• Steve Frampton

Graphic design love, Guillain Barré & growing up with loss

Updated: Feb 21, 2020

Growing up in the 80s I spent many hours lying on my bedroom floor or sitting at the dining room table, drawing and painting; everything from still life and portraits to cartoon characters, superheroes and spaceships that I would hang on my wall.

Logos and lettering were particularly captivating. The Ghostbusters logo, the swooshy text at the beginning of Superman films, the scrolling intro to Star Wars and the Autobots and Decepticons symbols. Letraset, a product inextricably infused with nostalgia (my Dad had masses of it in a drawer in the garage), the surrealist paintings of Salvador Dali, movie posters, vintage advertising and album covers were fascinating to me.

At the age of twelve I was introduced to the Mexico 86 World Cup Panini Sticker Album and stickers. My first ever sticker album, I fondly remember flicking through the pages, even when it hardly had any stickers in. I can't explain why but I loved it! The front cover grabbed my attention with its green, full-width banner, double-stroke text and simple, bright illustrations. 'Pique', perhaps on reflection, the somewhat ill-considered mascot - a jalapeño pepper with a moustache and sombrero, was to me as a young boy, and as someone with no prejudices, just a cute little character that I wanted to draw and stick on my pin board. I loved the bold, hand-drawn yellow and red typeface that his name was illustrated in and I was obsessed with finding his sticker because it was like gold dust!

Silver foiled 'shineys' as they were known displaying the team insignia were also very desirable but again were quite rare and unless you found one in a new pack that you'd bought from the newsagents on the walk home from school, you had to swap about 10 stickers with schoolmates in the playground just to be in with a chance of getting one shiney in return!

The player photos of that era were a mélange of mullets, tight perms and moustaches and were of little visual interest other than trying to find the player with the most outlandish haircut or the best name. Rudi Voller was always a favourite along with the brilliantly named Danish player Troels Rasmussen of whom I had about 15 stickers of! I couldn't give him away!

Undoubtedly, my favourites were the stickers of posters from previous World Cups with their different styles and typography, each one conveying the spirit, character and culture of their host country through illustrations which spurred me on to collect more with my hard-earned pocket money.

World Cup Posters, Photo:
World Cup Posters, Photo:

Whenever there was an opportunity to draw, paint or make something out of lego, cardboard, wood or clay I just had a go at it. On holiday, instead of building sandcastles on the beach, I wanted to build a sand crocodile! I entered every drawing or painting competition I could and at middle school (we went to middle schools in the 80s) I came first in an Easter egg painting competition with an 'egg' Bugs Bunny which had plasticine ears, nose and a giant carrot.

A drawing of a squirrel eating an acorn (do they eat acorns?) was selected for the front cover of an autumn school newsletter and I won the local Stafford Roundtable Fireworks Display Painting Competition twice, getting my picture in the local newspaper and receiving free tickets for the big bonfire display at Shugborough Hall. Small things, but they meant so much to me as a child, and art and design was the only lesson in school that I really loved.

With my two sisters after doing some painting - although Debs (middle) looks like she's painted herself
With my two sisters after doing some painting - although Debs (middle) looks like she's painted herself

Then my life changed. A week into starting High School, not long after my thirteenth birthday, I was suddenly taken seriously ill and rushed to hospital, with the eventual diagnosis being Guillain-Barré Syndrome (GBS), a very rare virus (only 1-2 cases per 100,000 people worldwide each year*) that attacks the peripheral nerves causing respiratory difficulties and ultimately organ failure.

I remember being carried into A&E in my Dad's arms. My body was limp and I was gasping for breath, like a fish out of water. Everything the Doctors gave me; oxygen, nebulisers... they had no effect. The last thing I remember is the blur of the lights along the hospital corridor as I was rushed into intensive care and a consultant telling my parents that they were going to put me on a ventilator to stabilise my condition. Then, I started to lose consciousness. The next recollection I have is waking up and being told by a nurse that it was a seven days later.

