Learning to adapt to what is there.

Good Morning to all and I hope that your day is treating you with love and understanding. It is a wonderful day here with the weather is looking like we will get a late storm, I simply adore our thunderstorms, sitting on the patio and watching the light show with the cooling rain. I am still a bit on the off side but am up and interacting as my medical team told me to. 

Today I am going to sit down and work out a proper ‘as I go’ daily planner. One where I have  – wake up a 6am: walk 6.15-6.45: shower 6.45…you get the idea, so that I can re-train myself.  My medical team at the moment are mainly concerned about the depression but I have lost much of my muscle use on my left-hand side since I had that turn in June. I think that if I can pick up things, get back into my crafts, cooking, reading and the other activities I did before the seizure, it may help me cope better with my depression. 

I have days where I feel like I own the world and then the next day I am scared to leave my room, I have the strategies that the medics gave me, and I am coping with it but it does not help with the feeling of overall uselessness. Yesterday I penned my blog in less than an hour…the words just flowed, yet today I am struggling with everything – the spelling, getting my ideas out of my brain, sentence structure and all the other things that should come naturally for a writer. Of course, this makes me feel just that little bit disappointed in me as a person because English and writing have always been my haven.

What this means for me is that I just have to decide how that day is going to be when I get up. I will have those activities that I MUST do (medical profession want me to walk daily) personal health habits, the activities I ACTUALLY enjoy – writing my blog, and those activities that my kids let me slide on when I am not having a good day – yes the housework. However, I feel that if I am going to overcome this and really reinvent myself that I need to firm with me. 

As I shared with my regular readers the other day I really do not have any idea WHO I actually am. Yes, I know what I can do but not who I am and that is just a little scary. I will need professional help to review and repair the damage done during my developing childhood years, but as for who I am, well that will be up to me. Rather exciting when you get to create the person you are going to be and you are well into your fifties!

I have never been concerned about wealth, I am very passionate about people’s rights, I oppose governments who think that they have the right to do as they like without consolation from the citizens. I firmly believe that children must have care, love, and support. I have a very strong ‘hippy’ ideology and still believe that capitalism is not the answer. That is what I have come up with since Friday, when I answered “Mother, Teacher…”, and was stopped as that described what I do.

Well, that is it for today as the head has decided that it has worked enough for today. I thank you for dropping by and taking the time to see what progress I am making. I hope that you will have a peaceful day and find some restful time just for you. 

 

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Life does not always work out according to what you have planned, so you must have yourself in a place where you can just easy though it.

 

Life…is it meant to be taken seriously?

Hi to all and I hope that the day is going as you hope for, that you have your share of happiness and relaxation. Today I am going to chat about one of my favourite people and I love him because he took the accepted social norms and ignored them. Yes, he could be classed as a problem but anyone who challenges society and gets people to question is usually identified as ‘a problem’

“Life is too important to be taken seriously”, this is one of my favourite quotes. I always had it on my wall to remind myself that I need to live the life I have but on my terms. Oscar Wilde created the order of these words to form this slice of inspiration. He gives you the idea to challenge the norms to make something of your life, to not just go ahead with what everyone else is doing just because…..

I love him, as in my view, he was a great wordsmith and could influence words to release humour which transcends the years as easily as he would sculpt them to build a monster that haunts you long after the book has been returned to the shelf. 

The Picture of Dorian Gray’,  a tale of vanity, lust, decadence, and all those other lovely traits that make life interesting; not always good for us but a little like that last piece of chocolate – fine so long as no-one else knows. I have decided to pick it up as it has always been one of my favourite stories, and I always find new messages with each reading, Age, I think, is the difference until now but with this last experience, I think it will be interesting to see what it has to say to me.   

I hear you ask why? Oscar captures the worst of human nature and makes it appear ok to act as you wish, given that there is no reckoning. The catch interestingly enough is that you are your own moral compass. Yes, people are flawed but most of us do try to do better, to forgive and to be just that little bit better than we were yesterday. I like to think Oscar had it ‘unright’, that given true freedom without fear of retribution, we would choose well.  

I am new to blogging so I am still learning. I am enjoying the experience but not sure what should or should not be shared. I am not sure what others like or read. I know that I find great comfort with the fact that I can get on here and write what I need to get through that day. Short, and just cover the fact that I made a promise to myself to blog every day, or exactly how I am feeling and hope that others can feel a little less alone (often my biggest enemy). It makes it the single activity the I am ENJOYING doing each day which turns out to be good for helping with my mental illness.

