Friday, November 23, 2012


That's how this week feels to me right now. With being off for the early part, and how having had 2 mornings of broken routine due to the builder being in, its a week I just want to finish and soon. Worst part is I know the building will continue into next week, so its not over just yet.

So many things just hanging in limbo right now, my mind is not my own.

All that said, I am thankful its literally only material things going on in my life. Meanwhile friends are going to hell and back right now with battles of their own. Pregnancies, premature babies, all the things that really tug at your heart strings and make you thankful your life if not as painful and stressful as theirs. But all the while wanting them to know that you are there for them if there is anything you can do.

So if you guys are reading, you know me well enough to know I will cross mountains and oceans to help in any way. Just say.

Hope everyone has a good weekend ahead, mine is pretty mediocre, but quiet is the plan. Just got to get this day out of the way, so here we go, on the train and awaaaaaayyyy.

Peace and love to all x

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That's how this week feels to me right now. With being off for the early part, and how having had 2 mornings of broken routine due to the builder being in, its a week I just want to finish and soon. Worst part is I know the building will continue into next week, so its not over just yet.

So many things just hanging in limbo right now, my mind is not my own.

All that said, I am thankful its literally only material things going on in my life. Meanwhile friends are going to hell and back right now with battles of their own. Pregnancies, premature babies, all the things that really tug at your heart strings and make you thankful your life if not as painful and stressful as theirs. But all the while wanting them to know that you are there for them if there is anything you can do.

So if you guys are reading, you know me well enough to know I will cross mountains and oceans to help in any way. Just say.

Hope everyone has a good weekend ahead, mine is pretty mediocre, but quiet is the plan. Just got to get this day out of the way, so here we go, on the train and awaaaaaayyyy.

Peace and love to all x

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Wednesday, November 21, 2012

A little embarrassed

To say the least! I have a habit when I am off work of watching PMQ's. Prime Ministers Questions. Now as everyone knows every now and then, we as citizens of this great country take time out to vote for someone to represent us and our local constituency on the national forum in the House of Commons. Rarely these days to we know much about these people and their background, in fact most don't even know what their plans are. Instead we take it back to playtime at infant school and vote for nothing more than our favourite colour.

There is daily outrage in the country about the state of the country, the leadership, the laws and the benefit system, yet so few people actually take the time to know what they are voting for at all. The grass is always greener, tackle some real crimes, lower taxes, pay my rent... All the usual shit that the uneducated and lazy people of the country moan about.

So back to PMQ's before I forget. WE, the people voted these people in. We, the people are responsible for each bum on the seat, and we the people are thoroughly embarrassed each time these people of power and responsibility act like a class full of 8yr olds with a supply teacher.
You would not accept a cop driving down the road, hanging out the window shouting get ya tits out. Nor a fireman whopping his chopper out to piss on a litter bin fire. If your milkman threw your bottles up your path, you would complain, and if your food at McDonalds is cold its the end of the world..... Yet time and time again we stand by and watch this bunch of childish clowns embarrass us on the world stage.

Never mind MP's expenses... I want them docked wages for every time they act like pre-pubecent teenagers in the underwear section of M&S. PMQ's is 30 mins to raise issues for future debate, question actions and get the whole house together for an address. Not for a food fight, not for jeering and sneering, and not for shouting each other down.

So please MP's... Learn to shut the fuck up, grow up, and behave in the civilised manner that the laws of this country dictate we live by in society. You are shameful and embarrassing.

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Monday, November 19, 2012


Ever had one of those moments when after a long period of being moaned at and criticised by someone for something you were doing (in your case legitimately), suddenly that person then does the exact same thing (illegitimately), and thinks its perfectly fine?

For me, while it pisses me off a little, I actually find it quite funny, and in some ways sad, especially given the reasons behind the behaviour. Amazed at how someone who spends so long commenting on other peoples lives, judging everyone around them, can suddenly just flip a switch, while flippin the world the birdie, and sit there like a smug little fucker, and think that everything is ok.

