Honestly, I’m not a nomad*….

…but I’m on the move again.  Due to unforeseen circumstances I’m making the move back to Hampshire from Nottingham, only 8 short months after I moved up.  The only thing I will say about the move is that it wasn’t my choice, and that fact is making packing rather difficult.  Packing to move up here was comparatively easy and a joyful task compared to packing to take what at times seems like a backwards (and completely surreal) step.

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The World is a Mirror (or beauty is in the eye of the beholder)

I have come to the realisation that the world is a mirror for how you see yourself.  If you see the world as full of opportunities, full of decent people (with the odd exceptions above and below the curve) and can find something positive in most things or people; then you are more likely to have a positive self image. Continue reading

Happy and Glorious: The (very late) 2014 Review


I’ve not been so good about popping notes in my Happy & Glorious tin this year, as I’m sure much more has happened than is evidenced on the below list!

  • Ticket: Cinderella, 17th January (Rondo Theatre, Bath Drama) Superb performance by all, just what a panto should be, fun for all ages.
  • Ticket: War Horse, 24th February (Mayflower Theatre, Southampton, The National Theatre) Very emotional
  • Ticket: The Witches of Eastwick, 12th April (Theatre Royal, Bath Operatic & Dramatic Soc.) Thoroughly hilarious romp of a performance.
  • Note: “Stepping out of my comfort zone in a BIG way (and having it go rather well)”  I have no recollection of what this was but “Go Me!”!
  • Note “Becoming a Stella & Dot Stylist” 27th June.  I’ve had great fun and met some lovely people (and got some beautiful jewels too) since starting as a Stella & Dot Stylist.  I’ve not done as much with it as I could but there’s this thing called life and holidays and work that got in the way.  I’ll see what comes in 2015 for this little venture (Edit: I don’t know if I’ll continue it past my renewal date… I’m loving my job too much and want my evenings and weekends free to play in the garden and have visitors!).
  • Note: “First interview for Welbeck Job” 28th November.  I got offered the job on 22nd November and attended the interview on the 28th, with a night in Sheffield catching up with a friend as a bonus.  It was a really lovely interview, much more of a conversation than a nerve wracking thing to endure.
  • Note: “Second interview for Welbeck job” 18th November.  Again an enjoyable interview with the two guys who I’d be working for but the trip itself was an emotional roller-coaster dealing with the :I don’t wan’t to live here, it’s too far away (and a bit grim)” issues.  I think it helped in the interview because I went in with a ‘I don’t care whether I get the job or not’ attitude.
  • Note: “Offered Welbeck job” 28th November.  After 10-days I thought I’d not got it and I was quite happy with that as I didn’t have to make the decision of whether to accept it or not.  Then I got offered the job!  Whilst happy to have been offered the job there were tears because I didn’t want to move that far away from my family & my support network; I’d be up there on my own.  However, I took the weekend to decide and…
  • Note: “Accepted Welbeck job!” 1st December.  The deed was done!

I know there have been a few more noteworthy events since then, and I’m sure there will have been more before but I’ve not noted them.  I’ll aim to do better in 2015 and I’ll have an overflowing pot of Happy & Gloriousness to list in the next New Year. (Edit: Note to self, must try harder!!)

Update on Life… More time has passed than I thought

I’ve just had a look back at my posts and the last one (other than last night’s tasty missive on milk) was in June…. LAST YEAR.  Over 10-months ago.  I found 6 drafts hidden away, containing half formed, part formed and nearly fully formed thoughts for internet consumption so I have tarted up a couple of those for future scheduling.  It was a bit of a shock to find that I had neglected my blog for a good 6-months more than I thought.

What has happened since then?  I’ll try and remember!

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Fast is the new…. Fast!

Forgive me friends it has been 66 days since my last blog.

Going back to my last blog, on 7th Jan, I was 7-days into the Fast Diet (or 5:2 Diet) and was feeling superb.  Fast forward to today and I am only just finding time to sit down and update you all on my progress. Continue reading

Same but different

As I sit here at my newly re-vamped desk, typing on my new computer (laptop finally becoming more limited by age than was good for work) and with the cat curled up in one of her favourite spots – tucked up my jumper – Continue reading

Taking back the years….

…and my body!

