March 3, 2018

And snow stops play

Posted in March tagged , , , , , , , at 11:49 am by viewfromthisdesk

I was really looking forward to March, the beginning of the month had so much planned and it was exciting stuff.  But then it snowed and because we don’t get snow all that often, life stopped.

March 1st, Thursday. A normal day by any other standards and until then, this place in which I live hadn’t really seen any white stuff, it had been bitterly cold but no snow.  Thursday lunchtime it was kinda trying to snow and schools kicked all the ankle biters out at lunchtime and my boss decided he wanted to be somewhere else, so leaving at lunchtime was for us too.  I didn’t mind, I had PLANS for the evening.  Plans that I’ve been hoping and dreaming for all my life.  For I was due to go to Stratford, home of the Bard, to the theatre.

Going to the theatre in Stratford is a bucket list item for me.  It’s one I’d like to manage this year if I can.  Thursday night was supposed to be my bucket list achievement.  A friend and I were going to see The Duchess of Malfi by John Webster, put on by the RSC in Stratford.  The theatre announced it was still going ahead but the roads were getting more and more dangerous.  It was decided that rather than end up in a ditch, we would not go.

We’ve got vouchers to spend on a future performance, the theatre was very good about that.  There is still hope that I will get there this year.  It was a massive disappointment but I have to be sensible.

Then Friday 2nd March was a Big Event Day.  It is hard to explain why it was so important to me but for those that have followed my journey know that Friday was injections day.  Not only that, it was due to be my last injections day.  Except Friday the roads were awful and the police were telling people not to travel.  All schools were closed, most workplaces were giving snow days and after ten minutes of opening, no shops had bread or milk or wine.  We were in a state of emergency, honestly.

So my injections have been delayed by two weeks.  I’m disappointed but being safe is more important than anything else.  I have to be realistic about this.  I waited and saved for so long, another two weeks isn’t going to change anything for the worse.  Be patient should be shouted at me wherever I go.  If I went anywhere, that is.  I’ve not ventured outdoors since returning from work on Thursday.

It’s now Saturday.  I have tickets to see a comedian tomorrow night at a venue in Cheltenham and tickets for a different comedian at a different venue in Cheltenham on Monday night.  Two nights that I’ve had tickets for for over six months.  I have everything crossed that the events are not cancelled and that the roads are clear.

For the first six days of March I had something in the diary for every evening.  So far, the first three haven’t happened.  Blooming snow.  And I have to be so careful in this weather.  I’ll fall super easily and hurt myself which could lead to a new forever issue.  I can’t risk getting cold because it leads to other issues which I could do without right now.  ME doesn’t cope with cold weather very well.

So, having not ventured outside since Thursday lunchtime I’ve been reading more – there’s not much else to do aside from watching the shapes and light patterns of the snow outside.  In February you’ll remember I challenged myself to read more autobiographies, I read two and really enjoyed it – I surprised myself so I’d like to carry that on through the year – although I’ll need to find this section in the local library which seems to have shrunk.  When I was in there this week, I was surprised at the amount of open space, lack of bookcases, lack of books.

My March challenge is new authors.  You’ll have noticed with my lists that I have a set of preferred authors and I binge read them.  So when I was in this week, I picked up a book from the returned shelves of someone new.  I also found the receipt of the list of borrowed books of a previous borrower within the pages of one of my books.  I’ve decided I’m going to try and read these too.  I’m letting my reading be led by fate or magic or something.


February 28, 2018

February summary

Posted in February, Monthly update tagged , , , , , , at 1:05 pm by viewfromthisdesk

Continuing the theme of letting you all know what I’ve been up to, here is my February summary:

Theatre was ‘Flashdance’ at Cheltenham Everyman which was great. I also saw a live RSC transmission of ‘Twelfth Night’ which was very funny and an NTLive transmission of ‘Cat on a Hot Tin Roof’which was good but a bit thought provoking and raw for my state of mind at the time.

Cinema was ‘Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri’ which was really good if a bit dark.