The virus had taken hold rapidly within the space of 24 hours. In my induced coma my weight dropped from six stone to three and a half stone in seven days and I was left with both temporary and permanent nerve damage, pain and paralysis.

My own immune system had turned on me. It's still not known even today in 2019 exactly what causes this phenomenon*, but it had ripped my nerves to shreds and despite the myriad of drugs that were being fed into my body intravenously and the truly disgusting tasting medicines I had to force down my throat, it lost the battle. I was trapped in a body that wouldn't move and it was terrifying.

I was so weak and poorly that I wasn't even allowed visitors other than my parents. Pupils from my new school, some I didn't even know at the time but had kindly come to visit me were only allowed to leave their cards and get well messages with nurses. I wasn't able to reply or thank them until I saw them again months later.

I can only describe the damage imposed on my nerves as being like a fire spreading through electrical wiring with each wire having an inner and outer core. The inner core (Nerve Fibre) carrying the signals for touch, sensation and pain and the outer core (Myelin Sheath) carrying signals for movement. With the fire burning through the outer core the inner core became exposed. With no insulation, the nerves would short circuit, pain receptors would fire and spark constantly. The slightest touch or movement of limbs was agonising.

To make matters worse there were lots of tests. These included a lumbar puncture (a horrible experience) and some excruciatingly painful tests that involved applying electric currents to the muscles in my arms and legs. I still to this day don't know what those tests achieved or if the consultant had any idea whatsoever of just how unbearable those tests were or had ever heard of Guillan Barré. When I tried to explain and describe the pain, it was discounted and I couldn't understand why as I cried out in distress. It was torture and like something from a horror movie.

Nobody could tell me how long it would take for me to get back to normal. I was looking for guidance, optimism and reassurance to allay my fears but there was only uncertainty, hesitancy and vague answers. Doctors said it could be anywhere from six months to two years but they never committed to saying I would make a full recovery. I desperately clung to the hope that it would be six months, two years seemed like forever and I didn't even want to entertain the notion of it taking longer or not being able to walk again. Even a few days felt like a lifetime.

All I wanted to do was to get out of bed and be able to draw or paint to take my mind off what was going on, the movement and independence that I'd lost and the horrible tasting, lumpy food that the dietician was making me eat every day to try and get my weight up.

In certain places, the nerve damage was too significant, and even though my right arm and lower right leg below the knee showed signs of recovery relatively soon after, it was the nerves and muscles throughout my left arm, left leg and my upper right leg, particularly the muscles that enable the human body to stand upright, walk, run and jump that had deteriorated beyond repair.

In the early stages I was unable to sit upright or wash or dress by myself, my left arm was completely paralysed so I couldn't hold or turn my drawing pad, my right arm was full of IV drips and my right hand would shake uncontrollably. I could only hold a pen or pencil for a short period of time. It was frustrating to the point where I was angry, frustrated, confused, upset and wanting to give up altogether.

In the course of the weeks that I spent in hospital, I only managed to summon up enough energy, concentration and control to draw just one picture; a cartoon of Garfield the cat, looking grumpy. It was a start, a glimmer of hope and a real feeling of achievement at a time in which I felt I'd lost everything. The nurses on the children's ward framed it and hung it on the wall. It stayed there for years afterwards.

It took over three years of intense physiotherapy and long, traumatic stays in an orthopaedic hospital away from home, family and friends for my symptoms and pain to settle.

There were no mobile phones, no internet, wifi, iPads or social media back then in the late 80s and early 90s to keep in touch with people. There was just a pay phone on the ward in the shape of Humpty Dumpty that was often broken (obviously, it was Humpty Dumpty). It was a very lonely and scary time but it encouraged me to become more self-reliant and to have some semblance of independence. I didn't want to stay in hospital for any longer than I had to.

The loss and grief*** that I'd experienced left me confused, frustrated, angry, sad, self-conscious, depressed and with no self-esteem. Initially, I didn't want to go out and I would never venture outside on my own. I was aware of people looking at me in my wheelchair and wanted to hide. I started to suffer from stress and anxiety and I had a distinct fear of the unknown.

