I have been a little bit late in writing this blog but you will see why shortly. The lyrics comes from the song “Cars” by Gary Numan.
We rarely consider what we take for granted until you have had a stroke. Language … balance … mental agility … driving. Yes, driving.
After suffering the stroke, I was immediately given a driving suspension by my doctor. Fair enough as I would need to recover before I even think about it; so after five month of no driving, I have been working towards getting back to driving.
The first thing was to speak to L, my primary therapist. She talked us about what I needed to be aware of:
- Drivers are legally required to notify the DVLA if they have suffered a stroke;
- Drivers have to notify their insurance of the stroke;
- Drivers have to undertake a driving assessment.
So with the information in hand, TBH and I turned to the web to find where I could take the assessment. We eventually found East Anglian DriveAbility (EAD). They help disabled and/or elderly people mobile and independent, with a comprehensive assessment of fitness to continue or return to driving.
We were met by C, an Occupational Therapist, and D, an Approved Driving Instructor, who explained about the assessment in three sections:
- The first section began with an interview with C about the stroke and my present recovery, before I was asked to complete a series of physical and mental tasks;
- The second section uses a static car simulator and I was asked by D to maintaining a constant speed before braking in reaction to a series of lights;
- The final section was to take for a drive around the local area whilst D asked me to complete different tasks as C observed me.
All in one, I was there for about three hours. After the drive, C and D sat TBH and I down and explained about their results. D said that he considered the assessment to be “excellent” and “one of the better drives” he’d seen, C said that she saw no reason why I could not drive again.
A brilliant result all round; I had to wait until the official report but that has now been forwarded to the DVLA along with the necessary forms. Now to wait for their response.