It’s been very humbling and yet satisfying to receive so many words of thanks and stories of hope after the Victoria Derbyshire programme went out last week.
Keith, Christopher and I are living with dementia as many others are – we just chose to make public our experience – not for personal gain at all, but in order to raise awareness. We don’t ‘enjoy’ these experiences – that seems the wrong word. We do it in the hope that it can make a difference to a handful of people living with dementia and raise awareness to many others.
It’s become humbling to see that speaking out, where before I would have remained silent, can affect others in such a positive way. We heard from a husband whose wife had been diagnosed and become very withdrawn – she saw the Victoria Derbyshire programme and now believes there is hope and has come out of herself. I’ve heard from people who now understand more and learnt so much from the programme.
I know I’ve said this before, but the power of the media is immense so makes it so worthwhile. I feel so lucky to have been given all these opportunities.
Yesterdays experience at St James Palace was another example that the Alzheimer’s society has given me. I had a wonderful day in London with my daughter Gemma. The weather was gorgeous. It was so nice not to have to worry about the journey as I had Gemma there to direct and take control – perfect:)
When we got to St James Palace, we met Keith Oliver and his wife Rosemary outside and Christopher and Veronica – we all shared our experience in the video diary for the BBC 2 programme so have got to know each other very well. It was nice for me to introduce Gemma to them as they felt they knew her as well.
The Palace was wonderful and we were allowed to wander round the adjoining rooms after the ceremony. The highlight of the day was Keith getting his award. There were 6 awards with 12 winners; one employee and one volunteer in each section. Keith won the volunteer award in the ‘Realising Potential’ category – Proactively supporting others with a willingness to share skills and expertise’. It was a lovely moment for all concerned and so nice for us to share that moment with him. The whole afternoon had such an air of positivity about it and it was followed by afternoon tea!
We got home exhausted but with so many nice memories to cherish.
Thank you once again to the Alzheimer’s society for giving me such a wonderful day……..