'I feel so trapped.'
Craig, 45, from Stoke-on-Trent, had a stroke caused by a major bleed on his brain in December 2018. Despite being told that he would be unable to walk, talk or even eat properly again, Craig has regained his speech while physiotherapy and sheer determination have allowed him to walk again. However, like many other stroke survivors across the UK trying to rebuild their lives, the COVID-19 pandemic has had a negative impact on Craig's recovery.
'All my physiotherapy for my legs has been cancelled and I've had no help at all. It used to be once a month and it really helped. Now I have no idea what to do next as I've got no access to the experts for more information. I've had to continue to do my exercises myself since my last appointment in January.'
The pandemic and lockdown have also impacted Craig's emotional wellbeing.
'It's made me feel like I don't want to go out. I want to get out there and do exercise but I don't dare. People don't move out of your way when outside walking even though they can see there are problems with my walking.
'The emotions run wild. I feel depressed. I like being out, talking to people and raising awareness of what happened to me but now I feel so trapped.'