David Burge Updates

David Burge updates his journey with leukemia

Posts Tagged ‘Pukekohe Christian school

First week of school for Rachel. Hand Troubles for Dave.

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Rachel finished her first week of school.

It has been a learning curve for all of us. She can see advantages to home education that she didn’t before. We can also see the advantages to “school”. She is happy with her decision and so are we.

Dave had  another interesting time at the Day Stay today. Basically his treatment was canceled today because of the 14 day series of injections he is on for the prevention of the clot in his leg. Fortunately the topic of the injections came up in conversation when it was mentioned by the nurse that one of the levels in his blood was high. Dave pointed that it might be due to the injections. The doctor then said he cannot have a lumbar puncture when on these injections (somehow the connection was not made earlier in the week when the treatment plan was made). We understand that doctors are human: we blame the system because seeing different doctors all the time does not help them or us. The doctor suggested that perhaps they could admit Dave to the hospital over the weekend, an idea that did not appeal at all. So he went home with the possibility that he could have the treatment over the weekend. Later we had a ring from the nurse to say that hospital protocol did not allow this for safety reasons. So he will just have the scheduled treatment on Tuesday and carry on from there.

Dave was very discouraged with his hands today (the wasted trip to Auckland not really helping). His energy levels are better so he tried to type. Basically he can’t. The pain levels after only a few words are high, his fingers have no strength and they will not do as they are told. His arms/hands ache all the time. He has tingling/numbness in his fingers. He can barely sign his name, never mind writing an article. This is a major discouragement. He can no longer drive and now he can’t write. He wonders what he will do even if he survives the BMT. Perhaps having physiotherapy would help: one article on demyelination said  “physiotherapy may improve muscle strength, function and mobility, and minimize the shrinkage of muscles and tendons and distortions of the joints.” Next week I will ask if this is an option. Perhaps even a consultation with a physio would help. She could guide us regarding what exercises could be done at home to prevent further loss of muscle strength.



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Dave was able to join our church service today. He was very tired afterwards but glad he went. I read “A conversation with Greg Harris” which talks about the process of homeschooled children moving from childhood to adulthood.


Things change quickly here. Last night I was considering Pukekohe Christian School as an option that I would feel very happy about. More like moving from the greenhouse to a cold frame than straight out into the weather (see the analogy in the article I linked to above). We had heard very good things about this school amongst the homeschool community in Franklin. But it all seemed impossible.

We rang the school this morning (Monday). We were given an appointment with the principal to show us around the school in the afternoon. I filled in all the forms and wrote the answers to their questions in the hope we could speed the process. I gave my application forms and answers to him. He did the full interview then and there.  The principal felt that God’s hand was in the whole thing. He felt Rachel should come to the school. Rachel felt the same and so did I :-). They have many homeschooled children that come to the school for the last years of their education and many of them do very well. He said she can start tomorrow. They would sort a uniform then and I could see the accounts person. (The school fees have already been provided by someone {unknown to us} who has created a fund for the educational needs of our children). The principal even felt that Rachel should start at year 10 instead of year 9 because she seemed mature. They do not hold students back if they are ready to move on or push them forward if they have not mastered the material.

The problem was that I felt that I could not commit to driving Rachel to and from the school each day (about 45 minutes round trip). But in August 2009 the Auckland rail network increased the services to Pukekohe. Previous to this, I believe they were very infrequent. There are already other students who take the train from Papakura. The school is a 10 minute bike ride from Pukekohe train station and the train will carry Rachel’s bike.

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January 25, 2010 at 7:15 pm