We had a beautiful walk yesterday morning; it was warm but being by the coast, we always have a breeze so it was not as stifling as I think inland was. We walked around the mere and then stopped in a pub beer garden for much needed refreshment, before coming home. My husband picked us some homegrown french beans for lunch, which were delicious and then it was time to set off to meet Joshua and my sister, halfway between us at a café we have used before. On my way, I had a phone call from the DOLS officer who is preparing Joshua’s Deprivation of Liberty application for the Court of Protection. She explained that it is almost complete and that she wanted me to bring her up to speed on our current respite situation. She had undertaken consultation with daycare and his epilepsy nurse to double check that any deprivation of his liberty was in his best interests. She told me the glowing report that daycare had given him, which made me feel very proud of how well he had adapted and at how popular he is. It was a perfect conversation to have, hands free, on my way to see him after almost 24 hours apart.
I arrived at the café first, as they had a motorway diversion to contend with, but he seemed pleased to see me, even though I had to ask for my first hug! We had a cup of tea and some cake while we caught up on all of the news and then loaded up the car with his overnight bag, wheelchair and waterproof sheet. With the amount of luggage, it looked like he had stayed for a fortnight! It sounds as though his Aunt managed him really well : he ate well, drank well and slept well. It was an extra complication that he was staying in 30 degree temperatures, but they stayed indoors predominantly with socks, splints and boots off to keep him cooler, which will have helped.
We left the café as it closed at 4pm and I drove through the city out the other side to the stables where Joshua attends RDA horse riding. It was his last session before closing for the summer, so I wanted him to ride, even though I was concerned that he might be tired, as he had been on the go since 7.30am. But he did not rest during the drive and was initially grumpy when we parked up as he worked out what was happening and realised that he had not gone straight home. But he soon perked up once he got out of the car and greeted all of the female volunteers, he began lifting his t shirt to flash his belly at them. I swapped his big clumpy boots for his new trainers and he was the first rider to be mounted on Witney, where he looked comfortable and sat happily waiting for the other two riders to get onto their horses too. They walked around the arena for their half hour session, with Joshua flashing his belly continuously and he slid off easily at the end of the ride. He sat on his chair while I swapped his footwear back over and he was given a rosette and an Endeavour certificate for his effort and smiles.
It is a 40 minute drive home from the new stables so it was after 6.30 by the time we reached home. Joshua had his afternoon medication and asked for ‘Giant’ so he went to bed for 90 minutes, only emerging at 8pm for a late tea. He must have been exhausted. After he ate his tea, he had a brief bath to wash the horse and heat away, then he was back in bed for soon after 9. He slept well that side of midnight but emerged on the landing to swap beds at 2.30am and then woke me again at 4.30 to return to his own bed, where he still is now. A great day was had by all and now he has two consecutive daycare days to look forward to, bring it on!