Not just writing after all.

person on a bridge near a lake
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I spend most of my days working at home, in a small country village and can go all day without speaking to or seeing another person, until the kids and husband come home. Also I am mostly an introvert at heart, preferring to let my words speak more clearly on paper than my mouth ever could.

Luckily I am one of those people who are mostly happy with my own company.  I do make sure that I drop and pick up the kids from school at least once a week just so I connect to the people there.  Also so I don’t go completely crazy and starting talking to the teapot, I try to take my laptop into the local coffee shop and sit and people watch as much as I can.

One of the ways to counteract this is I have recently joined a group for writers, a newly started group to get together and share their experience and also share work or ideas. We have only met once so far but I found it helpful to know that I am on the right track with the writing process.  I have a story idea and have worked out roughly what will happen in each chapter, managing to get as far as chapter 9.  A total of 24,567 words so far.

The only problem was that we are expected as writers, to actually read out loud our writing.  I have told the group that I will need to work on this – I don’t want to spontaneously combust and I fear I might when reading out to a group (or anyone actually).  We have been tasked to, ‘find or write a piece to read out to the group something that inspires us’.

I as yet have nothing.  It’s like my brain freezes with panic at the thought of having to read it out loud.  So when the kids are back at school on Monday I am going to arm myself with my notebook and laptop, sip a huge black coffee and hope the creative juices start to flow with something inspiring, that will not make me explode.

So for the mean time I will be practising speaking in front of the mirror until the time comes when I have to share with the group.  Putting aside my introvert side to embrace sharing my work with others and the being able to offer advice and give criticism  This I feel is the worst part that any author will fear the most, that fact that once you say the words out loud, they are then unleashed in to the world.

I am really pleased to be part of this group, so that I can work through these issues with other like-minded people in a small group.  Who knows, one day I could be reading out an excerpt of my own book, at my own book launch to a room filled with people – it’s good to aim high!

 

 

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Travel heals the body, as well as the soul.

After my hysterectomy at the beginning of April I had been recovering really well and feeling better than I have in many, many years.  As a family we had been looking forward to going to Exmoor for the long weekend of Easter, but fate was not so kind.

I ended up back in hospital after one of the stitches inside me had an infection, this caused it to give way and for me to start hemorrhaging blood.  My husband took me straight to A and E. I was there for a short time before being taken to Gynaecology. Unfortunately it took a few hours before being seen and luckily my husband made sure that as we waited the nurse kept checking my ever decreasing blood pressure.  

When it got very low during this time the nurse realised the blood loss was quite substantial and so I was immediately taken to a room to the gynecologist.  Long story short, everything was then happening very quickly and very painfully.  They managed to stop the bleeding and then scanned to make sure there was no other internal bleeding.  Luckily they did not think I would need a blood transfusion or more surgery.

So after a couple of days in hospital we missed our chance of going to the West Country, but we did make it home in time for lunch with my husband’s family instead. Also we enjoyed some glorious weather while I recovered from what I am now calling ‘my little blip!’

I am now four week post op and we are going to make sure we get down to Exmoor for the May bank holiday instead.  The journey down was a little bit painful and very tiring but when we arrived my entire body and soul took a deep breath in and relaxed.

A weekend away with my family was exactly what was needed, after all the stress of the last few months and then the recovery and ‘my little blip!’, to see all the animals and stunning scenery at my most favorite time of the year, was the best medicine a girl could ask for.   From moorland to seaside towns, I have come home feeling better than before my operation. Travel may be tiring, but it is also restorative.  I am now looking forward to finishing my recovery and getting back to being as healthy as I can be.

 

Out the other side – hysterectomy

What can I say, other than it’s all done!  April 4th 2019 was eviction day for all my lady parts with the talented Mr Griffiths.  I was both excited and nervous before the day, as I was being told by everyone who had it done or knew someone who had it done, it’s major surgery.  I drilled into all my boys that I would be needing a lot of looking after for weeks after the operation as I was going to be in pain and not to push my recovery too quickly.

It is not like I had not had surgery before, two laparoscopic and three c-sections, I recovered well after all of these.  I had read all the blogs about recovery and what to expect, but one thing they left out was how much less pain I could find myself in than before.

It’s true I obviously have some pain, there are three incision sites with stitches and I know inside will be more, the surgeon had to do a lot of scraping to rid me of the endometriosis.

