The Fight Goes On…

As the junior doctors continue to stand up for their rights and for the future of the NHS, I feel a rising sense of frustration that, no matter what they do, the government won’t listen. As a frequent flyer in the NHS, I see a great many doctors. As a disabled, long-term sick person I already have access to a 7-day emergency NHS as does everyone. Perhaps it’s just me but I don’t want a 7-day routine NHS, I have enough appointments on Monday to Friday, I don’t want them at weekends as well. I despair when a scan appointment

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My Wheelchair Adventure & The Art of Allowing

I need a wheelchair. I can’t say I’m particularly proud of that statement, but it’s the truth. It’s not a long held dream of mine. My body is now too fragile and damaged and I can’t keep landing in ungraceful heaps on the floor. Obviously I’m hopeful I want have to spend the rest of my life in the seated position but, for now, it’s my reality. I spent a long time looking at wheelchairs. Most are huge and when I saw them, they made my solar plexus flip and I thought I’d vomit on the spot. Many are not

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Getting Over Myself

The last twelve months have, without doubt, been the hardest twelve months of my life. I’ve had to face the reality of being me and it’s not been easy. In fact, it’s been nauseatingly painful and exquisitely raw as I’ve realised just how desperately fragile I am. I’ve always been strong emotionally and spiritually, but even these have taken a battering this year as I’ve crumbled, shattered into pieces and turned to dust in a heap on the floor. However, like the soggy biscuit in the bottom of the tea cup, I’m not gone completely, just changed beyond recognition. Well,

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The Day I Woke

In truth, I’d never really acknowledged just how challenging it would be for me to put my struggles down in writing and then share them openly and wholeheartedly with others. I had no idea how it would feel to become completely vulnerable and transparent leaving myself nowhere left to hide. I had no idea how my confession of brokenness would be treated; in this world of ‘love and light’ spirituality, would acknowledging my fragility and lack of robustness be seen as ‘less than’ and I’d be dismissed as damaged goods? When I pressed the send button I had no notion

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The Others

It’s easy for me, relatively speaking. I’m living my illness. I’m at the centre of my world of disability, illness, doctors, tests and hospitals. I get on and do the best I can each and every day; I deal with the pain, nausea, dislocating joints, wonky autonomic nervous system, exhaustion and fragility. I live it as it’s a part of my everyday life. Although I’m more than my ill-health, it forms a big role right at the core of my being. A trip to the hospital, more bad news or time in A and E, all form a part of

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The D Word

Although this is written in the present tense, I wrote this in the spring of 2015. It didn’t feel right to post it until the dark clouds had started to lift… Well, 26/27 on the depression scale. Not quite full marks, but not far off. As I sat with my doctor discussing this score, I found myself strangely irritated that I didn’t manage a perfect score; what does that say about me? So, 26/27, in other words, severe depression, also known as reaching saturation point and, quite possibly the worst enduring all time low I’ve ever had. This score has

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The Year I Broke

This year I’ve fallen apart. Everything I once held dear has been torn down and ripped away. My beliefs have been shattered, my sense of spiritual connection has disintegrated and turned to dust, and my physical self has crumbled with ill-health and disability. The story of my life unravelled as everything fell apart; I broke. It’s not easy to admit any of this as the truth is rarely easy to face. Yet, I’ve reached a point where I’m no longer able to hide behind the relative safety of my keyboard or to wax lyrical about the joys of pain and

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Rant…

To the man on the lift who thought his shopping trolley should take preference to my crutches – barging one out from under me as it was in his way. To the woman on the bus who felt her overly large handbag should take priority for the spare seat leaving me standing on my crutches until someone further up the bus offered me their seat. To the doctor who wrote to my GP telling her my medical exam was unremarkable even though he didn’t actually do a medical exam. To the woman in the coffee shop who blanked me completely

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Dear Junior Doctor

Dear Junior Doctor, This is a message to all the doctors involved in the current dispute over changes to your contracts. As a career sick person and professional patient (and no, I’m not proud of that), I have had the privilege to be cared for by a great many junior doctors. Strangely I’ve never considered registrars to be ‘junior’ but life is full of surprises. I’m not sure why the government seem so keen to break the NHS and, in truth, I don’t fully understand all of the implications of all the changes they want to make but it felt

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Identity Crisis

My thumb doesn’t know how to be a thumb anymore. It feels awkward and doesn’t know how to sit with the rest of my hand. It trembles, quivers and spasms; its confidence has taken a tumble, and it feels almost alien to the rest of me. It’s either burning hot or burning cold, and it feels like it’s going to explode at any moment. Yet, I think it’s the identity crisis that I’m struggling with the most. When I close my eyes I don’t think I have a left-arm hand or thumb, and when I open my eyes and look

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