BY TORIASTRINKETSBLOG · 14TH JANUARY 2019
So why would I want to tell you about a train journey?
Most people probably do not see this as terribly exciting or worthy of comment, but for little old me this has been somewhat monumentus.
Step 1 – booking
First off let’s start with I use a mobility scooter so getting a train is not quite as easy as first imagined and suffer with anxiety. I am unable to get on and off a train in quite the same fashion as most people out there in the big wide world and I have to call the lovely people at journey care to book myself on and off the train at least 24 hours before I want to travel. So there you have it, Step 1. For me just picking up the phone is a trial in itself. I hate having to speak to a stranger and answering lots of questions.
EDITED CONTENT: I have now discovered that you can book disabled travel online if you are travelling with Virgin Trains which is so much better as I don’t have to talk to a human and I get to input the correct information! Here is the link just in case you ever need it.
Step 2 – book tickets.
Now because I’m still working in the dark ages I thought you would be able to get a rail card at the train station. Apparently not! In this day and age you do it all online and it takes 10 plus working days to come through, so no disabled rail card for me then. Hey ho, I’m sure I will cope, it’s only money so they say!
EDITED CONTENT: Now you would not believe it would be so difficult to get a disabled rail card. Despite the fact that I qualify for one with all of their criteria it was declined twice because of their silly computer system. I have spent ages trying to get it sorted and now in AUGUST 2019! I have finally managed to get it sorted and I am now the proud or not so proud holder of a disabled rail card!
Step 3 – the panic attack
I have a full on mega panic when you realise that you are doing this all on your own without the help of your amazing husband, who has previously been there to help you get on and off the train and get into the teeny tiny space they give you and protect you from all the big bad people in the world. As part of this panic the following will occur:
- toss and turn all night
- feel sick
- loose appetite
- heart beat like you are running a marathon
- text your friends telling them your panicking
- tell yourself you can not do this
- snap at husband
- shout at dog for no reason at all
- convince yourself you will miss train
And the list goes on.
Nearly Time to go…
There is nothing for it, I have to get ready and go. I put it off for as long as I can, Skype Chrissie and Steph from Heartizan about the market place, play with dog, message everyone I can think of in my phone, speak to husband several times, browse Facebook, message more people, play with dog and eventually have a shower and get dressed. You see to me, nothing is really happening until I put clothes on. I can pretend I don’t have to get on that train or leave the house for as long as I’m in my pyjamas, as soon as that changes I know everything is real.
So the dreaded moment has come, my bag is packed with some overnight things, I am dressed and now I’m ready early. Ahhhhhhhhhh! What do I do? I can’t sit still but equally I can’t try and do lots as I will use what energy I have before I get on the train and I have to get to the hotel at the other end. I try browsing the good old book of face, nope that doesn’t work. ‘ Tink do you need a wee’, well that lasts all of a minute, lol and then the huskies next door but two start howling and my lovely dog tries to join in. Noooooooooooo! I mean could there be anything worse when you are anxious? I could have quite easily cried, so instead I shouted at the lot of them.
And I’m off
I don’t know if the taxi was trying to spite me or help me at this point but he then turned up 15 minutes early. I open the front door and my miniature ball of fury fun and love goes to say hello, at which point, and I don’t think I’ve ever seen anyone move so quickly, as he darts back into his taxi. Now I know some people are frightened of dogs but seriously Tink?!
How cute am I?!
This is the end of part 1. If you would like to read part 2 Click here.