It is now January 2008, seven months after Hubby’s injury, I have only managed to work part time for my new Australian employers and they finally pull the plug. We decide to go to Australia for a holiday, retrieve our belongings and give me chance to sort out my bank account plus monies owing.
Do not let anyone tell you that the airlines look after you and provide assistance when flying. We learnt the hard way they do not have a clue. We made the mistake of thinking shelling out money for a first class seat would guarantee treatment like royalty.
First mistake, many first class seats are pods with foot stools. So how is anyone supposed to use a sliding board to transfer from wheelchair to seat? Second, you need to stand up to change the seat to a bed. It was a disaster and Hubby got hurt during the man handling. Then to add insult to injury, on arrival, the chauffeur service sent a bus that Hubby could not access.
Once we got over the journey we had a fairly good time, I got my business concluded which gave us money to live on. At first we set ourselves up in a hotel in Chatswood NSW that I had previously stayed in. The room had a small kitchenette, roll in shower room, living room and one bedroom. It also had a little balcony that we used to sit on and watch the spectacular rain storms from. Later I managed to sort a new work visa and secured some more work by opening my own Management Consultancy Agency.
The good times were not to last, whilst up in the central New South Wales coast at Port Stephens, Hubby was bitten by a spider. The bite quickly became infected and turned into every spinally injured patient’s nightmare a pressure sore. Things deteriorated from there.
Gradually his involuntary spasms and pain became worse until we had to make the decision to return home. I knew I needed time to organise life back in the UK and booked Hubby into a private rehab hospital. Therefore, I packed up our life in Sydney and the flat over looking the river that I loved, booked the plane tickets and made all the arrangements we needed to move countries. Bad luck seems to follow Hubby and I, a week before we were due to get on the plane it became evident that the private rehab had decided not to take us on. I therefore started an email campaign with Stoke Mandeville for help in our case. We arrived back in the UK in May 2009 and had to find suitable hotel accommodation.