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Disability Narratives

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Video clip: Friends and family used crowd funding to allow a new home to be found and adapted to her needs, which helped her leave hospital and start work sooner.

We had the crowd-funding going on. Which I remember saying in the hospital that I didn't want that to happen, and I didn't want [name] to set that up. Because I didn't want people to feel obligated, and I didn't want - I just didn't want any of that, you know? You, you just feel like - it's like I'm not that sick, come on. You know? [Laughing]. We don't need that, and I don't want people to feel obligated and ooh. But I think, it gave a lot of people a feeling like they could do something to help. And I had to really think about this. I remember thinking about this when I was in hospital, and [name] and other people talking me through this. It's like if you knew someone that was - you know - had gone through this, and was facing the sort of life-changing kind of injuries and surgeries that I was facing, you'd want to do something, you, you'd feel utterly helpless.

And by giving to the crowd-funding site, people were actually able to help. Fundamentally, tangibly able to help us. And they have. It's been phenomenal. And what that's also created, - you know - yes, we've had an enormous amount of financial support, which has allowed us to do the things that we've needed to do. It's also allowed me to put aside some money for more advanced prosthetics. If I lose this hand, which is a possibility that I might lose this hand at the moment, then we've got money set aside from the crowd-funding to get more advanced prosthetic upper limbs as well as lower limbs.

So the crowd-funding has just given us a huge amount of support financially. But I've also realised that I've got a community of support that's massive. You know, like hundreds of people have donated. Some of them total strangers. Some of them family. A lot of colleagues. A lot of friends of friends. You know? And, and it's just - And I feel I have got this, these hundreds of people behind me, you know, kind of going "Come on, you can do it." So on my bad days, when I'm just like 'I'm just going to stay in bed, pull the duvet over my head and just - I just don't want to do this any more, I want out, I don't want to be in this body'. I'm just like 'oh god, but there's all those hundreds of people out there that are cheering me on, and I - I have to pull myself together, because you know, they are, they're out there supporting me and rooting for me, so I have to like - you know - get dressed, get up, go to work, you know get on with things because of that'. So, yeah. Huge amount of support. Hugely, hugely lucky. I've probably said the word 'lucky' like a zillion times in the course of this interview [laughing] which is surprising, considering what you're looking at, but. It's been phenomenal. So I am extremely lucky. We are as a family extremely lucky.

I don't know what we would have done. I honestly - we talk - [husband] and I talk about this a lot. What we would have done if we hadn't had that. And we don't know. I think I would have had to stay in - I would have had to have been in hospital much longer, because we wouldn't have found a place to live so quickly, that works so well for us. And we wouldn't have been able to do adaptations so quickly. So, and they wouldn't have released me from hospital without a safe place to go to. So I would have ended up being in hospital much longer. It would have delayed my return to work. Where - I don't know where we'd be living right now. You know, because we were out - we were - We would not have been eligible for council support for housing, because of means testing. So we would have had no support.