Hi, my name’s Gav, I’m new to blogging for Enhance the UK and truth be told, my story is no different from a lot of other disabled people living in the UK. Well perhaps a little different but I think that’s just complicating things. I just happen to be bold enough to want to share my particular experiences with the interwebs, how delightfully scary.
On to the part where I introduce myself to you. This part does feel a little like an online dating profile to me (I was fortunate enough to meet my fiancée via a dating website, but this is getting decidedly off topic). That impression could just be in my head though. I like making people laugh, I love puppies and I’m a big nerd at heart. Sorry about that, I appear to have distracted myself with talk of dating sites, I do love puppies and I am a big nerd at heart. The nerd part owes a lot to my childhood and my complete lack of any sort of confidence or personal skills. Star Trek and computers were my friends, talking to girls intimidated me, much like nearly every other teenage boy from what I gather. “Gav – the teenage years” can be discussed more on a future day. Let’s just say it was a time of chronic acne, obesity and an ill fêted attempt to learn to play the drums for my music GCSE.
As soon as I was able to, I headed off to university in Bradford (Bratfurd to the locals with their delightful West Yorkshire accent). I have never really had a life plan, uni just seemed like the obvious step for me after school. I ended up studying media technology and production which really is a fancy way of saying having fun for three years. I did many a first during my time there, I kissed a girl (and I liked it), I found out what the little symbols on clothing labels mean, I tried drinking lager (wasn’t particularly to my taste). I was fortunate enough to make a lot of really cool memories from my time there, probably one or two not so good ones as well.
I ended up spending the following four years after I finished my degree in Bradford as well and it was during those years two of the biggest events in my life occurred, I was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis and I also got engaged to my girlfriend of five years. Unfortunately we got divorced after five years, I was experiencing depression during that time and I was not the easiest of people to live with because of it. That coupled with the fact we were still kids when we got together and had begun to develop different goals in life in addition to my being unemployed for three of the years we were married for.
Despite the fact I was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis over eight years ago when I was 23, my willingness to discuss it freely with other people and the Internet (check out my YouTube video where I discuss how it went down here https://youtu.be/PI5ij7_O05k), and my ability to joke about it, I still don’t know whether I have fully accepted it. This is not to say that I am unaware or accepting of the limitations my ms insists on imposing upon me or the adaptations I am required to make every day to continue functioning ‘normally’ but more an admission that emotionally perhaps I am still to accept my diagnosis.
I hope that you enjoyed my first blog for enable the uk, I hope to have many future posts for them where you will get the opportunity to know me a bit better 😊. If you have anything in particular you would like me to discuss please feel free to get in touch, until then, don’t fail to be awesome…