It’s true to say that there are some things you didn’t know you needed till you got them. I’d include amongst this the Lakeland catalogue, internet shopping and, for me, online forums.
Pre-Small I had no time for online forums (or Lakeland, or internet shopping, but I digress…). I didn’t see the need. I had enough friends and colleagues in the same mortgage/job/first child spiral to give me all the information and support I needed. But then along came Small. And the path we found ourselves on was not one on which anyone I knew had walked. People were…. sympathetic (I didn’t want sympathy), angry for me and our situation (I had enough of that of my own) or worst still made light of it, saying he’d get better (he wouldn’t, not in the sense you mean anyway). So – support, where to find it? Have you heard of SWAN? Swan…?
At first I felt like I was intruding into this world where people talked openly and freely about things I hadn’t yet experienced, or might not ever experience. So, for a while, I listened and read, followed the odd post. Then, took a deep breath and dived in, hoping no-one would think what I’d written was inappropriate (or, God forbid, badly spelt…:-)).
10 months into our Swan journey I cannot tell you what a lifeline it has become. Nowhere else can I (can we all) be as frank about things that are worrying us; celebrate what to others may seem trivial, but to us is life changing (He. Picked. Up. His. Spoon!!) and talk about poo. Endless talk about poo.
There is a wealth of knowledge that Swan member have that is freely shared that gives us all such confidence to go back to the outside world to say ‘No, that’s not right, bloody do something’.
And sometimes, late at night usually, often after a glass of wine, very very funny conversations are had about subjects very non-swan related. And that is good for all our souls.
Happy Birthday Swan UK. Thank you for being there and thank you to those who are making sure it stays and grows up.
SWAN have made it through to the voting stage of the Direct Debit Big Break competition, they can win up to £2000 but needs lots of votes – please take a minute to vote for us if you can!