There’s two things that Amanda says have changed the quality of her life. The first is admitting she needed some help; and the second is writing poetry as a therapeutic hobby.
In Amanda’s case life and back problems had got on top of her, to the point where she couldn't tidy anything away and could only leave things on the floor because she was unable to move around her house.
“I just felt overwhelmed at home,” she says, “and that’s the point when I realised I had to ask for help.”
That help came in the form of the crisis clean service from Manchester’s social care team, who are part of the city’s Local Care Organisation, which brings more care into communities. The crisis clean provision is part of the Reablement Service – which typically supports people in their homes for around six weeks as they get back on their feet after being vulnerable or ill, so that they have time to recover.
Three of the team came to Amanda’s house and worked with her to make it a home again, where she would not feel like she was captive to the contents.
“It was like I’d moved to a different home,” says Amanda. “I could walk through to the kitchen again and make a cup of tea. And, I could move around in bathroom too. Sending a thank you card just didn’t convey what that help and kindness did for me. Even now, when I feel like I can’t manage the house, I think to myself ‘well those three girls did that for me’ so I need to carry on.”
Instead of sending a card, Amanda wrote a poem, which she sent to the reablement team. The poem is not only inspiring, but Amanda would like it to show others that saying you need help is often the key to life getting better.
“You don’t have to struggle on in silence,” she says. “Just talk about it and try to find something you are passionate about – like poetry for me. Help and poetry have kept me going.”
To read more on plans for health and social care in Manchester, log on to: www.healthiermanchester.
This is Amanda’s poem:
I just want to say thank you for every thing today,
You've helped me more than you can ever know in oh so many ways,
Life has got on top of me, I think that you can tell,
I'll never be a domestic goddess but it's never this bad when I'm well,
All the drawers and cupboards were just full of stuff,
things that haven't been moved for years just covered you in dust,
but you carried on, scrubbed polished tidied cared,
it was like having 3 fairy godmothers for me just having you all there.
So again I want to say thank you for all you've done for me.
the difference it's going to make to my life I just wish you could see
I'll never take for granted the time that you kindly gave
I'm not exaggerating when I say it's not just my flat you've cleaned but my sanity and life you've saved.