I’m getting there slowly, small steps. Everything is going in the right direction, I’m getting stronger. I’ve been doing lots of physio. The stoma bag is going to be for life I think. I’ve spoken to the surgeon and it’s too risky to reverse, more risk than I initially realised. It’s a bit like Tesco, a bag for life! They said I’m managing it well because I’ve only had about half-a-dozen leaks and bursts since I’ve had it at home.
The people at Snow Hill station are good to me too, they let me use the manager’s facilities which are really close to my pitch, instead of going all the way down to the platforms, so that’s all good.
The physios are happy with all my progress. I’ve been waiting to see the neurosurgeons about the nerve damage – my left hand still isn’t working properly. I still can’t straighten my fingers, I still can’t grip and hold things properly like cutlery and my toothbrush.
It’s also awkward doing buttons and things like that. I get numbness and pins and needles in it all the time. I’ve got an appointment day through now for February, which is 13 months after the actual accident. But I do feel okay in general.
When I got on the cover of the magazine the response was very good – people wanted to take selfies and get me to autograph them
My customers have been great. They were really surprised when I first came back in June and they were really supportive and helpful. All the get-well cards and best wishes have been overwhelming. When I got on the cover of the magazine the response was very good – people wanted to take selfies and get me to autograph them. The office sold out of magazines that week, they had to get more back from other offices so we had copies through the weekend. I was happy with the way it came out, but I thought it was a better photograph inside than on the cover! I’ve still got a couple of copies at home, one for me and for my dad when I see him next.
I’m really looking forward to Christmas. It’s a tradition to go to my mum’s in Worcestershire on the 27th, it’s always a really nice family day. My brother and his wife, my sister, her husband and their children and my stepsister and family will all be there. I’ll be at home on Christmas Day itself. I’ve got a friend who stays, I always make a roast dinner for the two of us. Meat and potatoes, Yorkshire puddings, no vegetables! A proper man’s Christmas dinner!
The amount of chocolates and biscuits and things you get given at Christmas by customers is unreal. And mince pies too – but I can’t eat them any more because of my stoma. Gloves, hats, socks, toiletries – I get loads of presents, especially because of the accident and when you think I’ve been here 20 years this year. I’m going to really enjoy it this year. I’m feeling positive after everything that’s happened – it’s all good.
I’m on my pitch Monday – Friday 10am–12 and 2-6pm, shorter hours on Saturday and Sunday
Photo: Matt SheehanSnow Hill Station (Stop SH6), Birmingham, UK