I feel like a flamingo!

Well, as promised, here I am with a Friday blog, although it may be a little shorter than usual because a) I don’t have as much to write about as usual, having been housebound for the past week and b) my medication makes my brain a bit fuzzy and also makes me drowsy… I’m such a lightweight!

Firstly, thanks for all your good wishes for my operation and I will get around to replying soon, now that I’m starting to feel a bit more like my usual self. Also, apologies if you’ve had trouble finding our presenter blogs – we have had a little facelift and QCommunity no longer exists so you will find our blogs under ‘Stories’. However, there is a slight glitch at the moment and only the most recent six are showing – I’ve been told it’s being worked on so hopefully that should be sorted soon and you will be able to see everyone’s blogs as normal.

So, as planned, my ankle osteotomy went ahead last Wednesday, albeit slightly later in the day than scheduled and I woke up with the lower part of my left leg in a cast… hence the reference to feeling like a flamingo, constantly standing on one leg! I won’t bore you with details, but let’s just say the surgeon seemed satisfied with how things went, although he’ll reserve judgement until the cast comes off on Monday and he is able to have a look at things.

I was allowed home last Friday and fortunately we have a sofa bed in our lounge and a downstairs shower and loo, so I have been able to ‘live’ on the ground floor. The physio in the hospital did show me how to negotiate stairs, but the ones in the hospital were quite different from our Victorian cottage ones, i.e. narrow, carpeted and with a turn near the top. I’ve been getting around reasonably well on my crutches, although I didn’t realise how much of an effort it would be as I’m not allowed to put weight on my left foot. To be fair, the physio did say I could have a walking frame if I preferred but I declined as it reminded me of a conversation I had with one of my QVC colleagues a couple of years ago when we were chatting about how long we intended to stay at QVC as Presenters. She said, and I quote, ‘You’ll never retire, you’ll still be coming in here in your eighties with your zimmer frame.’ There’s a thought!!! It’s a good job I have a strong upper body from Pilates and swimming and a really strong right thigh, vital in getting up and down from a seated position. Actually, we invested in a little stool for the shower, which is much safer than standing on a wet slippery surface, but I do my facial routine morning and night standing on one leg. I hate to think how dry my skin will be under the cast as I normally moisturise after a shower or bath and once the wounds are healed I’ll be reaching for the Decleor Prolagene Gel!

What this past week has given me is a new appreciation of what it is to be less able to get out and about, whether it’s due to age, illness or injury. The very first Get Well card I received was from a former dancing colleague, Diane. We go back to 1976 when we worked together in a theatre show in Barcelona. We had lost contact until she spotted me on QVC and wrote to me. Diane hasn’t enjoyed the best of health and spends the majority of her time housebound, quite a bit of it bed-bound. Until this past week I had no understanding of what that feels like – it’s almost like being a prisoner trapped in your own home. I now have huge admiration for all of you who are unable to live the ‘normal’ life so many of us take for granted and yet still remain positive and purposeful. It makes the fact that we can reach out to you through the TV screen for company and a degree of independence when it comes to shopping an even more important part of my job, something I will be mindful of when I come back to work, hopefully around mid-March.

I loved Diane’s card, which she made herself, but my favourite was from a friend of mine who has a wicked sense of humour. It features a photo of a Crystal Palace player (who obviously I won’t name on here) and the wording is: Following major foot surgery, leaving your foot in plaster, you’d still be able to score more goals than this fella… football humour!!!!

Speaking of coming back to work, Eilidh is back today and is covering my 6 p.m. Fashion on Friday on the Style Channel. She has been off for the past five months following the birth of her son, Beau, and apparently took him in to our Chiswick Studios for cuddles last week – why do I always miss out on the good stuff?! Hopefully there will be plenty of other opportunities. I think Jackie Kabler is taking the helm for my Fashion on Friday show on the main channel at 5 p.m. – it’s a good job my mum knows I’m off sick or she would be ringing in a panic if she didn’t see me on there, as she has done on previous occasions when I haven’t let her know I’d taken time off. She’s enjoyed herself this past week showing the ‘Bella” article to anyone who set foot over the threshold of her bungalow – she was really chuffed with all her mentions!

