CELEBRITY chef Matt Golinski is looking forward to enjoying the simple things in life after finally returning home to the Sunshine Coast on the weekend.
The Tewantin man was discharged from the Royal Brisbane and Women's Hospital on Friday night, four months after the Boxing Day blaze which claimed the lives of his wife and three children and left him with severe burns.
Matt, who turned 40 last week, enjoyed his first weekend back in the Noosa area listening to the rain and catching up with family, according to his father Keith.
He will live with his dad until he can readjust to life and determine his future.
The star of TV cooking show Ready, Steady, Cook suffered third degree burns to 40% of his body in the house fire which killed wife Rachael, and daughters Starlia, Willow and Sage.
Their funeral was held while he was still in hospital.
Police investigations into the cause of the fire are continuing.
"Matt is looking forward to enjoying the simple things in life once again such as preparing his own meals or watching the sunset," his father said yesterday.
"He has missed cooking. His physical recovery is such that he can prepare his own meals and walk and talk unaided.
"Although Matt has made significant physical progress it will probably be a while before he can contemplate working or can determine what the next chapter in his life might be."
Matt's discharge from hospital comes at least four months earlier than experts first thought possible.
But his road to recovery is far from over.
He will continue to receive treatment as an outpatient of the RBWH as well as undergoing extensive rehabilitation therapy in Brisbane and on the Coast.
In the short term, his life will be spent travelling between medical and rehab appointments and personally working on his own physical and emotional recovery.
Matt is expected to face a further two to five years of physical therapy and surgery.
Keith said his son, who has been out of an induced coma seven weeks, still needed time to come to terms with the reality of all that has happened.
"It's important he eases into any new routine slowly and doesn't overdo things," he said.
Matt was especially grateful to the support shown by the Coast.
"The local community has been especially generous.
"Matt is aware and truly thankful of the level that locals have held him and his late wife and children in their hearts and prayers."
The family was asking for privacy so Matt could continue to focus on his physical and emotional healing.
"Although Matt has made significant physical progress it will probably be a while before he can determine what the next chapter in his life might be."
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