Thursday, September 30, 2010

A moment of clarity.

So from time to time we have a bad day, sulk a bit, complain and grumble. But then something happens which gives us a moment of clarity.
Now that's not to say that I have been feeling sorry for myself recently, in fact quite the opposite, but todays events still have an impact.

Early this afternoon I received word that a building local to where I live had collapsed, causing a major incident. The building in question, 14 Waldram Park Road, SE23 has recently been undergoing renovation or conversion to flats if you may. Over recent months I have been repeatedly alarmed by the way the building has been treated. The largest of these concerns was the removal of almost the entire front of the building.

Being that the same company owns the land next to my house ( the scene of a previous collapse hence only being a plot of land now ), I have followed their work and plans very closely. Their recent application to build on the land was refused on the basis of trying to cram too many flats into the proposed building, aka greed!

Now today, early this afternoon a large number of emergency service vehicles including the London Air Ambulance, descended upon 14 Waldram to attend another collapse, this time a partial collapse at the rear of the property. Sadly, in spite of so many professionals attending, they were unable to save the life of the Vietnamese man injured in the incident.

On my arrival home this evening, the curious part of me insisted on visiting the site (not knowing at this time that someone had perished). Moments after arriving I was alarmed by the arrival of a private ambulance (black van) which only means one thing. Sure enough a few minutes later the men returned with the body of the deceased.

Its moments like that you do a reality check (one-two, one-two) and realise that for all your worries and woes, YOU HAVE LIFE! No money or happiness, no success or privilege can give a life. It is precious, and a gift, and something not to be taken for granted.

My heart goes out to the family of the deceased. I hope they are taken care of, and their loved ones departure is not in vain.

On the flip side I hope to hell and back that someone takes the fall for this "accident". Given the track record of the previous owners of the property, Earlsfield Estates, and seemingly the recklessness of the new owners, Mincove Global, it is about time someone was held to account for this constant abuse of building and planning regulation. Let alone the poor standard of building and construction.

Emails were exchanged between myself and Lewisham planning, building control and indeed the mayors office a few months ago, raising my concerns at the state of the building, the unsafe practises, and a number of other issues, such as damage to public property. But all that became of these was notice that there would be no intervention unless it was believed the structure was unsafe.
An apparent change in regulation recently allows developers to nominate their own building officer, taking the responsibility away from the local authority. Sadly in this case, regardless of my concerns, Lewisham were not willing to make an inspection, and allowed the developers to keep it in-house. A costly decision?

So I leave you with a picture of the site of the incident, at the time the private ambulance arrived.

RIP lost soul. And condolences to the family of the deceased.

External link for story


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The demise of 14 Waldram Park

Could this be the beginning of the end of another of Forest Hill's great houses. Only time will tell, but for now forensics are all over it due to the injuries sustained by a worked trapped in the collapse. Later transported to hospital by the London Air Ambulance (god bless HEMS)

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Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Still positive, against the odds.

Ok so its been one of those days from the start. You know the sort where everything seems to be going right, but all along the way there are just little things to poke and prod at you, in an otherwise normal day.

Nothing serious to report as such, a little lay in this morning followed by the daily routine of walking the dogs, porridge, tv and then work. Work threw up a couple of unexpected surprises, but nothing that didn't just keep the day fresh and funky for me.

Through it all I have stayed positive, I mean why wouldn't I? But it was only this evening I began to realise how positive I am now feeling about thing. A soaking wet, dark evening to drive home in, compounded further by being stuck in huge tailbacks of traffic. Used to the daily slog of battling traffic I thought nothing of it. Until I reached the cause of the problem. A little blue Nissan Micra sitting smack in the middle of the A205, reducing it to a single lane for both directions of traffic to use. NOW I could see why the traffic!

In a split second, after watching buses and cars going head on, running the gauntlet against eachother just to pass this car, I decided I was going to have to be the one to step up. So after popping the car on the kerb, a swift knock on the window, and him finally taking the car out of gear, a swift push put the car on the kerb and voila, the traffic flowing in both directions once again.