So, I haven’t done a huge amount of anything this past week – a bit of reading, watching The Chase and coming up with an idea for a new book – but I haven’t been able to concentrate particularly well because of the aforementioned medication. You’re probably thinking heavy-duty morphine-based drugs… No, just paracetamol and ibuprofen with a soluble aspirin thrown in to help prevent blood clots. I sometimes wonder how my body ever coped with the oral chemotherapy drugs for my leukemia! I’ve been trying to eat really healthily with protein at every meal to help my broken bones to heal and I’ve also been trying out something called 8G (8greens), which is a Big Deal on QVC next week. It’s an efficient way of getting vital vitamins and minerals into your diet even if you’re not that good at your five-a-day. It’s a pleasant tasting drink but the really good thing is that you can ‘hide’ it in other things like soups, sauces, stews and smoothies, so the rest of the family don’t even know they’re ‘being healthier’!

Right, it’s paracetamol time, so brain fuzz for the next hour or so… if I manage to stay awake.

Speak soon,
Julia xx

65 Responses

  1. In W H Smith today a birthday card ” 3 WORDS MOST FOOTBALL FANS LOVE” –
    inside – “Manchester United NIL”. I’m getting it for my “red” brother-in-law. Well I
    might not if they beat us AGAIN at the Etihad. Do you think Roy will stay with Palace?
    Keep doing the exercises, you are a trouper & will soon be back on screen (PLEASE).
    How is Kathy Tayler? She seems to have been m.i.a for ages, hope all is well.
    Come back soon,

    1. Hiya,
      The player pictured on my get well card scored last Saturday in our defeat against Everton – I told my son to put money on it and he did so it wasn’t a complete disaster! I kind of hope Roy will go at the end of the season – just hoping we stay up.
      I had no idea Kathy was off as I’ve been out of the loop myself, but I think she’s back now? And with some lovely family news – check her blog.
      My physio starts next Tuesday – hoping to be back mid to late March
      Julia x

  2. Get well soon Julia hope your recovery is smooth and no blips along the way.
    I enjoy reading your blog it is just like catching up with a friend.
    I’m afraid we are all Liverpool fans here but I am sure you won’t hold that against me!!
    I too am waiting for some surgery ( on my bladder) I am dreading it but I have had to wait almost three years so just want to get in with it. Take care and bye for now love Julia xxx

    1. Hi Julia,
      I have no problem with Liverpool – it’s about time you won the league! Really good team this year and a passionate manager.
      I had a minor blip on Tuesday but it was a bit self- inflicted as I tried to reduce my meds too quickly – back on track now.
      Good luck with your operation when the time comes
      Julia x

  3. Hi Julia glad to hear that you are coping well, I had a hip replacement in September last year so know to a lesser degree what it’s like. Hope your recovery progresses well and you can get outside. Glad the “blogs” that were are being worked on,haven’t been impressed so far but knowing Qvc i’m sure it will be improved soon. Take care look forward to your next message. Debbie Xx

    1. Hi Debbie
      I would say a hip replacement s pretty major – hope it’s all worked out well for you?
      Once I can start to put weight on my foot I’ll be able to move around more easily.
      At least you’ve been able to find the new location for the Presenter blogs – some have struggled.
      Julia x

  4. Hi Julia glad your feeling a bit better like you said we take doing what we want when we want for granted thank you for your reply on Twitter about the new qvc stories yes hopefully it will be sorted soon. Good luck when your cast comes of on Monday and with the start of the physio best wishes Loraine xx

    1. Hi Loraine
      The cast is off and the arcade boot is on – not loving it tbh, but at least it can come off so that I can have a proper shower. Next Monday I’m allowed to have a bath …. exciting times! Physio starts properly next Tuesday
      Julia x

  5. It can’t be easy, but all good wishes for a Speedy recovery Julia, look forward to seeing the toenails painted! You’ll soon be back to normal and look forward to your return.
    Angels 👼 with you.

