To pay or not to pay

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Everything's a mess

WARNING:  I am going to moan. 

The past two weeks I have heard about the daughter of my daughters friend being brutally assaulted and hospitalised by kids she was hanging out with, two Facebook posts of REALLY young kids swearing like adults at their parents (, this is meant to be funny right??!!!!!),  my own kid being approached by a couple of young kids from London obviously County lines as they just got straight to the point after offering him and his friends free weed, and this evening a young girl was kicked in the stomach by a boy so hard that she fell to the ground winded, and she was only teasingly flirting with him by taking his ball,, I thought there were some yobbos in the park the other week with the language and atmosphere but it was parents with their kids!!! plus on the news about some 15  year old kid luring his 13 year old friend to a secluded place and decapitated him.   Seriously what is going on.  

I'm reminded of that passage in the bible 

2 Timothy 3 The Message Difficult Times Ahead 3 1-5 Don’t be naive. There are difficult times ahead. As the end approaches, people are going to be self-absorbed, money-hungry, self-promoting, stuck-up, profane, contemptuous of parents, crude, coarse, dog-eat-dog, unbending, slanderers, impulsively wild, savage, cynical, treacherous, ruthless, bloated windbags, addicted to lust, and allergic to God.

It's a flippin scary world out there,  it gets me down.  It's hard enough hearing about all the poor refugees and the floods and cancer and kids committing suicide and the economy crashing and the corruption in government and climate change ect ect ect but when you see kids turning on each other it just feels like a pretty dark time in history.               I was talking to my youngest the other day and he said he didn't even know if he wanted to bring kids into this world,  I think we live in pretty tragic times, not all kids are like this imagine what a terrifying world this must be for them.   Anyway I was just thinking what a mess everything is. 

It doesn't matter how much sertraline or counselling I have the fact is,, its not just in my head things are shit. 

Eat pray love

I think I have finally lost it.  I watched the film Eat pray love Sunday evening, tears rolling down my face,, this is it, this is exactly what is wrong with me,, I have no pulse, no life. I went to bed knowing I needed to make some serious changes and woke up thinking I was Julia Roberts but fatter wrinklier and out of work.  I knew what I needed to do.  I made some  pretty fast decisions, wrote one very long letter about finding myself and feeling like I had no life and not wanting to go to my grave with these regrets and posted it feeling like I was embarking on a new life, I got to my volunteering work and felt sick all day,, that's it I have finally lost it,, I must be so due on,, where is my period, I must be on the menopause, no worse I am just officially mad, or clinically depressed or all of them.   I phoned my daughter for confession and she reassured me that she was mad too so not to worry, I phoned my son, I toned it down a bit and suggested I might be having a mid life crisis, he suggested a family trip to Amsterdam, which I won't rule out as it is very beautiful there and would have something to cater for all our needs.  So I felt somewhat appeased.  I thought about how I could discover myself spiritually and experience life in my overdraft and having to look after my dad, I would take him with me, I could do the world war 1 sites in Normandy but his legs are knackered, no I will not feel defeated already, I will try and save some money and by that time he might be more stable on his little bowed skinny legs, or maybe by that time he will be even more fragile and I will have to spend a few more years making him comfortable and then it will be my turn to die.. Aaaarrggfhhhhhh.   My rational daughter suggested the Brecon Becons,,,  I breathed a sigh of relief,  I might not be able to do India but I can do north Wales and still care for my dad.  I can still find myself,, I will meet interesting people and eat new foods,, well vegan foods I've pretty much hammered the cockles and laver bread over the years, i will carry a little notebook and make notes about all the interesting encounters,, I won't find myself a guru as my faith in Jesus doesn't really have room for gurus but I can meditate and regard the people I meet as pointers along the "way" in my life and find God within,, I found that concept in the film revolutionary.  I have always wondered how Christ lived in me,, I felt a bit creeped out thinking it was like a physical possession, but I can grasp the concept when it is more like direction, it makes more sense. So I will see where all this goes,, my hearts prayer is,, please don't let this be one of my mad ideas that burns me out and fizzles away,, please God let me taste life, taste you Lord and live. Amen

 

 

 

 

 

