever see those awful people again.I actually came out crying at the end of my last ever shift handing my uniform and things back and finally walking out the door.Not one of those tears was due to sadness it was all just pure relief and happiness , as I honestly hated that job so much and at times I couldn’t see any escape or way out of it.It was just 4 years and 4 months of true emotion coming out .Everything that had been bottled and kept in , behind that fake smiling person serving customers and clearing up them.I was finally free .Surprisingly my boss was on the phone when I was leaving.. hmm ironic..

 

Anyway once I’d left and got in my car to drive home, I thought I would quickly check my Facebook and emails etc seeing as I wasn’t allowed my phone during working hours so this was the first time since I’d had my lunch break at 10 am I had been able to check my phone.It was a good thing I did as I saw I had a missed call and an email asking me to ring HR of my new job back.I am so glad I did as they actually wanted me to start the next morning, I of course accepted.

1st November 2016 I started my first day as a level 3 apprentice in childcare at a local day nursery and it has honestly been the best thing I have ever done, It was honestly the right time and the right decision to leave my old job .I actually haven’t looked back or regretted it once.Yes it’s a lot less money as I’m on an apprentice wage, but I honestly don’t care everyone has been so welcoming, so kind,friendly and the kids are amazing .It is everything I could ever have dreamt of and more.There have been a few complications with the qualification side of things though and I am now going to be switching from an apprenticeship onto a level 3 NVQ meaning I will have to do more hours, 2 hours at college instead of half day and study in my own time.Honestly it doesn’t matter to me all that matters is I am finally in a career that makes me so super happy and has restored my faith in humanity, where I feel a part of the team , where I belong .I have noticed such a change in myself since starting ,I now want to get up for work every morning, I don’t want to go home at the end of the day, the time goes sooo much quicker,  I want to stay on , I want to take shorter lunch breaks, I want to be involved in everything I possibly can such as Christmas fetes, special evenings and events ,  and everything that happens I want to be there and be part of it.At the weekends I miss being at work and can’t wait to get back Monday morning to see everyone. I have the BEST team .I love everything about it ,I cannot say there is one thing I dislike ,I just love it and to me it doesn’t feel like my job , it just feels so right and I honestly could not be happier if I tried.

 

I have noticed i’m becoming a better person, I’m happier at work and home, I’m so much more myself  at my new job,I’m super comfortable, I am so much more confident and I don’t mind asking questions and finding out new things, I literally want to know everything and everyone.I want to be at all staff events .This is honestly my dream come true and this is why I’ve been dead quiet on here because my job has literally become everything to me, that doesn’t mean I don’t want to do my blogs anymore nor does it mean I will stop but if I don’t post for a while please understand I may be doing work things or studying so that I can gain my qualification to achieve my dreams.A few quotes that ring so true right now are:

 

 

dreams do come true ,if only we wish hard enough.You can have anything in life if you will sacrifice everything else for it -Peter pan

 

If you keep on believing the dreams that you wish will come true– Cinderella

 

All our dreams come true , If we have the courage to pursue them Walt Disney

 

NEVER EVER let anyone tell you , you can’t do something or that you will never achieve it because the truth is if you want it badly enough you will get it in the end, just keep trying and keep fighting for what you want.Trust me take it from me I was told all through secondary school I would amount to nothing, I would never have a proper job, I would never pass GCSE .Well I’ve passed GCSE ,I am worth more than McDonald’s and I can and will work a proper job in a nursery that makes me so super happy.Who has the right to tell anyone they can’t or won’t do anything? Absolutely no one , the only thing stopping you is you.My only regret is not doing this sooner, yes it has taken a lot of evenings searching and applying for jobs,lots of rejections, a lot of getting no where ,failed interviews, etc but it has happened it has all paid of .All those years of searching and dreaming have paid of I’ve made that first step into happiness and into my future life.

 

This is why I was saying in my previous blog I don’t know if I will now go ahead or be able to go ahead with surgery , as my new job means so much more to me and I have a lot studying and work to do to qualify and complete my qualification but what I do know is whatever is meant to be certainly will be.I never honestly expected to be able to say at the end of 2016 I would have been working in my dream job for nearly 2 months,I just never expected it at all but it means so much to me and has changed everything.I literally cannot thank my boss enough for giving me a chance and taking the time to interview me , then taking me on ..WOW I can’t thank her enough for that and I don’t think I ever will be able to do so. I can’t thank my boss enough for giving me the opportunity, the opportunity to shut the door and move onto pastures new .Most importantly the opportunity to prove I can do this and how passionate I am about doing this

 

Never EVER let anything or anyone stop you from achieving your dreams and always remember you are never to old to believe in anything , nor are you to old to wish or to have your dreams come true ..Nor are you ever to old to believe in happily ever afters .You have the power to do anything no matter what anyone says, or what medical conditions you may have.Fight for what you want in life , never give up and hold onto every hope and chance with everything you have XX

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Surgery talks..

