Paul and Vicki Waters were both born with a rare medical condition known as congenital insensitivity to pain, or CIP, which basically means that their nerves can’t register pain.
‘The receptors in my brain don’t work properly,’ explains Vicki, ‘so they don’t send any signals to my body letting me know that what I’m doing should hurt.’
The siblings from Dartford, Kent have years worth of injuries and incidents under their belts, and reveal several of their war stories in the video above.
‘I once jumped out of a window,’ admits Paul, now 25. ‘I was pretending to be Superman.’
He landed face down in his parents’ front drive from the two storey fall, covered in blood with multiple broken bones.
As children they needed a stairlift as they struggled with staircases. Vicki, 24, reveals that she once fell all the way down to the bottom after forgetting to pull the arm rest down. Her parents stared in horror as a bone was sticking out of her leg, which the young Vicki found very funny.
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Paul also recounts the story of when he tried to warm himself up by sitting with his back to a radiator whilst at nursery. He had no idea just how hot it was, and when he went to get up, a chunk of flesh was ripped away from his right shoulder blade.
Their parents Bob, 58, and Christine, 56, describe their kids’ CIP as a nightmare, as they were at constant risk of serious injury without knowing it.
The siblings now suffer from severe arthritis because of all the broken bones and other injuries they’ve sustained over the years. It’s now a daily battle for them to avoid getting seriously hurt.
Paul is adamant that although some people might say they’d love to not feel pain, the downsides are far too great, and that it’s scary ‘not knowing what your body is doing.’