Thanks to lovely Julie for coming up with the name of my blog… “I may be sat… but I’m all that! It looks a bit clumsy in the blog address so I haven’t added it for now… till I talk to one of my blogging friends! I love that every single person who’s heard it has giggled. I picked a tricky week to start my blog as it may well take hours to finish it!
This was the week that…
Somehow, you just have to pick somewhere and start… and somehow this week started badly. I’ve had glasses since I was 11 so had thought getting an eye test would be simple, and always forget I have one of those faces. I need thick lenses but small frames. I finally found frames that I liked that suited me… but that was the end of the story. I have written them an email to ‘explain my experience’ rather than complain, as a family member put it, but haven’t sent it yet. The staff were uber polite as always, almost to a fault. I should have known we were off to a bad start when one of the staff asked my PA if I could get out of my chair. If it wasn’t for my PA potentially doing herself an injury moving my little chair in tight spaces between the testing equipment we would have been stuck. I’d love to see what would have happened if I’d turned up in my electric wheelchair!
The next thing they asked my PA was “can she walk”!! I’m one for keeping my head down sometimes and doing whatever I need to just to keep the peace. My PA wasn’t having any of that so we waited for the one room that was wheelchair accessible. I wasn’t asked or told any of this when I made the original appointment. The actual eye test with the optician went fine. Trying on glasses was another story though, as the girl who was helping me trying on glasses complained about having to hold a hand-held mirror so I could see the glasses, being too short-sighted to see them in the fixed mirror. Another two staff came over to help, so in the end I found some glasses that fit… that was the enough for my PA who went off for a cigarette while I filled in the paper work. The best customer service was when she wasn’t there! That says it all. The staff obviously found it hard to cope with me, my chair, or my PA. The irony is I couldn’t have got to the appointment and got through the tests without my PA so they only got the sale with her help! They need Disability Awareness Training and they need it now! This one incident shows why my blog has the perfect title!
I’m supposed to pace all my activities so I can still have a life, but have adequate rest at the same time… I’ve never managed it yet. On Tuesday, there was the second of their workshops supposed to help me and others like to me to manage the crippling tiredness better, but it felt like a lecture. My PA, this time was largely ignored, and only used for one part of the group at the end… another frustrating day. The people who organised the training didn’t even bother to learn Julie’s name when they’d encouraged me to bring her along in the first place. Yet again I didn’t handle this well as I didn’t say anything. Another email to write once the workshops are over to ‘explain my experience’! We went straight from one appointment to the next, but fortunately this one went more smoothly.
By the middle of the week I was exhausted and in need of encouragement. I tweeted that I needed some cheerleaders and my friends didn’t disappoint. I forgot that my Twitter feed and my Facebook page are linked so this appeared on my Facebook page too. By the time I realised, one friend had already written some tips to help me get more motivated and help me get started on things and Bryony had already posted a cheer! too late to delete the post now! Actually this was my favourite part of the week. I love my friends to bits and they were there when I needed them. I’ve blogged elsewhere about the usefulness of social media when you are semi-housebound but this still took me by surprise.
The rest of the week was somewhat uneventful. My weekly horse-riding lesson in the sunshine was a welcome break from my wheelchair, and worth the pain! Followed by an appointment with volunteers from re:map to help design some me-friendly equipment. This is a work in progress but should be worth it eventually. After the week I’ve had I’ve had a welcome couple of days rest. Having not paced the rest of my week I’ve collapsed in a heap. I still have much learn about how to manage things.
I still made it to church today despite how I felt. Peter preached on 1 Philippians from verse 19 to the end of the chapter, the verse that talks about “To live is Christ, but to die is gain”. As ever there was a huge challenge from the passage and from Peter’s preaching. I will post the link to his sermon once it’s up on the website. Was lovely to have lunch with people and get know some newer friends better. I spent the afternoon asleep recovering, known as ‘payback’ fatigue, but it’s always worth it.
This week is set to be quieter. Just as well… have to come up with my next #digidisciple post, amongst other things! Wish me luck… or do the praying thing, if that’s your thing! 🙂