Published December 29, 2016 by goshgurl95

I know I’ve been super quiet on here but I’m hoping this blog and my next blog will hopefully help to explain why.As I mentioned in my last post there hasn’t been a great deal of medical/health stuff going on  (although has been some as you can now guess from the title of this blog) ,There has been things going on in my personal life ,I will be talking about those but not quite as of yet .. The same goes for this blog technically this all started ages ago but I wanted to wait a while for posting.

 

Those of you who have read other blogs of mine will know I am no longer a patient at GOSH but will also know that for quite some time there has been other surgeries I’ve wanted and I have put them all off for family reasons or other reasons.

 

Since the age of maybe 16 I have desperately wanted a boob job as my right breast is very undeveloped compared to my left side due to my goldenhars, and it has bothered me for quite some time  .Well really it’s been bothering me since I was at secondary school if I am honest.I always hated getting changed for PE at secondary school.Secondary school is when you start to notice the changes in your body and getting changed near so many teenage girls , you soon notice them changing and developing and going through puberty. It’s fair to say it was awkward for all of us .However they all soon started developing and growing breasts and needing to wear bras.I on the other hand I wasn’t at that point.Eventually I noticed I was being laughed at because slowly but surely I was the last girl in the changing rooms not in a bra as nothing had grown or developed.I eventually went out and bought a training/sports bra so I was wearing something to help stop the humiliation ,obviously it didn’t really help as I had nothing there and everyone knew it and were now wearing nice proper bra’s whilst I was just wearing sports bras and training bras just so I was wearing something, not because I needed to be.

 

So it is fair to say I was a late bloomer , anyway things did start to develop and grow .However even now I am finally able to wear proper bras etc my right breast just never has caught up with my left , and I know it is normal and most women do have one breast smaller than the other but due to my goldenhars it has made it more extreme than perhaps it would have been if I didn’t have goldenhars. It was so bad when I was younger even my parents didn’t think I would have anything at all that side as I only seemed to grow on the one side and nothing ever happened the other side.

 

It not only was an issue for me in the school changing rooms but also school prom .I would have said parties but I wasn’t ever invited to any parties and rarely went out during my school years due to all the bullying and issues I experienced at school , I was never popular and never had more than 2-3 friends if I was lucky so I was definitely the social outcast , the one no one wanted around or to be friends with etc.Prom is a huge part in any girl or guys life more so the girls I would say as it’s the last time you see everyone from school , where everyone gets dressed up, has their hair done, nails done and everything goes the bigger the better etc. I wore a strapless dress and had a lot of padding underneath the dress (something I also did at school to try to make things look better before moving onto push up bras or the gel padded bras) ,I felt Okay but seeing everyone else only made me more conscious.

 

It has only really become more of an issue as I have gotten older  to the point I hate going out in t-shirts  or baggy jumpers because I look flat as a pancake and look like I have a little boys chest .However I also don’t like wearing tight fitting tops too much due to this whole issues. It’s getting harder now I am getting older to find bikini tops and bras that fit because obviously naturally my left side is still growing but the right side seems to have stopped so I always end up constantly hoisting my bra up throughout the day where it is too big on the right side but the left side is too small and needs the next size up so I genuinely hate bra shopping as I never find anything that fits or that I love so now tend to just opt for cheap ones from primark as I have tried so many alternatives push up, gel,padded,stuffing bras, tightening on the one side. I can’t say any of it has worked for me personally.People have often said  to me why not get bras specially made but it just costs far to much than what I can afford and us women well we need different colours , and different types and styles for different things .People have also suggested I don’t wear a bra but it’s not possible I don’t like the idea of everyone being able to see it all through my tops or whatever.

 

I no longer go swimming because bikini shopping is a nightmare and I always now have that dreaded fear of going swimming or getting in the water and that side falling down/off or whatever so I just avoid that sort of situation and I don’t wear bikini’s anymore either.

 

For some time now mainly since 2013, but it became a stronger wish of mine after a holiday with family and family friends in 2014. I have known and wanted to get a boob job as I am so desperately unhappy with how things are .I finally got up the courage around September/October time this year to go to my GP and to discuss the possibility of this becoming a reality because I know this is the only way I will ever truly be happy or satisfied with how things are.

 

 

I asked mum to come to the appointment with me as I was admittedly quite nervous about doing this as I’ve never had to go to the GP to request surgery before I’ve usually been under a hospital and they have either suggested surgery as a treatment option or they have told me all the possible treatment or surgery options that are or will become available to me as I got older etc. Also the advantage of being under a hospital meant if I had any concerns I had the option to raise them , so the whole process of having to go to my GP to ask was completely different for me .It was also something I had put of for a couple of years  purely because I was worried and nervous about having to do it, not so much the hospital or surgery but the process of going through the GP.

