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Johnnie M

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Everything posted by Johnnie M

  1. Absolutely do it with the backing of your doctor and the supervision of the NHS groups. I can assure you that all participants are very well monitored. JM
  2. In May 2012 I was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, due mostly to lifestyle and a sedentary one at that! For 18 months I single-mindedly tackled my weight and reduced down considerably, keeping the need to medicate at bay. But as is usual with these things, the lifestyle came back and the waistline grew back too. I started medicating at the docs insistence/suggestion. Roll forward to end of last year and I find that the NHS are offering courses to help guide you through the ultra low calorie dieting that can be used to (hopefully) successfully reverse diabetes. It doesn't work for everyone but I thought that it may be worth a bash. On Feb 4th I started the 800 calorie a day diet using Exante meal replacement products, many of which are really awful but some are OK, so I stick to those that are OK. Other products are also available of course and one is allowed around 250 gms of vegetable per day, in addition to the meal replacements. I make soups, roasted ratatouille, curries etc and that is really satisfying. It doesn't come with carbs of course so I have started dreaming a lot about food! I have decided that carbs are the food of the Gods. I think the Greeks, Romans and Egyptians should have had Gods of carbs! In week 1 I lost a stone and in the following five weeks it has leapt to 2.5 stone overall. It hasn't been easy easy but I am quite single minded and the fact that I am now buying trousers and summer shorts with waistlines that I haven't fitted into since the 1970's keeps me going and my headspace in the right place. The reason for this rather lengthy missive is to say that anyone who is considering this option to reverse diabetes should just go for it. There are so many physical benefits. Less back pain, lower pressure on arthritic joints and a general feeling of wellness. I shall be trying out my new beach bod in June and can't wait! If you need any further information then feel free to ask and I shall be as helpful as I can. It needs commitment,especially at the weekend when preparing and cooking food is a large part of what I enjoy but it's only for 12 weeks and what harm can it do?! JM
  3. Fantastic news Dave. Another success story. Be careful out there in the snow! JM
  4. It is almost 7 months since this thread was last visited. I am wondering whether Penny managed to get back on the road? It would be lovely to hear from you Penny, just to let us know the latest. There may be others here who could learn from your experiences. The root cause of you having your licence revoked is not the same as mine as it didn't involve loss of vision. I also suspect that if you do have your licence back it is due to a time based limitation? Did you have to take a driving assessment, for instance, or did you get it back from a report issued to the DVLA confirming that you hadn't had another 'event' within the past year. I really hope that we can hear positive news Penny! Hopefully you are not able to read this because you are on a trip in your car! JM
  5. Not at all Finollie. They only want to know that the revokation of the licence is due to health issues and that the DVLA have subsequently been happy to sign these off and give you your licence back. Had you had your licence revoked due to drink driving then it certainly would increase. In this case not.
  6. What a fantastic thing to read on my way to work Finollie. I am so pleased that all went well and by the sounds of it you are a few short weeks away from being mobile again. I always liken it to the day that you got your first bicycle as a child. Freedom of the open road. Freedom of movement. Freedom to go wherever your heart desires without recourse to bus, train or tram timetables! I still get a joyful feeling each time I get into my car, even if it is just for a trip to do a weekly shop. When I first bought a TVR (I don't have it now but did have it for 7 glorious years), my wife asked me to pop out for a pint of milk. It took me two hours and around 60 miles to get that pint. Luckily she wasn't hankering for a cup of tea, otherwise there may have been something to answer for! The next stage may be somewhat frustrating. It will take the test centre up to a week to issue their report to the DVLA (Call them and ask them to fax it to the DVLA as well as posting it - it will speed things up). Once the DVLA have it, it will take up to five days to 'get on their system'. I suggest you chase up the test centre after three days from the date of your test. Once they have confirmed that the report has been faxed to the DVLA, chase the DVLA around four days after they have received it. It is then in the lap of the Gods as to how long they take to report to you that your licence is returned. If you have a case manager, phone them every day after you know that it is formally on the DVLA's system. They are really nice about it and generally very helpful. One day soon you'll hear them say that they have approved you having your licence back. It is a glorious day and I am looking forward to hearing all about it. You do not have to wait to get the licence in your hand! Just make sure that you ask them if it is OK for you to drive and get the name of the person that said it, just in case of confusion somewhere along the line. From a practical point of view, call your insurers and make sure that you have insurance agreed and ready to go once you have your licence returned. I did this and was able to give my insurance company an email to say that I was allowed to drive again. Once they received the email my insurance was valid from 12 midnight of the date of the email. Hence, I was ready to go!
