A day of two halves…..

I woke up yesterday, having been cooped up inside all weekend, by either the weather or my body simply not wanting to play ball…..it’s not like me to stay indoors all weekend and yesterday I decided I’d have words with myself and venture out whether I wanted to or not.

I had the morning to myself but no shopping needed and the thought of just sauntering around town for 90 minutes didn’t appeal, so I decided to try and walk into town and then catch the bus back….

I trundled along in the sunshine, taking piccies as I went, the first at the village pond

“I’m not coming back up until Spring has arrived…..”

And then passing by the beautiful gateway of snowdrops

and on out of the village heading towards the Westwood, stopping every now and then to take in the view….

Once at the Westwood I was in my element taking piccies

And almost forgot the time……I suddenly had to get a wiggle on otherwise I’d miss the bus back and have another 90 minutes to wait 😳🙄…….

One last piccie

I adore trees and their shadows are just as beautiful…

The bus was in as the bus station came into view……..

On the journey back, it became apparent that I’d been spied walking 😂🤣….and they were glad to see me taking the bus back. But then a story unfolded of the Westwood that I hadn’t heard before…..many years ago there used to be 2 kennels, one each side of the road where now lays a cattle grid, which housed 2 collie dogs who were in charge of keeping the cows on the Westwood side of the road. Every time the cows ventured near, the dogs would bark and the cows would get the message. When the dogs were no longer needed, one of the villagers Took one of them in , but eventually had to take it to the dogs charity as it just wouldn’t stop barking all day long – after all that had been it’s job for many years…..

I love the tales of old that I hear from those villagers who’ve been there most of their life…..

My village bus got back at 12 and I being picked up at 12.30 by Katie from the Humber research team as she was my taxi driver today taking me to the Trust Induction. New staff, new opportunity to sow seeds…..

We trundled up to the office as we were a tad early so I caught up with the girls in the office

As 1.15 approached we made our way across to the lecture theatre for the Induction session of new staff in the Mental Health Trust.

Mandy head of Patient Carer experience, joined me and after a hug we were ready for our double act.

It was a smaller group today – only about 25 newbies….and Mandy started off first….

The carer is just as important as the patient”……..

The patient and carers voice is “very very very’ important here at Humber Mental Health Trust. She went onto say how many people don’t like the word ‘carer’, don’t like to be called ‘a carer’……as a husband, for example, likes still to be a husband…….

The Friends and Family Test should be handed out by every department  – it’s the biggest quality measure the NHS has, to highlight the good and bad in all the services.

From April the question is changing from “would you recommend this service to your friends and family” to

Overall what did you think of our service today”

“Would you recommend…..”……wasn’t appropriate as people may be in a service they wouldn’t choose to be in so obviously they wouldn’t recommend it. A child having an injection, wouldn’t recommend an injection……so the question needed to change.

We rely on you to to enable patients to have a voice”…….”every service has a Staff Champion of Patient Experience Forum….but we always need more.”

The NHS 25 years ago was very ‘staff driven’…….now the tables are turning for it to be patient driven, equal partners with the public…..that’s the ideal…….me thinks not quite there yet but Humber are trying…..

Clinicians have the specialist expertise and toolkit to deliver care but the public are on the receiving end and their views of that care are key”

 Mine turn for the last half hour

……..talking about anything and everything including….:

I’ve had some amazing opportunities that I wouldn’t have had if I hadn’t been diagnosed.I talk all over the country in many different setting because that’s how I believe I can influence change….obviously it’s exhausting and takes days to plan even though people think I just magically appear but I always say I’d rather die of exhaustion than dementia.

 But my greatest achievement so far has been the release of my book  Somebody I used to Know, which has become a Sunday Times best seller. One reason I’m showing you it is because it shows you should never give up on yourself, others will do that for you…and this is the proof ..”

 And that was the end for another month. Katie took me back home and the bloomin’ rain started to fall once more so I stayed snug for the rest of the day, flask at the side of me, cuppa in my hand…….



About wendy7713

On the 31st July 2014 I was diagnosed with Young Onset Dementia. I may not have much of a short term memory anymore but that date is one I’ll never forget. I’m 58 years young, live happily alone in Yorkshire, have 2 daughters and I’m currently still in full time employment in the NHS. However, I’m now in the process of taking early retirement to give me a chance of enjoying life while I’m still me. I've started this blog to allow me, in the first instance, to write all my thoughts before they’re lost. If anyone chooses to follow my ramblings it will serve as a way of raising awareness on the lack of research into Alzheimer's. It will hopefully convey the helplessness of those diagnosed with dementia, as there is no cure – the end is inevitable. However, I’m also hoping I can convey that, although we've been diagnosed, people like me still have a substantial contribution to make; we still have a sense of humour; we sill have feelings. I’m hoping to show the reality of trying to cope on a day to day basis with the ever-changing environment that dementia throws at those diagnosed with the condition. What I want is not sympathy. What I want is simply to raise awareness.

8 thoughts on “A day of two halves…..

  1. I love your beautiful photos Wendy! I haven’t managed to get out to see the snowdrops, as its been raining non-stop, and hibernation has felt in order!
    You have inspired me to go and find some 🙂 Just looking at flowers and trees perks you up, don’t they.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Wendy what a wonderful story! I know it was real not a story, but you tell it as if it is, making me want to hear more until you round it off so nicely at the end. And your photos…….. they are so good and you seem to be able to get the best out of each scene. I agree with you about the tree shadows, which you’ve shown beautifully! Many of your photos would make a wonderful exhibition.

    I was delighted to hear from you about that Friends and Family test, especially the question that they are going to change, for the reasons you describe. I always make a point of refusing to fill one of those in; as it is now it just tells them what THEY want to hear, not what WE want to say, depriving us of the opportunity to be honest.

    I’m so glad you spoke so sternly to yourself and ventured out, I’ve so enjoyed your walk. And I laughed out loud at your caption of the upsidedown duck! Very clever.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. As always great piccies, but I love how you make pictures in my mind with your words. One of the take aways from today – I’d rather die of exhaustion than dementia. Great spirit. (Fave pic, the one with the tree shadow on the ground.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Hi Wendy, I love reading your blog every day and look forward to that very special time with you. I loved your pictures in today’s blog. I love your sense of humor, positive attitude and ability to deeply connect to your reader. Thank you Wendy. I love you so much and love telling people what I’ve read in your blog.

    Liked by 2 people

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