My First Ever Blogpost…..

That I haven’t had time to customise yet. Will make it all pretty soon. Maybe. But the words need to come out first!

My friend has MS and her son, aged 9, has Down Syndrome. She goes to the MS Centre once a week to go in their oxygen tank thing. But her son has disabled riding lessons and needs a lift back to school. In the completely opposite direction. Could you help, she said. From my house I’ll be doing an outer circuit of the whole of Bristol. Okay. I have disabilities of my own. Brain injury survivor. Left with learning disabilities, anxiety blah blah. I get stressed & confused very easily, especially in unknown areas/situations.

The first week I had to ring her at 9am and say I’m so sorry, I can’t leave the house. Combination of neck pain (slipped discs) and the thought of trying to get to the other side of Bristol which I don’t know sent me into meltdown. Not to worry she said. But I felt bad. I’m going to familiarise myself with the area I thought.

She rang a week later & I said yes, I’ll definitely do it for you! (Even though I’d forgotten to plan my routes). Are you sure? Yes. I’ll be fine. Got my wireless headphones, google maps on my phone & a power pack. Brilliant. And I did it. Stressful because I’d got the time wrong and sat in traffic and admittedly Lowan had to give me the final directions as I’d parked at the back of his school. Round! Round! he kept saying, bless him. But complete success.

This week. She rang me last night and thank goodness she did or I would’ve forgotten! Yes, no problem I said. I can do this. Couldn’t find lead for battery pack but it’ll be fine! Famous last words.

Drove most of the way without Google until I came to the bit I didn’t know. Had to do a few turnarounds but got to the stables on time and I wasn’t stressed like I had been the week before.

Lowan finishes his lesson, gives me the biggest hug & smile (I LOVE HIM), puts his new child seat in the back of my car and off we go. Except just as I was about to pull away I got a text. And I can’t lie, I felt sick. The text was:

Not sure if you can see the text (I'm new to this(!) but it says ALERT TVL: 
We failed to take your direct debit hi month. Failing to pay could lead to a fine. Visit *link*and update your details to pay now

Wait, what? But I checked my bank balance yesterday! There should be money in there. Checked it yesterday at a cashpoint because my online card reader thing I use for online banking thought yesterday would be a good time to break. I looked at my petrol gauge which was on the red. I need petrol. I’m the other side of Bristol. Knew I had about £3 under the dash and a £5 note in my bag. But really panicking because there should be money in my account and won’t be any fresh funds for 10 days. Fuck. Right, don’t panic, you’ve got food in the house. I need petrol to take Sophie to work at the weekend! Why can’t I budget properly?! But then trying to budget out of nothing is always difficult. Bloody hell it wears me out.

I’ve one earphone in to listen to Google maps but it was raining so hard, the radio was really loud (at little man’s request) and I think I missed a turning. Whatever, I definitely went the wrong way. And went round and round in circles trying to find his school. In pouring rain in a very busy area I don’t know. Google maps was telling me we were there. Lowan, which way is it? Left or right? Do you know? “That way!” he said, every time I came to a turning. Should have had him in the opposite side of car so I could see where he’s pointing. Starting to get panicky now, if I run out of petrol how the hell could I get car home. After 10 minutes of circling I’m thinking Lowan might be doing this because its funny and he loves me and wants to spend more time with me (he does, alright?!). Anyway FINALLY find it. LOWAN, WE’VE DONE IT!! I said like we’d just conquered Everest. And in he went.

Now I’m halfway down the red gauge. But wait, there’s an Asda up ahead! I go in, so thrilled. Then that thrill quickly turned to WHAT THE HELL! Its a pay by card, no shop, petrol pumps. FUCK.

Off I go again. There’s a Shell garage! Right, count money, what have I got. £9.70. That’ll do, that’ll get me home! All happy, I fill up to £9.50. Still winning right?! I go in to pay, hand all my shrapnel over and she says sorry, this is an old pound coin. WHAT?! OMG! Hang on!

Ran back to car and I am really turning it inside out now, looking under seats, in the glove compartment (that never gets opened), in my bag and ooooh there’s a little purse full of 1 and 2ps. I was 1p short. She let me off!

I walk outside and see a cashpoint. Lets check my balance while here, yes there’s money in there, lets me withdraw £20……ARRRRRRGGGGHHH! What a bastard stress of a morning because of that text making me think I was penniless. I tweeted the text saying an explanatory blog would follow and my mate @BunsofHam rang me and said “that text is a scam!” Bloody brilliant. The little scammers sent my anxiety rocketing and we should bring back the bloody stocks!

Ah well, never mind, I’ve got enough petrol to take dog to woods now, my sanity relies on it. Then I’ll probably go back to bed. Safest place! x


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