There is something that you may not know about me but I have once appeared on tv!
Years ago I nursed an RAF pilot called Tim, who crashed his Harrier Jumpjet. Typical of most servicemen that suffer a catastrophic spinal cord injury, Tim dealt with his injuries with a stoicism and bravery that was not only impressive but genuinely inspiring.
I remember one beer filled night when a dozen nurses accompanied a dozen patients to the pub which was located up a hill beyond the rehabilitation unit where we worked. After last orders as the nurses pushed their charges back to the wards, Tim organised the 'convoy' into an " aircraft V" formation with him leading the charge in the centre of the road and at full gallop the wheelchairs careered back down the hill .
It was a moment of pure , wonderful madness, with patients and nurses yelling and screaming at the top of their lungs as their wheelchairs bounced off each other and into the road, the grass verges and muddy ditches.
To me this is the essence of rehabilitation.
Risk taking, humour and a bit of stupid lunacy.
Anyhow I digress.......back to my one and only tv appearance!
Years after Tim's discharge from our unit the BBC featured his accident in one of their Emergency 999 programmes. As part of his story, a camera crew appeared on our unit to film some of the hospital based scenes of his rehab with an actor playing Tim in a wheelchair.
I was asked to feature in the fictional moment that Tim was mobilised in his wheelchair for the first time, so I donned my best, slightly tight, charge nurse uniform, made sure my hair was combed and squirted myself with aftershave and in front of an irritating ten year old director , I physically manhandled the 'paralyzed' actor from his bed and into his wheelchair by using a sliding board as the cameras rolled!
It was all very Hollywood, with me acting away with all the right phrases and caring expressions.
Meryl Streep couldn't have done any better.
Months later, the tv show aired and I sat for what seemed hours on my sofa for my big tv debut moment!
My scene lasted perhaps just ten seconds or so, and seemed to be totally filmed from behind.
And only one of my best friend's saw it.
He rang and told me honestly what he thought of my performance
" I saw your big fat arse on tv last night" he said dryly.
For Tim's story see