…………………………you never know when you will be in need of a strangers kindness. Saturday I found myself in this very situation. I’d like to think that if the situation was reversed I would be just as helpful.
The last few trips out on my scooter I have been experiencing problems with my battery power draining quicker and quicker and I have been relying on people power to get me the last few metres back to the car. It finally came to a head today, we attended a fun day in Thetford that Chiltern’s the company my brother is an award winning manager for sponsors. They are a local award winning estate agents in Thetford and we arrived at around half 11. I rode my scooter low speed (as we were walking with two, two year olds) about a mile to the park where the fun day was being held.
The children went on a few rides and we travelled around the park looking at the various stalls and tombolas. We stopped for lunch and a Frozen show. Each time I turned off my scooter and removed the key. After about 3 hours (about half of this time the scooter was being used) I noticed the powerlights were drowning very quickly. We made our excuses for leaving and headed off.
We hadn’t got far up the road when the mobility scooter battery died as we approached Hurth Road the A1066. My wife had no choice but to push it the mile or so back to my brothers house, she did this with my sister in law looking after her two children and our little girl. I was left behind to walk as far as I could to make my way into the estate so that my wife could pick me up in our car. It took them a while to get home and I plodded along at my own pace taking regular rest breaks.
It was the furthest I have walked in over a year and as I went further and further each step was becoming increasingly painful sending sharp pains throughout my whole body. I made it a short way into the estate before spying an area of grass that I could rest on. I set my sights on making it to the grass area and as I made each step the pain intensifed and I started feeling dizzy, whoosy and like the pain I was in was increasing so much that my body was no longer capable of tolerating it. I got to the grass area and recall dropping my walking sticks and falling to the ground. I don’t recall whether I totally blacked out through the pain or was drifting in a pain induced stupor.
A young couple (in their early 20’s I’d guess, who I learnt speaking to my wife on Sunday had a young child with them) came along and stopped to check I was ok, crossing the road to get to me. I tried explaining where I’d been and their first reaction was that I had consumed too much alcohol. Assuring them this was not the case I was then trying to focus to explain what had happened and that I was in need of my pain medication. I was not prepared to tell them that medication was methadone as to most people they assume the use is for an entirely different reason to dealing with pain. I was in so much pain that I could not focus and I gave my phone to the lady in the couple to find my wife’s phone number to call. Despite my obvious pain and discomfort and being a complete stranger to them they waited with me the whole time until my wife came to pick me up. I have no idea as to whether they were first aid trained or not but they kept talking to me and checking on me at regular intervals to make sure that I was ok. Once my wife arrived they then stayed and helped me up and into the car and made sure I was ok.
The world is full of bad news and inhumane acts, yet Saturday two complete strangers stopped and helped me more than they will realise. The pain coursing through my body was excruciating and just talking to the couple who stopped was keeping me conscious and functioning. I forgot to ask them their names and also to thank them. I have started a post on facebook in an attempt to find them and I would just like to say once again whoever you were THANK YOU VERY MUCH. You could have walked past and done nothing but you didn’t you stopped and helped. We should all take a leaf out of their book and not turn the other way but help each other. I am feeling much better now, I’ve had lots of my pain medication and several strong black heavily sugared coffees and have spent the time since resting at home. So far my post has been shared in the local area 177 times and I am hoping these good samaritans will be found soon enough for me to thank them in person.
Above all else I hope that others will take a leap out of their books and help next time they see someone stuck. We are led to believe that the world is an awful place to live but small gestures like Saturday demonstrate otherwise. If we all did a small something you would feel much better but more than that you will be helping a vulnerable person at the time they need you the most. Just a little something to think about!
Sunday I felt like I’d been run over by bus, any movement was so painful that I did very little, I wasn’t able to walk up the steps into the hot tub so even that felt like it was taunting me. We spent the day at home, me on even more medication and unaware of the various hours passing. My wife at one point popped to the local shop and was probably gone no more than 15 minutes. She got back I drifted off and when I awoke I sat with my LG who was hugging me and said mummy will be back soon. She told me mummy was back, and not only was she right I’d had a conversation with her, she’d painted her own and our LG’s toe nails and made me anther coffee. I know I am suffering when I lose large periods of the day and yesterday was no exception.
Even when I am having really bad days I try to ensure I have some small victory, without which life becomes very distressing very quickly, and bad days can soon become bad weeks, followed by depressing months. I have got trapped in these cycles many times in the past but since becoming more self aware having attended the pain management seminars I try to quickly stop this from happening. Last week we had visited a beach where we collected lots of large seashells and I’d promised our LG that we could paint them. Of all days for her to remember this it was yesterday. Not wanting to let her down I finally dragged my butt into the shower around lunchtime and after lunch my wife set up the paints. I asked my LG to choose some of the bigger shells that we could paint which she did. Usually this art and craft is either done on her little plastic (IKEA bargain) table or the floor and this has always made them very difficult and painful for me to do. Yesterday she was told as a special treat we would sit at the dining table, exciting for her but meaning I was able to join in. I managed to paint one seashell (mine was clearly the best) whilst my wife and LG painted several, but more importantly than that I was actually involved in an activity for a short amount of time on a day when previously I would have not. A very small victory on what was otherwise a bad day. A small positive that others take for granted no doubt but for me made me very proud of myself. The advice from the OT on my course to bring activities to my level was looking back so simple yet I forever said no to joining in so I didn’t have to get down low. It sounds so ridiculous now writing it but I wonder how many other spoonies do things at their children’s level instead of making life a little easier and moving the task to a height more suitable to themselves?