I'd worry that I would be taken ill again, panic about having to go to hospital and agonise about the demeaning examinations I might be subjected to. I was convinced that Physiotherapists took enjoyment from causing pain and that Doctors wanted to keep me in hospital and do tests just for the fun of it. I felt as though I had no say or control and I had to just do what I was told. Inevitably any tests involved inflicting hurt through needles and injections. I didn't trust anyone.

With no medication or treatment to fix the damage I was now starting to have to resign myself to needing a wheelchair for the rest of my life. This was devastating and took many years to come to terms with. I loathed being referred to as disabled. In my teens I missed out on playing football, riding my bike and skateboarding. During the subsequent 20 years since the illness I had at least two or three significant breakdowns in that time.

I also had to 'make-do' with a standard-issue National Health Service wheelchair as we couldn't afford a bespoke lightweight one. It's things like this that again affect dependency, self-assurance and morale significantly. The lightweight, specialised TIGA wheelchair I'm fortunate to have now (Thank you RGK) has been integral to boosting my confidence, independence and being able to lead as normal life as possible. With the technology, materials and products available today, I passionately believe that every child who finds themselves in a situation where illness or injury causes them to require a wheelchair that they should have access and funds made available for one that is suitable and bespoke to their needs and abilities. There's simply no excuse for ill-fitting, heavy and cumbersome wheelchairs anymore.

When I was finally well enough and ready to go back to school, staff, friends and other class members and pupils were very kind, accommodating, helpful and made me as welcome as possible. Friends still accepted me just like they had before (give or take the occasional school bully) and even though I'd missed a whole year of school time it was decided that I wouldn't be kept back a year. I was able to stay in the same class with my friends which was a big comfort.

I don't know if I would have been able to deal with being back at school, in a wheelchair, looking and feeling the way I did and then be burdened with what I would have perceived at the time as the 'shame' of being held back a year as well. It did affect me academically in certain areas and I often wish I could go back and do it all over again, but it led the way for where I would venture after I finished my GCSE's and to varying degrees it enabled me whilst at college and university to overcome some of my weaknesses in subjects I felt I hadn't done so well in at school.

On leaving school at sixteen years of age I did a couple of weeks of work experience at local electrical engineering company GEC where my Dad worked and I was offered a trial engineering apprenticeship. Art and design was my passion but I also liked technology and making and building things which was the next best alternative. It meant that I could earn some money, get some more qualifications and my Dad could drive me to and from work as I was unable to drive at the time.

During my apprenticeship, everyone had to keep a record of their work which I saw as a great opportunity to start drawing again and use that as a way to convey the methods and processes I'd implemented for the various tasks we were asked to perform. I won an award in my first year for 'outstanding logbook' and I was promoted to full-time apprentice there and then. I was incredibly proud of the achievement and the progress I had made within such a short period of time.

After completing the four-year apprenticeship and getting qualifications in EIectrical and Electronic Engineering I continued in a Technician role for a number of years in the Engineering/Research and Development Department. I think it was around this time and in my mid-twenties that anxiety and stress started to affect me again. My job involved developing and supporting hinged armature electromechanical relays for use in Transmission and Distribution Systems and Rapid Transit Track Protection; simply put, for use on the National Grid, power stations, substations and railways.

Some of the relays I engineered were used for controlling train signalling and for operating control rods in nuclear power stations; both areas of critical safety.

The thought that I might get something wrong that had the potential to cause anyone harm was something I really struggled with both during and outside of work. I recorded everything in detailed reports and was as thorough as I could be. I backed up my working, calculations and choices of components at every stage with as much evidence as I possibly could to the best of my ability and competency to alleviate the worry. Still, the distress caused was always disproportionate and anxious thoughts would often spiral and worsen quickly.

