Tuesday, 24 September 2013

planting carrots

I have not blogged for quite a while.  Life has been a series of ups and downs all a normal part of life.  I have had a difficult time recently and I am rapidly reaching a point in my life where I have to reconsider my core values, beliefs and things I have taken as a given for many years.  I belief that we must help the less fortunate and the less able.  I believe in  clear division between right and wrong.  Of late I have started to question what are my beliefs and what are others.  Am I being brainwashed, have I been brain washed and if so by who?

I feel like a veil has been lifted and I am seeing the world through fresh eyes.  I have an older friend who has been helping me find my way in the world.  He constantly advises me to look at the whole picture and not just a little piece.  Today I wonder if  I am just too scared to see the entire picture sometimes and perhaps I looked through the rose tinted glasses because the alternative is too scarey.

well dear readers today I took off the glasses and I did find a few trolls and a few other surprises but its nice to live in the real world and maybe reality will bite a little but it sure beats the slap in the face it gives me every now and again when I realise I have yet again been taken for a fool.

I had a debate about the use of carrots and sticks.  so i am off to plant carrot seeds for myself to reap and sharpen my pointy sticks in case the carrots dont work.

Monday, 19 August 2013

to thine own self be true

I agreed to do something that in my heart I did not want to do.  I found a justification for it.  Its only ..... Its ok because.....  Its a one off...., I could go on.  I allowed myself to be persuaded because I knew it was what the other person wanted me to do.  And that is it, he knew I found it hard to say no, so I agreed.  Now I feel like I have left myself down, I have not been true to myself.  I had a decision if I was asked this I would say no and yet I caved in and said yes.  What does that say about how I treat myself.

"This above all: to thine ownself be true,
And it must follow, as the night the day,
Thou canst not then be false to any man."

My father used to quote Shakespeare to me, mostly the Julius Ceaser but also Polonius speech from Hamlet.  I miss my Dad but I do have all the things he used to repeat over and over and over to me firmly ingrained in my head.  I used to tell him to shut up but now I appreciate some of the stuff he said.  

Love many trust few always paddle your own canoe.  

That was another favourite.  I get tired of paddling my own canoe sometimes.  But in the long run its better to do that than to allow someone else steer you into rocks.  

I have not been true to myself at all.  I am very sad about that.  I need to reflect on what exactly the problem is.  I decided to base my decisions on evidence and not on beliefs and feelings.  I agreed to proceed on a certain condition.  I was told that a certain condition was fulfilled.  I checked the evidence.  It was not fulfilled.  I felt left down and taken for granted, in fact I fell disrespected and considered not worth being honest with.  I suppose I gave the other person an opportunity to step up to the plate and I found him lacking.  Time to renegotiate the contract and rewrite the rules.  Or perhaps end the game.

I think its best if I take a few days to think it over.  Mostly things have been good for me.  there have been a few other incidents that make me wonder.  I suppose the question is now can I live with the betrayal.  It has brought up other times when I trusted and was left down.  My heart tells me to walk away but my head says the costs do not yet outweigh the benefits.  Last time this happened I was 21 I was hurt, I lashed out and ultimately lost out.  I always wondered if I had not lashed out and been petulant what would have happened.  Would it have worked out different, or would I have lived a whole life feeling worthless.  

I did a guided spirit meditation today to connect with your spirit guide.  I see this as a good way to unlock stuff from your subconscious.  Three people appeared, the first was myself at aged 5 in a pink and yellow hot pants swinging on the gate telling me to come on there was loads to do yet.  the second was the man who took my ability to trust and love, the third was my grandmother as a young woman.  5 year old me told me it was safe and ok.  The man gave me a gift in a box.  when I opened it it was my heart.  He gave me back heart it was very beautiful in a beautiful purple box.  My granny made me cry. I last saw her when she was in a coma and dying.  She put her hand on my shoulder and as i looked up she turned from an old woman in to a beautiful young girl.  She came today to give em a letter with the word love on it.  She was dancing around her long black hair swinging and skirts twirling.  She was totally free and very happy. 

I am still a little puzzled by the meditation but I felt much lighter after it.   Usually my inner child comes to me because she is scared.  Now she is telling me its time to have fun.  So is my grandmother.  Have fun for myself and not for others.  do what I enjoy and not what others think I should.  

