In my, in myself, as far as my attitude and my reaction to all this is I’ve always been a positive person and I remain so. In fact more so because I’ve made this conscious decision that I’m going to get as much out of life now as I possibly can, given that I don’t know how much longer of that life I’ve got left. And I may have been sleepwalking a bit in the past, prior to diagnosis, but since, but post diagnosis I’m determined to do as much as I can, although I am restricted to some extent by my energy levels, because some days I make plans to do things and then I have to cancel them because I just don’t have the, I just don’t have the stamina to carry them out. So that’s where we are right now at this moment. So it’s a year later now. It’s now a year since I, since I started having problems and around about eight months since the actual diagnosis was confirmed.
And the, the idea of retiring, I wouldn’t even call it retirement really. It’s not retirement from life, it’s just extricating myself from the madness that is daily office life and the world of emails and [laugh] being, being told that something is wanted yesterday, and all the stresses that that involves.
As an example, I have for a number, a number of years had this idea in my head of joining the National Trust, which I think a lot of retired people tend to do, and I haven’t had the time to do it before, but I’ve, I’m now determined to join the National Trust and then I can go and visit all their properties, of which they’ve got 300 or something in the country.
And I may say that my lifestyle is, and will be, considerably enhanced by the fact that I’ve now got a Motability car; the mobility element of my Disabled Living Allowance I swapped for a brand new car. And for those people who don’t know, I get insurance, tax, servicing, breakdowns all covered. All I do is the government takes back about £49 a week, which is the mobility element of my DLA, and in return I’ve got this brand new car, and all it costs me is petrol. This is going to be my passport to a future life, whatever the future holds, because I’m now much more mobile obviously. I can get to and from places much more easily and the National Trust being one example, and my plan is to maybe find somewhere to stay overnight if it’s far enough away, so I can stay in a nice hotel, go and visit National Trust property and I will not be comfortable with being idle, because I never have been. I’ll have to find something to do, and I’ve also put my name down to volunteer with the National Trust as well, driving their electric buggies to and from, which I need a full driving licence, which I’ve got.
And for me personally, as I’ve spent 30 years out of the last 33 years caring for and being concerned about other people, I cannot switch that off entirely, but I’ve now got to the stage where I, I don’t feel guilty now about worrying about myself. I’m more concerned about me than I, than I used to be. And I think there’s nothing wrong with that because my time has come.