Most of you in the area will have met the lovely, friendly Mickey Brooker. He has written a few words about his background together with a frightening account of an event that could have taken his life in October last year. Here is Mickey’s story in his own words…..
I was born in 1950 & grew up in Flackwell Heath with 2 sisters & 1 brother. At the age of 6, I started St. Paul’s School in Wooburn followed by Wooburn Secondary School until the school moved to Deyncourt in 1962/3. Although I was a Flackwell lad, I spent most of my early years around Wooburn Green & Bourne End.
In 1970 I married my wife Pat & we had 3 children. On 6th June this year we will be celebrating 45 years of marriage. All my children are married, divorced & re-married & I now have 16 grandchildren. We finally got our wish 12 years ago & moved to our bungalow in Bourne End. We love every minute of being in this area. I worked locally for most of my life, mainly in the garage trade & later as an engineer. I took early retirement & have a new lease of life!
One very sad moment in our lives was the loss of our grandson (my youngest daughter’s first child) to a brain tumour 9 years ago but as we are such a loving family, we have got through although he will never be forgotten.
Ibiza & The Value Of My Family & Friends
I started to feel stomach pains around 10pm, Saturday the 18th October. The penultimate day before I was due to fly home from Ibiza . I then went to my hotel room to take some tablets, on telling Matt my friend he said he would follow shortly to see if I’m ok. I took the pain killers, but the pains in my stomach were getting severe & making me feel very sick. Matt & Brian came in & looked concerned.
By 11 pm the pains were so severe that I asked Matt to call a doctor in. After being told it would cost around a £150 pounds, I said “just get the doctor in”. After about half an hour the doctor arrived, did a couple of tests, gave me a couple of injections & suggested that I should go to the nearest hospital immediately. After agreeing a fee of around £240 pounds to take me to the hospital, I was then put in a wheel chair & taken to the waiting ambulance & taken to the hospital in Ibiza Town. After about a 20 minute drive I reached the hospital in so much agony that I didn’t really care much about anything, the pain was so bad, I thought I was going to die.
After answering various questions, I was finally put into a CAT scan which again was sheer agony. Then after another couple of tests I was put on a bed & injected with morphine. I asked Matt & Brian to make sure they contacted my daughter in the UK while I was waiting for my results.
At around 3am, before the operation I was talking to the insurance lady about my claim but I have no idea what I said. I remember being told that I had a perforated bowel & cirrhosis of the liver & that I would be operated on soon as possible. I remember the theatre lights & being put to sleep.
The next thing I remember is waking up on Monday afternoon in intensive care, wondering where the hell I was & how the operation had gone but because of the language problem I had no idea how it went. I remember talking to the Thompson rep sometime on Monday or It may have been Tuesday for all I know! There were pipes, cannulas & bandages all over my body.
The first indication I knew something was wrong is when the doctors explained said how seriously ill I was. Shortly after, I noticed someone in the next bed who started to prey for me. I then discovered that I had peritonitis, the poison was travelling up to my heart & it was going to be touch & go. When I was told that I had cirrhosis of the liver, I disagreed because I was not a heavy drinker.
My daughter Lucy was in Sainsbury’s when the hospital called to ask if she could get over to Ibiza as soon as possible as I was now in a critical condition. Unfortunately she was unable to get a flight due to the half term holidays.
The hospital I was in was terrific apart from language issues. I remember how awful the nights were, my mouth was so dry, it made feel so ill, but one of the doctors did bring me a cup of water. I was only just able to suck the gauze. I had to endure this for the next four nights. Total Boredom through out the day, not being able to move. I had no one to talk to, no radio, no TV, no music, books or magazines. I also had nightmares & I hallucinating…. I was seeing gigantic spiders, probably due to the morphine . I was rather confused by the Friday but I had made good progress against all the odds. I was then transferred out of intensive care to a normal ward on the afternoon of Friday 24th October. Again there were language problems but I gradually got a little better as each day passed. The whole experience had terrified me but the fear went when I finally spoke to my daughter after several days of not hearing from anyone. Over the next few days I had calls from my close family & friends, I felt the nightmare was finally over.
I was told on the morning Thursday 30th October that I would be going home on the Saturday. The insurance company said they would fly out a paramedic from the UK on the Friday. After more check ups, I finally flew home from Ibiza on Saturday 1st November.
I will always be indebted to the hospital & the nurses for getting me through this awful time in my life but at least I’m here, to live again & tell this story. To my family & friends who cared so much about me, I love you all with my heart.