I've know Sam for well over twenty years now and we can share many funny stories together, like most good friends right?
One of Sam's best jobs, was working on a cruise liner where he got to see the world.
So when he came on shore leave and met up with us all he was bursting to tell us that he'd met a beautiful girl on the cruise ship, it was clear to all of us that Sammy boy was smitten! It wasn't long after that, he and Jem decided to make a live on shore together.. So in 2010 there lives on shore began.
Lets fast forward to 2012.. Jem seemed in perfect health after leaving a life on sea, nothing to indicate what lay ahead..
Randomly one evening she banged her head on the bedroom door, slightly cutting her head. After feeling dizzy taking Jem to A&E was the right thing to do.
As a result, she had an MRI scan and they discovered a brain tumour the size of a golf ball growing at the back her head over her main nerve endings.
Looking back, if they'd stayed at sea, chances are this would never have been discovered.
Jem then had surgery over at QMC Nottingham and all initially went well. However, as the tumour was at the back of her skull, growing over all the main nerve endings, she did lose half her hearing (permanently) and she developed facial palsy (recovered), which caused her face to droop so it looked like she had a stroke. Jem also had problems with fluid flow around her spinal system and developed a condition known as hydrocephalus, which consequently meant that she had to have a shunt fitted into her brain (basically a drain for the fluid to stop building up and causing pressure on her brain)
Jem came out of hospital & had to learn to rebuild herself again, leaving hospital in a wheelchair.
Fast forward to 2014 and Jem contracted meningitis and as a result then infected the shunt.
Every time the shunt gets infected, it has to be removed, there are at least 2 invasive head surgery’s, one to remove it and one to put it back in. As a result of the meningitis, she ended up in an induced coma, in intensive care for a whole month.
Eventually Jem and had a tracheotomy fitted due to breathing problems.
Sam was told to expect the worst and went through some very tough times, staying with jem in hospital for 3 months. However, through Jems strength she did recover from all of this.
Since being diagnosed Jem has had 15 lumbar punctures in total, they say you are very unfortunate if you have one in your life time, a very painful procedure.
Consequently, it was a very long recovery, both managing to try and live a relatively normal life under the circumstances, with Jem taking on a part time job as part of her recovery.
Getting married in 2016, showing each other how strong there love was. It was a fantastic moving wedding. Shortly after the wedding they decided it was the right time to buy a house and get on with life.
Lets go forward to 2017, Jem unexpectedly went into A&E hospital over at QMC on the 24th Nov, after suffering from severe headaches, she then went into intensive care. Placed into a coma on 3 separate occasions, due to problems with breathing when being woken up, she had another tracheotomy.
There have been various head surgeries since. Jems body has basically shut down, compartmentalising itself to focus on her severe brain trauma.
Jem is now over at Ashby ward at Lincoln and they have given her a stimulant (often used in bad car or motorcycle crash victims) to re-waken her mind & body back up.
All through this Sam has been trying to hold it all together and support his beautiful wife to the very best of his ability.
I know its massively taken its toll on Sam as he hasn't had much in the way of emotional support and this is why I am here.. To do what friends do and give him a boost, unfortunately I live 275 miles North of Sam and can't give him the local support, but i'd like to do something.
Even if I only raise enough money to help Sam with fuel money getting to the hospital, its something.. It would be wonderful if we could raise enough money to do something fantastic for them both pushing the funding target. So lets try!
If we can push the target then I will show you all what a difference to Sam's life your money has made.
Thank you for your time.
Sam's good friend , Dan.