I have found the fit me again!  At last!  I know it’s early days still but I have started running again.  I have had a big mental block about it, I think because for so long any exercise I have done (other than riding and Pilates) has brought about a setback – either an infection/cold or just a crushing fatigue.  This was even to the point that whenever I was trying to run in my dreams, I just couldn’t do it; although I desperately needed to run, my body just wouldn’t respond, my legs wouldn’t move fast enough or I’d trip over my own feet.

However, recently, thanks to building things up slowly with Pilates and riding, I have been feeling fitter and healthier than I have in a long, long time.  I can now take Archie out for a hack for 45mins to an hour and a good 90-95% of that time is trot-work, not just ‘bimbling’ but working on an outline, impulsion and strength… a good workout for me and the horse.  I’ve also been wearing the pedometer again and am mostly hitting my goal of averaging between 7-10k steps a day (just over 8,600/day for Feb/Mar/Apr) with my highest step count being 21,312!  And I didn’t have a setback either.

Another turning point was when we had to call out the vet to one of our ewes who was having difficulty lambing: I had to run from the far end of the fields to the house to get the field gate key.  OK, so I only managed to run the length of one of the fields but I didn’t die, my hips didn’t give me hell and I didn’t suffer a setback over the next few days. Watershed moment in ditching my fears that exercise will knock me back down as it has so often before.  I’ve even been able to run in my dreams and imagining myself working out on a cross-trainer has become an excellent tool to stop my brain spinning when it won’t switch off (although I think I can safely say that I will not be taking up spinning any time soon, if ever)!

I’ve bought myself a cross trainer so I can start out doing short stints without over-doing it, then building up my times by increments, still remembering my ‘phasing’ so I avoid setbacks. I started doing some interval training for running today (probably managed about 5-minutes running out of my 25 minute dog walk but, hay, it’s more than I’ve done in ages!) and I’m feeling energised rather than knackered.

I’m hopeful that I will soon be re-claiming my body from the clutches of CFS for good.  I’m looking forward to fitting back into all the fabulous clothes I used to wear that I could never quite bring myself to throw away.

Having CFS can steal your body identity.  I keep forgetting that before I developed glandular fever (and subsequently CFS), I used to ride at least once and often twice a day, regularly cycle and run just for the fun of it, go (jive) dancing 2-3 times a week and all this whilst working shifts of either 6am-2pm or 2-10pm.  I used to be fit.

After 13 years of being told by various doctors that there was nothing wrong with me other than being over weight and un-fit (with the sub-text of “lazy” running through it all), you start to believe them.  Even to the point that when you regularly have to climb three flights of stairs to your office (no lift) and it gets increasingly difficult you still don’t realise that it is not just a case of doing more exercise and getting fit; if that was the case it would become easier the more often you did it.

Although I wouldn’t ever want to get to the point that I was – where I could barely get out of bed and some days even thought of calling a taxi to get me the last couple of hundred yards home or be in tears at the thought of walking that far – and I hope that nobody else has to be in that situation before they get treatment, but I am glad that the eventual outcome was the diagnosis of CFS as it has enabled me to manage the condition and get to the point I am now, where I can see a way back to being as fit as I was at 17 before it all started.

Making a change

The last week has seen quite a change.  I had a social event booked on the weekend but on the Thursday before I was feeling very down what with all the worry about the outstanding stuff with work and about money as I’m only on Employment Support Allowance.  Anyway, my parents persuaded me to go as I’d have a good time catching up with my friends.

I did go, I didn’t have a good time and in fact, some of my so-called friends were downright rude and to be honest it did upset me a lot.

Overall, I’m glad I went.  Not that I had all that much fun but it helped me make a decision about continuing to go to these things; they are expensive, energy consuming and the people I was going to see have shown their true colors.  In the CFS clinic we were talking about things that you should/need/want to do and these weekends fall under none of those categories.

It has also helped me make a clean break.  I know that I’ve moved back to an area I used to live in and I’m back in touch with a lot of friends from school (through facebook) so it’s not exactly a ‘fresh’ start somewhere completely new but I’m putting a part of my life, a certain lifestyle, behind me so I can move on.

I’m now looking forward to being able to really get going with my new life once everything is sorted with work.