I always feel a little sad and disappointed after such encounters, to really believe that ALL the cars that had been passing this one for over half an hour now didn't contain ONE human being willing to give 30 seconds of their precious time (even though they has wasted plenty of it already sitting in the taffic caused by it) to help move a single stranded car. Yes the driver could have done more, but what a wonderful society we live in, when we can't even help another in order to help ourselves.

Other than that, and thanks to that, I feel great now. A little damp for getting out of the car in the pouring rain. However I can come home tonight and say I solved an issue, and did something that made a difference to others.

Right I'm off to dry off now, and reflect on today. Pondering over what makes people behave this way.

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My day in a picture!

Slow, wet and going nowhere.
Welcome to picture of today.

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Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Picture of the day.

Today is the Horniman's Museum. Aka Horney-man

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Solid.....solid as a rock.

Ok a stone at least.
Today I left my session with Peter not only with positive thoughts, but also a physical reminder for me to THINK!

Today's session was a real eye opener, and probably the most effective session to date. After a few minutes of chatting and starting the session, hearing what I was saying, I started to realise that change is happening without me even being aware of it.

Talking things through, reflecting on how things are changing for me right now, and how my attitude towards things, it all starts to become a little more obvious to me what I do right and wrong during a normal day. From anger and frustration towards selfish arseholes blocking my driveway, to how I react to being cut up, or someone cutting in in traffic, its all about being aware of the emotions that are being invoked, and how I choose to work with them, deal with them and vent them.

One revelation that arose from today's session was, how I treat anger and sadness in a very similar way. The process of feeling them both is almost identical, however I manage anger in a better way, if that's the right way of looking at it. From trigger, emotional reaction, and expression, right through to resolution. Anger for me goes through all the motions. And while dealt with badly at times, it reaches its conclusion. Where as sadness just seems to stall at expression, or maybe even before at the reaction stage.

Never concluding an emotional cycle seems to be where I trip up, and rather than being a 100 metre sprint, it becomes a never ending 400 metre loop that just keeps going on and on. To draw an analogy, running the 100 metres is a straight clear journey with the ending in sight. But running emotions round an oval just goes on forever. Yes we know there is a finishline there somewhere, but where? We keep going, running hoping and praying it will all end soon, but with the line nowhere in sight, we just keep running, tiring out and losing hope and motivation. To me, THIS is sadness.

Anger, a dash, a quick journey, and straight forward.
Sadness right now is the loop, so what I need to do now is find the tail of the 100 metre track, the emotional run off, and find the place I know I can end the cycle when it occurs.
To me, sadness is a deeper, longer process, to taking a longer journey is fine, as long as that line is in sight.

So, that was deep eh! And that's the real me coming out again. Unleashed again into the wild world (sorry about that)

But that's a good thing. Now I have a parallel to draw on, I can maybe start to see why sadness seems to be such a hard emotion to deal with. Am I afraid to cry, no. Am I emotionally detached? Nope. I am more than capable of understanding sadness, and feeling it. But when its something like grief, I seem incapable of seeing it through to its conclusion, which is the problem we have here, hence the sessions with Peter.

On my provisional chat with Peter on the phone before the first session even started I was asked what I felt I needed from the sessions. At this point I said I needed someone to sound off against, a sounding board. Someone to bounce thoughts off, to help me make sense of what I was thinking. 3 weeks later, as we sat in session I said that I felt in control, having known what I needed from the start.

As we talk in the sessions a weird thing happens. I will say something, something relevant, an emotion or a situation. Peter will then repeat it to me with his wording on the matter. Then the weird part happens. I will then take what he has said to me as his own problem, reflect on it and start to break it down, make sense of it and understand it. Helping myself more than anything else.
The exact process that usually occurs with me helping someone else, but somehow as I am replying, I am feeling myself start to understand.