 

To be honest it wasn’t as bad as I was making it out to be .I had to explain to the doctor what goldenhars was and how it affects me as she had never heard of it before (something that isn’t so unfamiliar now) we discussed what the process would involve which started with me going in explaining it was not just due to me wanting bigger boobs or anything like that and how I wanted it for medical reasons, She then took notes of what I told her about the condition and about all of the things above ,She then wrote up her notes and sent us away to get the two sides measured at the weekend so she could include that and then send a letter to the board to see whether they would approve or not , as obviously it is seen as a cosmetic procedure and a lot of women want to have it done and try to do so through the NHS. Now I know this is the route I’m trying to go however I would never go through  the NHS if it wasn’t for a medical reason.

 

That weekend I went to a local bra shop and got measured and it turns out the right  side is two whole sizes smaller than what the left .It wasn’t great hearing that but at the same time it was something I knew deep down and was roughly what I had guessed the difference to be .The lady in the shop wasn’t as nice as she could’ve been about the whole situation and I didn’t feel she was very understanding and questioned everything , questioned why I wanted to know individual sizes rather than just bra size and couldn’t understand why I didn’t want her to fit me for a bra etc.But oh well I got the information I needed and we rung the doctors on the Monday morning and got it added to the letter .

 

I then obviously had to play the waiting game whilst I waited to hear either from the doctors or from the board to see what the decision was.I think about a week-two weeks later I received a letter from the board….The APPROVED the funding for me to get it done.The next step was for them to write to my GP and ask them to write to the breast consultant at the hospital , and then the waiting game begun again..

 

I recently , just before Christmas received a letter from my local hospital with a date and time for an initial appointment with a breast consultant at the breast clinic, at the time I thought the date would be great as I didn’t think I was due back to work until the following day.However it turns out I am actually due back to work on the day the appointment is scheduled so I have unfortunately had to cancel the appointment and I am hoping  that I will be able to rearrange the appointment for a school half term (I’ll explain why in my next blog post) I also unfortunately don’t know if I will now be able to go ahead at this moment in time with the appointment or the surgery when I get to that stage , again I will explain all in my next blog post.So really although in some ways I’m further ahead in the process of getting it sorted , in others I’m no further than when I started.However on the plus side if it is not possible for me to go ahead at this moment in time or anytime soon, at least I have all the letters from the board etc and can always take them to the GP when the time is then right, but we will see.What’s meant to be will be , some things have been gained and learnt along the way now it’s just down to a wait and see and What’s meant to be will be.I will keep you all updated though on what happens from here on. xx

 

GOSH remains forever …

Published December 29, 2016 by goshgurl95

It’s been a while since my last blog post. But in all honesty there hasn’t been a great deal  medically or health wise going on , or otherwise really if I am honest. So there hasn’t been much to talk or update on really .Just the same old same old.

 

As you may all know now my last post which was in January this year , was all about my last ever GOSH (Great Ormond Street Children’s Hospital) appointment .I had known for a while that day was fast approaching but doesn’t mean to say it made it any easier when the day actually came around .

 

I had always known for quite some time that I needed and wanted  to do something for GOSH once I was formally discharged.I have done charity walks to raise money, completed the RBC Race for the kids in 2012 and have in total raised £700 for them .As well as this I have always sent a message on  stocking every year for the hospital’s stocking appeal for Christmas  ,I have always put money in collection tins for GOSH whenever I’ve seen them when I’ve been out and about or stayed at the premier inn ,I’ve always taken part in their raffles and have bought things from the charity shop when I’ve been at the hospital and have even opted to have lunch or something to eat and drink within the hospital cafe when I’ve been at the hospital.

 

However although I will always remember doing this and of course will always remember my time at GOSH and all the incredible staff who have helped me and have been apart of my journey up to that point.I just felt I needed something I could always remember them by.Something more permanent , although of course I will still raise money for GOSH and put money in their collection tins etc .Although I know GOSH will forever be a part of me and forever with me I wanted something to symbolise  and represent everything and the whole journey from the beginning until now really.

 

I decided to book something that would represent everything I wanted it to such as:

 

  • my time at GOSH
  • Peter pan ward
  • GOSH forever being with me, by my side in everything I do
  • The magic of GOSH
  • reminder of my childhood
  • reminder of growing up as a GOSH patient
  • reminder of my time at GOSH

 

In September I spent between half an hour to  hour getting this :

15192622_1085352181562128_1827209119503852860_nMy second tattoo .However this one holds a lot of meaning for me as I decided this would be my permanent reminder of GOSH .The reason I opted for this particular design. A silhouette of Peter pan , Wendy,John and Michael from one of the most iconic scenes within the film,Where Wendy,John and Michael learn to fly and begin their journey to neverland. I felt this was the best design for me  because the story of Peter Pan links in a lot with my time at GOSH. The reason being is as far back as I can remember there has always been artwork throughout the departments I visited or past through of Peter Pan and the story.Such as Maxilliofacial have a massive picture of Peter pan on their wall, X-ray and even medical illustration had artwork of peter pan the story.Every operation I ever had at GOSH I always stayed on Peter Pan ward and they to had lots of artwork displayed in the rooms and throughout the ward. J.M Barrie also  dedicated all of the rights of Peter Pan to GOSH and as a result created the ward, the artwork and  the ever so beautiful statue of Peter Pan and Tinkerbell outside the entrance to the hospital. My other reason for Peter Pan was because I think it captures the magic of GOSH.Throughout the past 21 years of my life I have been in and out of various hospitals but none have ever been anything like GOSH the care is just out of this world and there truly is something magical about the hospital as you walk in those doors.