My father always advised me not to rush into decisions.  I was a very head strong child, I always knew best.  no I don't know best, or rather I dont do what I know is best.  I am going to bring my joyful child with me for a while and see ho much easier life is.  People laughed at her but she did not care, she just swung her head tossed her hair and kept on doing her own thing.  

So take its time to take my subconscious minds tip for today.  Take back your heart, take the offer of love from others, swing on a gate in the sun, and when others ask you to stray from your path, toss you hair swing your skirts and dance off on  your own path.  

love many trust few and don't paddle your own canoe get an out board motor to make it easier.

Happy Monday

Sunday, 18 August 2013

hear me roar when i whisper

I have vertigo.  In short I have a label to explain why my head feels like it is spinning.  I think it is a physical manifestation of an emotional imbalance.  I have been feeling shame again recently.

According to wikipedia, shame is a volition of cultural or social values, while guilt arises from violating our internal values.  Not conforming to cultural values seems to be the story of my life. shame it seems is about evaluation of the self and guilt about the actions. the difference between saying i am bad and i did something bad.

why do I think I am bad? I have not experienced shame in quite a while but last week it rushed up into me again.  Like a bad visitor who I thought I had got rid of.  What is bringing me to this place and why have I lost my confidence again.  I feel a loss of power and motivation.  Some people can tap into that sense of low self worth I have carried with me for many years.  I thought I had got away from it but maybe recent incidents have made me feel it again.  I have many memories of shame and confusion from my childhood. Mostly of people laughing at me as a child when i did silly childish things.  I could not work out why they laughed at me but they did.  I did ask but I never got an adequate explanation.  this week someone said to me I was a big old silly.  It reminded me of what my mother used to day to me.  don't be worrying about that you are a silly goose to worry about that.  I needed to have my fears listened to and to be understood, to have the world explained to me in a way I could understand.  It keeps coming back to that for me.  I thought my inner child was all grown up but yet again she has popped out to be heard.  I have woken up crying at night because I feel so confused and I cannot even label the confusion or where it is coming from.

I think that the shame is that I am not conforming to the expectation of others.  I am been asked to accept something that goes against my better judgement.  I know others can accept such things but I cannot.  I agreed to accept it and since then I have been feeling ashamed that I did not.  I am ashamed that I have left myself down.  I have not stuck with my beliefs and I feel an internal conflict that is immobilising me.  When I try to move I get dizzy and unbalanced.  so it seems I need to do some work on this again.  Time to make a list of all the things that are confusing me and find answers for them.  I suppose I need to know that I am doing the right thing for me.

So in summary I need to be still and settle.  This is making me stay still and keep my eyes closed and to turn off my mind.  Perhaps I am trying to force a realisation that is not there.  perhaps it is only exactly what it is an inner ear infection that gives me symptoms similar to panic attacks without the emotional cause.  I lived in a constant state of panic for so long that this prolonged dizzy spell is reminding me of all of them.  I t is deeply unpleasant to relive them and perhaps I need to just relax and let the dizziness pass in the same way as I would let the panic attacks pass.

So now I think I have it, it does not matter why I feel bad I do.  Instead of beating myself up about it I need to tale car of myself and not pressure myself to be any better than I am.  Its ok to be ill and although there is an emotional cause for illness there is also a physical one.  I may be a receptive host to the virus but that does not mean I am a bad person.  I can learn from this.  This is a sign that I need to look after my physical health better.  So its time to stop blaming myself for getting sick and be kind to myself and allow myself the time and space to heal.  So its all about healing and not poking at myself to uncover the hurts just accept that they happened and learn to comfort myself in healthy ways.  It is time to open up my tool box and see what i left myself the last time I recovered from a bit of a downer.  From memory i put juggling balls, a crochet pattern and a list of recovery tools in an actual box to be there for when I felt bad.  time to root out the tool box and the guidance from the well me.  I do take care of myself really.

Today's realisation is I know what to do and I know how I feel I just need to allow myself to be myself. oh and I need peace and quite too:)

no more berating myself for being dizzy i shall live on my bed and think of nice things I can do when i am well again.