How the other half live and stufd

I'll start with the stuff.  I've got a couple of things going on right now.  I'm processing them so I'm not sure how I feel but they are going on all the same.   My eldest son has left home taking the dog.  My son has been an absolute pleasure to live with and to parent, not because he is perfect but because I have enjoyed being and enjoy being his mum and watching him grow and have been glad to be there for him when he makes mistakes and he's been there  for me when I have,  I see someone who is an independent thinker with a huge streak of compassion and a desire to come good.  My respect for him and all three of my children  comes from the fact that, non of them asked to come into this world and non of them asked to have a dysfunctional mum and non of them asked to have a life without that stable family unit you get from mum and dad.  I know alot of people think that being a single parent is just as good as having the dad around but I have missed not sharing their lives with an attentive father, a father I could trust was for them not against them, someone I could ask am I doing the right thing. it's been bloody hard work and I mean hard to the point of total exhaustion.  So when baby number two said he was trying to get his own flat it came and it came at a time when I was no longer dealing with a child's emotions and differences, but another man's, a man who was opinionated and young and convinced he was right the atmosphere in the home was tense to say the least I found it extremely draining he wanted to live his own life and make his own path and I just needed a rest.   All I wanted when he left was that it was with a kiss on the cheek and my blessing,  not in some inflamed argument with the fingers up and a chip on his shoulder and I'm so pleased, no, I'm so very blessed to my heart that that is what's happened and I'll tell you why.  He is going to need a friend who would put her life on the line for him because this life our youngsters live if on low incomes from broken families and in poor rented accommodation are surrounded by drug and alcholol wars,  while often struggling themselves. I can honestly say I am relieved my sons only enjoy  smoking grass and can see the carnage that fell upon my generation through speed acid and ecstasy and heroine, there are myriads of dead men and women walking toothlessly amongst us like ghosts  I have always tried to give my kids a background story to these beautiful tragic people, to give them more of a personality than just an addict. ,for example, he could of been a pro surfer till he went to Australia and got messed up on acid,  she could of been anything she was pretty and very clever, she was actually one of the most genuine women I have ever spoken too, he was a professional piano player,, he was shy, she was so very funny, he was gentle and sensetive,,an amazing plaster, a sales rep for Ford with a body to die for and a beautiful girl on his arm, these broken up people are more than just stories, they walk amongst us limbs missing, lives stolen, grey faces exiting in another dimension,, always busy, scared or angry always trying always dying.  I told my these  things about drugs I didn't know if it would backfire on me but I had to take the chance,, you see I had had a very domineering controlling mother who crushed me and I grew up afraid and angry and I found it hard to learn or feel loved and accepted so I went looking for drugs,, I sought them out and they were good,, I found freedom and peace and confidence in them at first, of course when you take different drugs paranoia, psychosis, anxiety and rushes with death make you realise that all that glitters is not gold, but by that time it's either too late to get out or you have to rebuild your life but now with the brutal realisation that nothing is easy to enjoy or like or love any more, when you have lived your life high, high highs and high lows, there is an emptiness about an unadulterated life it takes years to be content or to find anything fun again life takes on the mundane and you have to be pretty well determined that mundane is better,, you may have been surrounded by like-minded friends for what seems like forever, friends you have loved and cried with, friends you have had the highest of highs with along with the lowest of lows, friends who have held each other together through the times of neurosis and friends who just sit and smoke with you when life's come crashing down around you and death claims your soul mates, It's kind of like the closest you come to unconditional love. So to break free you loose family and have to find a new direction often only left with a childlike wisdom, like when you started off, which in my case was 16.   So basically I broke all things down to my son and said no one tells you that drugs feel good, they tell you they are bad and you might die but oftentimes it takes alot before you reach that point, you've just got to realise you will never be the same again, it steals the joy, the innocence the fun and the simple goodness of dealing with life through clear perspectives and eyes it steals families and parents and children.  So yes, there's been gange I wish there hadn't but there has and that stuff is sprayed with enough crap to send you over the edge, but I thank God that amongst there decision to smoke  there has been another inner decision to hang back and watch before doing ketamine with their friends or spice or meow,  they have seen their young friends over come by addiction performing sexual favours on older men and other perversions, knife crimes and rape and robbery, but the are walking their own path, they have come home and rolled up a spliff and had tea and walked through another year, sharing and figuring stuff out.  I'm telling you it's a war out there and your kids need to know who's side your on.  So getting back to the point my son has gone with a kiss and a blessing and I go over on a Thursday and we share and laugh and just be ourselves and every Friday I light candles for each of my precious kids and my grandkids and ask God to have mercy on us all and bring his light and love and truth into our lives whilst we muddle through. 

 

 

 

Finding Life and Paul

I met up with Paul last week,  Paul is someone I have known for about eight years and we always got on really well, but we were married so never looked at each other, we just knew when we met we thought oh he's nice or she's nice and that's the way it was until finally we met up after mum died for a coffee and by which time we were both divorced and both quite broken and our friendship was based on the understanding that we were both broken and it was a gentle nurturing relationship, we explored the countryside we watched the barren coldness of winter turn into new life, we saw buds blossom, we held frogs, caught tadpoles, watched grass snakes and hunted for slow worms, we had close encounters with buzzards and spotted Kites  and heard a cuckoo, we saw pregnant sheep and horses and cows and watched them as new mums with their fluffy little offspring and watched sunrises and sunsets and blood moons, we spotted the stars and watched out for the satellites that were travelling around the world, and Paul taught me to fish.  He stretched my limits, I had found it hard to leave the house on my own for a while,  I was OK if I had a job or a place to go, but I was mostly very afraid and stayed in and had stopped walking and exploring, something I had always done,, and now I was fishing off rock ledges,  spotting seals and hermit crabs and catch bass and macrel fishing well Into to the blackness night and scrambling up cliffs with only a head torch and cheap glasses from Home Bargains. We had freedom and we were living, really living it was the best year of my life.  As lockdown continued and we were all told to not travel and stay indoors  our underlying mental health issues in all their glory became harder to escape from and by the last lockdown were were suffocated by our heads our restrictions and our poverty and we lost track of life and love and laughter, I got very depressed and anxious and Paul suffered from really bad agitation so we gave each other space and time to be broken.  And that's where we are now, we are trying to pull out of these last couple of months and start living again, sometimes we go for weeks without seeing each other, then the pull of the life we experienced in each others company compels us to keep trying, this time a little more fragile a little more tentative a little more tired.  Lockdown has been hard but with the lifting travel restrictions we were able to get up the North Wales last week, we saw rolling mountains and literally hundreds of Kites circling a feeding station, we saw valleys and rivers and the mist rolling over mountains, we drove up mountain paths and saw rams and black sheep and shaggy horned cows, we saw quarries and ruins and wealth and poverty, big mansion type houses with drives as long as my road, and broken down houses with with scruffy kids playing on dirty garden slides.  We were living and loving. Praise God.  So we are here, we are not sure where but we both know we need to live to be thankful, to breath and to heal. One day at a time, one breath at a time one mountain one sunset at a time, two people trying to work through our own problems without without being a problem to each other.  It's quite dysfunctional at times but it's still the most respectful relationship I have ever had the privilege of being a part of. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Erections, Salvador Dali and sewing machines