 

GOSH and the staff have always felt like my second home and my second family ,so the idea of Peter pan being the boy who never grew up kind of tied in with my time and experience at GOSH as I never wanted to grow up or reach the age , or the day I had to walk out of those doors for the last time.I kind of did and, still do at times wish I could be Peter Pan and go back to that time so I wouldn’t ever have to leave the phenomenal hospital or team. I’ve realised more so since being discharged how lucky and fortunate I was to be under GOSH as now I’m kind of stuck in no mans land where I’m back to the real world, where GPs, doctors, hospitals have no idea about any of my medical conditions or even what they mean or even some of the surgeries I’ve had.To the point I’ve had doctors google the condition in front of me,  look through medical books and dictionaries in front of me , tell me to my face they’ve never heard of it , had to ask me to tell them what it is and what it means and basically talk through my whole medical file , which being under hospitals since before I was even born is some task to do.

 

I opted to get the tattoo on my left side directly underneath my rib graft scar , the reason being I can always say GOSH literally are by my side all the time in everything I do and are  apart of every decision I make. I don’t ever have to feel that I’ve fully left or that they’ve left me. Ear reconstruction  was my biggest surgery to date and one that meant  a lot to me and changed quite a bit.It was that surgery that has been the main reason behind my blog and Facebook page, it was that surgery that meant I joint Microtia support groups and met some absolutely amazing people .It was also that surgery that meant I stood and gave a speech to over 140 paying people at Microtia UK’s charity launch party. Microtia also probably is the biggest condition  that I have and that has affected things the most in a way and is also probably the condition that has led to the majority of my surgeries and possibly appointments, although of course I have other conditions and have had many surgeries and appointments for those to. Microtia was also what led me to meet the most fantastic consultant and surgeon I could ever dream to have Neil Bulstrode who even to this day is a massive influence and inspiration to me.I’m so lucky for Neil to have been there when I gave my speech at the Microtia UK charity launch party, I’ve been fortunate enough to hear him speak at various Microtia events about his work and got the chance to talk to him and to hear that he reads my blog posts, which is amazing.Neil really has been a big part of my GOSH journey and a major part of why I do my blog and everything.

 

I will admit the tattoo was quite painful as it is on my rib and even the tattooist wasn’t so sure it would be a good placement as it’s only my second tattoo , and said had I of come to him asking for it as my first tattoo he wouldn’t have done it there due to the pain etc. He wasn’t kidding nor is anyone else that tells you rib tattoos hurt.But you know what it was worth every single second of that 30-60 minutes .The reason I say it’s worth it is because lets be honest where would I have gotten in life without pain..  first stage rib graft killed and was extremely painful for me… the bullying was pain in another way,  but one of my motto’s is no pain no gain .Without the pain of some of my surgeries and experiences in life such as the bullying I wouldn’t be where I am now.I do truly believe anything you want enough you will do anything to get including going through a lot of pain to get there. I’ve had the heartache of being rejected because of my medical conditions but I’ve got there and come back through the other side slowly but surely. If I’m honest part of me wanted the tattoo on my ribs because I knew it would be painful .. weird I know but that’s me 🙂 .

 

I just thought well if I can endure the pain I did with my rib graft I can get through a tattoo which didn’t take any time compared to the length of time I was in theatre, in hospital recovering and in pain for.The worst part of the tattoo was Peter’s hat  and foot and well I couldn’t exactly have stopped at either of those points.. because what is Peter Pan without his hat or his feet??!! The tattooist said to me it would’ve been more painful and that he noticed I found the whole top part more painful due to my scar and obviously it being so close to scar tissue and the surgery site and said the needle vibrating on that area would’ve caused more pain than perhaps someone who didn’t have that. But oh well 🙂 He also said where he had to go over the tattoo to colour it in and then go over that would’ve made it sore and painful as the skin had newly been tattooed and then going over it etc. My best friend came with me and said she could tell it was painful as it apparently bled a lot.(I couldn’t see that due to the position I had to lay in)  and said I wasn’t talking much which isn’t like me ..anyone that knows me will know I can talk for England and I hate not talking so she knew it hurt this time around.

 

Ever since having it done in September I can’t help but keep looking at it every morning whilst having a shower and again after and just completely falling in love with it all over again .Although a lot of people told me before hand I would regret getting it done or regret getting it on my ribs I can honestly say I have no regret whatsoever over it and I know I never will do .In honesty I favor it over my first tattoo.I believe this was one of the best things I did .I also wanted it done as I hate saying Goodbye and as Peter Pan would say ” Never say goodbye, because saying goodbye means going away and going away means forgetting”- Peter Pan and I never want to say goodbye to GOSH so to me the quote is perfect meaning for why this tattoo means so much to me.