  7. That is, if I may say, wonderful news Finollie!! Yay! We have lots of advice on the practical assessment but we can let you know more when it is in the diary. Once you have applied then make sure you ask the assessment centre for a cancellation. Let us know where you'll be doing it as someone here may already have attended that centre. I did mine in Carshalton in SE London. It may also be sensible to ask the DVLA if you could have a provisional licence until you get your assessment done. I had one for about three weeks before my assessment and it really helped my confidence on the road and particularly enabled me to pinpoint if there were deficiencies of which I needed to be aware. You'll have to have L Plates, always be accompanied by someone who has had a clean licence for 3 years + and you cannot go on Motorways. Give them a call and see what they say. Come back here when you have a date for the provisional and we can tell you all about the assessment. Excellent end to my working day!!
  8. Well Ally, it seems you are making progress but the great thing is that you are legally back on the road again. Small steps may be the way forward for you, to regain your confidence. Avoid small car parks though! Have a good trip today. JM
  9. OMG!! Fantastic news! That has proper made my day! I had a feeling at the beginning of this week (hence my earlier comment) that the news would be good and would come soon. I hope you managed to get your insurers on board. Go home early and just get out there! Be careful until you are comfortable that you can cover all bases when driving. Be more vigilant than you would have been in the past. Have fun and if you are ever in the SE London area, give me a shout and I'll hoon with you! (a 'hoon' is a petrolhead's terminology for 'going out for a drive for absolutely no other reason than the pure joy of it!) Congrats Allyc!
  10. Yay!! Keep calling every day and I reckon you'll have your licence back before the end of this week or end of next at the latest. They have all they need Ally. It can't take much reviewing can it?!! They called me at work at to tell me that they were giving me my licence back. They said that they would sort out the licence later that afternoon but I was not able to drive until the licence records had been changed. I took the afternoon off (well I was keen to drive!) and sat by the phone waiting for that call. At 16.36 the phone rang and an angel at DVLA told me my licence was reinstated. 'Fantastic! Thank you so much', was my response. "Er, the licence will not be valid until midnight tonight....." Silence, whilst I took that particular bit of news in! I got up at 06.00 (it was a Saturday morning so this, in itself, was quite a thing!) and my former chauffeur/wife happily filmed me driving away for a rather long drive which involved A roads, B roads and motorways and a little bit of 'spirited but safe' overtaking. ? Bliss! Keep us informed! JM
  11. This morning I received a reminder from my insurance company that my annual premium is due. I've never been so happy to receive that notification! Although it will be interesting to see what the premium is now, given that I have just had a claim for nearly £1600 where someone rear ended me in traffic. Barely a scratch but the repairers completely changed the bumper! Happy with that too as it removed a scratch or two that I would otherwise have had to pay for at some point in the future. Advice....never park too close to ANYONE, in any parking situation. They don't care about your car! It's only metal though (yeah, right) ?
  12. Any news Ally? I presume that you have been in contact with your complaint handler at DVLA? I am sure they will be great in getting this licence back for you. Let us all know what progress.
  13. Fantastic news Ally! I reckon it'll be three to four weeks. It took my test centre one week to send the report to DVLA and it will take DVLA minimum four days to get the report 'on the system'. May I suggest that you ask the test centre to email the report to DVLA? That may shortcut the receipt of the report. After the report is on the system, your guess is as good as mine. Track the report by calling the test centre to find out when it was sent to DVLA then call the DVLA everyday after they have confirmed that it has been logged as passed on to the medical team. Let us know how long it takes overall as it will be helpful to others going through the process. Take care out on the road but enjoy yourself. It's like getting your first bike (but faster!) . JM
  14. Thanks Ally. I've not been since 2016 so am really hangin' out for a proper drivers drive, if you know what I mean. A leisurely pootle through Spain and France in my wife's car doesn't count really. It was just a sedate teaser. ?