Happy Sunday  

Wednesday, 7 August 2013


They say that experience is learning to recognise your mistakes each time you make them. I am experienced. I returned from annual leave and had a feeling that yet again something would have happened in my absence that would leave me in the doodoo. And it did . it was implied that I had not sent important information to someone and embarrassed the boss , however it was untrue as I never recall being asked for it. It may have been an oversight on my part I thought but then I read the email trail , it was unreal , someone else had been getting many emails on the subject and had failed to pass them on to me.  I remembered that something similar happened each time I was on annual leave. This is experience , learning from the past. the real lesson is not what I learned but what I do with what I learned. I had expected this based on past experiences and yet I was unprepared to deal with it. I have been upset about it since it happened. I am unsure how to proceed . I think that I would like for this to stop happening and for me to be able to fully relax and enjoy my time off . I did indeed enjoy it and I think the best course of action is to let them explain to me what happened.  I can explain away what happened as an oversight on the part of another or a cowardly act if displacement of blame but at the end if the day I have to decide on what course of action to take. I care very little about my paid employment anymore mostly due to things like thus. I find it hard to committ to it with the passion I once felt , now it is drudgery at best.  I feel let down and now it is time for me to learn what it is to be adequately assertive to prevent someone thinking I am the kind of person who will accept this. I could not find the request anywhere and I conclude that I need to trust myself. If I think I am right it is time to stick up for myself . I think the best strategy to adopt is to pretend that I am there to protect an innocent colleague from damage to her reputation from the lies if others. I think this is an opportunity to find a new aspect if myself one that puts me first , one that really believes in myself. I lost that part of me years ago. It was almost like brain washing . The gradual decent into my belief that I am worthless.  I think I should go back in time and reexamine the experiences I had where I allowed my confusion to prevent me from believing in myself. I don't need to be anyone's good girl to approve if myself. I approve of myself as I am.  Do whatever happens tomorrow I am still the same me. A me that comes first and communicates her confusion and disappointment clearly do that others can see she will witness wrong doing and not collude with it. I am woman hear me roar :) 

Saturday, 3 August 2013

new dawn new day Again

I stopped blogging as I had nothing to write about.  today I had the urge to write.  I have been very busy for the last few months and just took the time to stop and stay still for the last few days.  It is quite amazing what you see when you really look.  I saw things in people I had not noticed before and I saw things in myself I thought I would never see again.  I felt my sense of self in a very profound way almost as the opposite of an out of body experience - I felt totally at peace with myself and the world.  I suppose it was a moment of total clarity.  In the past people went on retreated or mediated to gain this, i just went to bed for three days and slept, well not exactly but i did spend a great part of three days asleep or resting.  It was almost like being a new person and seeing the world with totally new eyes.  I was amazed at how much people have been taking me for granted and how much I allowed that, I was amazed at how much people try to put me in a box, I was also amazed at  how many people are happy to let me just be myself and support me.  Life is pretty strange for me at the moment, I feel as great sense of transition and of realisation that there are so many life experiences waiting for me.  So many new things for me to experience things that I don't even know exist or can even imagine.  I have just had a very positive year and remember back to this time last year, to the confusion I felt, to the lack of confidence and to my lack of direction.  the big difference is that now I fell safe expressing my uncomfortable feeling, particularly when I am confused by something and when I don't fully understand.  One of my new favourite memories is of me singing for my mothers friend and her laughing at me.  At the time I was deeply embarrassed and confused and that was a feeling I felt alot as a child and until fairly recently.  I used to hold in that feeling, the awful shame and guilt and confusion.  since I have learned to express myself with confidence I can now say I don't understand why you are laughing and I as an adult I know that it was because of my earnestness and pure seriousness, I was indeed a very serious child.  I had to work out everything for myself.  I did not know how to ask for help or clarification and now I do.  I have been able to go back through all those memories where I felt less than ok and confused and reimagine what life would have been like had I been able to understand and ask for clarification.  Wow it was amazing indeed mostly I found that I imagined people explaining things to me in a way I could understand.  I cant relive my past but I can reimage it.  I can change how I view those memories of shame and remind that little girl that she is ok as she is.  My inner child grew up in the past year and no longer need other peoples adults to approve of her.  I approve of her and that is what matters.  Having a sense of confidence in myself and my abilities is so incredibly liberating and I feel as free as a bird.

Saturday, 8 June 2013

a new journey beings

I spent since 17th November 2010 trying to get well and recover from depression.  In that time I made new friends, saw new perspectives on life, found many new interests and now it is time for me to being a new journey.  I am a new Jane and decided that I am well.  I have thought that many times however the evidence I have now is that I trust myself.  I realized that I have been given the message over the course of my life not to trust my instincts and that was the wrong message.  I have been given the message that I was too sensitive that I was too this that and the other.  But how can I be too myself.

