My name is Sharon, I have been married to Paul for 33 years and we have 4 lovely children, 3 daughters Abigail 31, Kirstie 29, Paige 27 and 1 son Kieran 25. I have always lived in Bristol, in fact I lived at my mums house from 2 years of age until I moved out at 24, Paul and I have lived in this house now for over 34 years.
At the age of 9 after years of poor health, I was diagnosed with diabetes, something my dad found hard to come to terms with. I spent 6 long weeks in the Bristol Childrens Hospital, then I was sent home to cope with this which I will have for the rest of my life. I currently have four injections a day, but to me it's not an illness, just a way of life. I've had 4 pregnancies, yes all under very close supervision of the hospital and clinic/mid wife, with each pregnancy my insulin intake went up 4 fold, which meant I had to have 5 injections a day and 2 weekly hospital appointments. Abigail was born at 37 weeks weighing in at 7lb 10oz, Kirstie was born at 35 weeks weighing in at 8lb 12oz, Paige was born by emergency c-section 9 weeks early weighing in at 3lb 10oz.........Kieran was the only one I carried full term and he was a whopping 10lbs 5oz. Paige was the only one that had problems, and spent 5 weeks in the special care baby unit. She suffered bleeds into her brain, had problems breathing, in fact when she was born she had no heart beat, the first time I saw her all I can remember was all the tubes and these two finger print bruises on her chest where they had given her heart massage to get her heart beating again. Paige came home from SCBU 5 weeks later at 5lbs in weight after dropping to 3lb 10oz, we really haven't looked back since. She's now 27, 5' 8" tall......a good 6" taller than me, she's a very bright and clever girl, you would never guess - well except all the scarring on the back of her hands from the drips - that she had been a prem baby!
Paul and I started seeing each other just after we left secondary school, I was friends with his sister Sally and things just progressed from there! I always said I didn't want to get married or have children, but somehow things changed. I gave Paul 5 weeks notice that I had booked the wedding at the Registry office, giving only very close members of our family invites. But it was the wedding I wanted and the next day we flew out to Ibiza, my first time abroad...........and as it was our honeymoon decided to take 13 members of our family along too!! Actually it was all paid for by my dad who had just retired from work, originally it was just a holiday, but we managed to change it into our honeymoon.
We live in our 3 bedroom semi-detached house, next to woodland, so we only have neighbours on one side of us. We have a big back garden which is great for our dogs.
As a child we had a pet poodle called Pepe, Pepe was a lovely dog but a bit temperamental, unfortunately Pepe bit me quite badly and all trust was lost in him. We didn't have him rehomed or destroyed he stayed with us till he died. Obviously this didn't put me off dogs because that brings me to the next chapter in my life, my lovely 4 legged babies!
We decided 20 years ago that a cocker spaniel would be a lovely addition to our family, the children were fine with dogs and as they were getting older, no longer babies, decided now was the right time especially as I don't work. We searched for many months, looking into the breed etc. health issues and decided we would like an orange roan cocker spaniel. Little did we know that orange roans are pretty hard to come by and we would probably have to be put onto a breeders list and wait for a pup, which could be a while.
We contacted a breeder in Yeovil, who had a litter of blue and orange roan pups, unfortunately all the orange roans were spoken for and she was keeping one for herself. She did have a blue roan available, so we decided we would go and see the litter anyway. A couple of days before we were due to visit, the breeder called to say the family that wanted one of the orange girls had backed out and there was one available, she wasn't sure which one as she hadn't decided which one she was going to keep. We really didn't mind and drove to Yeovil. Both orange girls were beautiful, although I had fallen hook line and sinker for one in particular, but we had to wait. The weeks past and the breeder called to say she had decided to keep the other orange roan girl, so the little girl we had set our hearts on was ours......this was our Rosie
So Rosie was the start of our love of Cocker Spaniels, things have changed so much over the years, with new DNA health tests becoming available, which is all for the good of the breed. If you are looking for a puppy and the breeder hasn't health tested then please walk away, it's only one DNA test needed, so no excuse for not having them done.