Well, wakey wakey, that's not the real world, and I for one will NOT sit by and pass up the opportunity to make life hell for you. Slip once, and I will do everything I can to make sure you can't get back up again. Slippery floor and a foot on your chest, just give me that chance to keep you down the way you beat me down and tried to finish me..... I dare you!

We all judge each other, on a daily basis, on all levels. From sneering at someones dress sense, to making cutting comments about their life choices. So don't think I am saying its poor behaviour, its natural. But the intention behind it is where its at. If you are just a judgemental and outspoken kinda person, then the chances are you mean no harm by your comments, you just can't help yourself but make your comments known.

Others however, gossip, plot and spinelessly create situations out of nothing. Taking a genuine situation, spinning it at 1000rpm until its all muddled up, then present it to the world as a smear campaign against you. I know, I have been on the receiving end of one of these.

However half a revolution more and the tables are now turned. A similar situation arises but now roles are reversed. Questions asked at all levels about how genuine this all is, poor attitude towards those you should be respecting, and some very lame reasoning for actions.

All I can say is what I have said all along... The clock is ticking, and just how long it keeps ticking for is up to you... Yes YOU, yourself, your own worst enemy.
Karma has bitten twice already, and is waiting to take the final bite...

Once again..... Do it, I dare you!

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Monday, November 12, 2012


That's what makes things 'real' to us. We are presented with something, and from the facts we have, added to our beliefs, and spiced up with a little of our knowledge, we have real life. Or our perception of it at least.
The human mind is a complex thing, and given the way it works, it is hardly a surprise that with such a simple set of facts, we can be left with so many different opinions and beliefs from it all.

From an early age we start to form opinions, some we are guided on by our parents and significant peers, and others we develop through experiences we have, and how they work out.
Spiders, perceived by many as creepy and scary, but only because this is impressed upon us by our parents, and other older people from an early age. From this point on, we perceive a spider to mean danger, fear, and something to avoid. If we are able to open our mind enough to reassess this later in life, we can actually change our view of this.

The same can be said for so many other things in life, from religious belief, political belief, and even attitude towards sexuality. But these bigger things in life are rarely up for discussion or reassessment later in life. In fact, once we have a belief in these fields, most would struggle to reconsider.

Its not a bad thing as such, differences in opinion are what make conversation. Critical dialogue that is needed in day to day life in order to reach sensible decisions, and compromise. A decision immediately being unanimous is not a common thing, and we have opinion and perception to thank for this.

How dangerous would life be if it was as simple as an idea becoming reality with no further consideration of discussion. But at the same time, how great could things be if blinkered people could just see past their beliefs and be willing to consider other peoples thoughts, emotions and perceptions of a situation.

Sexuality, race, religion. Three of the greatest fighting points of mankind. Because we have differences there, and because it is beyond discussion and conversation, there is only one thing left. Hatred! And how crazy is that! (My perception of it anyway)

We have a beautiful gift called life, and really should be free to live it the way we choose to. There are of course moral issues here, and other peoples well being and happiness counts. So obviously rape, pillaging, and murder would be out of the question. After all we are 'civilised' now, or so we would believe. There we go again, perception!

A tribesman would have you believe that he is advanced, and comfortable, as would a playboy millionaire. Generations of families in the 3rd world have continued by reproduction at an annual rate, to ensure one offspring will survive. This is also true in nature, and 'acceptable'. However advanced, civilised society says the loss of a child us unacceptable and un-natural, therefore we fight against this with humanitarian aid. Sadly it is human nature to continue doing what we know, so while the advanced world continues saving lives, the 3rd world continues making them at a phenomenal rate, and the population continues to boom.

That's my perception of the world anyway. Religious people should embrace their OWN beliefs, and live within the boundaries that they set for themselves. While not bothering others of other beliefs with hatred and threatening behaviour.

People of all sexualities and races should be able to live together without prejudice. Why should one persons creed or colour dictate how we behave towards them, and why should someone who is attracted to someone of the same sex be frowned upon? It happens in the animal kingdom, to which we fundermentally belong to, and we watch on with amazement and nothing else. You don't kill a male dog for mounting another male dog for example.