So now that I am myself again and ready for the next phase of life where am I going and who am I bringing with me.  I reached a cross roads this week.  I do made a decision to take a complete break from all projects and things that do not contribute to my well being.

The first thing I am doing it cleaning out the house.  I think it is time to fully accept that I am enough as I am.
So i am off to do the fun stuff and even cleaning the house is fun if you put on the right mood music.   the music of my happy childhood that I forgot all about during my unhappy 20s and 30s.  I am glad my 40s are happy times again.

Friday, 17 May 2013

when in the jungle don't forget to use your machete

I sat down this morning to write up a proposal for one of the many ideas that are certain to drive me crazy if I don't get them out of my head and down on paper.  One of the proposals is for an art exhibition related to the change of the way local government is delivered.  As I was writing up the proposal or funding and support I realized that I was in fact describing how I felt about myself and my place in the world.  The idea is all about the loss of our town boundary and the amalgamation of all the local councils into one larger council.  I started by writing out the germination of the idea which has been floating around in my head for about a year in many different forms.  As I wrote I realised that all the things  was writing was really applicable to my growth as a person and my belief system that has developed out my my own loss of identity.  I am working around my people pleasing behaviours and was questioning why I felt the need to work on this idea and promote a sense of identity for the town and realised how important identity was for me.

I also realised that t my need to use all my talents to the best of my ability was being satisfied in a way that consolidated my identity and how I view myself in the world rather than how I satisfied my belief around my talents previously.  Previously I felt that it was a sin not to use all my abilities and went done the road of using the talents that other people identified as my best.  I realised that they were seeing in me something of them selves and directing me in a way they would have liked to have followed.  My father would have liked to have had to opportunity for a technical education, instead he funded the education of hi younger brother.  My mother gave up ON her dreams as she realised it was too hard, and I was encouraged by her to think that if you put your mind to it you could do anything.  I had a major breakthrough the other day when my inner child aged around ten years in a week.  now she is a teenager and as a teenager she is minding and bringing along all the other lite inner children who need her help.  Our role as parents is to help our children find their way in the world and guide them as best we can.  Some of us know where the best paths are and some of us have to thrash around in the jungle of life to ind our way.  so today I am off to find my machete and hack out my own path in the hope that when I find my way others will too.

Happy Friday apologies for spelling and lack of editing, had to down load this from my brain so I could function today. 

Wednesday, 15 May 2013

moment by moment there only is now

I had a bit of a moment recently.  A dear friend who I turn to for support and guidance told me he was thinking of leaving the group we belong to.  I go to thinking about how to take this news, it was not definate, it was not final, just considering it.  I was surprised to hear he had discussed the matter with another member of the group and she did not feel it was her place to share his thoughts with me.  I started to think about what his leaving meant to me and I realised that while I was upset at the thought of it, it was not yet a reality.  I eventually realised I had choices.  I could choose how I reacted. I could choose to share my feelings.  I Could choose to leave the group also.  I realised I control my own destining.  I did cry more than one tear and as I did I remembered the lovely song below.

I  forgot that he needed me too and now it was my turn to be patient while he worked out his stuff.  It is not all about me.  Any relationship is about give and take.  This is totally new territory for me.  I am stepping gingerly into expressing how I feel to others. I feel vulnerable and exposed but I have learnt that there is strength in vulnerability.  I have nothing to fear not even fear itself.  I am a little crazy from all the things revolving around in my brain at the moment but as always music is a great soilice.  I felt like a teenager listening to this but I never really understood it until yesterday.  I cant wait to give him a big hug and tell me that I still need support but that does not mean I cannot give it in return.  

Happy Thursday in the middle of the night.  I have been writing stuff all night and thankfully I have many of the revolving thoughts out of my head and on paper.  My younger daughter wants me to work on a project with her now.  I had been investigation starting a business and wanted to put my creative energies into making more money for me and my family.  Maybe it is time to decide its time to do things for me now.  and with that thought I am off to bed half delirious from writing non work related reports for a committee I volunteer in. Yes it is definitely time to put my creative effort towards my own financial gain.  apologies for those reading the appalling spelling and lack of proof reading 

Sunday, 5 May 2013

freedom from

who made the rules and why did I not get a copy.