Music was a Rammstein tribute band and a band called ‘Satellite Down’

Films I watched were ‘John Wick 2’, ‘Table 19’, ‘Spinal Tap’, ‘The Last Word’ and ‘Seven Pounds’. I wouldn’t necessarily recommend any of them.

I’d set myself the target of reading at least one autobiography in February and in the end, I read two very different ones.  Books I finished were ‘The Husbands Secret’, ‘The Last Anniversary’ and ‘Three Wishes’ all by Lianne Moriarty, ‘My Autobiography’ by Guy Martin, ‘The Day you Saved My Life’ by Louise Candlish, ‘How to be Champion’ by Sarah Millican, ‘Things I’d Wished I’d Known’ by Linda Green, ‘The House on Sunset Lake’ and ‘The Proposal’ both by Tasmina Perry, ‘And Then it Happened’ by Linda Green, ‘The Other Woman’ by Laura Wilson, ‘My Everything’ by Kate Marsh, ‘At the Waters Edge’ by Sara Gruen and ‘Human Remains; by Elizabeth Haynes.  This last book was addictive, I couldn’t put it down even before the twist happened and then you were just waiting to see how it all overlapped and came together.

Health wise, it’s been a curious mixture.  The second lot of injections made my ears go purple and bruised and scabby which I wasn’t overly pleased with but three weeks on that’s all faded and they look okay again now.  I do need more people to notice how flat and tidy my ears look though!  I have another appointment on the 2nd March which I hope will be my last one.  I’ve spent over a months wages on each ear now and I really, really need the spending to stop.

I’ve not had any major headaches all month which I’m super pleased about.  I’m beginning to wonder if my headaches are linked to my mental health and stress levels, it will be interesting to see how the headaches behave over the next few months as bat season starts up again and I get busier.

I succumbed to the coughing-flu lurgy that has been doing the rounds, I don’t think many people escaped that.  It was tough to keep well during that; too much coughing would trigger an asthma attack and not enough coughing just meant I was choking on nothing.  My whole being felt like I’d been in a fight and I ended up with a few days off work just being horizontal and trying not to breathe or move.  My ME obviously wasn’t great during this time but I couldn’t manage anything to any degree.

February 15, 2018

Six weeks words of wisdom

Posted in February tagged , , at 12:19 pm by viewfromthisdesk

I’ve mentioned before I’ve been keeping a diary this year to track extra meds or symptoms etc.  I’ve also been using it for notes about fun things like nights out or books I’ve read.  I then started jotting down inspirational things I’d found or seen or heard.  It may be pictures off the internet, song lyrics, quotes from a book.  As we’re half way through February, I thought I’d share them.  You may be able to send me some more.  I write them in random pages of my diary so they’re little surprises when I find them again.

* (January 1st had this one) Today is the first page of a 365 page book – write a good one.

* It is said some lives are linked across time, connected by an ancient calling that echoes through the ages.

* You can’t go back and change the beginning, but you can start where you are and change the ending.

* If it doesn’t challenge you, it doesn’t change you.

* Those who don’t believe in magic will never find it.

* Happiness can be found in the darkest of times if one only remembers to turn on the light.

* Confidence is sexy – walk into a room and own it!

* Sometimes I feel like giving up.  Then I remember I have a lot of people to prove wrong.

* You don’t always have to be a rock star.  It’s okay to be a groupie.

* Just because you took longer than others, doesn’t mean you failed.

* ‘Cause nobody wants to be the last one there // ‘Cause everyone wants to feel like someone cares. // Someone to love with my life in their hands. // There’s gotta be somebody for me like that. // ‘Cause nobody wants to go it on their own // And everyone wants to know they’re not alone. // Somebody else that feels the same somewhere. // There’s gotta be somebody for me out there. (Nickleback)

* Enter freely. Go safely and leave something of the happiness you bring! (Bram Stoker)

* I remember feeling lost.  It was bloody awful.  Hope you find your way.

* Positive thinking isn’t about expecting the best to happen every time.  But accepting that whatever happens, is the best for the moment.

* Believe only half of what you see and nothing that you hear. (Edgar Allan Poe)

* Some days, she has no idea how she’ll do it.  But every single day, it still gets done.