 

I would love to hear what you guys think of it or whether you would ever do anything like this .Let me know 🙂

 

 

The Last Ever GOSH Appt 19/01/16

Published January 19, 2016 by goshgurl95

If you haven’t already then you will probably need to read my previous two blog posts that I wrote and published today for this one to make any sense, as it’s a bit of a continuation from that.

 

I got to London with plenty of time for my appointment today , which was lucky really as the tube station was extremely busy so much so I didn’t even attempt to get on the first god knows how many.Before attempting and failing to get on a further load .As I didn’t particularly fancy being rammed into a tiny little standing spot, although I don’t mind standing on the tube at all .I had a brisk walk across to Great Ormond Street as it was absolutely freezing out this morning .I arrived at GOSH with plenty of time before my appointment so went to check in early.I’ve decided I’m not going to worry about the what if’s and what may or may not happen and just go with the flow of how the appointment goes today.

 

Arrived at the Dental and Maxilliofacial department and  all I had to say was that I had an appointment at 10.15 and Astrid the receptionist said ” it’s Mr Gill you see isn’t it ” and it’s Bethan Harvey ” so she basically checked me in without me having to do much at all … Just goes to show just how long and often I’ve been coming up to GOSH really.If the staff even remember and recognize me when they get so many different patients and families coming through the door every day.  To be fair though Astrid has been working there for as long as I can remember and Well I suppose I have and do class GOSH as my second home really so , that clearly explains it LOL.

 

I didn’t have to wait too long until I was called through , although it was slightly past my scheduled appointment time.I think I was the second person to get called through in the time that I had been sitting there so wasn’t bad going really.

 

I didn’t see Mr Gill my consultant today like I usually do , instead I saw one of the fellows that I’m sure I’ve met before ..I’m pretty certain it was the same one I saw at my last appointment to get my new retainer made ,She seemed to recognize me too , so it must have been her I saw last time. I knew then that any questions of surgery were not going to be brought up , as from what I’ve experienced in the past it’s only the consultant or the person your scheduled to actually see for appointments that would ever talk through things like that. I was only in there for a couple of minutes at the very most , was definitely one of my quicker in and out appointments, which in a way is rather annoying given how much it costs me to travel up to the hospital from where I live .Anyway all she wanted to do was check that everything has been going alright since my last appointment which it has been…Yes for once I hadn’t snapped/cracked or broken either of my retainers in any way shape or form , which must be some sort of record for me , as think most times I’ve gone for retainer checks I’ve had to get new ones made…Then again I’ve not had this new one very long, so lets give it time LOL. She looked through my records and said that my braces had come off in 2014 and that seeing as they have been off over a year now, that she couldn’t really see me needing or having to have any more retainer checks as apparently the norm is usually around a year or so.

 

So yeah she just checked over both retainers, got me to put them in and take them out and then checked over them to make sure that they were fitting properly and that they were not too tight or too loose and then got me to take them back out and had a quick check over of my teeth.Before asking me if anyone had made any plans for me to have any surgeries which I said I didn’t have any scheduled,planned or upcoming .. or at least not to my knowledge I didn’t. So she said she wasn’t  really sure what to do and asked if I was alright for her to go and speak to Mr Gill and ask him what he wanted her to do etc.Which I said I was fine about , as well  he is my consultant and the one over seeing my care and treatment. Whilst she was gone the dental Nurse Danielle asked if I was happy with how my teeth were looking and the improvement they have made , which I honestly am as I feel for me personally anyway they’ve made a huge difference and although it may sound a little weird I think in a way it hides my jaw issues a little more, and doesn’t make it look quite as obvious as what it used to appear to me.

 

The fellow was back within a few minutes and said she and Mr Gill were happy and that he didn’t want or need her to do anything else and  didn’t need to see again and was happy for me to be discharged… In a way a bit of a shock to the system , as although I knew it would be coming up soon purely due to my age and everything, I didn’t really expect it to be today .I suppose I thought and expected that when I was discharged I would have seen my consultant Mr Gill and he would have done it , or as had been discussed a few years ago when I was discharged from the ENT clinic with Neil Bulstrode that I would be seen in multi disciplinary clinic , as he had asked one of the other consultants if that would be happening as he said he would have liked to say goodbye properly etc when the time came. So yeah a little bit of a shock but in honesty I was expecting it to happen some time soon , as things have been good for a while now and been going as planned and well whether I like or not I am getting older now and the hospital is classed as a children’s hospital , so it was going to happen soon really.It was a bit of a shame as the fellow I saw said she would see if Mr Gill would pop in to see me to say goodbye and everything but he unfortunately couldn’t as he was busy with other things which is completely understandable although it would have been nice to have had the chance to thank him for everything he’s done for me since 2012 when he took over being my consultant.

