I have agonised for many years over whether to make my story public – I have written this book, re-written it, changed the names, changed them back again, written it again under a pseudonym, tried to change it into a novel... Finally, last year on a writing holiday at the wonderful Arvon Centre in Totleigh Barton, Devon, matters became clear. This is my story, and I am ready to stand by it. It is a true story and any value that it has for others lies in that fact. I have, however, changed the names of a very few people within the text to protect them from any repercussions of my tale.