But here I am on day six of recovery, the first day I am allowed out of bed without being shouted at by my husband,  without the familiar pain I have been in for so many years.  I didn’t realise how bad it had been to live with until now.  I am taking it easy and only pottering around the house and garden, when I get tired I rest.  The boys are still home and looking after me the best they can.

There are some things I would recommend to aid a speedy recovery;

  • Windeeze/peppermint tea or sweets, trapped wind can be painful.
  • Stool softener, you really don’t want to have to push.
  • Lots of fruit and berries, easy to eat as you will feel uncomfortable with anything heavy in your stomach, I ate a tonne of blueberries.
  • Triangle pillow, helps support you in bed.
  • Allow yourself the days in bed without feeling guilty, you will feel better for the rest.  
  • But don’t forget to get up and about a little bit, this will help get rid of any trapped wind and help you not stiffen up in bed.
  • I also took Arnica to help the healing.
  • Lots of fluid, will help with waking up your digestive system and bladder, will also help to eliminate any anesthetic left in your system.
  • Last is take the pain killers when you feel it coming on, if you leave it too late they will take a while to work and you will have to deal with the pain until they do.

*This is just my opinion, I am not medically trained in any way – always seek advice from a trained professional.

I can finally see what everybody is talking about, I do believe that I will be able to get my life back.  I have missed so much in the last couple of years, without really paying attention to much but the pain I was in.  I am looking forward to being able to horse ride, run, going to trampolining parks with the boys again and long dog walks.

All I have to say is, I wish I had it earlier.

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Mothers Day

6831310F-60C0-47C3-8A29-D8E67D52197D  This is what Mother’s Day is all about.

Today my family and I spent the day just pottering around Salisbury, had a spot of lunch and had a bit of a drive back enjoying our Costa coffees and hot chocolates fo the boys.

There was no big elaborate show, just some lovely tulips and a thoughtful card.  There was no mad dash out for a sunday lunch to an overcrowded carvery, packed with families for this busy day of showing how much you care for your loved one.

It was just what I wanted, relaxing.  In our family this is hard to come by, three boys and my husband need to be kept entertained most of the time by doing things or at least having a plan of what we are doing.  There were a few grumbles when I said I was happy to go with no plan in mind and I enjoyed it, most of all I have come home feeling happy.

With all my health problems of late and the looming date for my hysterectomy on Thurday this week, I am a firm beliver in ‘Do more of what makes you happy’.

I have a million and two things I should be doing before Thursday but instead I have filled my time with things I also wanted to do.  My eldest sons 12th birthday, a hack out on my favorite horse and I have my hair appointment for highlights on Wednesday.

Obviously I will be doing the things inbetween that need to be done.  But I am making more time then I would normally have before to balance this with things that make me happy.

Tonight I will be making time for more writing, whilst enjoying a G & T and followed by a nice hot bubble bath to round off a lovely day.

Thank you to my lovely family for making this day as I wanted it to be.

I am 1 in 10, Endometriosis and me.

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My journey with endometriosis has been a long one. From the age of 10 my period started and from the very beginning they were extremely painful and heavy. My mother took me to a female doctor who told me to basically get used to it, practice getting used to the blood with red food dye and she also gave me some painkillers to take. I took one look at them and asked how on earth was I supposed to swallowing such a big pill? Her response was that I could break them up and put it in some ice cream.

As I was too young to go on the pill to help control the periods, I tried my best to get used to them. When they got so bad I was taking a week off school in bed. The days I did go to school I would end up with s big blood stain on my skirt and teased until I went to the medical room and beg the school nurse to ring my mother and let me go home.

On school trips I would take so many painkillers through the day I would end up being sick, one at my friend’s house after spaghetti bolognaise! Other times I could be in the middle of a shop and be brought to my knees with the pain.

When old enough I went on the pill, this helped with the bleeding and a little with the pain. The hormones had me turning into a walking time bomb, exploding frequently. My school work still suffered as did my family.

This went on for many years, then when the time came after I was married to come off whichever pill I had been trying, to start trying for a baby. This did not happen for the first year. So we sought doctors advice once again and we were sent to a gynaecologist for fertility tests.

The tests were all clear but with my period history they thought it could be endometriosis. I had a diagnostic laparoscopic surgery which confirmed I had it. The consultant thought it may have blocked my tubes which meant I couldn’t get pregnant.