* You have to stop thinking you’ll be stuck in your situation forever.  We feel like our heart will never heal or we’ll never get out of this impossible struggle.  Don’t confuse a season for a lifetime.  Even your trials have an expiration date.  You will grow, life will change, things will work out. (Brittney Moses)

* Ships don’t sink because of all the water around them.  Ships sink because of the water that gets in them. Don’t let what’s happening around you, get inside you and weigh you down.  Stay up.

* Don’t wait for things to get easier, simpler or better.  Life will always be complicated.  Learn to be happy right now.  Otherwise, you’ll run out of time.

* I’m not a stranger to the dark // Hide away, they say // ‘Cause we don’t want your broken parts // I’ve learned to be ashamed of all my scars // Run away, they say // No one will love you as you are // But I won’t let them break me down to dust // I know that there’s a place for us // For we are glorious. (This is Me, Greatest Showman)

January 31, 2018

January summary

Posted in January, Monthly update tagged , , , , , at 4:28 pm by viewfromthisdesk

In my end of year post I wrote about how I needed to be selfish, do more for me. My targets were:

* one theatre experience a month.

* one music or cinema experience a month.

* tea and cake with friends.

Unofficially, I also wanted to read more. A friend signed up to do a reading challenge of two books a month which I thought was brilliant but I didn’t set myself a target.

In 2018 I started keeping a diary, not a ‘Dear Diary’ kinda thing but more a medical tracker and emotional calculator. Brilliant for keeping notes on all the extra medications I took for whatever reasons. This was also useful for noting down the positives that happened in terms of film, theatre and books.

So my January summary:

Theatre was a transmission of Oscar Wilde’s ‘A Woman of no Importance’ which I enjoyed much more than I thought I might even if I did ask loads of questions. I also saw ‘Strangers on a Train’ at the Alexandra Theatre. This is a classic apparently and was turned into a Hitchcock film.

Cinema was ‘The Greatest Showman’ which was brilliant.

Music was an AC/DC tribute band.

I also found a new films on DVD by post provider which has been really good, I’ve missed Lovefilm envelopes and our broadband is rubbish so streaming films isn’t an option.

Films I watched were ‘White House Down’, ‘New Year’s Eve’, ‘Girl’s Trip’ (not recommended) ‘Love is Strange’, ‘Enduring Love’ (not even a very young Daniel Craig could make it tolerable) ‘Flatliners’ (the original 1990 version), ‘Pressure’ and ‘House’.

Books I finished were ‘The Ghost Fields’, ‘The Woman in Blue’ and ‘The Chalk Pit’ all by Elly Griffiths who is one of my favourite authors. Also ‘The Art of Hiding’ by Amanda Prowse, ‘Mystery in the Village’ by Rebecca Shaw, ‘Summer at Sea’ by Katie Fforde, ‘Diary of an Unsmug Married’ by Polly James which was so rubbish I almost gave up at least five times, ‘Precocious’ by Joanna Barnard, ‘The Swimming Pool’ by Louise Candlish and ‘The Wrong Girl’ by Laura Wilson.

I held a crafternoon for MIND which was fun. I raised just under a hundred pounds which was overwhelming. The just giving page is still open if you want to add to the fund. Just search for me on the just giving website. We decorated fairy doors, there were sequins and gems and flowers and pens and watercolour pencils everywhere. And maybe some biscuits – M&S ones no less!

Health wise, it’s been tricky. Post-op itching aside, the ears haven’t been too bad although I did announce at 3am about ten days after the op that I regretted having them done because I couldn’t sleep on either side which is my default and preferred sleeping position. The steroid injections were super painful and horrid. There are no words to describe how awful the experience of twelve injections in each ear actually is. As much as I complain about this process or winge about the cost, it has absolutely been worth it. I feel like I’m a different person, I don’t need to hide, I am worthy.

I have been struggling with headaches again though. First one was five days then three and a bit days long with one non-headache day between but I don’t think it’something I need to see the doctor about yet, I am fairly sure I know what caused them. My first incapacitating day was the 23rd so rather than dwell on how pants that day was, let’s focus on how I managed all those days in the month before without succumbing to the dark duvet palace.

