Wednesday, 25 September 2013

How can this be right, thanks and it's funny what we miss.

I was without my mobility scooter for 6 days; a realitively short time, thanks to the wonderful team at Launceston Mobility.

There were many things I thought I would miss in my time without my mobility scooter, but the school run was not one of them. Today; however, I am so happy that I will be able to take my son to the bus again and that I can be a proper mummy again.

I have said time and time again, throughout this experience, how grateful I was to Launceston Mobility for all they've done for me, but there are so many other people I need to thank, too.

Firstly, my amazing husband, who sold his beloved Vespa, so that I could afford a new scooter and who also comforted me when things were getting a bit much.

Then there is my son, who not only tolerated having to go to school at 7:30 in the morning, so his dad could drop him there, but walked back from the bus after school without complaint, also. It's not a long walk and is very safe, as he is dropped right at the top of our quiet cul-de-sac; but still, he loves people being there to meet him and was a little nervous about it at first.

His school, also, has been great, as they not only sent a taxi the first day I was without a scooter, but came up with the plan above; even persuading the bus driver to see Kye safely across the road, onto our street.

My friends, who have offered me lots of support and love, during this time, and who helped get me smiling again when things got too much.

Family members who offered help, money, and even went scouring the internet looking for scooters that were for sale cheaply.

And last, but far from least, you lovely bloggers, who have offered up kind words and well wishes. I really appreciate it. 

Yesterday, my crisis ended and I happily have my freedom back; freedom that can not be taken away from me anymore. 

But, the story doesn't end here; people everyday face situations similar to mine, many of them in far worse situations than my own. One girl I have met because of my struggles revealed to me that her special, adapted wheelchair had been taken. She is paralysed from the neck down and controls her chair by blowing through a straw. Without it she is bed bound and she has been without it now for over a month.

Both myself and this lovely girl agree that changes need to be made to stop people making false claims for disability. We both also believe that what happened to us recently might not have been an accident but a way to force us into applying for the new Personal Independence Payments that are taking over from Disability Living Allowance.

Our problems come with how those genuinely in need are being affected by these horrible changes. 

I applied for PIP at the end of last month. I have yet to hear anything back. Already having had DLA, I was told my claim would be processed quickly. I am waiting for an appointment for a medical. That's the next step in my claim. After my medical, I will be given back my benefits, all going well. 

I am not too worried about this part, nor the wait involved, for myself personally, because my husband works and we lived on only his wages for years, before I got my DLA. Yes, things will be tight, but we'll survive.

For me, it was always about my scooter; about needing a way to get about, and I have that now, thanks to the kindness of Launceston Mobility. 

But, not everyone who claims disability and really need it, have someone else, who can support them, while they reclaim. The girl I already mentioned, for instance, lives alone and has strived hard for her independence and is now at risk of losing everything she's fought hard for, because of how long her claim is taking to process.

Even her medical, which she has now had, was difficult. Firstly, there was no parking, close to where she needed to go, meaning she had to not only ask family to take her, but have them lift her from their car to a taxi, then from the taxi, into the building. Once in, having her medical, she was asked to lift her arm. She is paralysed from the neck down (a stupid request really), but when she pointed this out, the woman doing her medical replied, "How do I know you're not faking?" Perhaps, all of my friend's medical records would have been a good place to start. Had she even read them? It doesn't seem that way. 

Yes, we need to catch the fakers, but does that mean that everyone should be treated as liars from the off? Does that make it right to force someone, as badly paralysed as my friend, to go through the experience she has, spending months confined to her bed? She still waits now to hear about her claim and she feels completely alone. 

This is how we are treating people in our own country; people who were born and raised here, while those who have come here from other countries are hurriedly given a house, benefits, and so much more. 
How can this be right? 

I would love to hear your thoughts and stories, regarding this matter.

Love and hugs,
Joss xx


  1. Very sad about your friend. I can only begin to imagine what she is going through - and you, too, of course, although it sounds as though you have some amazing support. But I was taken aback when you changed tack to comment on immigration. Without in-depth knowledge I'm not, perhaps, the best person to judge - and 'judge' is a word laden with emotion anyway - but I wonder how many born-and-bred Brits are abusing the system. I used to live near a man who was off work permanently because, he claimed, he had a bad back and couldn't find a job. Yet he was able to walk his dog twice a day and cycle round the town. The vetting system needs to be rigorous and efficient whoever is applying for benefits, so that the frauds are caught and the deserving can get the help they need and quickly.

    1. Oh I agree, that there are plenty of people false claiming and that they need to be checking everything carefully. But the comments made to my friend were ridiculous. One look at her medical records and it is more than clear that she is disabled and that she does deserve her benefits. It's hard to fake being paralysed from the neck down after all and why would you want to, when other are clearly faking injuries a lot less serious and getting away with it. I have no issues at all with them being tougher I agree they need to be. My issue is with the fact that in the process people who are genuinely in need are suffering. Especially, when they seem so willing to give money away to people who were not even born in the UK. The way they are dealing with the changes with pip, is causing some people to feel abandoned and alone. Which is completely unfair. On top of this they are cutting carers, meaning the elderly and others in need of full time carers or help both morning and evenings are not getting it. One lady would be sleeping in her chair, if it were not for her neighbour, because they counselled her carer that used to come at night to help her wash and change for bed. How can that possibly be deemed acceptable. That lady worked hard her whole life, paying to support this country and now when she needs the help, it is being taken away from her. While you see in the papers people who have come here from other countries being given houses worth a small fortune for them and all their children. There are so many people in need of help in the world, but I just feel that personally, the people who are born in a country should come before those who emigrate here.