• Charli


‘Pride comes before a fall’ but even more pride comes after said fall when knees and elbows hurt, confusion and humiliation set in and disorientation renders one helpless and hopeless.

This happened yesterday to a little old lady who had taken herself out for a walk, with the aid of her 3-wheeler frame, because the doctor had advised her to do this when her legs became stiff.  She said. At least she thinks that’s what he said.

I know this because I had received a call from Him who was on his way to work to say that he was assisting a lady who had fallen and who couldn’t get up. He couldn’t afford to miss the train and knew I was home. I raced round to find Him, little old lady and a bystander sitting in the road. I reassured Him that I could manage and he went for the train. A third woman appeared who came over and offered to help. It took me a few minutes to remember my previous manual handling training but I did recall that the most important thing was to reassure the injured person, let them know our names and advise them of any procedures that might occur. Little Old Lady was trying to edge her way to the kerb, hopeful that she could raise herself from there. I realised this wouldn’t happen and so took charge as the manual handling techniques suddenly came to the fore. I directed the other 2 women – 1 was to act as a buffer to prevent Old Lady’s legs from sliding and the other 1 and I would act as a solid base for Old Lady to press against and help herself up to standing. She successfully raised herself and began to take in what had happened.

1 women had to leave but the other, C, stayed with me and we gently allowed Little Old Lady, whose name we discovered was K, to lean on us, her trolley and walked her back to her home. She kept trying to encourage us to leave her but C and I were having none of it. I called her doctor who arranged to check her over and C kindly stayed with her as I had to leave to catch next train with L+T.

T has been listening to M-People recently and specifically ‘What Have You Done Today to Make You Feel Proud?’ I started chuckling to myself was I got home and then burst back into the house singing this at the top of my voice, because I am proud of what I did. I had a text from C later to give me an update and I will pop in to see K tomorrow.

When I was at my lowest ebb last October 2nd, the day Emma died, and I had taken the call from the hospital to get there as quickly as possible, I was dreadfully  distraught, on the train and quietly willing it to get in to Waverley as quickly as possible. A young man, maybe 22-25yrs old stood beside me and just rested his hand on my shoulder. He asked if he could help or call a taxi for me. I will never forget his kindness and in fact can barely write this through the tears pouring down my cheeks just now.

It doesn’t take much to stop and offer help and support or assistance to others. Most of us do this through fund-raising and sponsorship, and that is vital to improving research and supporting charities, but perhaps we should be looking to help those closer to home.

It got me thinking that we are all getting older, no-one ever gets younger, and we have to be aware of how frailty and vulnerability might impact on our lives. Are we prepared properly for this?

Pride – a poem

Look before you leap, smile before you weep,

Seek and ye shall find, a smart way to be kind.

Pride before a fall, friends and family call

You go your own way, but be safe for today.

Call me if you need me. I’ll be there.

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