The last week of January I picked up some sort of lurgy, the usual sore throat, bunged up nose, red eyes, sore sinuses. It’s hard being positive and cheerful when one looks and feels like crap.

My ME has been more tricky to manage, I’m struggling to maintain an even keel. I’m quite fed up, quite grumpy and emotional, I can’t stand crying for no reason but it seems to be a thing. I’m not controlling my pain levels, I’m not sleeping well, I’m just not managing.

So I’m back to a day by day, hour by hour plan. I’ll survive. I’ve gotten this far, one more day is possible too.

January 8, 2018

Three days on

Posted in Health stuff, January tagged , , , at 12:02 pm by viewfromthisdesk

Or, my appointment with the dishy South African with the big chopper.


So, Friday was the Big Day.  After two years of saving up and then nine weeks of waiting for the consultant to not be on holiday I finally had my operation to remove my scars.

These scars have been an issue for a while.  Not only were they ugly and obvious and itchy and annoying, they also made me feel really self conscious.  I can hide the scar in my bikini line from my one operation, I can ignore the two in my belly button from the other operations.  I can kinda cover the one on my back from where I blistered up after getting sunburnt aged 16.  I cannot cover the four on my ears.  I suffer from keloid scarring, it’s a body’s over reaction to trauma or injury.  In my case, operations and piercings.  These are not normal scars, these are red or purple, they are raised and shiny and quite large.  The four on my ears were about the size of marrowfat peas, hardly subtle.

I’m not a vain sort of person but on the odd occasion that I made an effort, I’d be aware that these scars were something I couldn’t hide.  Someone commented after the wedding last August that I had really cool earrings that day.  All I could think was ‘Great, so they noticed the lumpy scars too’.

The operation itself was not fun.  He cut the scars off by burning.  And then he scraped off the burnt bit and burnt it again.  Four different areas.  I wasn’t nervous about the operation I was only concerned about the smell.  I’ve had bits of me burnt in a medical and accidental way before, it stinks.  This isn’t like catching yourself on the side of the iron.  Needless to say, after Friday I won’t be roasting pork for a while.

Once the local aesthetic wore off (about two hours)  I was a bit (understatement) grumpy.  I had been warned it might sting a bit (no lie) but no one warned me about how itchy it would be.  Oh my goodness I could have taken a metal scouring pad to my ears quite happily.

The weekend was not without it’s productiveness.  I wore my magical manatee pyjama trousers with no shame, I read lots, I watched films, I crafted.  I ate a lot of biscuits just to keep my hands busy so I wouldn’t poke and scratch.

Fast forward three days and I now just have black scabs where the lumps were.  The daft thing is, these scabs are probably more obvious that the lumps were.  Maybe people didn’t notice the scars – maybe people noticed but didn’t care – what’s important is that I noticed and I cared.

I’m not allowed to complain about the oozing yellow gank that’s coming from the areas (yellow is good apparently, I just have to worry if it goes red and hot) or the fact the sites are super itchy.  I chose to have this happen.  I decided to pay a scary amount of money to have this done to me.  And I have signed up to have four very painful (and equally expensive) follow up appointments where they will inject the scar tissue areas with steroids to try and stop them coming back.


This is my first selfish act of 2018 and with time, I know it’ll be worth it.

January 3, 2018

Resolution revolution.

Posted in January tagged , , , at 5:25 pm by viewfromthisdesk

In the beginning of 2017 I made a decision to not buy any clothes or shoes for the year.  It wasn’t necessarily a New Year’s resolution because I don’t make them, no point setting goals just because it’s January. Make a change because you want to, not that you feel you have to or should.

My decision was easy, I hate shopping. I especially hate clothes shopping. Aside from the self loathing I have when I look in a mirror, I also have zero clue what suits me in terms of styles or cut or colours.

