Just as I was getting ready to go to bed last night I started to have a ‘ticcing fit’ in the kitchen. Will, who was my overnight support worker, noticed what was happening and was quick to start steering me to safety.

Unusually the fit started rather slowly and I didn’t lose control of my body straightaway. So, rather than head for the crash mat in the living room we decided to try and make it to my bedroom. I’m not sure exactly whose decision this was and it probably wasn’t brilliantly wise. But it was an interesting challenge for both of us. It felt strange forcing myself to keep moving while my body was locking up.

We made it – just. But Will had to face the final challenge of getting me onto my bed on his own – by then I couldn’t help at all. While he was working out the best way to do it, I tried to joke that this was bound to be covered in the manual-handling training about how to move and lift me safely – but as I couldn’t speak the joke was lost in translation.

When my speech returned I was determined to tell Will what I’d been trying to say. But instead of ‘manual handling’ what I said was ‘man-u-ling’, and that made him laugh.

My tics then proceeded to suggest all the things that Will had learnt in ‘man-u-ling’ while everybody else was learning safe lifting practices:

“Playing the mandolin”
“Learning Mandarin”
“Carrying a mannequin”

I haven’t tested his skills in any of these areas – yet.

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