The following testimonial is an extract from Mr Barfoot’s LifeBook – Farmin’ … The Barfoots Story
For my 66th birthday gift, Angela gave me an introduction to LifeBook. LifeBook is the brainchild of Roy Moëd. It is an attempt to capture your story so far, and to record memories of your life journey and family history for future generations. You are presented with a package explaining the whole process, which includes a personal interviewer and a professional writer to capture your stories and create an autobiography to share with family and friends.
I accepted the gift with gratitude, stuck it in a drawer and got on with my very selfish existence, not giving it another thought.
Not a month further on, I was in a coma in the neurological critical care unit at Brighton’s Royal Sussex Hospital, having suffered a massive subarachnoid haemorrhage and I was not expected to live much longer.
The Road to Recovery
The fact that I did is down to Angela, an incredibly gifted brain surgeon Sanjay and the supervising ‘God’, Mr Norris, together with the whole army of NHS staff and support facilities which we all take for granted in our lives – not forgetting, most importantly, the paramedics and air ambulance crew who got me there alive in the first place. Air ambulance, by the way, only runs and exists through charitable donations.
Fast forward three months, I was not only alive but on my way home. Angela, meanwhile, had enlisted the help of Hobbs, a specialist neurological rehabilitation company. Their job? To get me back on the road ASAP.
The Hobbs team included a neuro-physiotherapist, speech and language therapist, occupational health therapist, and psychologist (I soon got rid of her!). I had a paralysed throat and had to learn to speak and swallow again. My sense of balance was not too good either and I had to teach myself once more the cognitive skills we take for granted.
The LifeBook Journey
It wasn’t long before my LifeBook present came out from the drawer. Alicia Denny, my interviewer, turned up and away we went. It was not at all easy to begin with. My writing was not good, as it sloped downhill and was very spidery. I would speak into a recorder, but my voice would tire and I pronounced the words with difficulty, like a person with a cleft palate, then I would have a coughing attack. Nevertheless, Alicia would bear with me, dragging out the memories. Because of my difficulties, I would dread her coming and the timetable slackened off.
Fortunately, she persisted with me and gradually the book gathered a momentum and a life of its own. I took over the writing and production myself, using an iPad and emailing the chapters through to Alicia. I recruited a genealogist, Jeanette, whose research has added a new dimension. Angela has become the proofreader and my secretary.
Writing this book, I believe, has possibly been the biggest factor of my rehabilitation. It got my brain going again. Sometimes, after a big session of writing, my brain felt like scrambled egg for the whole of the following day.
It has joined the history of the past with the present and, hopefully, the future.
It is always your project; managed and created in a way you feel most comfortable
It was amazing to see the work Mr Barfoot put into his LifeBook project by way of supporting his rehabilitation. A LifeBook project doesn’t usually require that level of effort from its author, but, as in Mr Barfoot’s case, we are more than happy to accommodate each individual author’s requirements to produce a private autobiography they can be proud of.
When Peter Barfoot completed his private autobiography, he came and visited us for a celebratory LifeBook presentation
The following video and slideshow are some of the highlights of his special day.
Peter Barfoot's LifeBook
The closing statement of Mr. Barfoot’s book is an encouragement to assist the service which responded so quickly when he unfortunately had his accident.
Bryan Bates has also visited us recently. Follow this link to see his LifeBook reveal.