I am happy living in jeans or leggings or my famous manatee pyjamas. A hoodie or top is easy to pull on, the baggier the better. I am not a typical girlie-girl. A conversation I overheard when I was working away went along the lines of ‘I can’t buy the missus stuff for Christmas, she goes shopping every weekend’ which was an alien concept for me. Apparently this is what ‘all girls’ do ……

So I made a conscious decision to not buy anything. I’d already sorted through my shoes and gotten rid of lots of pairs, I also sorted through my clothes and made two recycling bags full. I didn’t donate these straight away, I wanted to see if I missed anything. Turns out I didn’t.

I’m quite a frugal person, I have a limited income so money has to stretch. Not shopping meant I could use my money elsewhere. Some of you know about the enormous project that has been ongoing since 2015, this is a heavy weight around my neck and so saving money is super important.

I managed the not shopping thing until August, when I was invited to a wedding. I spent less than twenty quid on a frock and shoes. It’s  important to look good for your friends. I know people can spend hundreds of pounds on outfits which I can’t quite comprehend.

Over the course of the year in total, I bought the dress and shoes, three tops and a pair of leggings. The leggings replaced a pair I’d destroyed so I feel they don’t count. Even as a shopping list, that’s not bad going. I know people for whom that’s not even one shop’s worth on one day.

I didn’t miss shopping because I’ve never enjoyed it. I’m happy to continue my not-shopping rule into this year, it’s not a hardship to make the most of what you already have and have a good sort through now and again. And perhaps that’s a sentence that can be applied to lots of things in life. I’ve just bought a gorgeous turquoise hooded top from Aldi this morning, and two pairs of amazing tights from Kate’s Clothing because I trashed a pair in the washing machine last year and they were in the sale. I can see myself not buying anything more for months and months.

So I’m going to spend this year sorting through and making the most of what I already have. Books can come from the library or my kindle books can come from a voucher I got for Christmas. I can get music for my birthday, I have enough craft stuff to keep me going for a gazillion years, I don’t have need for things and stuff. It’s an interesting approach to the year. What else should I try and do without?

December 31, 2017

Another year over

Posted in December tagged , at 3:13 pm by viewfromthisdesk

Today seems a good day to write. Today seems a good day to be positive.

I dislike this time of year for a great many reasons. This year was no different, these last ten days have been difficult for a variety of things and events and causes. I have struggled to get out of bed, get dressed and face the world. And yet every single day I have managed it. I may have not been happy and there have been a lot of tears but I survived.

On this eve of another year, we all reflect on what has happened, what we wish had happened, what we would have done differently if we had our time again. I’m no different. I have experienced so much good this year, it’s cheesy but I have been truely blessed by the friends I have around me. They got me through these three hundred odd days, they reminded me that being honest is okay, they’ll put up with my manatee pyjamas and not bat an eyelid.

Looking forward I need to focus on me. It’s utterly selfish but it’s something I’ve become aware of. I don’t think of me often, I focus on those around me. Hubby commented the other day that I need to be more honest. He says it’s not right I wear myself out putting a strong and brave face on for others and then come home and collapse. He says it’s not fair that everyone else gets the best of me but he gets the exhausted and grumpy me. I tried to discuss this with him, tried to say if we did more things together that he’d get a good me sometimes too. It didn’t work. Hey ho.

Next year is the year of me. I have to be happy for me. I have to be well for me. I want to be invited to stuff, I’ve proved to myself in this year that I can do stuff on my own. I have friends who will lend an arm, find a chair, laugh with me. I do not need to be a hermit.

Next year will be my year of focus and change. It has to be. I cannot continue to live my life in the same way as I have been. I need to reclaim my life.

And so my first selfish act of 2018 is that on Friday 5th January at about half eleven ish I’m having my scar tissue operation. It’s scary, yes. It’s stupidly expensive and will only be the start of fixing the outside of me but it’s happening. My other selfish targets are that I aim to have one theatre experience a month, I’d also like one music or cinema experience a month. I’d like tea and cake with friends even if we are in our pyjamas.

My other big thing I want to do is have a ‘crafternoon’ in order to raise money for MIND. They are a mental health charity and whilst I’ve never used their services, I’ve made no secret of how crafting helps my mental state. So I want to have this event at some point in January or February. Even if I only raise a fiver for them, it will be another thing I do so I’m not sat at home on my own. It will only be a couple of hours effort and I plan on having gallons of tea and piles of cake and have a glue gun and glitter and stuff for the crafting element. I know what I want the crafting to be, I just need a date and people.