    1. Hi Angela,
      Not much point painting the toenails at the moment as my foot is now encased in the aircast boot! Something to look forward to though. Hoping to be back mid to late March if all goes to plan
      Julia x

  6. Hi Julia,

    Wishing you a speedy recovery. I know what it’s like to have an operation and be housebound for a time, it isn’t pleasant at all.
    I do hope you’re up and about real soon and when the cast comes off, hopefully you’ll really be able to get back up on your feet.
    Look forward to seeing you back on screen real soon.
    Enjoy your “rest”.
    Sending lots of love Theresa xx

    1. Hi Theresa,
      Funnily enough I haven’t really been bored at all. The first week or so passed in a haze of medication… lots of sleeping… and since I’ve felt a bit brighter I’ve been able to do a bit of writing and, a real luxury for me, reading.
      The cast is off but in an aircast now and still on crutches for the next few weeks. Hope to be back mid to late March
      Julia x

    1. Thanks Gill. Good job my arms are strong hauling the new aircast boot around – it’s really heavy!
      Julia x

  7. Dear Julia,
    I wish you a speedy recovery and an excellent outcome to your surgery. I appreciate that you have a new understanding about the lives of some QVC viewers. Your words meant a lot to me and prompted me to write this reply. I am the same age as you and up to the age of 50 I had a very successful career which I loved. Then MS came and I have progressively got worse. I am lucky because I have my husband, wonderful daughters, their lovely partners and adorable grandchildren. I used to love shopping and do occasionally get out but my poor mobility has had a huge impact on that and that’s where QVC came in and I love it. I do feel that presenters sometimes forget that some viewers may be more or less housebound and make comments suggesting much more active lifestyles which many viewers no longer have. So, thank you for addressing this in your latest blog. Get well soon and look forward to seeing you back on our screens.

    1. Hi Helen
      So sorry to hear about your MS – none of us knows what lays ahead for us and something as debilitating as MS is a complete life changer.
      I’ve always tried to be mindful that not everyone is as active even as me with my polio disability, but the inability to leave the house truly has been an eye-opener. Life is full of lessons!
      I’m hoping to be back mid to late March so I’ll see you then but in the meantime happy telly shopping
      Julia x

  8. Hi Julie I broke my leg could not use the hospital crutches luckily we stay in a bungalow for shower and toilet. My brother had triple heart bypass he came to stay with me and we used plastic summer seat was ideal.
    Get well soon
    Take Care

    1. Hi Christine
      I’ve been managing okay on the crutches – they are a bit hard on your hands though!
      I’ve been told I can have a soak in the bath next Monday so will have to attempt the stairs – The thought of the bath will get me up there!
      Julia x

  9. Hi Julia hope you will soon be on the mend and less pain to put up with .I know how you must be feeling I had seven vertebrae fused in my back and was in a back brace for three months it was so painful . We take everything for granted until we are not able to do things .Good luck for Monday and hope your recovery goes well love Pauline xx

    1. Hi Pauline
      That sounds horrendous – far worse than anything I’m having to endure. I hope you are fully recovered now?
      Monday went well – cast off and aircast boot on and the stitches removed from the wounds which are healing nicely so all moving in the right direction.
      Julia x

  10. Hiya Julia glad operation all done and dusted, just need to take it easy for a while.
    Wishing you a speedy recovery Julia.
    Much love
    Elizabeth 💙

    1. Hi Elizabeth
      I was glad to get it over – I started to get quite anxious about it as I’ve never experienced a broken bone so didn’t know what to expect. Tbh it wasn’t as bad as I thought
      Julia x

  11. Hi Julia. Glad you are beginning to feel better. I had a bunion removed a couple of years ago and wasn’t allowed to put any weight on the foot for a couple of weeks. I rented a knee scooter because I found crutches very uncomfortable. It is like a conventional scooter, but there is support under the knee of the leg which has been operated on, and you scoot around powered by your good leg. It’s a bit difficult to explain, but would become clear if you looked on line. Of course, it might not be suitable for you but I quite enjoyed scooting around on it and it was quite a conversation starter in the supermarket. Wishing you a speedy recovery.

    1. Hi Linda
      A few people have mentioned the knee scooters to me – I’m actually okay on the crutches and it should get easier from next week when I can start to put a bit of weight through my foot, gradually building up to full weight-bearing over the next three weeks.
      How did you get to the supermarket from your house? That would be my problem as it’s not very close.
      Did your bunion op work? You hear horror stories
      Julia x

  12. Hi Julia I had foot surgery and was non weight bearing for four weeks , found crutches such hard work so I hired a knee scooter gives you so much more freedom and I could wizz around the shops .
    Speedy recovery.

