Cheetahs In My Shoes

living with the imaginary menagerie and all that it entails

About Us

“Cheetahs in my Shoes”  is based entirely on the stories of The Cheetah Keeper who, in order to make sense of the chaos that is life and his assorted medical problems, all of a sudden, discovered a pair of (imaginary) cheetahs living in his trainers.   These cheetahs have subsequently bred, travelled, invited friends to stay and continue to provide us with a way of getting through what being 4 brings.

I’m a mummy, not a medical expert in anyway, so what I write about our medical conditions is how I understand them and how they affect us.  They are by no means meant as a source of fact – but I hope what I write may help others in the same boat.  I’m becoming more and more interested in how children in long term pain or discomfort or under long term stress use imaginary play and imaginary friends to help them cope – so let me know if you have any ideas, clues or thoughts on the matter… please.

So to introduce us

The Cheetah Keeper (born May 2007)
The keeper of the Cheetahs, Dinos and Banana People – Mr Imagination!  Funny, cuddly and generally has his beloved giraffe Tesco (That’s what it said on his label!) tucked firmly under one arm whilst being about 2 paces behind the rest of the world, deeply suspicious of new experiences, changes in terrain and having files at most hospitals within a 20 miles radius of us here in sunny St Albans.
He is hypermobile (with the diagnosis of Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome Type III expected when he’s a little older), suffers from reflux and has a platelet function defect which means when he bleeds his blood doesn’t clot properly.  He has lots of nosebleeds, needs insoles in his shoes to try and correct his turned out foot and when poorly, does it in style.  When well, he loves his football, digging for worms, trains, the zoo and generally trying to catch up with all the things that he should be doing whilst being 4 but missed out on learning how to do whilst he was poorly.
The Cheetah Keeper’s Sister (born April 2005)
An extra tall adrenaline junkie mermaid who likes nothing better than throwing herself into water with little or no regard for the temperature or distance she needs to travel.  Equally happy when immersing herself in ‘make and do’ projects, ideally those that require the use of pink, purple and glitter.  She also has Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome Type III which has affected her speech and fine motor skills but didn’t really affect her gross motor skills until she had a nasty bout of Scarlet Fever in January 2010. After intensive therapy in Great Ormond Street Hospital in August 2010 she made an amazing recovery and although has a tendency to over do things (and subsequently end up really tired) generally is out there, trying everything, taking it all in and making the most of it.
Me – Jenny
Mummy (and hospital co-ordinator) to the Cheetah Keeper and his sister and married to M.  I too have Ehlers Danlos Type III but wasn’t diagnosed until I was 31 despite years of joint problems, lots of operations and a frequent flyer pass at the GP.   A ‘serial volunteer’ and lover of a good project – ideally to distract me from more mundane stuff like housework!  Currently involved with GirlGuiding as a Rainbow Leader,  helping fundraise for and playing the piano for the choir at Mandeville School and looking for any opportunity to indulge myself in my love of baking – ideally something that can be covered in butter icing!
Prefers to remain anonymous

18 thoughts on “About Us

  1. Hey Jenny, to convey my amazement and appreciation of your astounding versatility in doing all you do and still managing to write this blog, I am awarding you with the esteemed Versatile Blogger award.
    Congratulations, and here is the link to my blog-post about the award if you are interested…

  2. Pingback: So Why Exactly am I Blogging? – my take on the Britmums Blogging Prompt « cheetahsinmyshoes

  3. Can we rename this page Aisha’s Stalker Page! Yes, I’m back again! With another award for you….. just let me know if this is becoming tiresome. Congratulations and all that jazz 🙂 Here’s the link you need to find out all about the Liebster Award

  4. God! What an incredible family! I love that you all sound (and look) so positive through all of that. You are an inspiration!

  5. You and your lovely family are truly inspirational. It’s a fact – I can only be truly described as a lazy bum in comparison. Great cake too. What more could we readers want?

  6. Pingback: My first Vlog of 2012 – is too much routine too much? « Cheetahs In My Shoes

  7. Ahhh that’s why it’s cheetahs! My daughter Molly had an invisible dog obsession for a while. She used to get upset if we left them behind. Lovely but hard to deal with if you’re trying to get somewhere quickly and need to go back for invisible dogs. Now she has invisible friends which I sometimes sit on by mistake. Four year olds are such fun.

  8. In the “better late than never” category, please accept my congratulations on your remarkable entry in Dark Globe’s photo contest. Judging was a very difficult job and I’m just happy your work was enjoyed by many, many people.


  9. Pingback: Tesco Real Food – Cooking with Kids Event » » WitWitWoo ...WitWitWoo …

  10. “I’m becoming more and more interested in how children in long term pain or discomfort or under long term stress use imaginary play and imaginary friends to help them cope – so let me know if you have any ideas, clues or thoughts on the matter… please.”
    This is a fascinating statement to me because my son, who fortunately has been blessed with health and happiness in most areas of his life, developed an imaginary friend named Florin when he was having a difficult time transitioning to full-time school. He was having nightmares, panic attacks– it was one of the most traumatic periods that I have gone through as a mother (and possibly as a human being)– and then one day, he started talking about Florin (he still tells me stories about him all of the time) and the fear just melted away. He began to enjoy school and stopped worrying about going or crying when he was there. It amazed me– it was so clearly a coping technique of some sort, one that he continues to use.
    I hate to shamelessly self-promote, but I did blog about it. Here is the link if you are interested in reading my thoughts at the time:
    I love your thoughtful analysis of your son’s imaginary world and the depth of his mind is astounding! Thanks so much for sharing.

    • Thank you for your kind comments. As we were talking yesterday about our admission to Great Ormond Street Hospital (where we are now), 5 new Cheetahs suddenly appeared – and have come with us – they’re snuggled in his bed as I type. I will have a read when I’m on a better internet connection x

    • Sorry I haven’t been able to reply sooner – we’ve been in GOSH (as have the Cheetahs!). I will have a read – thanks for the link

      • Please! Don’t apologize! Hope all is well. Iwillbe sending positive thoughts to your family and of course to the Cheetahs!

  11. Hope all is well. Your boy is so lucky to have those Cheetahs to look after him, and so brilliant to have come up with them!

  12. Pingback: Name calling | Bibsey

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