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It's my party and I'll cry if I f***ing want to

Wednesday February 9

Happy birthday to me! I am now 16. I still feel the same though. All my presents were pink and I got quite a few things for my room. I got a wind chime made out of sliced crystals which Mum has hung from my light and she hits her head on it every time she comes into my room. And I got a pink leather whip from my Auntie Lesley for horseriding. Mum keeps telling me it's a riding crop.

In the afternoon I was supposed to be at school, but I still didn't feel right so I didn't go. Mum had invited my three teachers round and had not told me. I was in my room and Lee (my brother) had let them in and told them to be quiet. Mum suggested that I should walk with my frame from my room to the living room. I said I couldn't be bothered but I would walk from the hall. She pushed me to the living room door and I stood up with my frame and tried to walk in. But because I hadn't practised for a while, it just wasn't working. I took a couple of steps into the living room and got frustrated with it so I shouted "this foot is f***ing spastic, it's not f***ing working". That's when my teachers started to nervously sing "Happy Birthday". It might have been funny if they had laughed, but they didn't.

My halo has now slipped. I don't normally swear like that, I just got frustrated.

Thursday February 17

I have been invited to a ball at the Dorchester hotel in London on March 11. It is a charity event. You are expected to dress posh; Lee's coming with us so he has to get a suit. I don't know what I am going to wear. I don't go in for posh or dresses. I am a T-shirt and jeans kind of girl. I don't think they serve chips either.

Friday February 25

Evelyn took my laptop home with her yesterday to review my book and see if there were any obvious mistakes in it. She said I am doing well but made a point about me not mentioning that I am blind. I had never thought of that before. It's not that I hide the fact that I can't see; I just don't think like that. A lot of things in my book that I have described have been described to me in the first place. I get a picture in my head so I feel as though I am actually seeing it. I don't feel blind, although that might sound stupid. I have just got used to it. I don't wake up and think "oh, I'm blind". It has never really bothered me and it doesn't stop me doing much, so sometimes I forget.

Sunday February 27

I found out more about the ball at the Dorchester. It is a chocolate ball with a chocolate theme. There will be a chocolate fountain and chocolate wallpaper. Yum! I still do not know what I am going to wear. It sounds fun though.

Nicole Dryburgh, 16, attends St Nicholas' special school in Canterbury, Kent, part-time. Five years ago she was diagnosed with cancer. She recovered but then suffered a brain haemorrhage that left her blind and with limited mobility. Contact her at nicole@c-h-o-c.org.uk

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