I write because of the way you can manipulate the English language. I write because I feel more at ease expressing emotion on paper than having to deal with people. I write because I love words. I prefer the term wordsmith to a writer. A wordsmith is a master of his trade, whereas a writer does just that. I write because it is the one thing I have had throughout my life that has never let me down, never hurt me or never left me, it lets me be honest, to ramble on for as long as I like and leaves me feeling very much loved regardless of what is on the page.

Words are meant to tell their story and in the hands of a master that is just what they will do. Words have started revolutions, destroyed governments, made heroes of fools, and created causes from nothing more than an idea. Now, back to the main idea for today’s blog, the reason for Oscar’s quote “life is too important to be taken seriously”.

With what I have been going through for the past five-plus months I have decided it makes no difference if anyone else likes your choices, what you want to do, the way you live, your creations, your concept of fashion, your image, your hairstyle and the list is endless. It is your life – the only one you get to live. You do what you want. Write, paint, dance, and sing, it really makes no difference if others see or understand. All that matters is that you are fulfilled. Please do not misunderstand me, you should never hurt others in your pursuit of happiness, but you are allowed to your own personal happiness.

I know I am my most critical advisor, so for me, it translates into if I like me and what I am doing then that is all that should really matter. I have to create a me that I am happy with. I know I have to learn to not take life too seriously, and I really do need to appreciate the importance of me for ME. 

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Seeing myself through my best friend’s eyes.

Hello to you all from the land down-under, and I hope that your day has been wonderful. I have had a very odd day, with the emotions all over the place. I know that I am going to have these ups and downs but before I always had other peoples issues to fix so I could hide mine. This is a new learning path for me and I am on the very unsteady ground. 

I ended up going for a walk later in the day yesterday as I started to feel a little on edge and I thought it might have helped to settle me. I ended up taking a nerve-settling tablet to go to bed but still had an unsettled night. Today I have just been a little up and down and not really sure where I am but I did go for my walk and I cooked my meal so I can manage to get some of the identified tasks completed.

For tomorrow I have planned to only go for my walk, write up this blog and then I think I will just spend the rest of the day colouring in and sleeping. I may have done too much for the first five days out of the hospital and should have spread it out a little more evenly.  However, I am still hanging in there and know that I have limits and if I talk myself through the negative with a focus toward the positive I am aiming for, I can get to the end of the day. Baby steps are all I need at this stage!  Once again many thanks for reading how I am dealing with all this. xx

 

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This was one of the exercises we had in the hospital, what do you like best about your best friend? Now if your best friend was here what would she have put down on that sheet about you?

 

Creating the new ME.

Sunday has always been one of my favourite days…sleep in without guilt, combined breakfast and lunch so no calorie (Kj) rules and generally plenty of time to really do the activities you enjoy. I have always been an ‘off to the local market’ I adore seeing what sort of handcrafts and cooking the locals are doing, and of course you get to take your time, nibbling on local produce, sipping on coffee/tea and just watch your neighbours ambling and chatting. So having shared with you what I am planning to get back to by February next year, I will now ask you how your day has been going and hope that it is treating you with a sense of happiness and relaxation.

Again, for today I am planning on cooking myself a nice evening meal, do a little reading and start on my colouring in calendar for 2018 (I am really looking forward to having my calendar for next year as it will be a reminder of where I have come from and where I am going), but I am not going for my walk as it is a day of rest and I am so sore from the end of the week exercise programme, I think I am allowed to have a day of rest…

Tomorrow I am going to start on the paperwork that my psychologist team has given me, and it is designed to help me form an idea of how I see myself and what I think I do as a person. The first question is ‘who are you?’, so I answered “mother, teacher, binder…” and that is where I was stopped. It was then pointed out to me that what I had just said was what I did and certainly not who I am. One of the ladies then said to me that often people who have depression, mental illness etc do not have any idea that there is a very big difference between WHO you are and WHAT you do.

So I think I am going to find this a little bit of a challenge but I have promised myself that I deserve to give to me what I give to others, and more importantly for me (I have worked out that I am happy when I am helping others, and that is what I want to do with my life) I need to actually find out who I am and if I am not a ‘person’ then develop a ‘ME’, I honestly can not assist others properly if I any broken mysef. Anyone who has had depression, anxiety, or any of the other numerous mental illnesses that stop us from being ‘us’, will know what I mean, and if you do not understand then take some time and find out a little about mental illness as it affects more people then any other illness.