Kick me if I don’t mention it again. Remind me I said I’d do this, hold me accountable.

Wherever you are tonight, whoever you are with, be safe and happy. Thank you for getting me through another year. Thank you for your support, comments, brutal chats. Thank you for your surprise notes and gifts, you will never know what a difference they made to my sate of mind.

October 26, 2017

Music makes everything better

Posted in October tagged , , at 1:07 pm by viewfromthisdesk

A couple of weeks ago I went to a concert.  The usual challenges occurred but I had an amazing time.  Music is absolutely a magical and powerful thing.  I heard songs for the first time even though I’ve sung along with them on my ipod for years.  I heard lyrics in a different way, I laughed, I cried, I had my heart broken and left feeling happy and sad in equal measures.  It was just a beautiful few hours.

Since then, my ipod seems to be in tune with my emotional well being.  The songs it shuffles out are so meaningful and deep.  It really has helped me deal with some thoughts and issues that have been flying around my brain recently.  And I’ve gotten goosebumps during songs, I’ve cried as I’ve sung along, I’ve woken up to how I’m feeling about life, the universe and everything.

And then I found this totally by accident but totally at the right time.

I thought about doing this as a once a day thing on social media but then I realised I’d forget to do it one day or something else would happen and equaly it would get boring or lost.  So I’m doing it once, here.

And because this is my blog and I make the rules, I may have tweaked a couple of them.  And I may have more than one answer or used an album instead of a song.  However, my one self imposed rule is that I cannot use an artist twice which was super tough.

Day 1 – a song you like with a colour in the title
– Blackbird by Alter Bridge
Day 2 – a song you like with a number in the title
– Highway 20 Ride by Zac Brown Band
Day 3 – a song that reminds you of summertime
– Goodbye Earl by Dixie Chicks
Day 4 – a song that reminds you of someone you’d rather forget
– War of the Worlds Soundtrack *Note – this isn’t a person I’d rather forget but a period of my life
Day 5 – a song that needs to be played loud
– Enter Sandman by Metallica
Day 6 – a song that makes you want to dance
– My Life Would Suck Without You by Kelly Clarkson
Day 7 – a song to drive to
– Backstreet Symphony by Thunder / the entire Hysteria album by Def Leppard
Day 8 – a song about drugs or alcohol
– Whiskey Lullaby by Brad Paisley and Alison Krauss
Day 9 – a song that makes you happy
– Days Go By – Keith Urban
Day 10 – a song that makes you sad
– You Should Be Here by Cole Swindell
Day 11 – a song you never get tired of
– Abandon by Dare
Day 12 – a song from your pre-teen years
– One and Only by Chesney Hawkes *Note – as cringe as this is, it’s all I sang aged 10 and 11
– Blood on Blood by Bon Jovi *Note – this is my teenage years, not pre-teen.
Day 13 – a song you like from the 70’s
– Romeo and Juliet by Dire Straits *Note – I changed this to the 80’s
Day 14 – a song you’d love to be played at your wedding
– You are My Woman – Danko Jones
Day 15 – a song you like that’s a cover by another band
– Sound of Silence by Disturbed *Note – this was the first question I answered.  It’s beautiful.
Day 16 – a song that’s a classic favourite
– Summer of 69 by Bryan Adams
Day 17 – a song you’d sing as a duet with someone in karaoke
– Dead Ringer for Love by Meat Loaf and Bonnie Tyler *Note – not that I’d ever do karaoke
Day 18 – a song from the year you were born
– I was Made for Lovin’ You by Kiss *Note – thank you Google!
Day 19 – a song that makes you think about life
– Home by Daughtry
Day 20 – a song that has many meanings for you
– In Case You Didn’t Know – Brett Young
Day 21 – a song you like with a person’s name in the title
– Carrie by Europe / Lola Montez by Volbeat
Day 22 – a song that moves you forward
– Affirmation by Savage Garden
Day 23 – a song you think everyone should listen to
– 12 Redneck Days by Jeff Foxworthy *Note – I don’t think I should make anyone listen to anything because we all have different thoughts on music and taste.  I didn’t want to answer this question but this song is funny and is only played in December.
Day 24 – a song by a band you wish was still together
-November Rain by Guns N Roses *Note – I’m rubbish at whether a band is still together or not because in my opinion if it’s not the original line up it’s not the same band, so Bon Jovi without Richie Sambora is not Bon Jovi for example.  And Google says GNR have split up.
Day 25 – a song you like by an artist no longer living
– Hurt by Johnny Cash / Heavy is the Head by ZBB ft Chris Cornell
Day 26 – a song that makes you want to fall in love
– Faithfully – Journey
Day 27 – a song that breaks your heart
– Things my Father Said by Black Stone Cherry
Day 28 – a song by an artist whose voice you love
– Just Might (Make Me Believe) by Sugarland because Jennifer Nettles is amazing.  But everyone needs to hear Sky Hunter sing from StoneWire.
Day 29 – a song you remember from your childhood
– What About Love by Heart
Day 30 – a song that reminds you of yourself
– All Kinds of Kinds by Miranda Lambert / Strong Enough by Cher