Every time there was breaking news of a rail crash or incident on the radio or TV I would worry and often panic that it was something I'd done that had caused it even though I knew the product had been installed, tested and certified correctly without any problems. But I'd still worry... 'what if it is?' I'd look for the worst case scenario and be on edge for days or sometimes weeks at a time. I couldn't help it and the uneasiness it caused made me feel physically sick. I didn't know what to do or where to turn for support and that fear of the unknown had returned to haunt me; and it weighed heavily.

The PRiMA and MCAA Relays were just two of the products that I supported
The PRiMA and MCAA Relays were just two of the products that I supported

As a coping mechanism, to try and take my mind off the tension from work, I turned again to art and design when I was at home. It was around this time that PC's really started to take off but suddenly software like Corel Draw and the slightly more well-known 'Photoshop' received my attention.

Instead of a creating something with a pencil or brush there was a whole new world of things possible to do. I could put photographs and type together and play with effects, move things around and was astounded by 'layers'.

I self-taught as much as I could and was given an opportunity to do some work for an ex apprentice manager who was providing Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) materials and courses to schools. It was through this work and the enjoyment I received from it that I decided to explore the possibility of doing graphic design as a career instead of engineering but felt I needed a degree qualification to be able to achieve this. There was also a lot more that I needed and wanted to learn.

I made the decision to leave my job as a Technician after being offered a place at The Faculty of Art and Design at Staffordshire University. I feel bad that I can't remember the name of the chap who interviewed me and offered me the place (I think he had something to do with screen printing) but I want to say thank you to him. From 2002 - 2005 I did my Graphic Design / Electronic Graphics degree. I worried initially if the change from full-time employment to full-time student had been the right thing to do (that fear of the unknown again) but those three years at University turned out to be the most exciting, intriguing and fulfilling years of my life. I loved being able to immerse myself into design books, typography and design history. The library was one of my favourite places to go (I loved the peace and quiet) and I enjoyed reading Grafik magazine and Creative Review which I subscribed to.

It was during the second year of my degree that my tutor Jim Williams, Senior Lecturer and founding member of The Chase Design Agency in Manchester gave me the guidance and encouragement resulting in the most confidence I've ever had in myself and my abilities. I can't thank him enough for believing in me to the point where he felt I was good enough to approach The Chase at the end of my third year where I was offered a placement after graduating with a BA: 1st Class Honours.

At the same time as the placement offer in Manchester, I was also offered a chance to cover maternity leave at PR Agency Edson Evers in Stafford which was only a mile down the road from where I lived. Each were great opportunities and I desperately wanted to be able to do both, but they were both starting at the same time and ultimately I had to make a decision between the two.

The placement at The Chase would have been for a week or two with the possibility of staying longer, whereas I was being offered a much longer stay at Edson Evers in Stafford. In the end, it really came down to travelling and accessibility; sadly two major factors to consider when you're a wheelchair user. If I take the placement in Manchester, what would I do if my car broke down? Where will I park in the centre of Manchester that's accessible and close by? What would I do if I was taken ill? How would I get into the building every morning as it's not wheelchair accessible? All of these things affect just how independent you are able to be every day and I'm really not very good at asking for help as I don't want to burden anyone.

Going anywhere when you're in a wheelchair requires planning and needing to know that you can get from A to B and knowing exactly how you are going to do it whether that's by wheelchair, car, train, bus, ship or plane. I just didn't have the confidence that I would have the support-base I needed to assist me if something happened or went wrong on the 60 mile journey to Manchester and back every day and moving to a big, unfamiliar city when you've lived your whole life in a small town was a very scary prospect which made me very anxious again.

It was because of these uncertainties that I felt I had to decline the placement at The Chase. I was gutted, I felt I'd let Jim down in not taking that leap of faith but I felt honoured that I had been offered the opportunity in the first place and The Chase were very understanding of the situation. It was only a few days later that I started working at Edson Evers in a semi-freelance, part-maternity-cover, onsite-graphic-designer role (or something like that, I don't think I had a title) in their design studio.

