In particular to Allen Says, Big Mike, Paul Myers, those who donated and those who blogged and tweeted about my predicament.
Due to my silence in the intervening years, since the members of this forum saved my skin, it probably appeared that I took the money, cut and ran.
I’m sorry I gave that impression, it wasn’t intentional… I’ve been pretty ill during the years since then.
Last year alone I was probably on the net all of 4 or 5 hours but in ICU on over 14 separate occasions plus a number of admissions to general wards.
Sidebar: Before anyone gets the impression I’m looking for more assistance… Nope I’m financially OK /Sidebar
In 2010 apart from the non-surgical admissions I had 2 spinal operations which resulted in me not being able to sit at a desk for more than a couple of minutes at a time… This lasted for months. I still can’t use my arms to type for more than a couple of minutes. (The operation to the cervical spine went wrong)
I also had open heart surgery which was left until the last minute as the docs reckoned I had less than a 30% chance of survival… My wife was told to expect the worst… This, leaving the op until the last minute, was one of the reasons for the multiple hospital admissions.
I was recovering pretty brilliantly from the heart surgery when I had numerous lung emboli, which resulted in my spending most of December 2010 and January this year in hospital. I was discharged mid-January on 24 hours continuous home oxygen which lasted to mid Feb, and then started again to end March.
Physically I could probably have made this post in or around April this year; unfortunately I was pretty depressed… I have Bi-polar mood disorder, which is generally pretty well controlled, but the ongoing health hassles kind of took over for a while there and I couldn’t get my act together. I’m OK now.
Whilst it may seem that the above is an attempt to elicit sympathy it isn’t… au contraire it’s in an endeavour to explain my long silence, to those who assisted me and to assert that I have never been, and am not now, ungrateful for that help. Under normal circumstances I would never have revealed the bi-polar condition, in the open, on the internet… regrettably there’s still a certain stigma attached to it in certain quarters.
Getting on to the topic of that help… It did precisely what it was intended to do, in that it enabled me to stave off the most pressing medical creditors and use the breathing space to sell my house to settle everything.
We moved towns and are on a medical aid which has paid for most of the cost associated with my major medical expenses. The rest I have been able to cover. In effect, members of this forum saved my life, as, if I had been forced to use the govt health service it is highly unlikely I would have survived.
I earnestly hope that this letter will go some way toward dispelling any ill feeling that may have resulted from my disappearance. I would also like it to reflect and reinforce my gratitude to members of this forum for the assistance received.
PS: I am well aware that there are probably those on this forum who overcome far more serious physical challenges on a daily basis… I admire them.