All a little complex I guess, but hell its working.

Right, with all that said, I had better return to the daily grind and get a wiggle on.

So thank you Peter for my thought stone, and today's session. And thank YOU for reading :)


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Monday, September 27, 2010

Random pic of the day.

A new idea for daily entries on the blog.

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A whistlestop tour of my weekend.

Not sure where to begin really, after a flying start to the day on Friday, it all went wrong with work. Nightmare day, pain in the arse journey home etc. But all was better once the dogs had their say, and we took our evening walk.

So the real weekend, Saturday rolled around and the plan was to go to the London Tattoo Convention. Chantal agreed to work the morning, so we were not going to be able to go there too early. Which worked out quite nicely as the show didnt open until midday (was open til 2am) She went off to work, and randomly I decided to get up an hour earlier than I do on week days... What the hell is that about?

Once up, the daily routine kicked in, walking the dogs, some housework, and some washing amongst other things achieved in a short space of time. Before I knew it 2pm had come around, Chantal had informed me she was running late (as expected) and it was time to get ready to go out. By just before 3 we left the house, and for me it was going to be a mini-adventure. Travelling to East London, the route planner had suggested using the new London Overground service. Having not been on it, I expected just a clean train, but was shocked to see a very open plan layout, with the same walk-thru ability of a bendy bus (of which I have been on .... ONE !)

So 19 mins later we roll into Shadwell, East London, after a great smooth and quick journey, very impressed by the new service, and how many places it has opened up for me to get to with ease. Decathlon in Surrey Quays, here I come!
Anyway, arriving at the station it was immediatly obvious who was going to the show, for errrm, obvious reasons.
After a quick walk down to Tobacco Dock, we were there. Lovely, yet a little complex for a setting for the event I have to say, shocking layout. But im getting ahead of myself here. We queued for a few mins before paying the £25 per person to get in. Was kinda hoping for a tattoo or t-shirt included in the price, but alas, not to be.

Once inside, as I have said the layout was a bit complex, with tiny little "halls" or rooms all over the place, so getting lost was a definate. Walking around it was a real eye opener to see the kind of coverage and styles that people were going for these days. Some stunning work was seen there.

I wont bore you anymore with the details of the show, other than to say, it was a very worthwhile show, but more of a one off event, for me anyway. £25 to be an onlooker at a mainly static event is a one off thing. Amazing to see some of the traditional styles being demonstrated, and some of the body suit pieces were incredible. Not for me, but stunning work. Tim Hendrix (Miami Ink) charging an apparent £470 per hour, was unsuprisingly quiet. Great to see Phil Kyle doing his very relaxed style, but with some amazing results.

So after leaving the show at a bit after 6, we took the same route home, and decided on having a chinese for the evening meal. Weight was 218 for the day, so a few pounds shifted over the past week. A well deserved treat in my eyes.

So that was Saturday, and Sunday..... well not a lot to say really. Didnt do much, walked the dogs, ate loads, and slept, BADLY !
Probably because of the carb load up, but the night sleep was utter crap.

So on to today, well a flying start, out of bed nice and early, dogs walked and few, me fed, and off to work. Or that was the plan. Lucky for me an irritating arrogant woman had decided to park across my driveway. Attempting to keep calm I waited and eventually the owner turned up. On speaking to her it turns out it was my fault, and I should just be patient and she was leaving now. Well done luv, only 20 mins late for work. Arsehole.

What lays ahead now then? Well back on the wagon with the diet and lose a few more pounds this week if I can. Counselling on Tuesday, so can hopefully get a bit of my stress out. Oh and trying to find a holiday for 5-7 days for November, as Chantal wants to get away, which right now sounds like a good idea.

Right im losing focus now, so will call it a day, catch you soon.

Friday, September 24, 2010

A fine start to the day

Up a little late, I rushed off to walk the dogs. Seemingly done in record time, and beating a massive downpour of rain by seconds. Got to love lucky timing.

