Stephen K Amos....

by The Squirrell 23. July 2011 14:38

What an unconvential, but fun evening!

I booked us tickets to a "Comedy Gig" in Bristol....

The venue, a "Big Top" marquee on Queens Square Garden/Park.

The evening was fine, and warmish, we sat and had a drink, then

watched the (HILARIOUS) Stephen K Amos (and support acts.)

The heavens opened, but as the rain hammered the tent, it made it

bizarrely more cozy!

After the gig, there was a "Silent Disco" !! I'd not seen it before, but

so as not to upset neighbours etc, everyone is given headphones

(like ear defenders) and the music is sent to you direct, so no loud

music, and everyone hears the same, so you boogie...


It's not until you take them off, or see the bewildered

onlookers, you realise what a surreal sight it is as a voyeur!!

Great night, and despie the cold/rain, I no longer get so cold it

takes days to warm up, like I was pre Transplant!!.....




by The Squirrell 21. July 2011 07:40

After a "misjudgement" in my velocity, the local

Police were kind enough to remind me of this misjudgement,

and duly summoned me to explain myself...

The rather ironic name of the Court Clerk was not lost on me!!





by The Squirrell 18. July 2011 22:15

I take great delight now, in the simplest of tasks as before my

Transplant, I was hardly able to walk my garden, let alone dig it,

water it, etc...

My new ticker copes admirably with the demands I put on it and

my legs hurt before anything else now! (Due to my Muscular Dystrophy etc.)

While I was happily watering recently, I found "Barney" in his new

sleeping spot!! He was less happy with my watering it seems?!


Hamlet in the garden!...

by The Squirrell 16. July 2011 00:05

My friends Arnold and Dorothy kindly leant part of thier

garden tonight, to the local "Am' Dram' " group and a singing Trio

for some 40s songs and a rendition of a Hamlet comedy...



Jane, Mum, Dad, and I packed chairs, a picnic and went along!...


I was dubious, as it meant sitting out, well into the (cold)

evening....I was so used to getting cold the instant evening

drew in, due to my failed heart, that I still find it a tribute to QEH

and the staff, that I was WARM all night!! I had no idea what the

"average" person felt like until my transplant....


I had a GREAT and WARM evening!



Tyntesfeild House....

by The Squirrell 13. July 2011 09:26

Jane and I took ourselves off to "TyntesField House" today.

A wondefully cared for and interesting National Trust house.

The restoration work they have done is well thought out

(I loved the way they had changed the old stables, into

the cafe, and each of the Horse stalls, were

"private dining areas" for peaople to sit in have thier food!)

We wandered around all day enjoying the grounds, house,

and gardens (And I had a cheeky go on the Croque Lawn!)

Apart from (2 sets) of achy feet, we had a lovely day, and

my improved health was just the icing on the cake!

Good Times!





by The Squirrell 13. July 2011 05:42

For those of you who don't know, I lost my beloved,

younger Brother Duncan, who died aged 11 many

years ago, of a massive heart attack...

It was HIS death that lead Doctors to find he had

a genetic Heart Defect which was what killed him.

It was through his death, and subsequent investigation

that MY defect was found, and I was treated and medicated

to prolong my life (Until my life saving Heart transplant in 2009.)

I have him to look to when I think how lucky I was not to

suffer the same fate...

Today (13th July) would be his Birthday.....

It is a difficult day for me and my parents (And Duncans friends.)

The day is tinged with saddness, a few tears, but mainly joyous

memories of a wonderful, loving young boy, with a keen sense of

fun and a rapier wit...

Rest in Peace Duncan we all still love

and think about you every day... X


Lytes Cary Manor...

by The Squirrell 11. July 2011 22:24

Had a lovely day out today with my Mum and Dad....

Since my transplant, I have been keen to spend as much time

as possible with loved ones to make the most of my good health

while it lasts.

We all took a trip to Lytes Cary Manor, which, if you are National Trust

members is worth a look. It was lovely day, and I walked miles!!

I am still astonihed at what this heart is capable of! It brings home to me

just how sick I was all my life, right up until QEH peeled me open!!  :-)



Tea Party......

by The Squirrell 10. July 2011 11:54

What a nice way to spend the afternoon!....

Some years ago (1999?) a friend asked Dad to build her a "Bird House"

(As she is an avid RSPB member etc) to mark the year 2000/Millenium!

He embarked on an "Owl Tower"! The theory being, make a structure for

her that was tall enough for her local Owls to nest in safely, also rafters

for the Swallows to nest, holes/windows that song and hedge birds could use

to nest, and even a low "hole for badgers and foxes to use"...So he did!!

Some years later, she also wanted a "Grotto" in her bit of woodland/trees,

as walkers go through etc, and it would be a nice "discovery"

and also somewhere to sit down and rest tired feet!!

Both projects now long done, she opens her garden every couple of years,

gets a Jazz band to play in the garden, sells Cream teas, and we open the

toy box, and take along vehicles to entertain visitors, who come to see her

garden/house and walk through her land.


(Gate £ procceds to charity too, so all in a good cause!!)

Mum, Dad, Jane and I went along for to support the event,

and had a lovely afternoon in the sun!


(Yes QEH, I did put my sunblock on! - Transplant patients

are prone to skin cancers due to drug regime etc, so we have

to be EXTRA careful in the sun!)

I walked up and down all day, in the heat, and the ticker

just kept ticking!!


(Still can't get over how lucky I am....)





QEH....Weight issues... :-(

by The Squirrell 6. July 2011 14:40

I had my most recent check up at QEH on 4.7.11, and although I

was elated at being told I could reduce one of my medications a

bit (The nasty one with horrid side effects, and also gives you the farts!!)

BUT I was "Told Off" and warned about a large weight gain..??.....

It is obviously crucial that transplant patients keep thier weight down,

to ease strain on the heart and body, and also as some of the pills

make you HUNGRY ALL THE TIME, you can over eat! Coupled to the fact

that the pills also make you fatter we have to be REALLY careful what

we all eat, and make sure we exercise regulaly!

I could not understand HOW I had lapsed so badly, and according to my

daily weight chart, I had not gained alot (Less than QEH claimed?)

After racking my brain, I began my investigations!! AND FOUND THE CULPRIT!!

After my transplant I was told to get good bathroom scales to weigh myself, so

I bought 2 IDENTICAL scales, from the same shop, the same day, and EXACTLY

the same models!

However the ones I use in the bedroom daily, have developed a FAULT!! And read

some 3+ Kgs lighter!!   :-(  I thought I was doing okay, but it turns out I have

gained almost 5kgs since my last QEH check up!!

Back to square one!!!  



About Matt.

My name's Matt. I was born with a congenital heart defect which hampered me in my youth, and sadly became a terminal conditon recently, and beyond the (amazing) care of the BRI-Bristol Heart team.

In 2008, my condition deteriorated, to a point I was happy to see Xmas 2008. I had prepared to die.

Then in January 2009, a late night phone call from QEH-Hospital Birmingham changed my world, when they offered me a heart transplant, if I could get there pronto!!

6 months on, after a rocky start, I am still alive, thanks to them!

Read on to see how my new life is taking shape, and my adventures to date!....



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