Every week BARBARA FISHER looks at issues that affect us all – the issues that get you talking. You can join in by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
SETTLING down at my laptop, I can hear my mother’s voice: “Barbara, what are you doing indoors on a lovely day like this?”
She’d have been proud of me last weekend, though, as Mr F and I met FJ* in 250 acres of parkland. Since our daughter moved back to North Wales, Birmingham has again become our half-way point to meet up, and Cannon Hill Park is where my parents took me, and my three-wheeler bike, after they picked me up from Sunday school.
On one of those days, when I was seven years old, they told me that I was going into hospital the next day to have my tonsils out. Were they right to withhold this information to the very last minute? You bet your life they were, as I had very little time to worry about it.
We do tend to overshare these days, don’t we? Olympic gold medal winner Dame Kelly Holmes revealed last week that she used to cut herself with scissors on a daily basis. A successful, bubbly athlete, she has always been a brilliant example of perseverance, combined with an attractive modesty.
OK, we can still applaud her for revealing she was only human, got depressed, etc. But why is that no one can be a public figure (worse… a ‘celebrity’), these days without telling us about some serious dysfunction along the way, as if it’s a qualification?
Someone who really has had a hard time, but who only stressed the positives at the Uxbridge College Annual Awards, was former event rider Claire Lomas.
Competing at the highest level, before being paralysed from the waist down in 2006 following a riding accident, Claire was the first paraplegic in the UK to use a Rewalk suit. Her courage, determination, and sense of humour shone through, particularly when we heard that she walked the London Marathon: 26 miles on her robotic legs. It took 17 days and earned her the title of Bionic Woman.
HEROES can also be closer to home, such as a Police Community Support Officer (PCSO) who earned respect in Hayes, by listening and getting things done.
After hearing from the chairman of Hayes Town Partnership, David Brough, that Helen Morahan has just left after nine years, to return to nursing, she gets my (belated) award for good service.
The wooden spoon this week goes to Brexit, because I’m sick of hearing about it. Do send me your nominations. *FJ=Fisher Junior
Claire Lomas with her MBE, in February