On getting home and feeling the dogs, and having a weigh in, great news for me as 1lb gone again in the last day. Finally below the 220 mark for the. First time in ages.

And now kicking back with a lovely bowl of fruity porridge. What else can the day bring? Let's wait and see.

Happy damn Friday all!

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Thursday, September 23, 2010

Time to relax with a cuppa.

Phew, that's another day over with, and I'm glad to see the back of it. So time to kick back with a cup of hot chocolate, and maybe a sneeky biscuit. Aaaah.

So today, pretty average really, dog walks, got caught in the rain slightly while walking around with them. Then onto breakfast, porridge of course, and onto work.

My back is a little tense and sore today as expected, still a bit of tension in there which is a shame. But hopefully a hot bath in a bit will help with that a bit. So something to look forwards to. In fact I think I will start running that now!

So the rest of the day, some interesting yet pointless training today, all revolving around quality and customer focus, which I have to say I find hilarious in the current situation, so that was boring!
Journey to and from was a bit mind numbing really, I must start mixing it up a bit before I start blocking out the whole journey, and driving on auto pilot.

I was just thinking that I have not been doing too much over the past day or two, which is a very good thing, to give my mind a rest. But hoping to spend some time with my mind very soon. Maybe get some book writing done again soon, hopefully the weekend.

Speaking of the weekend, I think I will find my way to the London Tattoo Convention in Tobacco Dock and see what's going on in the world of art and body customisation. Other than that, so big plans.

Spinning the clock back to 24 hours ago, I spent the evening by the river with Chantal, Amber and Brad, taking in the changed landscape, some of the crazy people, and finishing up with a coffee, so that was definatly a good way to end the day. Only a shame Amber didn't get the photo she was looking for, but I'm sure where there is a will there is a way.

Right, bath almost done, and hot choc going cold, so I'm off. Have a nice evening.

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Wednesday, September 22, 2010

This is the life!

Well for a dog anyway. What a hard stressful existence my poor dogs have. Wake up, wee, be fed. REST. Go for a walk, REST. REST a little more rest, and maybe a wee, then some more REST!
Come the evening, a walk, a wee, some dinner, and REST! With playtime during any of the rest time of course.

Sometimes I wonder if I should envy or pity the dogs. For now its definatly envy.

So, me, today. What can I say, the life of a dog really I guess. Woke up and had a little lay in, then sprung into action with the usual 4-5 mile walk with the dogs. Home and breakfast was next (porridge of course. Honey and almond). A few minutes to myself to catch up with today's news, then took a bath.

The afternoon has so far consisted of going to physio. Back On Track in Catford once again saving the day. My back cracked like a box of Cornflakes,n followed by being massaged. To say I feel better is an understatement. Me and the physio were both amused at how much of a difference some manipulation and massage had made. I have almost full range back in my neck now which is fantastic.

Remainder of the day is a tough one. I have plans to go with Amber to take some pictures this evening in town, but until then have some free time. So I am gonna catch a liquid lunch (diet shake not beer), then maybe give the dogs a good brush, and be a man of leisure for a while and kick back to watch some tv.

Can you tell how relaxed I am today? Crazy huh, amazing what a few forms of therapy can do for the body and mind.

Enjoy the day y'all. Lovely weather out there.

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Lunchtime liquids

Yummy yummy in my tummy.

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Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Dinner is served

Chocolate Protikee shake. 125 calories of loveliness!

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Relief is on the way.

After struggling about this morning and moaning all afternoon I decided to book in a session with my old physio. Remembering how quickly the symptoms went away once my back had received some attention, I thought it is a small price to pay for comfort and mobility back.

On calling I was pleased to hear I am still on their records over 2 years after my last appointment. Sadly the rather pretty and capable physio Jodie who used to work there, does not any more. Which is a shame as she was fantastic at cracking my back.

