It began as a simple exercise in improving keyboard skills…but with the support of St Luke’s, it’s become a fascinating insight into the daily life of patient Ted Murat.
Ted, who is 86, started keeping a daily diary when son Philip gave him a computer back in the year 2000.
“I just wanted a bit of keyboard practice so I just started to put down what came into my head or simple notes about things that had happened that day,” Ted says.
“I was just writing for me, it wasn’t to entertain anybody – it was just observations about things that were happening at the time.”
Move forward more than 20 years and retired television engineer Ted, who lives with pulmonary fibrosis, was spending time on our In Patient Centre, when Occupational Therapist Rob Smith suggested that he might like to put down some of his memories on paper.
That’s when Ted pointed out that he already had more than two decades of his life preserved on a computer file and with the support and encouragement of fellow Occupational Therapist Lorraine West, that story has now been printed out in full, with Ted also adding special extra sections of his childhood in Attercliffe, his lifelong passion for cycling and his 62 years with wife Sheila, who died last autumn.
“I had no inclination to write my story but when it was suggested to me I thought I’d give it a go as I never say no to anything,” Ted said.
“People have said they want to read it and I’ve said I’d be flattered, even though it was never written to be read.
“What I like myself is that I can open a page at random and be quite surprised at what I’ve written!”
Ted, who lived for many years in Wadsley Bridge before becoming a resident at the Porterbrook Care Home in Crosspool, now looks forward to his regular St Luke’s visits.
“It gives me the opportunity to meet other people from different environments and I love it, I think it’s wonderful,” he admits.
“It’s thanks to St Luke’s that I now have my story printed out and that’s meant a lot to me.
“I’ve never thought about turning it into a book – I’m just amazed it has got this far and that’s only because St Luke’s has spurred me on.”