Freedom comes in many parts.  As part of my therapy I was reminded that freedom is one of the four needs, freedom fun love and power.  Freedom from and freedom to.  Freedom from judgement, freedom from fear, freedom to do as i please, freedom to think for myself.

I freed myself from my need for approval and yet feel upset when judged.  Clearly I am not fully free.  I need to remind myself that I am living my life for myself.  

So I asked myself the question who made the rules and why did I not get a copy.  I make my own rules and as long as I am ok with myself and my actions then I am ok.  I did have a long think about why I was so fuzzy today and realised it was because I felt unfairly judged.  I live by my own values and not by the values of others, it is only when I am true to my own values that I am be authentic, that I am truly myself.  My discomfot was not in the judgement but in the moment when I nearly abandoned myself.  I caught myself just in time. Well done me.

I am enough as I am.

freedom to and freedom from

I have that familiar fuzzy feeling.  The one that precedes a breakthrough.  I thought I had one yesterday but today I wonder.  I love being free to do as I please.  There are consequences to this.  Judgement is one of them, disapproval is another.  I blog to release my mind from the constraints of thinking. think in ink is a tool I use to clear my head.  Right now I should be writing another blog but I need to regain my equilibrium   I have a reasonably integrated life.  I need a considerable amount of time on my own to feel stable and clear headed.  

Everyone we interact with comes to the interaction with all their own issues.  They all have their own filters.  I  have changed my filters.  I am actively seeking to escape from my own limiting beliefs and in doing so I feel a little disconnected.  I am not entirely sure why I feel peculiar but I do.  So I am trying the things that worked before and one of them is music.  I am not a great jazz fan but in times of confusion I like to listen to Nina Simone.  It brings me back to a time in my life when I was full of hope and I find it reconnects me with the joy and freedom I felt.  My art teacher used to play different music at different stages of my life drawing class, Nina Simone was always the music that energised  me the most.  Jazz seems to hit the fuzzy spot in my brain and neutralises the feeling of confusion.  Perhaps it is because it is so hard to work out what comes next with jazz unlike the predictable boom boom drum machine rhythm of techno and the noise of scremo. 

Music was an important part of my recovery process.  Learning to trust myself was another.  Letting go of my need for approval another.  If I do not need approval then why do I feel so judged?  Perhaps that is the question that is bubbling up inside.  I need to take time to process what is causing the confusion and let my mind rest.  Tomorrow I need to stay doing exactly what I plan to do.  so its back to basics again.  I was working though my list and getting on with my own stuff.  Time to go back to that and not get too caught up in judgements, mine of others and other of me.  Time to get me an ipod and some head space.  

Oh and it truly is time to enjoy being me.  I am exactly where I want to be in my life.  It is time to move onto the next thing whatever that is.  Yesterdays break through was to be open to new things and to challenging how I view things.   Memory is fickle, emotions are fleeting.  

It is time for me to trust myself. and there it is the answer to the question why do I feel peculiar I forgot to trust myself.   At the end of the day if I don't trust myself none else will be able to.  thank god for that I can stop listening to jazz now.  it is tickling my brain. This morning I felt free.  I am free and I am responsible for the choices I make.  Life is a simple as you make it. 

Sunday, 21 April 2013

the choice is yours

I woke up this morning and realised its all about choice, when i get asked to do something I can choose to do it of choose not to do it.  It is the element of manipulation and coercion that makes me uncomfortable.  I realised that I was feeling manipulated and while the request made of me might have seemed reasonable to  the person who made it it  did not feel reasonable to me.  I thought about the request and I realised that I was ok to agree to the request and I did.  My concern was that if I agreed to one request then I would feel obliged to agree to more, again I realise I have a choice.  Its all about making the right choice for me not for others.  Hope I remember this when next faced with dealing with an uncomfortable request. In the long run looking after myself is the most important.

Saturday, 20 April 2013

sometimes i wonder

I would love to live my life without being judged.  I wonder why people expect me to live by their rules.
I wonder why I try.  I need to feel free to do as I please.   Today a friend expected me to account for my behavoir and I felt that she was expecting me to seek her permission  to behave a certain way.  I started to feel righteous indignation and felt highly mistrusted.  I dont really understand what it is I feel, I suppose I feel like she is trying to control me.  Life can be complicated enough without having to worry bout what others think of me.  I hate being expected to conform to values that I dont agree with.  I hate people trying to control how I think.  I just want to be free to live my own life my way.