I'd had no experience of working in an agency or studio environment beforehand and it was a steep learning curve and pretty nerve-wracking.

In the Studio at Edson Evers (Photo by Lydia Lewis 2007)
In the Studio at Edson Evers (Photo by Lydia Lewis 2007)

Initially I think pure enthusiasm and determination kept any anxiety or fears at bay. I'd worked so hard at University and I'd been offered a great opportunity. Everyone worked hard and it was a really nice team who got on really well with each other. I just wanted to do the best I could and help others. I must have shown some potential because after a year I was promoted to Design Studio Coordinator and then Design Studio Manager not long after that.

What I didn't want to do was let anyone down after having so much trust put in me, but the long hours that you would expect in a design studio with relinquishment of holidays, working at weekends and going in to the office on days off to meet clients and deadlines, took a certain toll and I was aware of the ever-present, residual effects of Guillain Barré (tiredness in particular), yet I tried not to let it show. It was the satisfaction from the work I was doing, the enjoyment from being with new colleagues and making new friends that helped keep me firing on all cylinders (or as many that would fire anyway).

I was able to work on a wide range of projects; everything from magazines, brochures, posters, packaging, advertisements, exhibition graphics, photography, events, website designs, animation and video editing for clients from all over the world and all from my desk in Stafford!

Getting my work printed in magazines and on packaging was one of the most satisfying accomplishments. Seeing something I'd done that had been printed thousands of times, distributed across the UK and ofter further, used by clients to promote their service or product was and still is a real sense of achievement and something I'm most proud of. There's just something about being able to pick up and hold your work in your own hands that to me personally, is far more satisfying than just seeing something on a screen. It's final, it's permanent, you can feel it and it's more personal.

Then, around 2012, the result and accumulation of a number of more recent losses including the death of a colleague caused my anxiety to reappear. I had an uncontrollable and irrational fear of letting people down and of not being good enough. I worried about workload and panicked about deadlines. I'd go into fight or flight mode every time someone asked for something, particularly if it was needed immediately. After seven years the Studio felt unmanageable and I succumbed to the belief that I had no control over the work, being able to get it done on time or how I felt or reacted.

I struggled as best as I could during the following months hoping it would subside but it was affecting my work and my relationships with colleagues, friends and family. I didn't feel like the same person and I didn't like how I felt. I was miserable and snappy, I'd get angry and lose my temper easily (I apologise again from the bottom of my heart to anyone whom I may have been terse with) and I lost my sense of humour, although some people will say my silly one-liners, puns and witty remarks were pretty hopeless anyway.

It was extremely hard to face having to tell management of the situation. Not coping, I regarded myself as a disappointment but I needed to let people know so that they were aware of the circumstances and that I had been to get help from my Doctor. I was conscious of the detrimental effects on my everyday life, health, work and others. I was too ashamed to even tell my family that I had accepted counselling for stress that I fitted in around my working hours. It definitely hit a raw nerve with me (ironic really).

I still feel somewhat apprehensive today talking about stress and anxiety in trepidation of what people may think or make judgement towards. We lead such hectic lifestyles nowadays and it's such a prevalent issue affecting a huge number of people**; many of whom are also afraid to talk openly. I've kept most of my experiences, worries and fears to myself predominantly over the years. I'm not looking for sympathy, just the opposite, but feel it's time to be honest and open about it. Tackling the stigma attached to mental health is still very real and prominent. Significant progress has been made in recent decades, but it still remains a key issue driven by negative associations, experience and language**** (personally I do think people are being more attentive and empathetic towards the issue).

It felt like a weight had been taken off my shoulders by acknowledging and talking about the problem. I think it's important to start a conversation if you are struggling with anxiety, stress or any other mental health condition. I hope others are encouraged to talk more openly about the issue too, specifically in light of all the publicity surrounding mental health in the media, in particular the Headstogether campaign spearheaded by the Duke and Duchess of Sussex and Duke and Duchess of Cambridge which has been one of the most influential initiatives.