Well, I am now off to do some more activities with my Sunday and feel as if I am a normal person. I truly mean that in a positive way, as for the past four days I have truly felt as if there is hope for me, and that I can work on little things without the world closing in on me, and this means that my demons are losing their power and leaving me alone. I have been told and have prior experience which has taught me that I will have days where I will spiral backward but with blogs like this one, I can recap and see that I just need to push myself and take control.

Thank you for staying with me on this and I sincerely hope that your Sunday is just perfect for you. 

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My first attempt at using paints as a medium for my creative nature. One of the medical team said that a really good way of helping yourself out of deepening dark depths is to find ways to get your mind to forget the darkness….even if it is only for a little bit.

Rejoining the land of the living!

A wonderful weekend hello to all. I hope that you have something great planned and that it will be a special two-day break. My Saturday has started well, I got up at six am and headed off for a walk…as I was so sore from yesterday I was going to make it a short one but I ended up walking for an hour (I will be paying for it later) as the morning was just perfect. Little evidence of people and so much in the way of nature and her beasties greeting the day. I grew up in the bush and have never really got over the call of mother nature.

Once I got home, quick shower and then my breakky and tablets, so I can kick back a have a restful day. I have checked my emails, facebook,  made my morning entry into my personal diary, and now I am writing this up, so I feel as if I have been so productive. I do have other plans for the day, so I am going to read some more of my JD Robb novel, I am going to make myself  80% dark chocolate with fresh ginger buttons (the health benefits makes it a guilt-free treat) and do a pasta with zucchini spirals and a homemade cheese sauce to go with it for dinner. I will most likely do some colouring in throughout the day as it is a no thinking, easy on the body activity.

I am serious about my rejoining the land of the living, and yes it is going to be slow. My activities for today allow for me to follow the doctor’s directives for a daily walk while keeping my people interaction to a minimum, my cooking has always been a fun, calming activity for me, and I plan on dividing it all up so I do not tire myself out, and the colouring in will ensure that I stay awake for the day so I will be sleeply enough for a proper night’s sleep.

Well, now I have bored you enough with the third day of my slow journey back to sanity, I will wish you all the best for a beautiful Saturday and hope that you find yours relaxing and peaceful.

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Taken 9th Dec 2017 – could do with a haircut but I think I will grow it long again as I always preferred in longer.
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Drawn 16th April 2015 from a photo a friend took of me at my birthday dinner in Melbourne. I was so happy and life was just perfect. I just thought that the smile in both is pretty close….that is just so good?

 

Time to plan for two rainbows.

Hello and welcome. I hope that your day has been calm and that you have some wonderful activities planned for your weekend or at least plan for a relaxing one. I have had another good day today. I visited with my psychologist and we had a chat about the things that went wrong and how I can organise my life so that I will have plans set up and have something to fall back on.

I did my walk for today, so I am feeling very sore and ache in places I have long forgotten about, but I have been promised that this is good for me. I am reading my JD Robb book and whilst it is taken me longer I am still enjoying my Eve and her no-nonsense approach to solving crimes. My Centrelink contact was good and the department has decided that I will be on a medical exemption until the middle of April, which means that I do not have to seek employment or work for the dole. So I will have all the time I need to focus on just getting myself back to an even level.

I am going to spend some time over the weekend having a look at setting up a parent advice page, as this is something I think I could do well and I know from my years as a parent and teacher, that quite often parents really feel lost with many of the questions that crop up during raising  kids. 

I have had two really big days and I am very surprised just how much better I am feeling. I know that I have had the backup phonecalls and appointments with the medical staff but little things like me actually talking to other people on the bus. I had not noticed just how much I had isolated myself from the world. Today I had two people come up to me and tell me what a beautiful smile I had, I helped a lady with her groceries and another lady get a muzzle on her dog for the ferry trip, and I chatted with other travellers like I had known them forever. I really did not know just how much I had cut myself off from the world over the past five months. I know it will be a slow return back to where I was before the turn and I may have lost some of who I was but I will gain new skills, and if I start with a smile every day then I will not only feel good but I will also make someone else feel better.

