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Harriet's Blog

The latest news about Harriet

Harriet is rushed into the Derby Royal Hospital


Staff at the Lighthouse nursery told us that Harriet was not herself today and seemed to struggle, as we took Harriet home it seemed that she may have come down with some sort of virus or cold.

Harriet was put to bed and we kept making sure that her heart rate and oxygen levels were at a reasonable level for Harriet, but as the day progressed, Harriet seemed to be getting worse, her oxygen levels were dropping and her heart rate was raised significantly.

We decided that we needed some help and contacted the kite team; they spoke with the relevant consultants and asked us to bring Harriet in straight away.

Harriet`s breathing was now starting to deteriorate and knew we had to get her to hospital soon, but decided to take her in the van, rather than an ambulance as Harriet was more comfortable in the upright position as her lungs could drain off the increased secretions.

As we arrived at the hospital we parked the van quickly and then rushed Harriet into the children`s Accident and Emergency Department. We told them the kite team had spoken to the relevant consultants and that Harriet was now in respiratory distress and needed urgent medical attention.

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Harriet`s Neurological, Spinal and Hip Assessment


With Christmas and the colder month`s nearly upon us, we had a few more appointments with Harriet at the Queen`s Medical Hospital in Nottingham.

Harriet had been booked in with the consultant neurologist Dr. Whitehouse for some months, but we also needed to take Harriet to see the consultant spinal surgeon Dr.Grevitt and a hip surgeon for an assessment on the same day.

As we arrived at the Queen`s Medical Hospital, we found that the car parks near to the spinal unit were all full and therefore had to park quite a distance from the unit. Once parked we made our way in the bitter cold across to the spinal unit with Harriet, we booked in and were then sent to the X-Ray department for an X-Ray of Harriet`s spine and hips.

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Harriet`s Step Lift and Tracking Hoist arrive


With all the main building work now finished, we were now waiting for the outside steplift and overhead tracking hoist in Harriet`s bedroom to be installed .

We initially had a phone call from the steplift company, to say that they could fit the lift within a week, but there had been some problems on the bespoke build of the lift system and this had to be postponed for another couple of weeks.

When the lift people finally arrived, it felt like such a relief as we knew that we would no longer need to carry Harriet from the car into house, especially if she was sleeping. Harriet was also starting to get very heavy and it was a real strain carrying her safely.

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Harriet`s First Day at Nursery

As our other children started to return to school, we were now preparing for Harriet to take her first steps on the learning ladder . Months of planning and preparation from health care professionals was needed to make this possible, as Harriet is a very complex little girl who has...
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Harriet moves into her New Room


It had been just over three months since the builders started Harriet`s new room and the building was now at a stage where it was virtually finished, we therefore asked the builder if it was possible to get the room passed.

Building control came out to Harriet`s new room and passed the building, which now meant that Harriet was able to move in her new room.

The builder explained to us that although the doors to Harriet`s bathroom and tracking hoists were not in place, that this would not affect Harriet or the carer living in the bedroom and using the disabled bathroom facilities.

Harriet`s room was designed to not only be functional for her needs but also take into account a sterile environment and we therefore decided that it was best to have a tiled floor in the bedroom, which would follow through from the main house .

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Construction of Harriet`s New Room begins


On May 28th 2011 the builders turned up with their digger and started the development on Harriet`s new room and the front drive.

There was very limited access to the rear of the property as the house had been extended in 2004 and the only access that would allow for machinery equipment, materials for trades personal to pass, was through our next door neighbours entry. We were very fortunate that we had a good relationship with our neighbour; she was extremely helpful and allowed materials to be delivered onto her front, machinery up the side of her house and allowed the work men to use her entry as main access point to our garden.

Initially when the builders looked at the access to the rear of the garden, they thought a digger would be out of the question given not only the narrow entry, but also the steep steps that the digger would need to climb up into our garden. The builders decided that they at least needed to try this option and given that they were using a small digger, to level off the front of the house for Harriet`s lift and driveway adaption this seemed a good time to try. After several attempts the digger was finally into the garden and the builders could start the footings for Harriet`s new room.

The builder started digging out the footings for Harriet`s room with the digger, this took just over three days and was timed just right for the building inspector to come and pass ready for the concrete.


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