I know, catchy title!, let me explain,  I've been up and down the past couple of weeks,, Im fluctuating between  backslidden Christian, binge drinker and Newby vegan,, add a sewing machine in there and its exhausting.   So after a period of seclusion due to my head, my latest obsessions have given me a bit of a spark so I managed to do a bit of shopping for Peter the writer downstairs. And Yes he is a writer I did some research because I was paranoid about being groomed at 50 by a nearly 70 year old 😂😬. So I take Peters shopping in and put it in his fridge, no French wine this time thank God, but four cans of Stella, six eggs (free range), paracetamol the Guardian (£2.20!) and immodium.   (mental check, NO FOOD IN FRIDGE OR CUPBOARDS, low level anxiety as I already need to take care of this man and I don't know where to fit him in), any how after an invitation to PLEASE stay a while, I sit and listen to Peter as he talks about Salvador Dahli and I'm shown a book that is only one of 50 copies of his life's work, I randomly turn to one page of a lovely picture of a naked woman and I'm looking at it wondering why her leg looks in the wrong place when I briefly glance to the side pictures and realise I'm staring at full foofy footage whilst Peter is standing next to me on his walker, I reassure myself that art is different to perversion and try to look fascinated at the detail and cultured.   He hobbles back to his reclining chair puts the legs up, his double hernia bulging out his trousers and yes I mean hernia and he tells me the story about Salvador Dahli and his wife who were really poor and lived in a little cottage with no windows, as a present to his beloved wife he buys her a little kitten and when he asks her if she is happy she tells him that whilst she loves her little kitten there is no light in their cottage and it makes her sad so when she is sleeping one night he cuts out four sections in the walls which capture the sun moving hour by hour around the cottage, she is happy. Peter reminisces on his days of health and travel when his favourite thing was snorkeling around this Island and feeding the great great grandkittens from the original kitten Salvador had given his wife.

The next part of the story was a bit jumbled, Peter took two immodium with his lager and I heard his stomach rumble and gurgle as he continued,  just one more story he beseeched me to listen and apologised for boring me,  I assured him I was far from bored,, on guard maybe, pityful and fascinated but not bored.    So Salvador had a friend a famous artist this artist apparently had been one of the most wealthiest artists at a certain point in his time, or something like that, the point is he is famous and rich I think he had an Italian sounding name and he invites Salvador to the unveiling of his engagement present to his soon to be wife, I want to mention here that Peters fascination with this story is centered around the soon to be wife's reaction, so, the unveiling arrives there is a mass, a bulk centered in the room, filling the room almost in its entirity and the sheet is pulled loose to reveal a huge stuffed polar bear with a huge erection.  Peter pauses to increase the suspense from the fiance his face shines with utter delight as he tells me that she took off her husband to be artists hat and hung it over the giant erection and exclaimed "darling I would never of thought of that".     Peter smiles broadly in total admiration and sighs, "what a lady".   I didn't feel he could top that story so I gracefully departed to my flat where my second hand sewing machine lay in wait.  Bare in mind that I have very little knowledge of sewing, I immediately proceeded to alter a new summer dress I had bought from the charity shop.  I must remember that desire does not give me skill, I must use the desire to aquire skill then attempt alterations. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Plant based diet

Ok so ive deleted my post about me being an alcholic because it makes me feel vunerable.   This post is about the facr that i am sick and tired of feeling sick and tired.   I tbink by now the mental healthnurse in my Drs thinks i really have mental health problem,im always asking could it be this or could it be that,,i just cant settle for the fact that i feel so pbysically ill all the time and its all in my head.  

No you havent a tumour 

No you havent dementia 

no your not on the menopause

Its depression,,,   too right its depression, I have felt like shit for all of my 40s and now I'm the big 50 I want some answers,, but who's going to bother helping a 50 year old from a council estate who's on sickness benefits, it's cheaper to keep pumping me full of anti depressants.  I thought my mother was crazy when she was in the throws of her paranoia and refused to see her Dr because they were trying to kill her.    I think I'm crazy too because no one seems to want to explore other avenues and I think its odd, don't they want to make people better.   If my Dr woke up one morning and for the next ten years had fatigue which meant every single thing he had to get on with exhausting, no pleasure in people places or things I  wonder if 40mg of citralopram would appease him. Oh and then the Propanol to stop you feeling like your going into cardiac arrest,,, its exhausting and I can't help wonder what the hell is going on because I was young but now I am getting old and time is slipping through my fingers and I'm still knackered. 

