suzefricker@mylifeaccordingtome.org Available all the time, just send me an email and I will get back to you.

Tomorrow May Not Come

Two years ago, 14 June 2017, I woke up for work expecting it to be a normal day. I looked at my phone to see a BBC news broadcast about Grenfell fire. I usually woke up at 5 am.

Two years ago today my mother and I, both with very little and disabilities, went down to the fire which is 3 minutes away by car or bus but too far for us to walk. We had loaded the car up with homemade blankets, fans, jumpers, food, drink and anything we knew we could do without. We went round to as many pop up centers as we could find and donated what we had brought to the efforts that were underway for them.

The Christian Center

The Westway

St Clements church

All three places were on our stop tour.

We sat with victims and prayed with them, helped them get food, sorted out the donations till I was physically unable to cope any more and was a blubbering wreck. AT that moment no one cared about religion, gender, ethnicity, age, politics, the social economic background we just came together. There were Christians in mosques and Muslims in churches and no one cared.

Businesses were giving away food and doctors and nurses and pharmacies were looking after people with needs so that they could keep the nonurgent cases out of the emergency rooms.

The only thing that we wanted was to make sure that we all got through that horrific day. Firefighters were even working double shifts and many have suffered PTSD from that day.

Because of this fire people have been displaced and the pain of that day lingers on every day. For 6 months I had nightmares every night. I got so tired that I was falling asleep everywhere.

So today I ask that you do something kind for someone in memory of those who did not make it out of that death trap, for the firefighters who suffer for what they saw and for the volunteers who bravely did whatever they could to help the community out. Don’t put it off till tomorrow because the lesson we learned the hard way here in North Kensington is that tomorrow is never guaranteed. So don’t put off till tomorrow something you can do today. Tell your parents, children, relatives of any kind that you love them. Live good lives and most importantly do not take your life for granted…

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Autism and surprise

Well, as we all know, Autistic people are not very good with sudden change. That is why this one particular autistic person feels the need to say this as it was a good surprise I got. On Wednesday I went to go and see Giovanni Pernice, which I have already had a slew of people telling me “your autistic, you can’t do that” so please no one who reads this please say it to me as I will honestly find a way to block you.

The surprise came when during the intermission, I went to get a picture with one of the Strictly stars who had been on this current season who I thought was soooo amazing and I loved watching him with his professional dancer Janette Manrara. Can you guess who I am talking about? Obviously, Dr Ranj.

I was getting very overwhelmed and was almost at full meltdown mode when I got to him. I asked if I could take a picture with him and started to cry. Embarrassed by it, I told him I was autistic and that I was getting overwhelmed. He took me to one side, ( a quiet space) and stayed with me and talked about dancing and what I liked and stayed with me while I calmed down. I had explained to me that I was diagnosed last year and that I was still learning how to cope which was hard for me. I then fretted that I got a picture with him and my friend who was with me didn’t… He came back in with me when the intermission was over and went to my friend just so she could get a picture with him as well.

This was a surprise to me as I have been having meltdowns at least once a week and have had varying reactions. The good ones came from very different places. He did not have to help me. He did not have to stay with me. He certainly did not have to make sure my friend got a picture with him as well and yet, this celebrity, who I have adored watching on telly took the time to make sure I was ok. He made sure that I was able to go back and watch the rest of the show which I did. I was able to stave off a full meltdown until the very end because of him.

Dr Ranj had never met me before and will probably never even see this but his random act of kindness was so important to me as I was getting quite low about the lack of support I am getting in some areas of my life that it really has inspired me to continue in my quest to make sure that anyone who is autistic and wants to be able to do things others say that they can’t because they are autistic have the courage and the support they need to be able to do it.

Dr Ranj you are amazing and this random woman who you have never met before and probably never meet again is so very grateful to you for everything 🙂