Normally you’ll find Headway Support Workers out in the community, or visiting people at home. Their role helps members to gain more independence; be that through practical support or just venturing out and trying new activities. For Sam and member Laura, they typically enjoyed going to the cinema or coffee, shopping in town, lots of chatting and the occasional bit of drawing. Since March, their sessions have looked quite different – starting on the telephone before moving over to Zoom – but they’ve arguably been more creative than ever! “We watch animal videos and do meditation sessions. Whereas previously we would always go out in the community, now we are able to focus on developing projects from week to week” says Sam, “we’ve also been talking, drawing and writing a story”. Below is the first of these! The pair worked over a number of sessions, drawing creatures from the sea to accompany their tale, and have even put together a playlist to go with it (scroll to the end). Now let’s all take a trip down to the depths of the ocean…..
The Octopus Secret Party
One night our parents are out, not just out. It’s their anniversary and they’re going away for the whole weekend.
Which means that that’s the time we get to have our secret party.
The party is going to make us popular in the neighbourhood, suddenly we’ll be on everyone’s Christmas list and everyone will know our birthday.
The idea started when no one remembered our birthday. We only received a card from our parents (of course Mum didn’t forget, she had to give birth to us.)
We already feel hard done by as we’re twins and have to share our birthday with each other.
No one cares.
We decided that what we need is to throw a mammoth party, so we can make ourselves really popular because we deserve it, and then no one will forget our birthday ever again.
But how on earth are we going to be able to organise a massive secret party and not be caught?
How are we going to make it look innocent, like we’re going to be sleeping in our own beds, when really we’ll be throwing a party that the entire neighbourhood will know about – but not our parents!
The way we’ll do it is: we need our parents out, leaving the house to us young ones.
How are we going to make sure everyone has a good time?
And how are we going to organise a party at such short notice?
If we let all the other octopuses know, then they could tell the jellyfish and the jellyfish can let the goldfish know and the goldfish can tell the sea horses – because we know they talk much louder and the word will spread around the entire beach that there’s going to be a massive party.
But we’re nervous. Because we’ve only got our house and our music and it’s only going to be us as the hosts. We need snacks and sea water cocktails.
How are we going to sneak the refreshments in, so it doesn’t look like we’re throwing a secret party?
Luckily, we’ve found a secret entrance at the back of the rock.
We have managed to invite many, many sea creatures. Shrimp and sting-ray and electric eels to light up the dance floor.
We’ve been trying to get the music in and have managed to get a good collection of music and have some good speakers too.
We even have Slosh coming, the coolest rock band on the reef. The drummer is the older brother of one of our friends at school.
So as soon as our parents are gone, we radicalise the house and make it completely ready for the party. We strip away everything and make space for the band and all the guests…
But what we don’t know is that Dad knew about the party in advance.
Dad’s company was actually insuring the company that represents the band! When he got the invoice, he realised that the address was his address!
And as angry as he was, his friend told him to keep quiet about it and let us try to have our do…
What happens next?
At the end of it, it looks like a surprise party for us!
The stars of the show are our parents! Because they have been involved in the music industry and they bring their bands and become the head act.
They take over our party as though it’s their party, and take the credit for it! They said it was the best wedding anniversary they ever had!
So what’s going to happen to us now?
We’re going to be the most in trouble octopus children in the universe. We’re going to be grounded for the rest of eternity and have to do whatever menial housework jobs that our parents don’t like to do. And that could be anything with our parents…
We should have just been truthful and not told lies that were going to get us in trouble. Because the truth is the most important thing. But we really just wanted to be popular…
Sometimes it’s knowing the balance of how much to be naughty and how much to keep to the rules.
Next year, we’ll ask our parents to help us plan our birthday party!
Story soundtrack: listen along as you read and be transported under the sea
Bobby Darin, Somewhere Beyond the Sea