    1. Hi Debbie
      As I said to Linda (above) my problem would be getting to the shops in the first place – they’re not close! I’ve coped alright on the crutches – I just keep reminding myself it’s only for a few weeks. Hope your foot is ok now?

  13. well house bound or not you sound up beat keep it up I am h.b a lot due to my s. l. e. lupus flare ups but at the moment I am out about and that’s what awaits you life is good and you’ll see when you get back on your feet it’s a joy miss you on Friday but all the other presenters are wonderful like a family mined that’s from home feeling xxpamela

    1. Hi Pamela
      I’ve tried to stay positive – no point being otherwise really. Sorry to hear about your lupus – that must be difficult as it’s an ongoing condition.
      It’s nice to be missed on QVZc but as you say the other presenters have been great at filling my Fashion on Friday shoes.
      Julia x

  14. Glad your op went well and you are back in the comfort of your own home. Miss you on QVC! Very best wishes for a speedy and full recovery xxx

    1. Hi Cherry
      It was good to get home, albeit only the downstairs at the moment. Really looking forward to tackling the stairs soon so I can have a soak in the bath and sleep in a proper bed (my own bed).
      Nice to be missed
      Julia x

  15. Hi Julie Get well soon Keep Strong I know what it like I had a stroke at three years old paralysed down my left hand side life as been hard but now at 56 I positive strong and enjoying life Charmaine

    1. Hi Kathy
      I hope you are enjoying your holiday. I can’t wait to be able to walk along the gorgeous Maritim beach without my ankle giving way on me.
      Julia x

  16. Hello Julia,
    Thank you for your lovely blog. Hope you will be back on your feet soon. Big hugs. Antoinette x

    1. Hi Antoinette,
      So pleased you enjoyed the blog even though it was shorter than usual.
      Hobbling around but improving each day
      Julia x

  17. Hello Julia,
    Thanks for a lovely blog despite you having your leg in plaster, hope you will soon be back on your feet again at least the worst is over now, Take care of your self look forward to your next blog
    Big Hugs Linda xx

    1. Hi Linda
      Having my leg in plaster wasn’t the problem – the meds making me fuzzy meant I had to keep it short! Have reduced them a bit now, hence feeling up to writing replies and a slightly lengthier blog this week.
      Julia x

  18. Hi Julia I had a serious leg injury a while back & got a waterproof leg protector so I could shower. I could send if you want it.
    All the best for a speedy recovery.

    1. Hi Jan
      I hope you’re better now. Thanks for the kind offer – I bought a leg protector so was able to shower and now the plaster cast is off I’m allowed to get the leg wet. It’s the worry of slipping in the shower that freaks me out every time I go in – especially now without the protection of the cast!
      Julia x

  19. Get well soon Julia .Drives me mad if I can’t get out the house for even one day. (Like today with the gale force winds ) . Look forward to seeing you back on Q very soon xxx

    1. Hi Ali
      More storms on the way this weekend so you might be stuck indoors again. I don’t mind too much really, there’s plenty for me to be getting on with, not least editing my latest book which I’m supposed to be doing right now!
      Hoping to be back mid to late March
      Julia x

  20. Hi julia the new look website takes alot of getting used to hope you an dchris ad daniel ad sophie are well
    iam not bad.if you dont mind measking is daniel still working in something to do with football .hope your house you moved into you have done all the renovations .if i have not said it before happy new year to you hope you had good xmas and new year glad january is all over for another year along month to drag on february will be quick leap year and then end of year.ps iam now on a2week holiday from work at mcdonalds doing lazy doing nothing.