So I am booked in for tomorrow afternoon for an assessment and initial session, hopefully the person replacing Jodie will be just as good at deep tissue massage and back cracking (not a technical term I might add) As long as I can turn my head by the time I walk out of their offices I will be happy.

The question on my mind now is, should I splash out on a once monthly deep tissue sports massage to keep my old knackered body loose and ticking over? I'm sure it can't do any harm, but on the flipside, will there be any benefit. Something I may discuss with them tomorrow. Resolution treatment is one thing, but if I can be proactive and prevent these things arising, even better.

So the day is coming to an end now. I have some reading material from the counsellor to go through, details on stress and emotions. So I shall get tucked into that soon. Then its walk the dogs, chill for a bit and try and get a good nights sleep on my aching neck/back.

On another note, day 2 of Protikee diet. Doing fine on it, and looking forwards to the coming days :) Fingers crossed I can stay on track.

Have a great evening all.


Another day, another session.

So today started off in an intersting fashion to say the least. Waking up at about 7am with a god awful backache which I seriously need to get looked at very soon. As well as a headache from hell. So not a great feeling.
After popping a few pills and jumping back in bed (carefully crawling more like) I got another hours sleep and tried starting the day again.
Second attempt was almost as painful as the first, back not happy at all, but head a little better.

Unfortunatly due to the extra hour in bed, that sort of ruined my morning, as I was unable to get the dogs walked before going to see the counseller. So up I got, pulled myself together and got dressed before leaving the house for the walk up to see Peter. Arriving a few mins early, as I waited outside I suddenly remembered that I didnt have the paperwork with me that he had asked me to return. Oops. Thankfully I didnt take this as a spark to start of a day of doom and gloom, so maybe some good is coming from all this already.

After the session I decided on a haircut, which was long overdue. Then rushed home for some porridge, with cinammon, yum !

Anyway, I digress, im sure you want to know about the session today really eh. So here goes.
Firstly I have to say that this was the first official session, the previous one was a getting to know you session.
So the session started by a recap of last weeks chat, in which he gave a suprising amount of info and feedback. Even if he had read up a few mins before, his knowledge was good and reassuring to know it was not just a generic catch up session.

As agreed last week, we decided to focus on emotions today, channelling them, dealing with them, and how I seem to have a blockage in managing to get them dealt with and out in the open.
As we talked this over we uncovered a few other underlaying issues that could possibly be the reasoning that I am so poor at managing to get my emotions out of me. As most would expect, childhood came up, but I have to stress that was through my offering, and not his asking.
Key points covered today were as follows

-Growing up as the only male in the family
-Premature emotional maturity (dealing with emotions as an adult from 10-11)
-Being a very open person, but fearing people becoming involved in my emotions
-Finding ways to channel and vent my emotions, rather than bottling them up.

Its strange to sit there and chat about these things in such a productive way, and the session is formatted in such a way that after a little exploration, we recap to ensure it all makes sense and we are heading in the right direction.

Today I started to make a little sense of how certain things in my past have really shaped the way I deal with my emotions, and how from quite an early age I would start to bottle up my feelings. Nothing traumatic, nothing abusive or anything like that. But a long sequence of events that have in some way impacted on my behaviour. It was no sort of analysis, just a few simple questions that made me sit and reflect for a moment on things I felt may have had some baring.

The first death I experienced was my Aunt Peggy. I clearly recall where I was when I found out she had passed, and it was me asking my mum had she died. When my mum said she had, my reaction was very numb and as simple as "oh no, thats sad". On the flip side, when Adam King was killed by being hit by 2 cars when I was 11, I cried with ease, and was deeply distressed by his passing. Maybe the graphic way he was killed, maybe just the first person I was used to seeing on a daily basis, who knows. But it reminds me that I am capable of expressing grief in this way.

