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Autobiographical Extract

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October 11th 1999, a year I will never forget, not ever. It started off as an ordinary day until breaktime at 10.20am, it was about 10.30am and I was playing football in the lower tennis courts as any normal day. I made a pass and it was returned quicker than I anticipated. then came the worst thing I was badly tackled by a mate on the opposite team and went flying and fell to the concrete hard, hitting the ground. All I could feel was pain because my knee had rebounded off the floor twice.

After I came round, I could see a big crowd of people hovering over me. Someone tried to help me to my feet but however hard I tried I just fell down again which increased the pain. There was a dinnerlady who was kneeling down at me radioing to the office for an ambulance. Steve, (the caretaker) was first to help me up and was assisting the dinnerlady to get me to hobble over to his office where I was in for a fairly long wait until the ambulance arrived.

When the ambulance did eventually arrive, I couldn’t feel anything in my left leg. They got me into the back and rushed me to hospital. I arrived and was put into a ward that was full of adults and next to me was a 54 year old man whose name was Bob, he was butt naked telling me about his accident which made me laugh. The hospital had baby blue paint on the walls with a yellow boarder and it had a bad aroma of disinfectant and sterile medical equipment. It was cramed full of wounded people. For ages I wasn’t worrying about the pain but just hoping for the best and talking to someone who would be a great help later in that month without knowing it until it happened and he would change my life.

I was taken for an X-ray and the doctor said it was just a sprain. He issued me crutches, tubi-grip and a slip to return to hospital in one week. I returned a week later as a nervous wreck and had a more qualified doctor to assess me. He re-took my X-rays and said when he looked at it that there was some definite abnormality to my left leg. He wanted me to be admitted that day for an operation the same day on my knee to get to the bottom of my knee. I was sitting in the adults ward where I had been admitted to and was reviewing the days events.

It came to the time when the doctor wanted to operate on me, as I was taken to theatre, it smelt completely different to the rest of the hospital, I was crying because they told me that I may never walk again and be crippled from the left leg down. After the operation I could only feel more pain.

The next day he came round to the ward I was in and he showed me my X-rays, and what was wrong with it. He was very curious about how it had happened. He told me that there would be very little chance I would ever be able to walk again let alone play football or any sports for that matter. After he had finished he went and I was left in floods of tears for hours.

The friendly bloke I met when I was brought in from school was in the bed next to me. We were talking and he had heard the doctor telling me how I won’t ever walk again. I will never forget what he said to me, ‘No matter what obstacles are thrown at you, God never gives you more than you can deal with. After all that has happened, you must never let anything hold you down. Take life one day at a time.’ He told me this minutes before he had a heart attack and he later died. With what he had told me, I think he knew he was going to die.

When I heard about Bob, I cried for hours. He gave me a boost of confidence about my life. He is a friend I will never forget. Hours later the doctor returned to say to me I could leave the hospital but I had to have a special cast on my leg and would be sent home the very next day. I was due to return in six weeks time. I was very scared, frightened and very depressed.

During the six weeks, I had to stay off school and rest my leg all the time, there was nothing to do. I wasn’t allowed to return to school because of my partial disabililty, and they didn’t have the facilites to accomodate my needs.

The six weeks had flown past and before I knew it I had to return to hospital. I saw the doctor and he said I had partially crippled my knee and I would walk again but it would take another twelve weeks before that happened and I would suffer from arthiritis all my life. Tears streamed down my face and my mother comforted me, but she wasn’t there when I was in hospital a lot of the time as she had a very demanding job so I was with my nan. I was strongly advised to take up physotherapy.

I was only a few weeks into my physiotherapy, and I had to go to hospital because my nan had been taken to hospital after suffering a stroke. I have never felt so lonely and sad in my life. I foolishly stopped my physiotherapy immediately.

I was always with my nan, the last words she ever said to me minutes before she died was that she loved me and was very proud of me and she will never forget me, she also said she was so proud of me because of all the obstacles I have overcome at such a fragile condition and at a such young age and I have to concentrate on getting better and growing up and meeting the girl of my dreams, having loads of kids and making her even more proud of me. My nan also said that things happen for a reason but I shouldn’t be sad, don’t think of the years you could have had with that person but the years you did had with that person. She said I should never remember her in hospital in such a bad way but the way she was weeks before when I was in hospital.

I have overcome many emotional obstacles as well as physical ones to be where I am today. Like Bob and my nan said: ‘No matter what obstacles are thrown at you, God never gives you more than you can deal with.’ and my nan said: ‘Things happen for a reason and shouldn’t be sad, don’t thing of the years you could have with that person but the years you have had with that person.’

Nothing will ever hold me down. I have come too far to be where I am to let it all go. I will privale and suceed no matter what the odds are. My nan taught me that I should never take life for granted and to live life to the full.

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