I've monotored my stress levels, this week I managed three days without drink but then my son had A bit of an altercation on his way home from work with a man who has a coke (NOT THE DRINK) problem and ended up raming his way through a crowd who had stopped to get live footage for facebook, he came home so mad I ended up wonder what the hell have I given birth too, I then heard my windows were going to be put through and my dad's and my daughters.   I thought how has my life come to this I'm from Newton for Heavens sake.  So I bought a bottle of the Shy Pig wine and had a damn good drink then worried the police would call around and it would be like a scene  out of eastenders with me pissed but trying to stay frightfuly composed as the neighbouring addicts revelled in the entertainment from the new woman on the block.  Oh there I go worst case scenario ING again.   I won't even go into detail how I ended up arming myself with a rolling pin to defend my property car and son.  I put it down the back of my trousers like a pro then scuttled back in the flat feeling like a complete idiot after a moment of clarity. 

This is what I mean by social anxiety Dr Thomas

and this is what I mean by I am not depressed but my social standing depresses me. 

Anyway I digress 

So after watching Netflix  health documentary on how the meat and dairy industry are trying to kill us and the Testimony of a couple of chronic cases of health issues being all but cured by plant based diet I thought why not give it a go, I will not be stopping my anti depressants after two weeks as it will take months to come off these things safely but if it improves my energy levels I will become a vegan evangelist.   I'm already hungry just thinking about all that fat I'm cutting out.   So this is another attempt to self help. 

Oh yes and I bought some CBD capsules on my overdraft to help with alcohol cravings, my daughter reckons my cravings will dissappear with my stress when my son moves out in a week or two. 

Night night

Tangerines and coffee for breakfast, I wonder if I can afford to be a vegan while still feeding two constantly starving omnivores. 

 

OH WELL THATS THAT THEN

I had a phone call from my Dr yesterday.    He was phoning to review my prescription for citralopram and assess my mental health.   First time that has ever happened.

My conversation with him was quite good as he was empathetic and understanding of my frustration about being stuck in a world of fog, anxiety and severe fatigue, neurotic thoughts and hopelessness.   Anyway my point is this,  I am on medication the full dosage and anti anxiety medication, I am volunteering to build up confidence, I am trying to maintain relationships and do self help videos and I am still ill.   I am really struggling, so I posed the question, look, I'm 50 all these symptoms are symptoms of menopause could it be a biological problem maybe?   This was my assessment. 

Dr: are you still having regular periods? 

Me: I have a regular one day bleed a month. 

Dr: well your not on the menopause.  When your periods stop then you are on the menopause.  I will speak to you again about your medication.  

Oh well that's that then. 

In the meantime I have to continue in this mire of fog and exhausting and such poor concentration that I feel afraid driving sometimes, I have to wake up every morning with raging anxiety and find daily life extremely difficult. I look fine on the outside maybe a little knackered but on the inside I feel like a shell of a woman who's every day is a real struggle.  I've addressed my diet, my exercise my boundaries my self talk I've read and learnt and applied.  I honestly feel like I can't possibly do any more.  I have  resigned myself to the fact that this is life for me and to be honest.  It's bloody depressing. 

 

 

A shock encounter

I have to say that I honestly have been blessed with the type of personality that generally finds most people agreeable even if they are a problem to others.   I've always been very grateful for this because it leaves me generally at peace with pretty much the vast majority of people  I kind of make it my business to have peaceable relationships.                     But the strangest thing happened last week when I was volunteering in the Welsh Air Ambulance,  a volunteer came in and even her face bugged me!  then came her fussy voice and her prescece which was passive aggressive,  she irritated me so much that I had to walk away because I was thinking some really mean stuff,  this immediately arose my curiosity, what was going on with me, they say that the irritation we feel when encountering people that rub us up the wrong way is because they are mirroring our behaviour we try and hide,  I don't mind that explanation it keeps me from making these feelings become a Wedge between us.   Then later on in Zacs place zoom meeting we read Romans 14 and discussed our attitude toward people and the mindset we should adopt as people who call themselves followers of Jesus.  

It's a decision to be loving when there are no natural emotions to help. 

I read this from the Ragamuffin Gospel this morning, 

How I treat a brother or sister from day to day,           how I react to the sin scarred wino on the street,   how I deal with normal people in their normal confusion on a normal day may be a better indication of my reverence for life than the anti abortion sticker on the bumper of my car.                                         We are not pro life simply because we are warding off death.  We are pro life to the extent that we are men and women for others, all others, to the extent that no human flesh is a stranger to us, to the extent that we can touch the hand of another in love, to the extent that for us there are no others. 

Powerful stuff it we want to treat people how we wish to be treated ourselves. 

Violette Szabo

Carve her name with pride.