From that point on, I have rarely shed a tear, a relationship has brought me to tears since that point, but nothing else really. In times of grief or fear I simply tighten up and stand strong through it, and then at some point store the emotions away, forgetting about them, but leaving them there to fester, and put me where I am today.

Im not in a terrible place, but I do know that its not a good place, and something I need to address before I go through anymore stressful situations.

So as the session drew to an end, and we started on the final recap and summary of the session, my mood changed from light and chatty, to a little deeper in thought, and suddenly finding myself in deep reflection over what we had been discussing. It was a change of feeling that I was more than aware of, and was even aware that my replies in conversation has slipped from "yes (and some supplimentary talk) to simple "uh-huh" as my mind wandered away to start processing what it had been presented with. Which to my mind was a positive step, and Peter also felt that this was a good sign. Once again we had managed to stir up the pot of emotion deep within me, and fingers crossed, started to untangle the web of confusion deep within.

I will be doing some more writing on this over the course of the week, but all in all, im enjoying the counselling very much, and finding it quite productive even at such an early stage. So here's to next week, and seeing where we are at then.

So thats todays mind session over with.

In other news, my back is really getting on my nerves now. I need to see someone to give it a good crack, and get some mobility back in my neck soon. Just a matter of finding someone local and affordable to see to the matter.

Question is chiropracter or physio. Physio would deal with the whole matter, but would be nice just to get the back cracked would be a nice start.

Right, time is up.
Thats me done for the day, thanks for reading, and sorry for going on for so long, hope it was an enjoyable or in some way useful to read.

Monday, September 20, 2010


My shoulder aches. So far that is my only complaint of the day lol. But an irritation all the same. Other than that I'm happy with the start to the day. Woke up fresh, took the dogs for a walk and had a look at a few financial bits and bobs of mine.

So what does today hold? I don't know, but what I do know is its the start of round 2 of the diet. After a night of sin foods last night, its time to step up again and get on with a healthy regime.
So from today, its porridge in the morning and delicious shakes and drinks for the rest of the day. A week, maybe 2 weeks of that again (with occasional grilled chicken throughout), then step it down a notch and start eating again.

Other things on today's agenda are, replace tail light bulb on the car (now I figured out how) and of course 6 hours in hell, aka work.

I have to say I am feeling somewhat positive right now, even when something gives you a little kick in the lower region, I'm still managing to stay standing up. I think recent conversations with others, and a little reflection have made me feel better about my own situation. I have changed a few plans, considered stepping up other plans, and retaken control of what's going on in my life. Now the hard part, maintaining that control.

I have another session with Peter tomorrow and am hoping I will bring something more positive to the table, and be able to dig a little deeper into my mind and weed out any other little niggles.

But right now, what I would love most.... Is a back massage. Always when I can least afford it! Grrr.

Have a good day all, time has run out for me here now.


Sunday, September 19, 2010

A restful day for once.

It makes a change for me to have a truly stress free day, but I think I might have actually managed it today. Or stress free by my standards anyway. I didn't sleep in late, got up once my body said "ok I'm ready". Porridge for breakfast, then slowly got ready to walk the dogs.

Once out walking the dogs, I actually appreciated the outdoors and fresh air.

Positive in mind has an amazing effect on the body I have to say. This afternoon I have managed to relax watching some TV, and instead of the usual worries and concerns about everything around me I managed to forget everything for a while and kick back.

Having recently started taking stock of what I have, what I am blessed with and gifted with (aside the great sense of humour and amazing looks), I have started to notice other people around me more. And while it would be wrong to say I pity them, I can honestly say that sometimes "it sucks to be you". OK so sometimes I'm down on luck, go through rough patches, and other times life seems unbearable. But compared to some others around me, even those who are judged to be the lucky ones... I'm glad I am who I am.

In recent days, weeks I have started to reconnect with myself, and return to my comfort zone. Returning to my old ways, the inner me. I think one of my problems has been, as I have distanced myself from other people, and stopped helping people with their problems and woes, I have resorted to self analysis. Which in anyones books is sure to be a bad thing if you spend too long doing it, and dig too deep.