  15. Finollie If the visual defect has been present for 12 months and you have already had reports from the various consultants or doctors confirming 1) the event was an isolated event and is a non progressive condition 2) That there are no other vision issues or defects or progressive conditions present - Your consultant opthalmologist should be able to confirm this 3) Sight in both eyes (the Esterman test shows this anyway) 4) No other diplopia - Your consultant opthalmologist should be able to confirm this 5) No other impairment of vision - Your consultant opthalmologist should be able to confirm this. It seems to me that you just need to get your doctor (or, if he/she is not prepared to provide a letter, an occupational therapist) to confirm that, despite your visual defect, you are able to go about your normal daily life without a problem. It's about getting dressed, shopping, crossing the road, getting to and from work or other places that you frequent etc etc. My doctor wrote a letter to me for forwarding to the DVLA. It seems to me that there is a good case for you although I note your vision loss is right in the middle of your field of vision. I am not sure if this might be negatively viewed by the DVLA. PS. I had a letter from my consultant stating that she 'supported my application to get my licence back'. She would probably never write that I should have my licence back as she recognises that only the DVLA can make that decision and they must apply their own rules. She could not possible know the fullest extent of their decision-making criteria. I wish you luck.
  16. Hey LyneH It seems that your son's eyesight is improving and that is a good thing. I cannot guess at what DVLA will say but hopefully he will move forward in some way. If they still refuse then get the Esterman test redone every six months ( I am sure that someone will do it privately for you ) to check that the vision has improved. When you an improvement then start the process again. In respect of your own loss of licence, you don't mention whether you have vision loss so I imagine that this is something that DVLA do as a matter of course. If you have another 'event' in the six months then they will extend the revokation of the licence. You need to call them to see what is expected after six months. Good luck to you and your son. I just booked a week of driving in Spain in September 2019. I hope the borders are open!
  17. Hi Finollie, Sorry to hear that things are not progressing. Why can your consultant opthalmologist not give you a letter confirming that 'in his opinion' you should be able to drive? It seems weird that he wont do that. Have you asked? Once you have a letter stating as such from him then issue this to the DVLA and ask them to open a case to consider you for getting your licence back under the 'exceptional case' rules. You don't state what it is that you have done so far with the DVLA or what it is that the DVLA said in response. Always put everything in writing so that you have a paper trail. Not so necessary after you have a case number confirming you are being considered to get your licence back but would be useful at this stage. You are unlikely to get your licence back if the loss of vision is 'hemianopia' (half your peripheral sight). If the loss it classified as quadrantanopia (roughly a quarter of your sight) then there is a good chance. Are you able to post your Esterman test results here? I posted a PDF file of the exceptional case requirements in a post above here. Read them carefully and see if you can tick each of them off. If you can get all the tests and reports together and can show that the event was a one-off, perhaps you can then send them to the DVLA and ask for consideration to be made for you to get your licence back. You need to take the bull by the horns I'm afraid and fight your corner. Show them absolutely that you can reach all their criteria! You can do it! Good luck!
  18. Dear Bill. I have a lovely house in SE London. Please feel free to holiday there as and when you feel like it. There are many little jobs that need doing and even though I know they need doing my wife seems to keep reminding me every six months. She seems obsessed! Your family can be in London in less than an hour on our superb train service (we will even give them lifts to the station!). You, however, will be busy.....
  19. I have just been catching up on the forums here and found that Karl seems to have gone offline for a while. Perhaps he got his licence back and was so excited that he just hopped in his car and hasn't been seen since. He could well be on a road trip to end all road trips. If he is then all is well in his world and it is worth a cheer! Go Karl!