 Dad had an emotional day yesterday, he re read letters his father had written after he was first diagnosed with dementia, they were letters of love and loss and gave a glimpse inside the heart of the man my dad didn't really know.  He followed that up by watching carve her name with pride with Virginia Mckenna, a black and white film made not long after the war about a woman called Violette Szabo a British/French Special OpsExecutive agent (SOE) during the second World War.  On her second mission into France she was captured by the German army, interrogated and tortured she was deported to Ravensbrück concentration camp Germany where she was executed.  She was 23.

There's a poem in the film that Violette husband to be wrote for her, I think it's possibly the most romantic poem I've ever heard, it goes like this

The life that I have

Is all that I have

And the life that I have Is yours.

The love that I have Of the life that I have

Is yours and yours and yours.

A sleep I shall have

A rest I shall have Yet death will be but a pause.

For the peace of my years In the long green grass

Will be yours and yours and yours.

The poem was in fact written by an enceyptor in the war who lost his wife tragically in a plane crash.  The British used to send coded messages in poems and found if they were originals it was harder for the Germans to get information from them.

Facinating and true. 

Interesting afternoon 

I am not anti Vax

After  I was hurled a frustrated quip toward my decision  not to take the covid vaccine,ive been thinking hard about my decision,, its not an easy decision to make saying no to something that apparently will stop you potentially dying of covid,  but I have made my decision based on a body of Dr's who have dared to speak out against the narrative, these Dr's have absolutely nothing to gain by going against the grain and to be honest I  tend to sit up and listen to professionals who are losing reputation jobs and freinds because in their professional oppinion this vaccine has not been fully approved by the FDA and has not had long enough to test the potential long term side effects.   There is also a disclaimer with the vaccine that no one holds responsibility if damage/death! is done by it.  So basically I would feel safer receiving something that the compa ies providing it are putting their name to any potential risks, at least there is some integrity in that contract.  

I don't like the vaccine I don't like the term human trials I don't like the way the government is more than happy to profit from pumping two maybe three probably even more vaccines into people even though they have absolutely no idea how these vaccines will effect long term and I don't like the way big pharmacy companies are profiting without taking responsibility for any possible fallout.   

https://m.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=469038991023976&id=100037536370287

Please take your time to listen to this. It is for your information only because the public hears only what this untrustworthy government wants it to hear.   

I've had to make a seriously hard decision not taking the vaccine, I didn't do it to be different,  I just don't trust its safety long term.  I know there are many normal  everyday people who have had them so they can get back to normal everyday life, pubs, holidays etc and I know people who have had it so they can have contact with loved ones and family,  I completely understand.   I am not an anti vaxer,, I am an anti human trialer. 

Just thought it would be helpful for some people to understand what's behind one person's decision. 

Stay safe!! 

My new neighbour Peter and Dorothy Parker

I moved into my new flat a couple of weeks ago and intoduced myself to the neighbour downstairs who seemed very chatty and helpful.  I'm not sure how old he is but he needs an operation so his current mobility limitations make him seem older than he probably is.    I found out soon enough that not only has he lost his dad during lockdown and couldn't visit him but in the last two years he had lost his son in a horrific car accident.  My heart immediately went out to him.   He mentioned in passing that he was a writer which immediately interested me because I love people who have a story or a bit of culture, so I hoped we would have more little chats during the duration of us neighbouring together.    

Peter is my neighbours name and he asked me in the week if I could possibly pick up some shopping for him on the weekend, which I felt was a bit sudden but hey it might get me closer to more of a story.   Who was this man? this writer living in the bottom council flat from me in one of the roughest areas of West Cross.   Was he a liar or did he have a life story to tell? 

So my first shopping list was

Free range small chicken 

Thick cut marmalade

French wine (about 8 Quid a bottle) 

A large brown loaf

And some mouthwash 

This man obviously had class. 

I wasn't sure if Aldies would offer me the selection of food on his list but it was pouring down so I wasn't going to trapes around looking for the perfect size chicken or listerene mouthwash so I picked the smallest of the chicken and some gum protecting mouthwash as I noticed he had the odd tooth missing and felt it a wise choice. 

I dropped his shopping off about three ish and he asked if I'd like a glass of wine,, seeing as I thought (when purchasing his wine) he seemed more of a full bodied type of guy than a fruity (he seemed flattered at my analysis) I agreed to the luxury of one small glass of good French wine.   

We talked about where he had lived and I sat in wonder.  I have always lived in Swansea but my heart has travelled many a distant shore.  He spoke about places I'd never even heard of, I darent tell him for fear of him not waisting his breath on such an ignoramous, he talked about books and film stars and life and lost loves and I told him how I longed for culture, not money but culture.   The wine was smooth and strong and I felt rich and listened and dreampt of a life that seems so out of reach now.   Before I parted he told me to look up Dorothy Parker, she would be my stepping stone to my council flat culture encounter,,, and so I did. 

Dorothy Parker was born to a Jewish father and a Catholic mother, she was a social activist, poet and a bit of an enigma really, 

 If your interested in learning more Dorothy Parker’s stunning wit and tragic life - BBC Culture https://www.bbc.com/culture/article/20170605-dorothy-parkers-stunning-wit-and-tragic-life

All in all a very cultural afternoon. 