 

I didn’t really know how to feel about it all and honestly I still don’t ,I mean don’t get me wrong I know it’s a good thing and I do see it as a good thing and as the end of an era or chapter or whatever you like. But at the same time although knowing this day would come at some point I guess part of me never really believed or expected it to though, as silly as it sounds.As I’ve been under Great Ormond Street Hospital’s care since I was 22 weeks in the womb before I became a patient at the age of 3 months old, so really it’s all I’ve ever known throughout all of my life and it definitely feels a little strange knowing I won’t ever be going back as a GOSH patient anymore.It’s a little sad too as I’ve met some absolutely amazing teams of people from the consultants,surgeons,doctors,nurses,play specialists, the receptionists etc so much so they’ve become my second family and second home too. So a little sad knowing I won’t be seeing them anymore  and it means I’m growing up whether I want to or not I’m becoming an adult .. oh dear… LOL . But of course I see all the good and the positives too such as it means now I’m no longer under any hospitals , my health is good , my conditions are doing as well as they can be,I’m happy and it just means a new door will have to open and the next chapter of life can and will begin.

 

I went to sit in the Lagoon cafe  for a bit of breakfast and a hot chocolate seeing as I hadn’t eaten before I left the hospital for  the last time as a patient and to type all of this up onto my phone too of course :). I think looking back at the whole of today and the last few months I could see this completely being on the cards and I know now looking at everything I am happy as I am and that although in a sense the surgery decision has been made for me , it’s completely the right and best thing and I am happy that I’ve not had the two further surgeries .Although I would still like to get a few bits done but nothing facial or anything as I’ve decided I am happy as the person I am and it’s time to just work on the confidence and accept it all fully that this is who I am and have become .It’s been one massive journey from start to finish but the whole experience and journey with GOSH has been incredible.. It’s strange yes that it’s come to an end after 20 years and 5 months of being a patient and I am of course going to miss the hospital, the teams of staff that have helped and supported me throughout various parts of my journey but they will always be extremely special to me and hold a very special place in my life that will forever stay in my heart and with me.I have never been able to fully thank any of the amazing staff or teams of people for the things that they’ve done for me throughout the years.Well this certainly is not exception that I still owe absolutely everything to them and will never be able to thank them enough for everything they’ve done for me.

 

…………………….

 

Now I just couldn’t leave without first taking these photos  as peter pan and the hospital have become so special to me:

 

GOSH journey appt 19/01/16

Published January 19, 2016 by goshgurl95

So I am now on my way to Great Ormond Street Hospital in London, Although to be honest  I thought I was going to end up being late and missing my train as I really wanted to do my pre appointment blog post before I left home . I must have  been walking at some speed  due to the cold or something as I didn’t leave mine until maybe 7:45 ish so 5 mins later than planned an got to station by 8am .I hadn’t planned on getting on the train until 8:16 am  but I’d actually got to the station early enough that the 8:03 am train was still sitting in the station an hadn’t pulled out , watched the 8:10 train come in an pull out although to be fair I could’ve got that one but it looked rather crowded so I decided not to get the train until 8:16 as planned.

Anyway I feel completely calm and fine although I know that I’m more than likely going to be asked about surgery or further treatment again.  It does seem strange though  that Mr Gill has  asked to see me today as usually I only go for check ups between 6-12 months, so Is a little strange as to why he’s asked to see me at 3 months.

Obviously it’s not been 3 months since I last went to GOSH  as I  had to go back to see one the fellows to get a new retainer made as the previous one was too small … Anyway I’m getting off topic I really don’t know how I’m going to answer or what I’m going t o say or answer when that question is asked .I find it’s harder now as my parents no longer come to any of my appointments with me anymore and now I’ve got to deal with this all alone an make the decision alone ,I mean my parents always leave the decisions to me but for them to know about them an what’s going on though helps .However this time I’ve not told them .I’ve left them in the dark about it all as although I planned to tell mum 3 months ago when it was first mentioned I chose not although we are a really open family and we  talk about anything and everything I couldn’t bring myself to tell her as she got so upset over knowing I had to come back in 3 months time rather than between the usual 6-12 months time gap,  and actually started crying an worrying asking me what was wrong , what was happening etc , which I couldn’t answer why he wants to see me in 3 months time as I wasn’t told either so how could I then tell her we had been discussing surgery and that we most likely would be again today when she’s got upset over it being 3 months time ??

 