So for the past few days I have tried to listen more, compare it to my experiences and try to offer a shoulder, some advice, and a friendly ear to anyone needing one.
I have found from all this that I am ready to start trying to get back on my feet. And a part of this process I have decided that getting my book writing back on track is a key part of all this.

Right, back to relaxing, a new week starts in the morning. Fingers crossed the diet will be back on track, and with another counselling session on Tues I'm hoping for a positive week.

Thanks for reading, take care

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Saturday, September 18, 2010

Some form of therapy!

Well it could be considered therapy in one sense I guess

Todays sitting at Innocent Needle Tattoo's.
Thank you to Michelle for the amazing art work.

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I'm in control

Or at least that's what I like to tell myself. OK bad start to the day, bad start to the blog really. But a great example of how a single act can start the collapse of a whole house of cards when your mind is a tiny bit fragile.

After much deep thinking last night, with a refreshed and revitalised mind, I managed to sleep well last night, eventually dropping off at about 1.30am. In fact I slept so well last night, that there lays the problem. I overslept. So usually over sleeping to me is a matter of waking up, thinking "oops" or at worst "oh shit" and then getting on with the day, but today... Not the case. The doorbell woke me, so by the time I got up and towards the door I was still sleep-blind so asked my mother to open the door.

Now I don't think I mentioned it here, but mum is deaf and I recently bought her a hearing aid which has changed everything. Sadly she insists on taking it off and putting it on, which the cheap temp one I bought her is useless for, so in short she has managed to break it. She refused to go to the door before fixing it. So blind, I opened the door.. And there was the "we missed you" card :( Damnit.

So now I am sitting in the bath with the Blackberry, writing all this down, while at the same time reflecting on it and seeing how somethings have pissed me off more than normal, and focusing on the good that will come of today.

In a couple of hours I will be sitting in a tattooists chair for another sitting on my tribute tattoo, an appointment I have been looking forwards to. So with that in mind, I will consider getting out of the bath the start of my day and start with a clean sheet.

So thank you for reading, thank you for joining me and the Blackberry in the bath (I didn't drop it, woohoo) and I shall be back in a more positive frame when I start my day again soon.

Have a great day all.

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Friday, September 17, 2010

A quick 5 min catch-up

Well, I figured as I had 5 mins spare I would quickly jot down a few points that gets everything back up to date, mainly the whole issue with mum.

Since my last entry she has had 2 surgeries on her cancer. The first was a mastectomy to remove the affected tissue and the tumour. And the second was a corrective procedure following an issue with the drain after the first op.
After her first operation she was rather poorly, displaying the signs of her blood loss episode, so I was keen to get her back to the hospital and get her checked over. This is when it was decided to do a follow up procedure.

I am however happy to report that after the second operation her health has taken a turn for the better, and she is back to being an active and energetic "over 60" year old :)
That in turn has given me a little more time to reflect on my own life, hence the counselling being started.

All in all things are looking up for me right now, so im hoping to be able to get back to regular blogging at some point soon.

As for things with my sister. She is pregnant, expecting her 4th this winter. The recent arrival Teyla is in good health and making great progress.
The dogs are as fun and loving as ever of course, with Tuvaaq now being somewhat calmer than he used to be. He is a man now :)

And finally the house issues. The kitchen and bathroom are scheduled to be refitted in the coming month or 2, which will cause a nightmare for sorting out somewhere for the dogs to go, and getting mum out of the house when any dusty building work is being carried out. But where there is a will there is a way.
The plot of land nextdoor has recently had planning permission refused for their plans of a 7 flat building. So its still an empty cleared plot of land, leaving me with a big ugly white fence blocking my view of the rest of the street

Right im done, im rambling and I dont like rambling.

Seek help!

