Glamsticks Now And Then
Back in 1999 on Good Friday I went out for a horse ride (my own horse) and had a really nasty accident which left me in a bit of a bad way, I only had a few days in hospital but I ended up with ligament damage to my right knee, I was on crutches and had a splint on my leg for almost a year. I was told by the people who know better at the hospital (specialist) that it would be ok and they didn’t want to operate on me as I didn’t do the sport for my living it was a pass time hobby, so life went on, I would fall over now and then (not drunk, if only lol).
However, over the years the falling over and stumbling got worse, so in 2008 I went to the doctors and the hospital and they decided that they would try to make me better and they would repair my post lacruciate ligament, so in 2009 I went off to hospital thinking my condition would improve, BIG MISTAKE.
I came out of hospital a few days later with my leg strapped up and in a splint and on crutches again. I could hardly move for weeks and it went all downhill from there.
I did have a job and even though I was friends with my boss no one really bothers with you as they have their own lives to lead.
In 2011, I was told by my employer that I couldn’t do the job they employed me for any more so I was being “medically retired”, not something you want to hear at my age.
I wasn’t going to take this I wanted to work I wanted to do something, so I started studying holistic therapies, I obtained a wide range of holistic treatment certificates under my belt. However, I still wasn’t allowed to work. So in order to keep myself busy I started to make cards as a pass time for family and friends. I soon got bored with this and wanted to do more…
One Evening whilst my husband was at work I was watching TV and looking at a phone cover I had recently obtained for my phone. I started to wonder how it would look with gems on it. I had some gems already for the cards so covered my phone. After putting the finished cover on Facebook I had various requests to do friends covers for them. I then did a pair of shoes and a T Shirt to see how they looked.
Then a very nice lady told me about Debbie and the problems she had and well you know the rest.
One Friday I found out about Debbie and by the Monday, my husband and I where on the ferry to Ireland to buy the business and Glamsticks was REBORN……..
This is a note from GlamSticks founder Debbie Deboo
I'm Debbie, I've suffered from ME. and Fibromyalgia since 2004 and it has got to the stage where I almost constantly need a wheelchair and even going out for a little while in the wheelchair ruins the rest of the day for me and I just sleep.
Anyone who has this terrible debilitating illness will totally relate to my story. I guess the issue is that other people don't. M.E. is still misunderstood and as we look well and often make an effort (which we pay for later) when guests are around then we are not really regarded as ill.
I was a fun loving, party attending, social events organiser professional. I was a teacher with many years experience teaching Religion and Philosophy and had many friends and a great social life. Then I got ill. Then I lost my job. Then I lost my friends. Sounds familiar? That seems to be a common story for people who suddenly find themselves with a disability or debilitating illness.
It's very difficult to adjust to not being able to walk much anymore or do the things you used to be able to do. I'm still the same intelligent, vibrant person but I find I can't remember things, i suddenly can't spell, I can't read books (I have a library room with many hundreds of books, I love reading, it has been a devastating loss), I mix words up, I can't follow conversations. I prided myself on my achievements and intelligence. I have excellent qualifications and won a scholarship to university now my head hurts when I try to think.
I've been told I'm boring now and I've lost my sense of humour. Someone looked me up on Facebook the other day, a friend I'd lost touch with before my illness. After a week he deleted me as a friend saying I wasn't fun anymore... great, kick someone when they're down....
I feel bad because of the people around me and what they have to go through. My husband married an intelligent fun loving girl now I never go out and cry a lot... he has to do all the housework and phone hospitals etc on my behalf.
I have tried to be optimistic that I will get better but it is hard when I just get worse and worse but I am not a person who just lies down and gives up (although suicidal thoughts have been there at times).
I guess being ill makes you think about life in a different way and as I was always doing something in my previous live it was difficult not doing things in this life so I took up different more manageable activities. I got interested in complementary therapies and I am now a Reiki Master and I tried all sorts of arts and crafts, soap making, jewellery making, candle making, painting etc.
It was when I started using an elbow crutch for support on the times I tried to walk that I had an idea. I'm a colourful person, I love clothes, shoes, bags, beautiful things. My wheelchair is covered in diamante. The crutch I had was grey.... that couldn't be! So I accessorised my crutch, it looked beautiful. Then I thought I would have a crutch to suit various outfits then GlamSticks was born! GlamSticks are fab and fabulous crutches. Why do disability aids have to be grey and boring?
I want to look fab! My GlamStick lets me do that :) I have had so many comments since I have started using them that I decided to start a little business making them to order. This has given me something to live for and also a way to cheer other people up. It may even be a way for me to make a living in a manageable way as at the moment I can't manage a conventional job.
GlamSticks became more than I ever imagined, winning Disabled Motoring Mobility Product of the year 2011 but with all the success came a price and I found my illness meant I could no longer continue with GlamSticks. You can see my story here GlamSticks, The Story. I put the business up for sale and I was looking for someone who I felt would continue with the ethos of GlamSticks and had some understanding of the motivation behind GlamSticks.