A Spartaci Tale
Can I start by saying I spent over ten years in retail management before seeking a change and starting from scratch as a packer in a factory. Worked my way up to Warehouse Manager, trained to operate every machine in the factory, keyholder, used to doing 12hr nights when needed and watching my second wife leave because I was a workaholic. So stick your scrounger labels in a tight dark place and we'll begin.
Originally misdiagnosed, thankfully, with Motor Neurone Disease. After waiting three months inside a vodka bottle I got to see a consultant who told me I had a trapped Ulner Nerve and the beginnings of Osteoarthritis in my spine. Where my Doc had got MND from was a mystery. So, at this point, partial paralysis in left hand, intermittent severe pain in lower spine, beginnings of problems with alcohol and depression, Doctor with a broken nose, me with a new Doctor.
Can't use opiates so finding painkillers that worked was an ongoing game until a friend introduced me to cannabis. ( A whole other story. ) Physio brought some success with the hand although still weak and suffers loss of feeling. But time brought the worsening of the arthritis, as it always does, and a re-diagnosis of Degenerative Spinal Disease. It also brought my first heart attack, diagnosis of cardio-vascular disease and a statement that changed my outlook on life. I was taken straight in to surgery after the heart attack and the surgeon told me he didn't expect my heart to last longer than five years. This was Feb 2008.
In the last six months I've also been getting abdominal pain and loss of control of bladder and bowel. Doc wants to stick a camera up there again but being quite honest if I can sort the bladder/bowel control out I see little point. I can handle pain and if they find what they probably will my heart won't take the treatment required and I'm not willing to spare the time.
So, Monday 16 January 2012, cat snoring, sat quietly, feel bloated and uncomfortable due to bowel problem, hiatus hernia making my reflux worse, reflux bile causing me to hack and wretch, spine pain about a 7 - like toothache in a molar. Usual first steps out of bed told me I'd be able to walk today which was a plus as I needed groceries. All three pain inspired dashes to the toilet hadn't produced blood from anywhere, another plus, bum should be secure while out. Half a dozen layers and a stick assisted tortoise impersonation to the bus stop. Lovely spine juddering bus ride ( I bet all disabled ppl love speed bumps as much as me. ) Little stage whispered moan about arseholes walking three abreast on the pavement as if everyone should make way for them. Pleasant smile from a lady in Tesco, every little helps, then home again. Totally fucking knackered.
Roll up Employers. Cameron's Health Gestapo Atos keep calling me back for assessments so there must be hundreds of you out there who want a complete liability who will puke, piss, shit, curl up in a ball in pain or just plain fucking die at any moment on your payroll. What! No?
All MPs and Lords should feel utterly ashamed at what they are allowing to be done to the UK sick and disabled. Stop the Welfare Reform Bill. Now!
Responsible Reform 'Spartacus' Report << Read it and come chat at #spartacusreport