So at the age of almost 26 years old, I had keyhole surgery to laser off any endometriosis they found and to push the dye through my tubes to show any blockages. Thankfully it all went well, nothing blocking them.

Whatever they had done had worked as I then fell pregnant 3 weeks after the procedure and went on to have my first son. He was followed very quickly by two more sons, 3 under the age of 4 years old.  Doctors say that having children can stop the disease from returning.

For a few years I managed any symptoms with either coil, contraception pill or by diet elimination. This worked until within a year I had gone from running 10k runs quite slowly but regularly, not being able to walk upstairs without getting out of breath.

When I went back to the doctors for a referral to see a gynaecologist once more, I knew my options would be limited. On the first visit he said the disease had come back, I had my children so it was time for a hysterectomy.

Just like that this insidious disease was once again giving me no options but surgery.

It had made me seriously anemic and has somehow twisted my womb and cervix around so I could not have my cervical screening test done. The gynaecologist planned to take it out anyway, so told me not to worry.

So here I am 39 years old with a date for surgery coming up in just over a weeks time. I am scared, relieved, optimistic and a hundred other emotions about undergoing such major surgery.

March is endometriosis awareness month and it would be fantastic to have a cure for this awful and life changing disease. But making people aware has to be one of the first steps as many people have not even heard of it, let alone understand how hard it is to live with it on a daily basis.

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International Women’s Day – A hope for my boys.

International Women’s Day was held on Friday 8th Mach 2019 is the focal point for women’s rights with their campaign #BalanceforBetter.

It seemed that every female celebrity was tweeting in support or posting with Instagram to promote gender equality for all women across the world.

Women’s International Day has been observed since the early 1900’s.  It was adopted in 1975 by the United Nations and before that it had been mostly celebrated by the socialist movement and communist countries.  This was following a national holiday held on the March 8th 1917 when women gained sufferage in Soviet Russia having been inspired by American socialists.  In present day in some countries it is still a public holiday, whilst in others it is a day of protests or celebrations and in others it is ignored completely.

So what a great idea, women supporting women.  Tweets and memes about women and empowerment.  It seems that I may have been hiding under a rock as I didn’t realise that this was such a big thing now.

When I was a teenager there were the Spice Girls with their radical “Girl Power” but actually this has been in the background, gathering a following around each country as it went.

“Sufferage”- “feminism”- ” girl power”, whatever you want to call it.  There will be no doubt that most people will be able to say they had a strong female role model or inspiration for their life.  But what about our boys?

As a mother of three boys who are all growing up really fast, I really hope that they look at me as a good female role model in their own lives.  I try really hard to make sure that I am there to back them up when they need it and to make sure they are told off when it is also needed.  I also hope they learn not to just give up and that in life you have to work for what you want, no one is just going to hand it to you.  To be kind, compassionate, but also not be taken for grated and pushed around.  To stand up for others when there is unfairness and inequality.

I hope that when my boys grow up to be men, that they will treat everybody with the same level of respect, whether man/women, colour, creed or religion.

If National Women’s Day has shown me anything, it’s that there still seems to be unfairness and inequality in the world or else this would not be just one day – it would be everyday.

I hope that empowering both young girls to be strong and young boys to be respectful,  they will help to accomplish this when they are adults.

 

 

 

 

 

1st Published Writing

gray persian cat standing near cupcake
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So the writing career is still in the very early stages.  I have dabbled so far with genres and have dabbled with also a couple of children’s stories.  Nothing has gotten past the editing stage and also the stage where you read the story to your children and don’t expect them to rip you apart like a seasoned editor of the worst kind! (but they do!!).

But I was secretly pleased when I wrote a small piece for my children’s school, which I thought would just be a blurb for their portfolio.  But it has been published on the schools website for all to see.

This was exciting enough and I revelled in the moment with my husband as I fantasized about being a published author of my many, many books.  This was soon to be dwarfed in comparison when one of the other parents actually stopped my in to tell me how much they enjoyed reading my piece and how well written it was in their opinion.

Pop the poppers and bring me balloons – I’m having a party in my head.

woman holding firecracker
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This is obviously small-scale.  But I am keeping account of these small moments to look back on when the bigger problems/criticisms come later down the road.  I will remember my first, it may not be big but I will be proud of it.

Also I am spurred on with my own manuscript in the afterglow.  But the best news is they have asked me to write another piece for them to use.

Baby steps lead to giant leaps.