Well that's what my mind and body have been telling me to do for a while now, but today was the day it changed from a thought to a reality. Having considered all sorts of counselling for a long time now, only to dismiss is as something I didn't need. In the past few weeks I have realised that it would be a positive thing to do, and have taken steps towards making it a reality.

So this morning I, Michael Snasdell faced up to things, and met up with my counsellor, Peter for the first time. Having always been the one who counselled others, this was a real role reversal for me, but I have to say, after just 1 hour, a much needed one.

I have been doing my usual deep thinking recently about the world around me, and trying to identify the triggers that cause me to take an emotional nose dive into, and was quite surprised with that I actually came up with. Some things that I would have expected to be a true burden are actually not factoring too highly, and other things that seem to have just been insignificant seem to really stir some emotion.

Having talked to Peter quite openly about where I am right now mentally, things slowly are starting to fall into place for me. Its not a quick fix, and its certainly not the answer to all my questions of the world around me, but its IS another trigger. I am constantly identifying things in my life that provoke me in any way, so I have a catalogue of things I in some way avoid for the greater good. Mainly people and experiences, not that they are emotional decisions, just more life choices, and areas i prefer to stay away from for ease of life, and so I remain in my comfort zone, and surrounded by all things familiar.

So today I have formed a new opinion, and experienced something quite new to me. Counselling is a positive thing, especially for people as emotionally inward as me. The u-bend of emotion, where everything seems to be building up has been identified. Now I just need some serious emotional plumbing to get everything flowing properly again.

Grief, anger, resentment, and fear are just a few of the things I know are tangled up in that u-bend. The loss of a number of friends over recent years, as well as family members has brought not a single tear to my eye. Reflecting on this today however in calm environment stirred up some of that trapped emotion, and started to cause my head to almost tremble with things trying to break free. I know grief, tears, and an emotional "outburst" is NOT a bad thing, I just feel I need to deal with what is in there, for my own good.

Anger plays its role too, knowing that being the peacekeeper is an important role to play in life, but not to deny to myself that I have feelings on each matter too. That things regardless of how impartial I remain, will affect me with some form of anger or pain. I am after all only human. But like a professional in any role that deals with conflict and confrontation, I know that somewhere there is an outlet that I need to vent it all too. Somewhere other than a blog (sorry guys)
Many professionals have counselling as part of their job, and now I can start to see why.

Resentment, well there is a lot of that floating about out there, with the whole mum being ill issue topping the charts, but closely followed by other family issues, and then of course the inevitable envy of people moving on in the direction I too want to follow, work matters and other little triggers.

And then fear, of course fear. My greatest one being the loss of my mother which I know is coming. Maybe its the uncertainty of the whole thing right now that is chewing me up inside, or maybe I am using the whole experience and journey through the hospital and treatments etc as a mask to hide behind, just to try and shield me from the money shot which is "the passing". Reading back I have to say I have noticed deflection after deflection from the underlying issue..... My mother is going to die, and there is nothing I can do about it! There, I said it. And I said it only because after talking about it, I accept it now.

I could go on for ages right now, pouring more and more thoughts about it out, but for now, all I really wanted to say was, thank you to Peter for taking this on, and thank you for in one short hour, managing to shake things up just enough for me to start seeing things a little cleared, and start to figure out what direction I need to head in now.
To say I have been blinkered or lost is an understatement.
I now know what it is like for all the people I have spoken with, who I have helped in some way to finally start to see whats going on. I always wondered how a conversation could begin to make someone stronger, how it could act as a catalyst for action, and how my words could affect another persons life. Well, now I do know how that feels. And as a bi-product of all that, I feel better for knowing I have helped others too.

I started out today a little anxious, both about this meeting, and for what lays ahead with work etc. But now, 1 hour later that's all behind me. Counselling is a positive step, and as for the rest of the day and work, hey its just another day, which I have a lot of control over. Watch out world, here I come.

Back later with a little more reflection.

Thanks for reading :)