Some questions were easier than others.  Some I really struggled with.  And there are artists that I’ve wanted to include but haven’t and feel guilty about that.  But I have 3428 songs on my ipod, it was a tricky task but such fun.  I’d like to know your thought on my list.  Did it make you listen to any new tunes?  What would your answers be?  Email me, introduce me to new artists and songs.  Share the magic.

August 31, 2017

One month on

Posted in August, Health stuff tagged , , , , , at 11:05 am by viewfromthisdesk

It’s been a very strange few weeks.

On the 28th July I posted ‘when the darkness wins’ and I was at this very desk when I wrote it over those few days.  I’m working away again this week but my outlook and attitude are very, very different.

It’s curious how writing that post has been very cathartic.  Admitting all those things and releasing them has been brilliant.  Yes, it was hurtful and emotional but it’s been good for me.  I can’t drag that baggage with me forever.  Whilst I’m never going to be free of those thoughts and memories, they are not dragging me down right now.

Sitting at this desk again is odd.  I remember how hard that week was, typing the words, remembering the things I wrote, revisiting stuff in my head I didn’t want to go back to.  Sitting here this week I feel like a different person but it’s probably that nausea thing I had.

The ‘nausea thing’ as it’s been titled really did knock me for six.  I had probably ten days of it in all.  Last night was the first night I ate what could be considered a normal plate of food.  It took ages though and my taste buds still haven’t come back but at least I’m eating.  I lost four pounds in a week – not that anyone has noticed – and they’re still off.  I checked this morning.

My weight is a constant battle.  Being sedentary and unable to do much by way of exercise is a huge factor to this.  My joints and energy levels are just not like other people’s.  I can be exhausted just walking up the stairs and so the idea of doing a couch to 10km thing for example is unthinkable.  This nausea thing, however horrific it was, has helped me realise that if I’m ever going to be a skinny minny then food is the only way to that.

Not eating ‘normally’ these past ten days has been truly horrible.  I can promise you that.  Watching hubby inhale an entire pizza whilst I’m struggling with one scrambled egg was a particular low point.  Making a sandwich last two meals and not wanting it at either of them was also pretty pants.  The questioning from himself ‘what have you eaten today?’ felt invasive and accusatory.  I wasn’t deliberately not eating, that is not me in any shape or form.

I was intrigued as to whether four pounds made any difference if the doctors knew.  Turns out my BMI is still in the obese range but it’s getting closer to overweight.  Two more pounds off and I’d just be overweight, not obese.  Pah.  Life is too short.  I’d find it easier to grow another three inches than lose another two pounds whilst actually eating food.

That four pounds was in a whole week, Sunday to Sunday.  I’ve not lost anything this week (Sunday – Thursday) but I’m going to convince myself that whilst I’m still not eating properly, my body is in shock and won’t lose more weight this week.  Not that eating any form of food is going to make me a heifer again.

