So, this is the first blog in quite a while. Apologies for that everyone - I thought things were meant to be slow and boring in the New Year after the Christmas period, but obviously not, hence why I need a pause button! I have been so busy with a combination of CP Teens UK, University, Athletics, and of course, socialising in general! I'll try and go in a logical order and I'll try not to go on and on!
As I said in the last blog post, I/CP Teens UK went to the British Athletics Parallel Success Training Day, which was a couple of weeks ago now. It was a day for new athletes with disabilities who have registered an interest in Athletics, so it was lovely to be invited along as an athlete to encourage the 'newbies' and to represent CP Teens UK! It was also a Classification day for some athletes - athletes who had been registered with their club for 3 months or more could come and be professionally classified ready for competition. I don't know if any of you watch The Last Leg on Channel 4, but before every CP Athlete went for their classification, we were placing bets on what they would come out as, and we were going "#IsItOkay to bet you'll be a T38?!" etc.!
6 CP Athletes, from left-to-right: Amy Carr, Millie Forrest, Me, Laura Webb, Jayden Saberton & Reece Goodwin
This was the first event where I (along with my team of helpers!) set up a CP Teens UK Support Stall. It had loads of information about CP Teens UK on, what it does, contacts etc. I'll admit, it wasn't the best stall as it was my first attempt, if anything it was a bit of a practice run for the stalls in the summer to see what works and what doesn't. However, I was so surprised at the response! The teenagers & young people who were there with Cerebral Palsy either:
a) Knew all about CP Teens UK and they all whipped out there phones to show me they
followed it & used it!
b) Thought it was the 'best idea since sliced bread' and whipped out there phones to get
connected to CP Teens UK!
I couldn't believe it! One parent who came to the stall said how she follows & uses CP Teens UK but asked if she could take away leaflets about CP Teens UK for other parents she knows ... of course, I was like 'YES!' haha!
The CP Teens UK Stall, with my team of helpers, left-to-right: Laura Webb, Laura Parkes, Me, Sophie Clarke
My favourite part of the day was most definitely when a 10-year-old girl with Cerebral Palsy walked up to the stall and asked if she could have a CP Teens UK sticker and a CP Teens UK balloon!
I also met a boy called Reece, who also has Cerebral Palsy and I cannot believe we've never crossed paths before. I've only ever been aware of 3 CP Athletes in my Athletics Club - myself, Laura (who I met through CP Teens UK & I convinced her to come down to Athletics!), and Jayden, and for obvious reasons we know each other quite well. So, I asked Reece which club he was part of, to which his reply was 'Sheffield'. After some rather confused looks, and 'are you sure's', it turns out Reece trains every night Laura, Jayden & I don't! It gets even stranger though, it also turns out that Reece is not only going to the same University as I'm at in September, he's doing Sports Development with Coaching like I am! ... So, there is going to be 2 of us wobbling around the campus attempting to look sporty when we can't even walk in a straight line!
The Sunday after the Athletics Day, I held the first ever CP Teens UK Committee Meeting, which was to get the ball rolling for the events CP Teens UK are holding for you throughout 2015. It was great to sit down & start making sense of things. It was also fantastic to meet Carly (Tait) who is a CP Wheelchair Racer for GB. I won't bombard you with dates now, but here's a few you may want to keep free:
- CP Teens UK at Disability Rocks, Saturday 9th May, Matlock, Derbyshire - PLEASE DO BOOK
TICKETS HERE http://disabilityrocks.org/disability-rocks-in-the-midlands-at-lea-green-
development-centre OTHERWISE YOU WON'T BE ALLOWED ENTRY TO THE FESTIVAL!
- Sunday 5th July, CP Sport & CP Teens UK Racerunning/Sports Day, EIS, Sheffield - PLEASE
REGISTER THROUGH CP SPORT
- Saturday 17th October, CP Teens UK Charity Ball with Celebrity Guest, Sophie Christiansen
OBE - TICKETED EVENT, PLEASE EMAIL email@example.com TO BOOK TICKETS
On Sunday, I went to London with two of my best friends, Sophie & Laura. No trip anywhere would ever be complete without some kind of Cerebral Palsy incident - and we always find them hilarious! When we got on the train first thing in the morning, we ended up in the wrong seats, which didn't amuse the train staff (they needed to take a chill pill as they weren't even reserved!). Given I'm not great on my feet at the best of the times, walking down a moving train wasn't the most straight forward of things (literally!)! Bambi on ice springs to mind, and when the train suddenly turned a corner, it was man down! I literally walked down the coaches automatically going 'sorry...sorry...sorry...sorry!'.
On the way back, it was dark, and every time a train went past us at speed, I jumped so much I nearly hit the ceiling, which caused many laughing fits! The first train that went past us at speed, I for some reason automatically put both arms up in the air like 'don't shoot!' - I thought Laura was going to pass out from laughing! When we were nearing our home station, we decided it would be a good idea to gather our bags together and move into the lobby. Whilst standing in the lobby, the train started waving around all over the place & I was literally falling everywhere, which again, was hilarious! Sophie went 'is this down to the alcohol we've just had up from London on the train, or is this just Ellie's general rubbish (she did use a stronger word!) balance?!'