I ambled back to my flat delighted that I had an experience to think about that evening and as I mused out my kitchen window, I turned to look in on Grandad, my super intelligent, amusing and cutness itself hamster, who lay lifeless with his little arm bent back at the bottom of the cage.  I immediately got him out and felt his little cold body, he still had life in him, I rubbed him gently and kissed his little face and warned him up in my hands.  Grandad twitched and then started labouring for breath, he was like it for about forty minutes just deep breathing in then out then still, then in and out then still, labouring in death and I just cried, I cried because I love him and he was dying and I wouldn't have the pleasure of him anymore and crying because that's exactly how my mum died, she laboured for hours death claiming her, death forcefully taking her, Grandad had a big seizure his little  body stretched slowly out in my hand, my mum had a seisure in my arms very slowly and deeply, I felt it tightly grip  her from deep within but she didn't move, I just wiped away the foam from her mouth that was being forced out with the pressure.  Then she was gone.  Still. Still as death. 

I put Grandad in a little box and I'm going to Bury him tommorow in the woods, now he is free. 

That's the first time I've cried about my mum, properly. 

What a unique day. 

 

Who is God

You know, I have been a very dysfunctional person really my whole life,  I think I've only got by as good as I have because I'm genetically relatively good natured I think if I weren't you would see much clearer the mess I really have been or at times am.  

Since I was a little girl I was deeply comforted by a k owing that there was God,  it was always God related to the Christian Bible, probably because I I live in a once Christian culture.  My parents do not believe and my sister do not believe but somehow I always knew God was real and to be honest I survived alot of the consequences of my dysfunctional lifestyle because I did believe and God was always my "friend". 

I can't say that that belief helped me be more prosperous but it gave me a deep moral consousness and a heart for anything broken.  The only time I disregarded this moral consciousness is when I chose to numb my pain with amphetamines and valium and alcohol and cannabis,  then I think I can honestly say I didn't care much about anyone or anything I only cared about getting out of my head and I mean that in the literal. 

About 10 years ago I had a profound spiritual awakening and for years I sought to please God to read His word and to obey His commandment,  yet something was missing, there was this joy in the Lord I read about that I did not have, I started to suspect that although by this time I knew alot about Christian theology, I did not in fact have a personal relationship with Jesus and I lost heart,, this coincided with me realising that alot of Christian theology was anti semetic which baffled me as Jesus was a devout Jew as were the writers of the gospels and just as my faith in theology fell apart my mum got brain cancer and the events that proceeded from that really finished off my belief in what I believed was true.  I still however believed in God and Jesus but I was now lost. 

So what happened I just lived by survival again and did what I could and what my emotions dictated and where did I end up!?  Well I ended up at 50 being a shadow of who I was in my teens twenties and thirties which I can tell you is a sad state to find yourself at my age.   So I survived as best I could but still I am left with these big questions which hold eternal significance, who is the real God and who is the real Jesus.   I really want to know.  

So here I am at the beginning again searching weakly but I hope a little more humbly. 

Who are you God. 

X

Just listen

I am well aware that everyone suffers in life and many have the most heartbreaking stories,  but reflecting on what my counsellor suggested that everyone suffers, I just want to say that I don't think that makes any of us feel any better.   I think that sometimes when you have been through something traumatic you just need a safe place to tell your story without being made to feel you are being self indulgent or self pitying.  Just that you need another human being to listen and say shit man or bless you sister that was intense I hear you.  I think since my mum died I had such a shock at the brutality of what the Brin tumour did to her, it completely and utterly devastated me.  I want to say up front for anyone who ever reads this that knew me or my mum that I did not have a close relationship with my mother for years but when she asked me to care for her after her diagosis, I accepted and me and my sister watched in absolute disbelief at the 17 months that my mum literally fought it and grasped desperately at the life she had been left.  She did not go peacefully she went down fighting.  

I won't say much more now but I'm writing this because my pain inside won't heal because there is not a suitable platform for me to get this story out.  I'm expected to get out of my depression and get back to work without even pausing for a moment to acknowledge that something absolutely horrific just happened.   So I'm on 40mg of citralopram and now beta blockers and was nursing a concerning alcholol issue and I'd probably just carry on feeling sick and being sick but I just can't carry on like this. 

My mum was wild I mean wild she was self disciplined her whole life and very donesticated and after her brain operation she regretted that she'd been so good, she wished she had tried drugs and rode motorbikes and travelled more and told people more you get the picture and in her own way she lived exactly how she wanted the last 17 months of her life regardless of the impact on her family around her and that was incredibly hard for us at the time.   You have certain ideas about what a dying woman should be like.  You don't imagine her making you drive to a motorbike shop and trying out the bikes or phoning old lovers, or sleeping onky two or three hours a night because you want to see the stars and hear the birds rise or chain smoking just because what does it matter anymore. 

So I will try and tell my story and see if I can move on.  Because as it stands I'm stuck with all these memories and questions with no place to grow and move forward. 

Didn't drink or smoke yesterday just walked and read.   Wasn't as bad as I thought.  Had a horrid headache all night and when I woke up but its a beautiful day and I'm sharing my heart. 

