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vintagelaureate

A little ramble

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Sometimes it's good to talk, right?

Back in 2009 when I first got my tickets for Glastonbury my life was in a very different place. After attending several (too many!) Leeds festivals and a solitary Download, I decided to go for the big one, the holy grail of festivals - Glastonbury. After registering and somehow getting a ticket I was so excited, I joined this site and started reading all things Glastonbury. Sadly, that year it wasn't to be, in early January 2010 I suffered a few suprise illnesses that resulted in heart surgery (aged 24), nearly a year off work and a drastically altered lifestyle. It gave me time to reevaluate myself and the direction I was going in and throughout my recovery I decided to change a few things. However, my desire to get to to Glastonbury wasn't one of them. Sadly, the next time I tried to get go, my doctor and physio advised against it so plans were shelved for several years,

Fast forward to 2016, I was in a much better place, doing the things I used to be doing and with a one year old (at the time) ready to tackle what life threw at me. So, come October I organised my team of merry men (and women) to finally score those elusive tickets. Thankfully, we had success and those golden tickets were mine. For a few months, Glastonbury was all we'd talk about - my wife doesn't understand the appeal but because of my endless chatter she knows a lot about the festival! At the end of January 2017, we found out my wife was pregnant with my second child. It was one of life's fantastic surprises. With a due date in September, my wife was fine with me still going to Worthy Farm and the stage was set for a stunning year. Come our 20 week scan, we were hit in the face with a sledgehammer. During the anatomy scan, done in more detail due to my heart defect, some problems were picked up by the doctor. Ushered into a room and handed a tissue, we were told that our baby had problems with its brain. Not just simple problems, structural issues. What made it worse was the medical explanation was 'bad luck'. We sought second and third opinions, a plethora of scans and specialists but they all told us the same thing, that the outcome was bleak. As a family, we decided to hope and let life lead the way. This was a month before Glastonbury. Despite all this, my wife was insistent I go the the festival. I really didn't think I would be. The decision was made the weekend before and I hastily packed my bags and prepped my equipment. 

The festival itself was everything I imagined it to be and much more. From the snaking, burning hot sweat pits that was the queue for Gate D on Wednesday morning to the sunset over the farm, the whole experience was both immersive and immense. Everyone talks about the size and scale, but you can't prepare yourself for Glastonbury. Wow... the hard work and dedication that goes into creating and maintaining that piece of eutopia on Earth should be roundly applauded. With everything going on at home, I never felt able to truly relax, but I gave it a good go. I managed to catch most bands I wanted, although the key was not to plan for many, and i caught several surprises to. For my sins, I am a massive Foo Fighters fan and managed to get pretty close for their set, and those two and a half plus hours released a lot of tension. There were so many brilliant bands I saw over the five days, Rhythm of the Nineties, Royal Blood, Frank Carter, The XX and many, many more. Yet one of the standout things for me was the people attending. Not all, you get idiots everywhere but chatting with strangers and sharing euphoric moments with temporary friends can never be knocked. Also, if you're reading this, the girl who lent me a phone charger in my desperate need, thank you. I could write reams about the festival, perhaps I will one day. I started writing this without a real purpose, more just to put some words on a page. 

Anyway, like it is for most, Glastonbury was an escape from life. Whilst I couldn't truly escape, it was much needed relief at a time of need. It gave me something to look forward to, something to enjoy and memories to cling to. Things I will be forever thankful for. I very much hope to be back on the farm in 2019 and beyond, fingers crossed. 

My second daughter was born at 35 weeks, at the end of August. She is doing well. She is defying the odds - eating, breathing, moving, reacting and doing all the things the doctors said she wouldn't. It is a long road ahead. We've seen neuro specialists and had MRI's. My daughter is truly one of a kind - she has three separate conditions and the doctors think she is the only person in the world with all three. So they, never mind us, have no idea what to expect long term. She will need surgery in the next few months as she has fluid on her brain but as she lies here on my lap she is a reminder that life is precious - seize your moments and saviour them. I'm not particularly active on this site, but I sourced tickets for a couple of people and hopefully haven't offended anyone so I just thought this would be a place to put my thoughts down. 

Anyway, if you've read this far, thank you. As I said, I don't really have a purpose for this! But, it's good to talk, right?

 

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What a fantastic life-affirming post @vintagelaureate. I hope your daughter continues to defy the odds;  it sounds like she couldn't wish for better parents.

Warm hugs to you and your family.

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@vintagelaureate thank you so much for posting, wow what a post, what a journey, and I truely wish you and your family all the luck in the world in bucket fulls - your daughter sounds like a true fighter and she has very special lucky parents

x

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its always fantastic to talk .. to strangers at Glastonbury , I try and make a point of talking to as many as possible and to the weird and wonderful people on efests ... look forward to hearing you have tickets for 2019 any help required give me a shout ... fantastic post see you in 2019 on the farm . Alex 

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Just now, mashedonmud said:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               

That was so humbling I was speechless.

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Thanks for reading. I didn't expect replies to be honest, I had second thoughts after I'd clicked 'post' but just wanted to get something down. Thank you.

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A truly inspiring family! I hope one day you get to enjoy the festival together! Look after each other! Keep us updated on things as its good to talk! Best wishes! 

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Awesome story mate. All the best with your family. Best thing I've read for ages. Send it to the Glastonbury organizers.

They love to hear that stuff.

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 you are making me cry at my desk

 

 

you and your wife are amazing 

 

as you were 

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