Christmas is a time I've come to dread. Impossible to get enough nursing shifts covered, snow makes roads impassable (can't afford a 4x4 even if I approved of them) and sons health is usually fairly edgy due to severe asthma/low temperatures/flu etc.. We've spent too many Christmases in hospital to approach them with anything other than trepidation. This years problem looked like it would be compounded by service cuts, but it's turned out to be the threat of them rather than the reality - so far.
So, daughter is home till after New Year, she and my wife have gone to Midnight Mass, we've a nurse just come on to do the night shift (thank you, thank you), our son has settled in bed listening to a story tape (he's needed a fair bit of ventolin but seems to be quite settled for the moment) - I can hear the suction machine and the oxygen concentrator in the background but someone else is dealing with it just now. And I have a few minutes of Christmas Eve to myself. Daren't risk a beer, just in case I need to drive if anything goes wrong, but I've got myself a coffee and a mince pie. We take over again at 8a.m., so barring emergencies, we should get a reasonable nights sleep as well.
Just now the world feels OK. Happy Christmas to anyone reading this.