So not a bad start

What defines Alcoholism

Yesterday I think the shist hit the fan.   I have woken up two morning in a row feeling completely unstable me tally, very teary and looking at my life wondering where I have gone wrong AGAIN!

I have always found it difficult to socialise and often prefer my own company but this has in my later years contributed to horrid loneliness and I think I started filling my weekends with some red wine and playing music to fill that gap and to be honest it did for a while.  Then I started sneaking into my sons room and smooching a marujuana joint, just a couple of puffs worth because the grass they smoke today is wrecking stuff and my head couldn't handle more than a few puffs but there I was and that became a thing. 

After I had to care for my mum who was a force to be reckoned with anyway and after her brain tumour operation suffered paranoia and was just manic, my anxiety levels hit rick bottom and later when me and my sister had to move in with her I was drinking everyday to hide because I was so uncomfortable inside being around her, she was so out of control bless her. 

Then mum died and I just kept drinking and then it was lockdown and I kept drinking and I started regularly having little spliffs.  This wouldn't be so bad if I hadn't had trouble in my younger years with addiction.  I could see a pattern forming again and I didn't k ow or want to stop. 

I think watching my mum die in that 17 months in such a cruel and painful way just pulled the rug from under my feet.  My faith was shaken my view on life was miserable I felt old I k ew for real now that one day I was going to to die and that I had probably done the most of my living and looking back I wasn't particularly happy with the way I had lived my life.  I was in a dark hopeless place,, or rather I am. 

Today I have told myself I am not going to dri k and I am not going to smoke, I spent about an hour yesterday trying not to have a panic attack after smoking and I just chucked the stuff away.

So here I am this morning

Needing hope and direction and to sort things out

According to Christianity God does not let things tempt us beyond what we are capable of resisting

But either I don't know God or that just isn't true or I'm just weak.  Whatever there is a an issue here. 

 

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Things she wished she could do

My mum was diagnosed with terminal brain cancer in 2018. 

She said lots of tbongs that go over and over in ny mind.

One of the things she said which I'm not even goi g to try and analyse but I found heartbreaking was that she would like to ride a motorbike down route 66 with a leather waist coat on that was only just barely containing her ample bosom. 

Bless 

I thi

Breasts and Bikes

There is light on the Horizon

Get yourself a hero

There is something written in the Bible about Iron sharpening Iron, I take this to mean that there are some people in life that sharpen our character.  It maybe hard to find that person in your real everyday life.  But there people throughout history who we can identify with and take strength from. 

Let's not give up hope in these times.   Plenty have gone before and carried heavy burdens and emerged with dignity humility and a little more wisdom.   

If our biggest challenge of the day is loving our family let's do it with courage of conviction and direction and simplicity and lashings of love.  Be kind, listen and don't be quick to pass judgement. 

Maya  Angelou said

I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”

I say... 

I am not a strong woman or an inspirational woman but I get strength from strong fair merciful women.  And I have the ability to be inspired.   

I'll settle for that today. 

 

 

 

 

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The little things

I have a small plaque in my toilet so my sons have to read it whilst having a pee.  It says 

Enjoy the little things in life because one day you may look back and realise they were the big things. 

This simple little truth holds the key to much contentment,, and it's so easily overlooked.

Yesterday as I was picking up my youngest from school in my side mirror there were loads of little sparrows having a dust bath.  Not just bathing but really getting stuck in,, it looked like they were having a really lovely time.  How simple.  And it blessedme to watch it.  I took a video but I haven't quite got the ha g of this site yet and I'm finding navigating it a bit complicated.  If I suss it out I will post it and you will see what I mean about the little things in life. 

Be observant you might catch a hidden treasure xx

 

 

 

The Steps

Getting Old

40 years ago these two fabulous men would tease us youngsters as we moaned endlessly about having to climb Langland steps after a hard day down the beach.  Those steps were a killer,, well actually they still are.  

Now they are the training ground for a recovered knee operation and a desperate attempt to strengthen a ruptured archilles tendon. 

My dad faced the steps with gusto I could see his years of physical training work out mentally, I could see the look on his face, the determination to hang on in there,, his push his drive.  He wobbled, his stick slipping, his knees buckling his heart pounding.  

He did it. 

I was sandwiched in the middle feeling responsible for these two oldies,, what if they slip or have a heart attack,, what would happen if I had a heart attack,, you know the usual 1000 worst case scenarios. 

My Uncle followed, his pace slower he was swaying from step to step chatting and giggling about life and they both got to the top and talked about the rugby. 

We've all walked those steps, for years,,  weve run up them, cried up them, dragged ourselves up them and skipped down them.  Now we take our time but we keep climbing.  It's not so much for pleasure now but a show of physical endurance, a necessity to keep moving, keep climbing one step at a time. 

And I thought about life and time 

And I thought about struggle and steps

And I thought about the different attitudes over the years to the '' steps''.   The laughter the stretch the memories.  The warm sea breeze as you reached the second steps on a summers morning and just got a glimpse of the sun twinkling on the water and you knew it was going to be a great day. 

And my evaluation was this

Time waits for no man 

Take something good from each day, 

My dad's determination

My Uncles sweet comment about still chasing my Aunty round the bedroom. 