 

 

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Uluru is a massive sandstone monolith in the heart of the Northern Territory’s arid “Red Centre”. The nearest large town is Alice Springs, 450km away. Uluru is sacred to indigenous Australians and is thought to have started forming around 550 million years ago. It’s within Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, which also includes the 36 red-rock domes of the Kata Tjuta formation.                                                                                                                                                                                                        I have used this beautiful photo as it has two glorious rainbows, which is a rare occurrence, and I am in awe of this glorious rock. I have been out to it several times and I have actually climbed it (prior to us learning to respect the Indigenous rights) and I felt a calmness I have rarely felt.  I plan to have a grounded central foundation but sometimes, I can inspire calmness, awe, creativity and numerous other feelings that make                                                                                     people feel better.                                                                                                                                                       

Baby Steps…with lots of help!

A happy hi to all and hope that the day has treated you with much happiness. I have had a good day and although I am tired I feel better than I have in a while. I am very appreciative of the day as I feel as if there is a reason to be active and happy. It allows me to know that I am starting to heal and whilst I still have much work to do it is in the right direction.

I had my doctors appointment today and she has helped me with my plan. Tomorrow I start with a psychologist where we will work with what is underlying from my childhood, as well as learning skills to allow me to combat the depression when it begins to invade. My doctor has also suggested that I continue with the daily walks simply to get the blood flowing through the brain and making it active.

I then did some thank you gift shopping for the kids as they have been so good for me through all this. I got some chocolates for the staff at the mental health unit as they took such good care of me, and really did make me feel as if I still have something to offer the world. I also grabbed a book by the Dalai Lama on ways to reinvent myself and loss the traits I do not need and became a truer me. And the last thing I grab was a colour by the numbers colouring in book for grown-ups…yes, I am serious, but I thought it would be just that little bit more challenging than the ones that are random.  

I am tired but do feel as if I have actually achieved something with my day. Yes, I am still depressed and find it difficult to honestly believe that I will eventually overcome all of this, but I have faith in the people that are supporting me…that is family members, some close friends, and several medical people, and of course the doctors have me on the necessary medicine to help with stabilising my moods. I have simple activities to do when I feel myself getting panicky, and I have a book by an author (J D Robb) I love which will allow me to read when I am feeling able. So it is little steps and I am not feeling as if I am being overwhelmed. 

 

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A friend emailed this to me with the request that I allow positivity to enter my life. She went on to say that I have always been one of the happiest people she has ever know and that should mean something.

 

How my being overweight has been affecting me over the years.

The usual happy hello and I hope that this day finds you feeling well and in a cheerful place. Again, thank you for joining me for my blogging for today. I have been out on my walk this morning, organised a good breakfast and lunch, and been a little proactive in doing some housework. Today I have decided that I am going to have a look at one of the biggest problems I have had throughout my life. My inability to control my weight or rather using my weight to punish myself for my beliefs in my wrongs.

Like any family, my mother has numerous family photo albums of her offspring growing up, and I am the one that goes from paper thin to a duplicate teddybear. For the early years, I have no real memory of the reasoning but I did start to notice a link between horrid eating habits in my early teen years and they have continued to now. Of course, I have always had a reason…to much study, working out for the softball team and no one ever said anything as it was the 60/70s and weight was not a big deal. 

I was given a weight watchers membership for my 15th birthday present from my parents as Ma thought that as I was working full time I should look more grown up and “have more pride in yourself”. I managed to keep it off for two years until I had something go wrong and I went back to the punish me on that subconscious level by eating any food I could. 

With my stay at the mental health centre at the hospital, I was lucky enough to get to review how my eating patterns impact on me as a punishment tool for myself. In short, when I see myself as having done something wrong, created problems for others or just messed up someway, I head straight to the fridge or cupboard. I know that being overweight is unacceptable and one of two responses occurs  ~ A) I am ignored because I am fat and therefore have no use, or B) I personally do not have the energy to take part in that. A nice safe haven in which I am not bothered.

Now let me get into what the team at the hospital shared with me and I will try to keep it as close to what we did as I fully intend to follow it myself.

“Let me start by asking you two questions, and yes, they do not seem to have anything to do with weight but all will become clear as we go along”.

  1. Do you have a hard time saying “no?

  2. Do you rarely get angry?

“Yes to either one of these questions means you’ve just found the key to creating a body you can love. Your answer to this has important clues to your weight-loss. Many women who have body issues are generally fighting against internal unseen monsters that makes them reach for that comforting piece of food. These women have looked at themselves in the mirror with disgust, and they’ve hated themselves for not being able to change their bodies, but sadly this is often hidden deep in the subconscious.” If we go one step further and I ask if you find it impossible to say no to others, then your extra weight could be acting as a form of protection so you are not truly being seen. And so with not losing your temper, it is most likely that you use your weight as a buffer for the unexpressed anger. Did you feel unworthy or unimportant throughout your childhood?