I’m split on what to do part of me says yes an the other  says no .The part saying yes have surgery  is the real self conscious me , an the nervous part me thinking well I know sooner rather than later now they’re going to be thinking about / talking about and then discharging me or referring me elsewhere because of my age as I’ll be 21 in August, so I know it’s going to  happen sooner or later and I know that this will either be my last surgery(ies) here  and then I’ll be discharged or if I say no it’ll most likely happen today or over the next few months . Which is hard enough really as I’ve been at gosh since I was 22 weeks in my mums womb, and then became a patient when I was a 3 month old baby. Since  then I   have had regular  updates , appointments , treatments an surgeries since an I can’t imagine not having GOSH, although of course they’ll always be my second home and my  second family etc  and I’ll still do my blog , fundraising and  raise awareness just the same as I currently do . The  thing is I’ve been self-conscious an insecure about myself since I was 8 years old do that part of me says do it an also the part me saying do it is because what happens if I say no then change my mind in a few years then I’ll be at bottom NHS waiting list an have to get gp referral to another hospital an team an go through everything from the beginning an it’d be a slower process an I may even have to pay for it as it’d be considered cosmetic surgery, as hemifacial microsomia is not something you can cure . However the part of me saying no is the part of me that knows just how hard everything the past 20 years have been for my parents an it’s gotten harder  on them as I’ve got older such as mum cried at my BAHA surgery , cried about me having to be seen in 3 months time rather than usual time wait etc.So how can I really put her through that again as I know she finds it the hardest out of her an dad . Then how can I also do it when my sister Is so sick with mental health illness as she’s currently battling anorexia and has been in hospital since September and  isn’t due home until Monday

 

.How can I really do that to them as we need each other right now an need be there to support encourage an help my sister and I don’t want to take that attention away or off of her an I don’t want be taking my parents away from her when she still really needs and relies on them. It also means if I do decide to do the surgery  that I’ll most likely have it done within the next few months or so as they usually get me in pretty quickly once I’ve agreed etc .Which  means my sister would still be in the early stages of being back at home with us after being in hospital for months . I would have to postpone or set back getting my boobs done as I’ve now got the name of a surgeon and hospital but although haven’t taken it any further yet I would have to set that back  until  everything surgery wise at GOSH was sorted an done. Even then I would probably have to leave it a few extra months an that . Whereas if I was to be honest I’d rather have my boobs done first but the thing is I just find have the time as I’m fast running out of time if being at GOSH  so this would have to come first if I decide to go ahead

I’m almost at Liverpool Street station an I’m still no closer to knowing what my decision is , what I’ll say or how I’ll answer so this is going well …

GOSH pre appointment 19/01/16

Published January 19, 2016 by goshgurl95

So I don’t very often do pre appointment blogs.. well actually I’ve never done one before that I can recall..  but I have a bit of time to kill before I have to leave to get the train for today’s appointment at GOSH (Great Ormond Street Hospital) So thought I would do a pre appointment blog , as well to be honest there’s a lot going on and I know that I will be seeing Mr Gill today whose currently my consultant at GOSH and when I last saw him 3 months ago we had a chat about further treatments and further surgery, so obviously this is going to be brought up an mentioned today.

 

I honestly thought as I got older the easier things would get in making these decisions over surgery and what the best thing or the right thing to do is, well I honestly don’t think that’s the case I think if anything it just gets so much harder and more complex to decide the older you get , as you realise more what is going on and what’s happening and have other commitments in life that have an impact on these decisions.

 

What’s played the most on my mind and made making any decisions hard, has been the fact that my little sister , my only sibling has been really Ill and has been having her own battles and struggles as she was diagnosed with anorexia in May last year after us suspecting things weren’t quite right since the previous November , and she then got admitted into the Priory hospital in September last year, and is still currently in there .So obviously I don’t want to put any additional pressure ,stress,worry or upset onto my parents because that’s just not fair given what they’re going through and have had to go through throughout the past year. However I know that my sisters recovery is going to take years unfortunately and unfortunately is something that could be with her for the rest of her life now.

 

It makes things hard as she got jealous of me and funny with me when I went into hospital for my first stage of ear reconstruction and told me I was being selfish and just after the attention, which of course I wasn’t and well ever since that has always played on my mind with going ahead with any other further treatments or surgeries, I mean in a way me and my sister are very much alike as we now both having conditions that are going to be with us for life and affect us in various ways.

 

See I kind of want to go ahead with further surgery ,as I’ve been considering having my chin realigned and a second Coleman fat transfer to my right cheek as I feel this will help me to become more confident and happier in  who I am as a person and just hide my condition that little bit more. However by saying this I don’t mean to say I regret or wish I didn’t have Hemifacial Microsomia or any of my other conditions because of course that’s just not true , It’s what makes me who I am.However I’m still single and have only ever had one serious relationship and that ended around 3 years or so ago and well I do wonder and worry  is it my face that puts guys off of me , or tells them to no longer be interested in me, or to decide not to get to know me as a person.Believe me I’ve tried I’ve been on dating apps and I’ve tried everything I can do .I just honestly feel my confidence and things are getting in the way and maybe my appearance too.However if I do decide to go ahead I’m not going to be doing it for them I would be completely doing it for me.

 

At the same time of saying all of this , it doesn’t mean for one minute that I’m not happy because of course I am happy and I do have happiness in my life ,I’ve got brilliant friends and family, I’m working full-time, I’m starting to go out more often and see more of my friends too. I honestly am very happy in life and the issue I have is I could happily live how I currently look but I could also quite happily change it too, It is something that gets to me from time to time and I just think maybe I should edit it slightly by going ahead with these surgeries as they would only be minor surgery . If it came to it I would travel up to London and stay there the night before and do the whole thing on my own as I just don’t want to take my parents away from my little sister who needs them so much more than I do right now.