And I’ve come to another big decision too and it’s a proper selfish one.  I’m struggling with the guilt of doing something for me but I’m hoping I’ll get over it.

About eighteen months ago I tried to get treatment for some scar issues I’ve got.  But the treatment I had years ago for other scars is not offered anymore on the nhs, there’s no money.  Course I had to wait sixteen weeks for an appointment to be told to get lost but hey ho.  The nhs doctor told me I’d have to go private and at the time I was super upset.  But since then my scars have bothered me more and more and so when I’ve been working here I’ve tried to put some money aside.  So my selfish decision is that I’m going to make an appointment to see a doctor about them next month, going to try and get them sorted.  It’s going to be super expensive and I’m aware I might not be able to afford it right now but I’m hopeful that I’ll make it work somehow without resorting to the fantastic plastic.  If I haven’t got enough saved, it won’t happen, simple as.

Curious how not eating leads to a fresher outlook on things – Don’t fret though, I’ll be back to my usual grumpy, mood-swinging, pain filled self soon enough.  Normal service will be resumed.

August 16, 2017

Weeks thirty-one and thirty-two

Posted in August, November tagged , at 12:14 pm by viewfromthisdesk

It’s been an interesting and difficult fortnight. However, I can’t say I wasn’t expecting it. I write this blog trying to pretend no one reads it, or at least if they do, I don’t know them. You are all unknown and mysterious.

That is a daft frame of mind I appreciate, but if I’m going to write then that’s the mindset I start from. Because if I think about you as an individual, as a friend or family member, I’m not going to be honest because I don’t want you to worry or be upset. I protect you from the truth and no one wins. You don’t know I’m struggling and I bottle it all up.

I totally know that my post ‘when the darkness wins’ has upset some of you. I also know that my post ‘One Million Lovely Letters’ was much more cheery and read by half the people.

So unless you sign up to get these witterings by email, you might miss the happy ones. Relying on faceache to show you everything is like relying on Father Christmas to bring you that new car *and* squeeze it down the chimney without scratching it. So click on the grey box that says follow and you get to laugh with me much more than crying.

I was humbled by what followed both those blog postings. I received my very own Lovely Letter, not from Jodi but from someone else who had watched the programme and thought of me and then read my blog post about the show. That random Lovely Letter made my week. It’s amazing what a stamp and ten minutes of your time can do to cheer someone up. So I encourage you all to do it because I can vouch for the magic it makes. I also wrote three of my own Lovely Letters. I didn’t manage one a day for a week but three is better than none. And I want to do it again soon.  I may have cheated insomuchas one of them was typed and one of them was a post-it note sized card but I still did it.

I also had surprise parcels and gifts. I had a gorgeous bunch of yellow flowers from a dear friend and they also brought doughnuts which were lush. I had a packet of kit kats which you all know I have a weakness for, an engraved spoon which has more meaning than just the words etched into it and a manatee tea strainer which is so epic that I cannot put into words.  And all these things before my birthday!

So maybe I need to be more aware that people do care about me and my mental health. Maybe I’m not as alone as I thought I was. People may be geographically distant but not emotionally.  And if I upset you then please tell me, or if you have questions then ask them.  Ask me to elaborate on something or discuss further or pass on sources etc.  If you interact then I know you’ve read and are interested.  Email me, messenger me, a proper letter even!  Human interaction can be lost in this modern technology filled world.  Tell me you saw that scenario I wrote about from a different point of view.  Challenge my negative thoughts and memories.  Recommend a film to watch or a book to get on my kindle and then we can talk about it like proper grown ups.

I hide behind these sentences because I cannot meet you for a drink in town or travel to your sofa or speak to you on the phone.  I use this writing medium to explain the stuff that my speech issues prevent me from saying.  I can type at 2am a reply to a message.  So don’t read and be sad, read and reach out and tell me how things are.  Tell me it’s not like that, tell me it’s actually somehow different.  Help me look at things from a different angle, through different coloured glasses.  Remind me to stop eating everything in sight.  Tell me about your lovely letter that you wrote and the feedback you got from it.

I’m still here, just not physically.

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