The Doctor I spoke to explained in a very considerate and intelligible way that, essentially, the reason I was feeling the way I did was primarily due to a disruption of electrical signals in the brain (although it was unknown whether this was a remnant of the nerve damage caused by Guillain Barré). It wasn't 'me' that was or had the problem, it was something that was physical and conceivably chemical that was out of my control and it was being magnified by extenuating circumstances.

After all this time things suddenly started to fall in to place. Finally having 'a diagnosis' by a professional medical practitioner enabled me to think more clearly, focus and I was able to rationalise things to a much higher degree. And, with a new perspective and treatment to moderate my anxiety, I began to feel better and was able to continue in my role without any time off work with the support of family, friends and colleagues.

In 2016 I experienced another life changing event... this time a far more positive one! I met my wife Jill which changed my whole outlook on life, how I feel, how I perceive myself, my values and the world around me. It often feels like fate brought Jill and I together to support each other with our unique and individual losses, although help from friends and a little assistance in profile writing by a work colleague and friend (Thank you again Marisha for persuading me to join also played a huge part.

I still don't know why Jill agreed to meet for a coffee with a 'sci-fi and superhero loving graphic designer who likes typography, fonts and gingerbread' but somehow it worked!

Our Wedding Day October 12th 2018
Our Wedding Day October 12th 2018

What Jill has been through in her life definitely struck a compassionate chord and Jill's own story which you can read here was even more of a touching reminder of just how fragile life can be. Jill had experienced two huge losses in her life of which, in due course, led her to become a specialist in grief recovery with a real passion for helping children.

Jill believes and often tells me that "Things happen for a reason"; whether good or bad. Had none of the events that have happened to both of us in our lives not taken place, we wouldn't be together and where we are now.

My experience as a child had significantly affected my health over the many years after my initial illness. I had received treatment for the physical symptoms like physiotherapy, hydrotherapy and occupational therapy for a relatively short period of time but at no point during rehabilitation was I given or even offered any form of psychological help for my mental or emotional wellbeing. I just had to try and cope with the trauma and loss I'd sustained and try to work it out by myself with only my family and friends to guide me. They all endeavoured to do the best they could but in no way were they experts which meant that they laboured with what to say or do to help me, especially when I was struggling and asking 'Why did this have to happen to me?'

I can only hope that treatment for children suffering trauma has changed significantly in the last 30 years; it's certainly something that I would like to investigate and pursue. I recognise that resources may well not have existed or weren't thought about or considered in the late 80s and early 90s. However, there are now a wealth of mental health services and resources as it's become so high profile, and if people are unable to obtain help via the NHS then there should be a way of accessing or being referred to other services instead to ensure people receive the support they need as quickly as possible.

My loss has been cumulative and I have carried it and it's effects with me for a large percentage of my life (nearly 30 years!) My experience has aided my understanding of how early intervention when dealing with loss is incredibly important and invaluable for those experiencing the grief evoked. If help had been forthcoming at the onset of Guillain Barré it would have been beneficial to both myself and my family. The change in my parents lives was also consequential. My Mum gave up her job to be a carer to me and I've always felt that my Dad initially struggled in coming to terms with the fact that I needed a wheelchair and would probably be disabled for the rest of my life. They both had, along with my two sisters their own losses that they were having to deal with themselves. The empathy I feel towards the subject incited me to work with Jill to help her achieve her goals in helping others and to raise awareness of Grief Recovery and the assistance that is available.

I worked with some wonderful people and make some lifelong friends along the way with some very clever PR and marketing people and some very talented designers and developers in the Studio. I just hope they were able to learn something from me. I certainly learned a great deal from them.

In 2018 I therefore made the very emotional decision to leave Edson Evers and from the job that I had done conscientiously for 13 years that I was extremely proud of. Working with Jill to help people and children in the community, whilst at the same time being able to do my own design work on a freelance basis felt, at this stage in my life, like the best of both worlds which would also enable me to maintain a better balance between work, life and my health. Plus, I've since been fortunate to help Jess, the new Studio Manager at Edson Evers when she's been on holiday which has been nice to be asked to go back and do.