  20. Lyneh So sorry to hear about your tumour. Benign or otherwise it must have been such a worry for you and your family. I wish you a swift recovery. Now we can see the Esterman test results, I can understand your concern. It is definitively Hemianopia rather than quadrantanopia. The DVLA may not that there is quite a clear central vision but as it covers two sectors of vision I am unable to really help. Get the results in along with all the other reports required under the exception case rules and see what they say. I am sorry that I can't be more specific but as has been mentioned before, we are not medically trained and more specifically, we are not members of DVLA teams deciding these cases. The DVLA will take each case on its' own merits so it is almost impossible to say one way or another. Good luck to him and let us know how you get on with the application. The more information we have, the more likely we can help with an appeal if it is needed for someone in the future. What is important is that the DVLA are consistent. If they are consistent with their decisions then we can't complain but when they deviate and allow someone a licence, where similar results have not lead to another person getting theirs back, then that is unfair. JM
  21. Lyneh, Glad to hear that your Son is moving forward to reapply for his licence. The waiting is interminable. I am so sorry but I am not able to comment on whether his results are likely to get positive results from the DVLA as I am not qualified to do so. However, if you can make the pics smaller (your Son can help with this) then post them here. We may then be able to make an educated guess based on what results we had. In fact, if you look at my results I posted a few pages ago right here then you may well be able to judge yourself. However, be aware that each case will be viewed one it's own so there may be many reason's why DVLA allow some to move forward and not others. We do not know what their criteria are. If the DVLA review the Esterman test results and then ask for reports then take each step slowly and you should eventually find he gets his licence back. It just takes quite a while. If all the reports are sent along with the re-application then this will help shorten the process but be aware that the wheels of industry (pardon the pun) turn very slowly at the DVLA. Good luck to you and your Son. JM
  22. You may be right Daffodil! One horsepower? Yikes!! I will be the chap who needs to get a carriage that takes two horses (much like the Citroen 2CV, deux chevaux). The 2CV is actually one of my favourite cars of all time. It is hilarious to drive and couldn't pull the skin off a rice pudding (as my Grandpa used to say). It was, nonetheless, full of character and it never failed to illicit a wave from other 2 CV drivers, much like the British sports car marque, TVR (which have engines at completely the opposite end of the scale! JM
  23. On this day in 2016 I had my stroke. Well, a headache actually which I was told was a stroke. A bit of vision loss and perhaps some memory obfuscation but otherwise I am all good. In a few days time I shall also have been tobacco free for two years. Yesterday I had been driving again for 4 months. I love it! Fuel costs are hitting me hard but I am not ready to go electric, despite the amazing torque those machines have! Internal combustion engine all the way for me! And a bon journee to you all.
  24. I had every confidence that all would be fine Ally and it seems that it will be! Fantastic news! Remember to buy L Plates for your car and don't go out on your own as you wont be insured. Your passenger will need to have had a full UK licence for over three years and you can't go on motorways. I only had a couple of weeks in a car before I had my assessment but it was invaluable in convincing me that all would be fine. When you get your assessment date call them and ask for a cancellation so that you can get it done as soon as possible (unless you feel you need an extended time on a provisional). Kelly and I have recent experiences with the assessment so come back when you have had a few trips in your car and let us know how you got on. We can then give you the full modus operandi for the assessment. You don't need to wait for the actual licence before getting out on the road. Call them again and ask if it is OK to drive now. I did exactly that, they said yes, so I left work, met my wife at the station, she drove me (in my car) to Halfords and I purchased a set of L plates, stuck them on the car and was back on the road within two hours of getting a 'Yes'. Have fun on the road, concentrate and take it slowly for a while. Moreover, be safe and enjoy! It's a liberating experience.
  25. Well Ally, I had all that flim flam and after a number of weeks I sent a letter of complaint (which in itself took two weeks to deal with!) but it did make a big difference and they have targets you see! My point to them was that if I am a 'high priority case' then what is it that they are doing to reflect that fact. I knew that they had had the reports they requested as they had already confirm the dates they had received them. I was also told *by various people at DVLA) that the information would be 'considered within two week' and it had already been 5 weeks so quite what 'high priority meant was beyond my understanding. Words to that effect anyway. Once the complaint had been received they seemed to be on top of it and I had a specific case officer allocated to me. I guess I was just frustrated at the lack of forward movement really! Worth a try I guess. Well, it couldnt hurt. JM
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