Leg 5, Race 7 – Day 25, 25th March

At 1.30am Tom duly woke me and brought me my pills and some water to my bunk – bless him! I got up anyway – I'd been trying my hardest to keep within my watch system – even though it wasn't safe for me to go on deck as I couldn't hold on! I sat in the nav station and started writing a note to Elaine K on California – as I thought it would be nice for her to get a friendly note. After about half I suddenly felt very ill very quickly and found myself crawling to the heads to throw up! I hovered there for the next half an hour – accompanied by Sonny who was chatting to me to make sure I was Ok – before I felt it was safe enough to stagger back to my bunk. I was pretty sure that it was my body telling me it had had enough of the drugs! I felt at my lowest point of the whole trip and was now starting to doubt if I was going to be able to continue after California. I was worrying that the docs there might not pass me as fit to sail and in turn that worry made me feel even worse! Tom woke me up for breakfast and brought me a small bowl of porridge to perk me up.  I felt marginally better after that but went back to bed for a few hours until lunch time nonetheless.  Got up and had a lunch of soup, sarnies and tried one cautious Diclofenac pill – thinking that rather than take a cocktail of pills just one that could ease both pain and inflammation might be the way forward. Straight after lunch Brendan mentioned that the office had emailed loads of messages from the friends and family of the California crew – it had been suggested that we read them out over the radio - as they didn't have any working computers on board so we couldn't send them a memory stick with them on. However as their radio was also their lifeline and the battery life short, and as both Brendan and I agreed that the messages were a private thing and not for everyone to hear, I offered to sit and write them out long-hand so we could send them over in the next transfer and so that they would also have something to read and re-read. It was obvious that they would all be in need of comfort and with no other contact from back home this would be something of a life-line for many of them.

It took me 5 hours of solid writing to get it done – (don't think I've written that much in one go since I left school!)! By the time I finished it was nearly supper time but I was feeling extremely sick again so went straight to my bunk – feeling very low once again. I was frustrated at not being able to sail, worried about my shoulder – even though it was now less painful. I was also aware that it would need a good amount of recovery time to heal and a long build up of physio and re-strengthening before I was able to do full duties around the boat and at the very least not be susceptible to more damage through holding on with my left arm if hit by a sudden wave with force.