And try and make those steps sweet. 

They keep going up and they do not get any easier. 

But there is still joy and life to be had in the climb. 

 

The Move

OK.  So, I have moved flats in 2 weeks, from signing to now laying here in bed in my new home and I can tell you something, moving is stressful and for me a test of faith and friendship.

I think I have always been a nervous character,  it was always manageable because surprisingly I'm so laid back but I have to be honest the older I am getting the more debilitating anxiety has been in my life.  This has been down to (my own analasys)  economical pressure.   Socialogical change, and poor decision making. 

I find myself at 50 a bit of an emotional wreck really. (in my opinion, of which the standards were set by an incredibly tough mum). 

So when 2 weeks ago Swansea City Council gave me the opportunity to move but I had to do it immediately I knew it was a good decision locality wise also health and hygiene wise and also it put me and my kids or more so my grandkids with a little more distance between the poor buggars with heroine addiction who's block I was sharing.  All in all it had to happen.   The problem being that mentally I am a bit broken due to just life and I knew this would either make me or break me. 

 

There is a verse in the bible which says perfect love casts out fear.  I have thought about this verse for nearly 12 years and it has always seemed like the perfect solution to all my troubles yet I never understood how to make that verse a reality in my life.   So I started having a meltdown,, when I say a meltdown I mean my brain refuses to process information I become vacant and can't make decisions, it's coupled with raging anxiety from the first breath in the morning to the last sigh at night,  it's not the sort of thing you can self talk yourself out of completely so I started thinking about perfect love.  I have a problem when it comes to people loving me, I just can't feel it.   So, anyway I started thinking.  I can't do this but I'm doing it.  I motioned my thoughts toward where I felt God's ear was, I can't do this God, I had no other strength to hang on to my fear so I just thought I will see what God will do!

So firstly Paul my wonderful partner and I mean that in all seriousness snapped into action and just carried me for the first few days organising and pointing in the right direction and planning,  I could see that it was weighing on him by this point because I was still in a complete state of mash potato brain so I had a glass of wine one evening and just sat with my head and something just snapped into action.  I thought shit!!! I've got to get moving!  It's just as well because Paul had to start taking some new medication he had been prescribed and it was heavy on his head, his motivation and energy levels plummeted, it was hard to watch, it is hard to watch.  So I started in my own muddled way gathering and sorting and packing and phoning and changing addresses,  oh and by the way my eldest son decides he is not coming with me and I am tempted to go into a panic as he has no plans!, just that he is not coming!.  So first he was going to squat in the empty flat and was going to demand the council rehouse him as effectively they have made him homeless by offering us a smaller property which he isn't officially  meant to share with me and my younger son.  What a nightmare so all that was going on too. 

My head on the brink, Paul's head on the brink Joshes head on the brink and Ollie even more quiet than usual but I could feel his disapproval of the sudden change,  he didn't want to move back to West cross anyway!! 

Hey ho

Back to my point I gave up trying in my own strength,, in a few days I could see that things were coming together naturally or to me super naturally as I truly believe that all good things come from above.  I think God is good and all good things are birthed through him.  So I started to relax and just watch how God would help. 

After signing for the flat on the Monday, Tuesday night in Zacs zoom meeting Sean Stillman offered help with some men and a van from the Rough Edges one of  Zacs places charity arm into the community.  I was a little hesitant to accept the offer because if I can do things with out troubling a soul in life I will, but I soon realised that this help being offered was actually a huge part of the stress I was carrying so I messaged Sean to say yes please. 

Thank you God. 

Then the housing officer for West Cross who told me he alone upports 600 tenants!  Seemed busy and stressed himself so after not being able to alleviate my moving stress questions with him, I phoned Karen from Sketty housing who was like an Angel,, literally, she replied to my emails texts and phone calls, she returned calls and was clear empathetic calm and helpful, so that alleviated my panic about benefit changes and the now growing rent arrears as I'm now paying for two flats till the other one is emptied cleaned and the keys are handed in all on my overdraft😬😬

Thank you God. 

Paul then managed to paint through the entire flat, woodwork and all in three days, working to his usual standard of perfection and unbelieveable energy. 

The day before I was due to move Josh informed me he was going to come with us to the new property so I didn't have to worry about him for a bit.  

Thank you God

Friday morning Chris, Howard and Keiran turn up with the rough edges van and with Paul they literally shunt the contents of my flat to the new location up a flight of hideously narrow stairs, and no matter how difficult it was there were still laughs and fags and coffee,, marvellous. 

Thank you God. 

And last but not least, Liz from Zacs made a beautiful Victoria sponge and delivered it herself which was lovely because I haven't seen her in person for an absolute age,, her smiling eyes behind  her mask were a welcome sight amongst the men, Oh and by the way that big cake was our tea as I didn't have any food in the house to make a meal. 

Thank you God

 

So now I am here, still got lots to sort out but the back of it, is broken.  And I feel frazzled but loved by God, and my fear,  well I can only describe it like when your helping your child to do something and they cling on to you and they are still scared but that hand you offer them gives them that little extra courage to complete the task. 

That's me

Thank you God