    1. Hi Martin,
      I hope you’re enjoying your holiday from work. We’re already halfway through February can you believe – the years definitely go quicker as we get older. The house is all finished… for the moment. Dan is having a break from football although he might well return to it at some point in the future.
      Hope you’re coping with the new look website okay now?
      Julia x

  21. Hi Julia
    Good job you are able to live downstairs at the moment, exactly what I did as it’s bad enough trying to get around on crutches without negotiating the stairs as well. We had quite a high wooden threshold on our front door and I can clearly remember arriving home and being there for a good 10 minutes trying to get over it, frightened to death of falling again.
    On the odd occasion I wanted to get upstairs, if Chris couldn’t find things, I went up on my backside and down again with a few stops in between.
    Wishing you well today when they remove the plaster
    love Annette x

    1. Hi Annette,
      I know what you mean about getting in the front door. We have four steps leading up to ours – I was scared to death when I first got back from hospital, but not so bad when I got back last Monday after having the cast off and the stitches out. I’m going to brave the stairs on Monday cos I’ve been told I can have a bath!!! Talk about something to look forward to.
      I know you sent a card (work told me) but they haven’t forwarded it on yet – thanks anyway
      Julia x

  22. Get well soon Julia . Watching qvc is one of my favourite pass times as I am In a wheelchair , you and all the other presenters are like my friends! I love spending my money on beauty products which I have a full cupboard of!!! Love fashion too oh I might as well say it I love everything about qvc!!! Looking forward to seeing you back on the telly . Luv Rhiannon xx

    1. Hi Rhiannon
      It’s great to know we are company for you. You did make me laugh with your comments that you love everything about QVC!
      I’m hoping to be back mid to late March if recovery goes as planned
      Julia x

  23. Hi Julia, glad to know everything went well and wish you a speedy recovery; not nice when you can’t do all the things you want to do or get about freely. Losing mobility is one of the hardest things to cope with, but I hope you are being waited on. I bet they are all missing your lovely quiches and soups. Turn this negative into a positive and just ‘chill’ and relax as much as you can and make the most of this ‘me’ time as, before you know it, you’ll be up and about and it will be full steam ahead as per usual.

    This new presenter’s blog is a real pain in the ‘you know what’. I’ve given up trying to find people as there is a never ending little circle that keeps going round and round, 😬😬. It’s so annoying.

    Keep warm 😘 Gail xx

    1. Hi Gail
      As you will probably read in my latest blog I have had meals made for me, although I have managed the odd soup or cheese sauce while standing on one leg! I’ve actually had to fend for myself a fair amount too as Chris has been at work but I have a little path of transferring things from one work surface to another on the way to the dining table – quite ingenious really.
      I am trying to take things easy, although I have got some editing to do on my next book, and I’m not great at sitting doing nothing.
      I hope the presenter blog situation eases – I think it’s difficult to find us if we’re not one of the most recent six blogs, but once you’re on our latest blog, if you click our name the other blogs appear dating back to last September – hope that helps.
      Julia x

  24. Miss you on your fashion hours.. seems strange that your not their, been watching over well over 20 years my first order was placed with YOU. a Treasures of India pendant (still got it) GET BETTER SOON Gail north

  25. Yes new look website is horrendous, the idea to list all blogs in one place and not by presenter, was a very silly idea.

    You’ve done another injury to your ankle then?

  26. Hi Julia just read your blog I haven’t been able to find them on the QVC website. Hope you are feeling much better now and your ankle is improving so you can start to walk on it and get back to normal. Take care
    Love Sue xx

  27. Oh hi Julia
    , I’ve just caught up on your blogs and am so thrilled about your comment on my card! Thank you. Bless you you are having a testing time at the moment, it is so hard not to be able to do things for yourself isn’t it? And then to have the accident on your arm, must have felt quite unbelievable!
    I’ve just had a rough couple of weeks, which has been really hard. But I have great support and I hope I am coming out the other side now! I’ve had depression, of which there is little rhyme nor reason. But when it hits it’s awful.
    It comes with the territory of Irving with this illness for so one now. Being housebound gets extremely claustrophobic!
    Any way, I am really excited to preorder your new book and look forward to it very much. It’s unbelievable you have written 7 books in 5years, and worked full time, and kept your home and family going. Got married. I suspect when you got your blood diagnosis you would never have believed what could, and did happen in your future.
    You deserve all the success with the books.
    I am looking forward to seeing you back on screen, only when you are fully fit and able.
    Take great care of yourself and sending you much love Diane xxxxx

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