7. A little progress

Tuesday 4th May 2004
Ari is now settling in to his new surroundings at the Rehabilitation Clinic in Kensington. He has already begun working on intensive therapy, which will have to include, of course “showing him how to hold a rod and cast ;-)”. It will be several weeks still, but he is doing good !

To all you fishermen out there – catch us the biggest fish ever, and let us know about it !

Gaëlle Bert


Thursday 6th May

I haven’t felt the need to write for a few days. So I must be feeling better! But since I started writing just for you to know what was going on while you were asleep and semi awake, I shall carry on. On Monday you were moved from Sunninghill General Hospital to Kensington Rehabilitation Hospital. It was just as stressful as they said it would be. You were scrunched up on the stretcher bed of the ambulance, sweating profusely, a little scared. I’m glad I rode with you; I couldn’t leave you all alone, completely helpless, even in the good care of the paramedics. New faces, new walls, you were tossed, turned and tested and then bungled off in another ambulance to Bedford Gardens just so they could X-ray you. Your left leg you’ve held tightly bent so now that foot has swollen terribly. No thrombosis was found luckily. Today you went again, they were afraid it could be ossification of the muscle. No, luckily…

They wouldn’t believe me when I told them about your writing. Last week Thursday, no Saturday, I gave you a crayon and paper and you did some scribbles. At first I smiled at you and said good, good. And you were pushing your head towards me, opened your eyes so wide! I couldn’t understand, we were both a bit frustrated so you fell asleep. So I stared at your scribbles and there was my name! Backwards but there it was. Thanks to the “ë” ! I tried to tell you that I had understood, but it was too late… and you slept on and on. That was the best thing ever. Now you are eating soft foods and drinking. Your first was my birthday. That was the best gift. Plus you came off the drip at the same time. Your parents found Michelle Cahi, Occupational Therapist. She came to see you and did some exercises with you. It was so marvellous to see you put the ice-cream card on the I-card, and the telephone on T and the clown on C. I almost had tears in my eyes… you also felt like Ari with her help. What joy you give us !


“With time and patience the mulberry leaf becomes a silk gown” Chinese Proverb


Affirmation – Laughter, play and time to me brings inner harmony. Balance is life enhancing for me and everyone around me. – Yes, otherwise I scream at the kids too much.


Much of the discord we experience comes from resisting what is. I don’t because I take Ari as he is now, not what he might be or what he was and so I can concentrate on what I have to do with him now.


Once you acknowledge what is, you can take appropriate action.MY MOTTO!


So now at Kensington, I feel they are looking after you as a person not just a body to work on like an engine. Although the nurses and everyone were always very nice to you and us, at least here they are trying to help you become Ari again: you are dressed, you go to the gym for your therapy, you sit in a chair, they make you stand on a tilt table, and also the speech therapist, Alex, feeds you and concentrates on communicating with you. She’s using a Yes/No board today. It’s easier than blinks and thumbs up.

I’ve started working on editing the show you did at Inhaca with Neil. His mum would like as much as possible of his footage. Zoë says “you’re getting quite good at this!” I guess I am. It feels so strange to see the two of you joking around like you always did. This footage is like an antique now, something so valuable since it can never be reproduced again, or even copied. So I have let go of African Angling Safaris. It was very hard to admit that I had to, but I did it because I had a breakdown, and I even went and had a magic muffin…

Besides, you will be able to do it again if you want. And if you don’t want to or can’t, well, at least I won’t have spent any time away from you needlessly. I’m not an avid angler, I’m not a business woman, or even an editor, just a concerned loving wife. And I’m starting to realize at last that your recovery is going to be a very long journey, very long. I must muster all my energy to be with you and help you when you need me (even though that’s what they’ve been saying all along !) DENIAL ! I guess it’s a protective mechanism, and I’ll always keep some elements. Hey, I can hear a Muezzin from your bedside this afternoon. In the quiet sunshine, it reminds me of our travels in Egypt and Israel. Oh blissful times ! To come again. We are going to make something of our lives from now on. I promise, there is no use in being stressed out in a rut, we really should enjoy ourselves and the kids more, who knows what’s coming around the next corner ???

Thank you John for the lekker sound system and the delicious car you sold to Ari ! the deep deep bass beat tunes my heart beat and balances my energies to make me feel like the music.


Gaëlle = Dragon frog

The Chinese dragon traditionally symbolises joy, energy and health, guardian of spiritual wisdom..

Like the frog that effortlessly slips between the elements of land and water, we live in the two realms of body and spirit. Remember to nourish both, to derive the greatest joy from life.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s