Alive and not Kicking (a sample from my memoir)

‘Alive and not Kicking’ memoir

‘Alive and not kicking’ is the name I choose for my memoir and shares my life from September 11, 2009. The ‘not kicking’ part of the book name is an attempt at humour, and laughing is vital when living with a disability. The ‘alive’ part celebrates the medical professionals’ efforts in SA Health and other people, including family and friends.

Eighteen Point Five will publish the memoir on September 11, 2021, the twelfth anniversary of acquiring a Spinal Cord Injury (SCI).

I plan to share a few snippets of the writing leading up to this date.

Note – the writing is in draft stage, and before editing.

‘Alive and not Kicking’

My last FB update before walking to the school.

Ben’s school class were due to take part in the sporting day event named ‘The Gauntlet’ at 11:30 am. It was just after 11 am and it would take me 30 minutes to arrive. I was viewing CNN’s report about the photos taken by the Hubble telescope of the Butterfly Nebula. As I was amazed at the handiwork of God, I updated my Facebook page just before I left home.

I ignored the gusting wind until I arrived at the Salvation Army church at Oakden. The path had an abundance of pine cones, and the wind was sending more. I considered running in my version of the Gauntlet by avoiding the collisions with my head. I choose to walk through the Salvos car park instead.

Arriving at the school, I could only have a quick chat with a friend and smile and wave at Jasmine. I was on a mission, similar to the white rabbit in Wonderland. ‘Oh, dear! Oh, dear! I shall be too late!’ Jasmine’s smile from her beautiful face disappeared, as the grains of sand from the nearby pit blew into our eyes. After watching her participate in the long jump, I moved on, thinking ‘First the pine cones and now the sand’.

I continued on my quest and gathered up my dad, Alexander, and my son, Benjamin. My dad wasn’t happy, ‘I don’t want to go near the trees. The wind is blowing at a hundred miles an hour. I told a staff member, and they said things are under control.’

I didn’t have time to chat about the weather, as Ben’s event was about to commence. ‘If you are you strolling while talking, can I go in front of you?’

Cedar College sports day map that shows the location of the ‘Gauntlet’.Cedar College sports day timetable showing the ‘Gauntlet’ at 11:30am for 4 We arrived at the location of the Gauntlet, and he continued to mention the weather. He loves talking and always took much interest in everything I have done in life. I was following his example as a father, by attending the sports day.

The speed of the wind noticeably increased, and the tree branches moved more intensely. Out of the corner of my eye, I noticed a soccer ball. A little boy, chasing after the ball, had no chance of catching it. His face was red, and his arms and legs were moving fast but didn’t seem to be running quickly enough. I took a few steps and then bent down to pick up the ball.

I was alive and not kicking.

Please visit the website for the memoir ‘Alive and not Kicking.

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