PDA WA Associate Director, Melanie Hawkes, shares her ”I can do it” series.

Written by and starring Melanie Hawkes (and her dog Upton)

Growing up with three younger brothers, my parents were busy all the time. I either had to learn to do things for myself, or wait a while for someone to help me – not ideal. With hands like mine, sometimes it was a challenge to find ways to do things, but it has made me more independent. There’s no better feeling than being able to achieve something previously thought impossible. 

I only have the ability to bend my little finger on each hand, but can grip things between some fingers as well. Tasks I can do include feed myself with ordinary cutlery, write, type, knit, cross-stitch and prune my bonsais with scissors. What I can’t do with one hand I can usually do with the other, and if not, I use my teeth. ** Disclaimer: don’t try this at home. I look after my teeth by flossing and brushing every day and regularly visiting my dentist. **

Here are some videos of me doing some everyday tasks. It might be slow and frustrating to watch, but I am proud that I can do these things when nobody is around to ask for help.

You can watch my videos below or by going to the PDA YouTube channel (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCMyTzhTbs2oLH-WZR18zX2Q). Whilst you’re there please check out our other videos and subscribe.

I hope that you enjoy watching my videos.

Melanie Hawkes, her sweet tooth and unwrapping a mintie.
Melanie Hawkes and how she writes with a pen.
Melanie Hawkes, her dog Upton and treat time.
Melanie Hawkes and her front-opening face mask.

There is one thing I wish I could do myself: put my own mask on. As I can’t reach behind my ears I have to get people to put it on for me. The solution? I pinned one to my hat, so when I slide my hat on, it comes on too. Or, if I have to wear it all day at work, I wear this mask that my awesome support person Amy made for me. It has a flap that I can open and close in order to eat and drink! And at the end of the day I can pull it off with my stick.

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One thought on “PDA WA Associate Director, Melanie Hawkes, shares her ”I can do it” series.

  1. Mel you are such an inspiration and you are to be admired. You are
    amazing and ‘team Mel and Upton’
    are the BEST!! You could teach us
    able bodied people a thing or two!!

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