365: It’s coming on 2001-2003

This was me, around December 2001. I was partaking in a themed victorian day in Halsnead. One of the teachers, Mrs Leyland scared me so much, I cried. We'll hear a bit more about her in future blog posts.
This was me, around December 2001. I was partaking in a themed victorian day in Halsnead. One of the teachers, Mrs Leyland scared me so much, I cried. We’ll hear a bit more about her in future blog posts.

So now, in the 365 series, we are going into the time when I started school at aged 4 to when I was 6 years old.

I was given a place at Halsnead community Primary school, and I was placed into a teacher called Mrs Stickler’s class (she wasn’t married at that point, but by the time I was in year 1, she was and I had her again). I will gladly, admit though, when I was in those years, I wasn’t the finest of people. I was loud, rude and I once licked a paper towel to clean my tongue when I licked a teaching assistant’s hand (luckily, Mrs Fairclough forgave me).

Our headmaster was a man called Mr Rowling, who looking back, is one of the best bosses that I ever will have. He was welsh, experienced and played guitar. He’d been at the school since 1993 and left in 2007, with all of us in tears (not me though). Halsnead was a good school for me, despite my naughty behaviour, as they tried to help me through what was a defining point in my life. in Nursery, I was put under examination by doctors and psychiatrists and the likes for my behaviour, who believed my naughty behaviour to be a result of an illness. After what turned out to be 11-12 years, it turned out that I was on the Autistic spectrum, which caused a mild form of dyspraxia in me. This luckily hasn’t affected me in many ways, and has probably made me a greater person, but we will get to that sooner.

One memory of one of the things I had to go through was a blood test to help my diagnosis. I was taken out of school, driven to Whiston Hospital children’s ward, and I had magic cream (which numbed that area of my arm, put a butterfly needle in me and took out my blood, I did cry, but in the end, after I left, I got Burger King for lunch and was sent back to school.

In reception and year 1, I was with the same teacher, in the same school, with two friends called Dillon and Jack. Dillon was in my class and Jack was in our neighbour class until he defected to Whiston Willis. Jack I do still see and speak to on the occasion, and Dillon I haven’t seen for three years, but from what I heard from mutual friends and acquaintances is that he has changed to a person I would not like to associate myself with. One memory with Jack I have is I went to his house one day, and we were playing and I wouldn’t climb on his bunkbed that he had, and I was getting some stuff up to play with, then he fell landing on his arm. I got his mum and we took him to hospital where we learned he broke his arm. I was upset. What I was upset about was that he didn’t get a robotic replacement arm like DR X from Action man (great toys, they should bring them back!).

It was in Primary school I met lots of wonderful people, but one who stands out as well is Rebecca Wood. Rebecca has known me for the best part of 12-13 years. She is truly the best person I know, who I would entrust with my life if a situation came up. That’s how close we are and were!

So that’s those years in a nutshell, but there was one thing I’d like to mention. I went to Majorca with the family in 2003, I left school a day early to go. Two stories come to mind:

1. We went to the local toy store to buy a beyblade (because they were cool things then, spinner thins that battled each other with these cool powers, I love you Japanese animation) and we went back to the room to find my dad had gone, we didn’t know where he was, we looked for him, my mum was crying (for reasons I will get into), I was crying, we looked in one more building, and he was there with some people we met. I said to him ‘you’re in trouble, you’re in trouble’. And writing this and looking back makes me chuckle XD

2. It was at this time (2003) when my Mum was getting fat. I didn’t know why, and I wouldn’t ask her because I know and knew even then that was rude to ask why a lady was fat. But in Majorca we were in the room and I asked her. She explained to me the reason she was getting fat wasn’t food, but something else. We will get into that in 365: 2004-2006.

About the author


Since 2012, Benjamin Attwood has written for the If you Ask Ben blog.

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