I could go on all night, but will end by saying, the world you see, the world we all share...... Its all about perception. Open your mind a little, and take one moment to consider why someone acts the way they do, or thinks the thoughts they have.... Its really quite eductional!

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Sunday, November 11, 2012

Deja vu.........

Ever had that feeling that you have been through something, done something or seen something before... Of course we all know what deja vu is, but other than that quirky feeling of 'I have been here before', have you ever REALLY been through something all over again?

Its never good things that happen over and over again either is it, have you noticed that? Only the bad things, the things that knock us back, push us off course and really mess with our minds. Over and over, like a bad repetitive dream.

Obviously you know where I am going with this, off on a wild rant about something non specific and vague, but with the aim of getting it off my chest. Naturally! So without messing about any more here goes.

Having one close relative of friend die is always tough on you, mentally, emotionally and as I have found sometimes physically too. Illness, depression, anger, and so many other things can crop up when we are going through something close to us. Someone passing is one thing, but someone slowly slipping away it something completely different. As I have said before, the hardest part of coping with a loss isn't so much the actually removal from existence of the loved one, but more the mechanics of how they are removed from our lives.
A tragic accident is short, swift and something we are presented with in a flash, and have to deal with. No choices or chances, just taken, in an instant. Tragic and hurtful, but we tend to move on quite well from these things. Left with only the happier memories of our times together, our mind is at rest.
However the other option is disease. Slow, painful and tragic. Sorry if I offend at this point, but you know I don't like to beat around the bush. Disease takes many loved ones from us all annually. We see them slowly slipping away, weakening, suffering, and fighting with all their strength. But the truth is, once the disease, cancer for example takes hold, the outcome is inevitable.

My journey with mum is very well documented I believe. The hard times, the good times, the fights with condition, and the fights with the family. Each time I read back and remind myself of something that happened, I can recall it with such clarity, it is as if it has just happened.
So having walked the path once, finding myself back on it again now with my aunt should be somewhat more predictable. And I have to say it is. Progress, condition, deterioration etc is no real shock to me, but then again I don't think anything  'unexpected' happened with mum either. I have read enough and seen enough about cancer to understand what it does and how things work.

I dint quite know why, but once again as we reach a pivotal part of the journey, and Joan's condition has taken a bit of a turn, I find myself frustrated. I have always known I would not be able to be there every day, but for some reason it seems to be stressing me out. Having been through a serious bout of depression and anxiety when mum was ill, I know what it feels like to start slipping back in that direction. The same way someone who drinks regularly knows when they are about to lose their legs, I can feel mine starting to buckle a little under me too.

Seeing the signs is one thing, but doing something about it, that's something totally different, and far easier said than done. Slowing down in activity, lacking interest in doing things, removing yourself from social situations, not being able to concentrate, and worst of all, deprived of sleep. All signs that things are not right in the brainbox division. Medication worked wonders last time with a lot of that, but that was never a road I was happy on, and would not be one I would choose to walk again given the choice. Never say never though, right?

Instead, this time I am trying alternatives, getting it off my chest as it arrives (hence blogging now), speaking to people about it, increasing physical activity to naturally release endorphins, and trying to stay social at every opportunity possible. I can only try right. So firstly I apologise, to my friends who I may start to bore with tales of me, me, me. People I may suddenly start talking to a hell of a lot, people on the same wave length as me. If at any time it gets too much, just say.

A lot has changed in my head since mum passed, and I would like to say I have become a stronger, more independent man, who lives in a way I feel I would have mad my mum proud. But I also live in the shadow of doom and gloom, that of Joan being so ill, and ever closer to leaving us. Its not something I shy from, and I think about it every day. Realising responsibilities, thinking of ways to make contact, and make each of her days something enjoyable and special. While at the same time remembering that time is not on our side, and any day could be the last.

Maybe its the not knowing, the uncertainty of time remaining that makes these things so hard. Going back to what I said earlier about the mechanics of a loss. One you were not expecting just happens, before you can blink, think or take another breath its over. With a long term situation you are tortured with wondering how long is left, what else you can achieve, and how you will cope. Twisting and contorting your mind in so many ways, driving yourself crazy trying to cope with something before it has even become reality.