 

I don’t want it to seem as though I’m just doing all of this for attention either  because I honestly am not and that couldn’t be further from the truth .This has  been something that’s been on going and talked and discussed about for years at the hospital now ,way before my sister getting Ill.However I’ve not discussed any of it with my parents as I just physically cannot bring myself to with everything they’ve got going on and I know it’s been so hard for them having to watch me go through numerous treatments and operations throughout my 20 years of life. I know it is  getting so much harder for them to see .Mum cried at my last surgery and even when I told her I had to go back to the hospital in 3 months time which is today she got upset and cried because she was worrying something was wrong or going to happen so how on earth can I do this right now ?!!  I’m now at the age where GOSH will be looking to finish up caring for me and discharging me so it’s a really hard decision to make and I’m not looking forward to it at all……

2016 !!

Published January 9, 2016 by goshgurl95

This is my first blog of this new year, so firstly I just want to say that I hope you’ve all had a lovely Christmas with your families and those closest to you and secondly of course I want to wish you all a very happy 2016 and I hope that it will be a happy,bright and healthy one for you all of you.I also want to thank you all so ,so,so much for all of your support throughout 2015 I honestly means the absolute world to me.I cannot believe how quickly last year went and that were in a new year already !!!

 

I’m glad that we are finally in a new year, as usually I’m not the kind of person to be thankful for a new year but last year was probably one of the hardest if not the hardest year for my family and it has been an absolute roller coaster , so I’m so glad to finally have most of that put into the past now , although of course it will now change family dynamics but that’s fine this is what family is about adjusting and changing to the members within it .I’m looking forward to a new year of lots of brand new adventures and blogs (I promise I will stay up to date this year).

 

Already have some things to look forward to in 2016 such as my beautiful little sister will be coming home permanently after being in hospital since September of last year, were getting a puppy at the end of January, It’s my 21st birthday this year, my sisters 18th birthday this year, and most of my friends 21st birthdays this year too. So I can see this being a very busy and exciting year ahead .

 

My new years resolutions/aims and goals for 2015 are:

 

  • I’m going to look after myself better this year ,so taking a bit more Me time between work and life, and just generally do more for myself this year, but of course I’ll still be there for everyone else too ,I just feel last year in particular I forgot to have time for myself and think this is a key thing to even if it’s just an hour out of my week.

 

  • I’m going to treat myself more often so for example I’ve decided I’m going to treat myself to getting my eyebrows waxed and tinted every 6 weeks, I’m going to get my eyelashes uplifted and tinted every 6 weeks, If I see things in the shops that’s a little pricey I’m going to treat myself to it , basically this one kind of ties in with my first aim/resolution

 

  • Be more out going , so like try to hang out with my friends more and generally go out and about more rather than just sitting around at home on my days off .

 

  • Be more spontaneous , so basically just have more get up and go and be like you know what I want to go here or someone messages me and says can we meet up in an hours time be more spontaneous to say yes and to go and do it

 

  • Be more sociable so again kind of ties in with the previous two but also to pick up the phone to friends more often or drop them a text or Facebook message or whatever to see how they are and arrange to go out and meet up with them more often

 

  • Start the process of getting a boob job.This is something I have wanted for years now and it is not a decision I’ve taken to lightly I have done a lot of research and done a lot of thinking and planning , but it’s something I’ve wanted since I first started secondary school .Although to be fair I kind of hoped that I was just a late developer and nature would take it’s course, but well it hasn’t and I just know this is something that would make me feel so much more confident,happy and comfortable within my own body and within myself , so this is definitely something I want to start going down the route of this year.I already have a name of a surgeon and everything so I think it’s time really to put that all into place as I’ve waited years for this and I’m nearly 21 now
  • Do more charity events this year at the moment I want to do the RBC Race for the kids, Santa dash for GOSH, and a skydive for Microtia UK and GOSH, I would also like to do something for the charity Mind UK that helps people with mental illness as this has become something that now is very close to me and has been since around May 2015.I would also like to attend more charity events

 

  • I have also decided I’m going to dedicate a lot more time this year to my blog and my Facebook page that runs along side it and keep both up to date and not fall behind on doing so.I would also like to get my story out there more to help raise awareness

 

  • I am also going to be a lot more organised this year as I know I haven’t been very organised last year or been late replying to messages or getting back to people etc.I became the first charity  officer for Microtia UK just before Christmas which I am super excited about and will blog about soon, and I’ve been late already in sending charity pots out .. please note I am sorry about that and I am already on it and getting it sorted .

 

  • I want to complete my adult leadership qualification with Brownies through girl guiding  this year

 

  • I want to start my adult leadership with the guides through girl guiding

 

  • I would like to become an advocate for Cochlear UK

 

  • I would also like to look into and take up sign language courses to promote myself that little bit more,as this is something that would and could help me in life and I also want to do it so I can communicate with others with hearing loss who rely on sign language or use it ,Also I would like to learn it as I often get deaf customers come into my work place and I would love to be able to sign with them