So with me, this developed because I was the eldest sibling and my three young ones all had illnesses of some sort and I was the go and collect person for my parents. As we matured I was still that but the others all got special support that eventually lead to recognition from other family members, teachers etc. I was just there…never did anything of any value and quite often would get into trouble because one of my siblings had been sick (or similar) and I had not cleaned up or fixed it up. I never did anything that measured up to my sisters and brother.

So in effect what I have done is spend a lifetime hiding my true self behind these layers of extra weight, covering myself up from being seen so I can keep the vulnerable me safe. What I need to do now is allow the real me to break out and take pride in the person I really am. Yes, it will be difficult as hiding me is a life time protection tool but if I am to survive and take control of both my mental and physical health then this is the path I have to walk. 

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Belief in yourself to be brave enough and step forward to find the magic you need.

 

 

Healing is not my master…

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Hello and a very big thank you for dropping by to see what I have to share. I hope that the past fortnight has been good to you and there has been much joy in your life. I certainly have a lot to share with you as I have had a big ‘finding me adventure’. I use this blog as part of my medical healing process, and that was on the recommendation of my doctor as I love writing. Fourteen days ago I had to seek the help for my anxiety and depression.  I had a couple of friends and my kids who noticed the downward spiral and effectively gave me little choice in seeking help from the local mental health unit at the hospital.

Those who read my blog often know that I am currently in a major depressive episode and my anxiety has effectively been keeping me in my room, panicking about everything.  I had some form of seizure in June and ended up in a 9-day coma, which the medical profession is still trying to work out what was the cause and the list is quite extensive. As a result of this turn, I have damage to the left-hand side frontal lobe, heart issues, liver scarring, memory is questionable, gallbladder problems, epilepsy, depression, anxiety and I often end up shaking to the point I can not hold a cup unless I use both hands. I have gone from a qualified teacher in May to a person who has trouble recalling her name and feels as if I am I a waste of space with nothing to offer to anyone.

I feel that most people do not understand mental illness or the constant pain that physical inabilities have on those of us unlucky enough to suffer from it. I have suffered from mental illness most of my life but it has always been something to be hidden, ashamed of and I was lucky as I have good people skills and helped others, so no-one ever noticed when I was struggling. Sadly after the life threating seizure I have lost my skills that have always allowed me to communicate with others, I am unable to hide my embarrassing traits and I am having MASSIVE problems adjusting.

Now before you think that I am conceited I will share with you that I am a level 5 dyslexic, which is a neurobiological condition. I had all the beneficial skills that go with this – inquiring mind, problem-solving, great a getting new ideas, always developing new ideas without prompting, excellent at analytic thinking and always having a creative answer to any situation, mecca never stood a chance against my ever ticking mind, I always had more than one way out of trouble (really annoyed both my parents and teachers), and as I have got older I can see the bigger picture and know that I can give more than a quick thought on any issue. This was not discovered until I was in university  (I was in my 30s) and volunteered for a mental health study, the professor was really amazed at how intelligent I was with the level I presented with and the fact that it had never been detected.

I was very lucky with my hospital stay as the staff gave me some advice on coping skills, some information to think about. I have always been a writer and reader but since my turn, I have big problems remembering words, how to spell, sentence formation and it really upsets me. One of the nurses (after having read one of the entries in my diary ) asked me if my spelling was an issue in the classroom, I told her that I would often get words wrong. Her next question was “what do you do with your students to overcome this problem”, that was easy as I just let them know that I did not always spell words right and that everyone gets things wrong and it is not a problem. The problem comes if you do not let others help you, so if Miss Bee gets her words wrong, hands up and one of you can come up and fix it up. My nurses’ response was ‘so you need to do the same thing you told your students to do…let people come up and help you fix it up, and one problem at a time. So simple went I heard her say that…no it will not be easy to get into practice as I can be too bloody stubborn for my own good.

So after spending a fortnight in the mental health unit….not really remembering going there but coming home with a plan to visit a psychologist on the Island, doing a regular walking routine, and putting a weight loss programme in place, I should be able to reduce my bodily pain, gain skills to control my mental illness and retrain myself to go into a job that will take my mental and physical restrictions into account. I want to thank you for reading to the end of my piece, I do write for myself but it is just so wonderful to know that there are people who enjoy my words enough to drop by from time to time.

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