I may sound cold in saying this, it may just be me who thinks it, but I cope far better with the actual death than I do with the build up. Passing is a part of life, a certainty, in my mind once the moment arrives, it passes quite quickly. But in some sort of weird mission to make everything right, when someone is ill, I am driven to do all I can in the situation, play any role I can, and make sure there is nothing left undone or unsaid.

The thing torturing my mind right now is timing. Making sure I see Joan again as many times as possible, and spend as many minutes and hours with her, just making sure all the silly things are done. We talked of having a Chinese takeaway, as she doesn't remember ever having one before, watching programs, discussing quandaries, and making the sort of conversations that delve deep into your mind, and remain there long after the conversation ends. I guess really what I want is memories, but that's natural, right?

You can probably tell by the scatty way this is written that my mind is not quite right at the moment, I certainly can. But I am trying here, trying hard not to let it get any worse. Hopefully next weekend I will see Joan, and clear my mind a little. Some honesty, some openness and some straight talking as ever. Fingers crossed as I re-join the motorway for the drive home, it will be the air rushing through my hair, and not the thoughts rushing through my head that accompany for the journey home.

PS, thank you to Rachel for being there on the phone yesterday when things were getting a little sketchy. x

Friday, November 2, 2012

Its that time again. From the heart.

Yup, that time where I  go off on a wild ramble that says a lot but amounts to nothing, kinda anyway.
I spoke to my aunt Joan's carer today, Chris, just to get an update on the situation with Joan's arm and shoulder. Last week when we spoke, the doctor was due to come out early this week to assess how the pain relief was working, and to see if the dose needed adjusting. Well the doctor decided that they were indeed having the desired effect, but a stronger dose would probably be better.

At this point I'm not sure what patches she is using, but do know the dose has risen from the initial 10mg to 25mg now, and as time goes on, use is returning to the arm. Not that Joan is willing to accept that they are working. In typical fashion she is a little against medication and modern medical practises, so she is standing her ground that its still causing a great deal of pain. HOWEVER.... Chris has noticed that Joan has returned to doing her crosswords, and is carrying out other functions which had previously become too painful to do.
So however you look at it, Joan is managing the pain and discomfort pretty well, hopefully its because the medication is taking it away. The doctor certainly feels this is the case.

Before my aunt was diagnosed with cancer I had never met her neighbour and now carer Chris. While visiting her to tell her mums secret of having breast cancer for a year back in 2008/2009, my aunt dropped her own bombshell by saying she too had found a lump, and just like mum she was reluctant to seek help for it. Feeling it was a foregone conclusion of what it was and how it would go, they both initially felt they would just go with the flow. Needless to say this was NOT to be the case.
After the diagnosis and speaking to Joan I heard that Chris, her long time trusted neighbour, had agreed to care for her in an official capacity.

The first time I visited after hearing this, I went to visit Chris and her husband who live just over the road from my aunt, and at this point I guess you can say we both formally interviewed each other, trying to make sense of the others intention in the situation. I think it is fair to say that by the end of it we had built a lot of trust and respect for each other, so we were in a happy place to move forwards in Joan's best interests.
As time has gone on, the conversations between myself and Chris have become increasingly open and blunt, discussing mortality, relatives, and care regularly and without holding back.

I received a call from Chris about a week ago, late one evening, and this is when I first learned of the current issues Joan is having with her shoulder. Chris has been great from day 1 keeping me up to date with appointments, and anything going on in Joan's life that she felt I should know about, including any changes in Joan's condition and moods. We spoke again tonight and she updated me on the situation with doctors comments and opinions, and how things were going. The doctor saying she still feels the pain is caused mainly by arthritis and a frozen shoulder, and not primarily a spread or progression of the cancer.

However she went on to say that Joan's appetite is slowly dropping away to nothing, and that she is losing a fair bit of weight now. Saying that I would notice a chance the next time I see her. This of course is not great news, but at the same time mum did go on and off her food from time to time, so it is in no way any sort of life force indicator that suggests the end is nigh or anything else so sinister.