With some of the EE Team on a day out at The Shard (2013)
With some of the EE Team on a day out at The Shard (2013)
It's reassuring that the office banter and general (yet affectionate) verbal abuse that I'm accustomed to still hasn't changed which is comfortingly familiar.

In the past year, when I've not been working alongside Jill I've provided graphic design, social media content and video for a local volunteer group working with Stafford Borough Council, Stafford-based charity A Child Of Mine that provides support to bereaved parents and Aspire Stafford who provide support to adults with learning difficulties. All are very different from my engineering background and the manufacturing, construction and electrical clients that I'm used to, but it is very rewarding to see and be a part of the work being done to help people in Stafford and surrounding areas. I hope I'm able to more more of this type of work in the future too.

I often used to think about what my life would have been like if I hadn't contracted GBS. I can certainly pinpoint and attribute the emergence of my fears and anxiety to my own childhood ordeal, but what direction may I have taken? what sort of person would I be?... would I be more outgoing? more self-assured? or would I be the same as I am? I try not to think of that anymore. After all of the tribulations and irresolution since childhood, I'm now comfortable with who I am, my disability, how I feel and, I hope I'm still a decent, loyal, dedicated, principled and likeable person too.

Skydive with Edson Evers to raise money for Crossroads Care Staffordshire (2013)
Skydive with Edson Evers to raise money for Crossroads Care Staffordshire (2013)

For all of the bad things that have happened while growing up and into my adult life there have been many positives and I consider myself to be quite lucky. If things had been different, I probably wouldn't have met the wonderful people and made the friends I have along the way, or achieved things I never thought possible; going to university, doing the job I always wanted, having the independence to be able to live in my own home, learn to drive, jump out of a plane and be an extremely proud husband.

Now, all these years on, thankfully, the severe discomfort and pain that was so distressing has subsided and it's only the signals telling muscles what to do that still can't find their way to where they need to go. Fortunately, I do have completely normal feeling and sensation again. (Although I sometimes get achy and restless legs in certain types of weather for some reason).

I think I will always carry the scars of stress, anxiety, fear and lack of confidence from my childhood, but hopefully they won't be the open wounds of the past. I definitely feel as though I now have the awareness and better coping mechanisms to deal with apprehension and the disposition to accept, understand and move forward with regards to my relationship to my loss.

In addition, I know that there will always be that one reassuring constant and benefactor; my love for and enjoyment of graphics, typography, print and design which influenced and inspired me as a young boy. It is an affection that has helped me through adversity and a devotion that has guided me towards the profession that I wish to continue and the type of work that I would like to do, which I now look to approach, not only with my experience and knowledge of the past 32 years, but also through the eyes and mind of my first thirteen.

Sadly, I never found a 'Shiney Pique' or was able to swap enough stickers to get one :o( Image: Pinterest
Sadly, I never found a 'Shiney Pique' or was able to swap enough stickers to get one :o( Image: Pinterest

#graphicdesign #edsonevers #edsoneverspr #publicrelations #design #disability #children #health #mentalhealth #mentalhealthmatters #griefrecovery #griefrecoveryuk #school #nhs #gbs #guillanbarre #guillanbarresyndrome #wheelchair #rgk #rgklife #art #mexico86 #pique #worldcup #ghostbusters #autobots #decepticons #logos #mascot #panini #worldcup #grief #loss #trauma #wheelchair

* - Guillain Barré Syndrome (GBS) Described Concisely (Video)

**Fundamental Facts About Mental Health -

*** "Grief is the normal and natural reaction to loss of any kind." - Grief Recovery UK

The Joy of Letraset (BBC News) -

**** -

Read more about the Mexico 86 Panini Sticker Album at Creative Review -

Grief Recovery Websites and

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