So, all these facts, but no personal comments from me yet, strange or what, Well here goes.
I wont say its an easy thing. I do know what lays ahead, and if the truth be known I feel like after many childhood and adolescent years, I am finally getting to know my aunt. A long time in the making, and the timing kinda sucks really. But at the same time I am in a position both mentally and in life where I feel comfortable with the conversations we have. I feel educated enough to engage in long meaningful conversations, and we have fun. We laugh, we talk about serious matters, but most importantly we connect. I have spent hours with some people, days and weeks even at times, and really not clicked. However with Joan its just there. Not a family thing, just a level that we are both on.

I don't know how else to explain it, maybe its my mind playing trickery with me, and separating family and friendship to make the whole matter easier to work through. Either way, at this point in my life I feel like I have bonded with a great friend, and in doing so I have opened myself up for them. Whenever we spend time together I feel like I have brought her some strength and happiness, and leave her a little more revitalised than she was when I arrived. I know when I leave there, I certainly feel that way. Always with a smile, and always with a deep warm feeling in my heart. Am I ready to let that go, of course not. And I wish, just like with mum that I could do something to extend their time. The whole situation was the same with mum, visiting her at the hospital, hospice or home, I always felt that regardless of time spent there, 15 mins of 5 hours, it was always time well spent, and I felt I was doing not only what was morally right, but what was good for both parties too.

As it becomes more obvious that we are about to lose a loved one, as their time with us begins to fade, regardless of our relationship with the person, no matter how long we have known them, there are certain things that really make coping with a persons passing a little easier, for me at least.
When it was clear from what he was telling me that Graeme didnt have much time left, I made a point of visiting him, spending some quality time with him, and just relaxing. Letting both conversation and silence flow when it felt natural, and making sure that we both had the opportunities to say our peace. Not our goodbyes, that would be far too sombre, and would be accepting THE END.But instead allowing closure on certain aspects of our lives, and to make sure we share common grounds on our last page in life together.

The same was true with mum, having had quite a strange relationship with her for many years, and sometimes lacking a little respect. It was important for me to restore that respect, and make sure that she knew deep within her heart that I loved and respected her every day of my life, and that I was grateful for the gift of life she had given me. Now as another close loved one clocks up their last few miles, I have made it my mission to give back. For all the kindness she has given from so far away for so long now. Just like my other aunts, offering financial assistance where possible, and making sure we never went without, it is my turn to repay the gift, and to make sure I am there to support and assist her whenever and however I can.

In the next week or two I will take a trip up there, before there is any cause to, so to speak. I don't want my next visit to be because I have got word that she has declined, or is feeling worse in any way.  I guess in reality I cant actually control that, and that at some point before one of my visits, I will get a call that suggests  I go sooner rather than later. But if I can beat it this time around, that's one more time we won, and didn't allow life to dictate to us what our next action should be. 'We' as in me and Joan.

So, that's the starts of what's in my head right now. I would love for one more Xmas together with my aunt, in a condition where she can enjoy it, and who knows maybe even another birthday for her too. I won't go setting time scales here as no one knows what's around the corner. But I would be lying if I said its not reached the stage of playing on my mind, and appearing in my thoughts and dreams at night now. I really don't want that day to come, but know that when it does, she has been cared for in every way possible til the end. I also know that she is receiving the best possible care, and I am eternally grateful to Chris for all the long hours she puts in taking care of Joan, so sincerely, thank you Chris, from the bottom of my heart.

So I shall leave it there now, the dogs need feeding, my back is aching and my mind is dangerously close to getting moody.
Thank you for taking the time to read this. More will follow for sure.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Even the best laid plans...

Yup even the BEST ones can go wrong, and that's what's happened to me today. The final hurdle on what was meant to be something cool, and I fell!

All worked out in my head, and all set to be fun, but of course it wasn't going to go to plan was it.

Maybe I will start to believe in what I used to, the more excited you get about something, the less likely it is to happen. Sure feels that way at times.

Well as Avril Lavigne is screaming in my ears right '.....just keep on laughing, one things for sure, there's always a brand new day'

Such is life, fuck it, I'm gifted, I'm ALIVE!

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