Friday, 19 April 2013

Less is more

I have been overdoing it.  Over thinking getting caught up in other people's stuff and forgetting the importance of minding myself.  I have had family visiting and my ex husband staying for a few days.  i feel like i need to be alone. So for a few days I have given in to the tiredness, the headache  the nausea for acid reflux, the pins and aches of life, my sore painful ankle, the dizzy spells, i could go on and on.  I went to a meeting last night on life skills and although I thought i knew it all I was reminded that we need to look after the basics for life to keep on the straight and narrow.  No point in getting the Nobel prize if you drop dead the day after.  the most important message is change your thinking or your behaviour to improve your life.  Fairly obvious stuff but how often do we need the obvious pointed out to us.  So today I decided to look at the basics that are missing in my life, unpaid bills, messy bedrooms, dust, and I realised I have been neglecting my home caring, and blaming others for the mess.

I am the adult there and its time I behaved like one.  I set the standards and if I slip it is hard to except the children to catch up.  They are after all only children. I often feel over burdened by responsibility and yet I keep taking on more.  Its time to go back to basics and realise that keeping busy in itself is not enough to have a fulfilling life.  its time to do less. Less is more 

Tuesday, 26 March 2013

its all about them

well thank god that is over. 

 'Its all fine now ' my mother says,  'but well ...yesterday your dad had heart attack ....but its all fine now.' or 'your bother broke his leg... but its all fine now', or 'the house burnt down.... but its all fine now'.  This is how she delivers bad news.  And yes it is all fine now but it wasn't.  

I have a minor existential crisis over that last few days.  I forgot my tools and my good sense.  I allowed other peoples views impinge on me  and forgot to trust myself.  I shared something that made me happy with a friend who decided that this was not something that was OK and told me so in a way that was meant to be positive but instead deeply hurt me.  Instead of remembering that so often, feedback tells you more about them than it does about you.  
It is important to look at the evidence before passing judgement.  So I did.  The evidence is very solid.  I am happy now than I have been in ages.  I am happy with what I have.  Other people want more, some people want less. I am satisfied by what I have.  One day I might not be and then it will be time to make changes.  My brother said to me recently that other peoples rules are something they put in place to control us.  I am living a relatively rule free uncontrolled existence.  I finally learnt how to please myself.  I have strong morals.  I behave in an ethical way.  I know my values. I am free to live my life that way that I want. 

I had the most awful pain in my tummy for the last few days as I allowed the what if scenario of someone else invade my brain.  I tried my old faithful tool, my tarot cards, they told me that I was creating a far more frightening reality that in fact existed.  sometimes when i am blocked I use them to free up my mind to other scenarios and release subconscious feelings and thoughts. all I could see there was that yes I was really happy, and that despite this I was imagining all sorts of what if scenarios.  

I have made great progress in the last few years now instead of holding in all my bad thoughts I shared them with people I felt would never judge me.  And my trust was rewarded.  by seeking out those who truly want only what is best for me, by talking to those who are very much OK with who they are I reaffirmed that it was OK to be me and that if I think I am happy then I am happy. 

So today realise that you are the only one in control of your life.  It is you and you alone that decides what is right and wrong for you.  Most certainly accept feedback but be discerning find and act on what's useful, then discard the rest. Remember its almost always more about them than it is about you.  I am enough as I am. 

Monday, 25 March 2013

Sometimes I wonder

I have been unspeakably tired and unwell for the last few days. I have taken to my bed. I feel like I am fighting off one of the many viruses and bugs going around but my body I neither getting better nor worse. I just need loads and loads of sleep. I sometimes wonder why it is I do not allow myself to trust myself to know what's best for me, why it is I need someone else's permission. Today I had a bit of a wobble, the first one in months. Last week I visited the college I wanted to go to, in fact the one I had expected to Ho to when I was young. I found myself back at age 16 the same age as my duughter wondering what my life would have been like had I gone there. I remembered what I expected to be like now when I was 16, certainly much slimmer, long greying hair, very very tanned and wester beaten, long flowing skirts, surrounded by goats children and men . I would be some kind of potter or artist living in an artists commune in Greece on an island full of goats olive trees and handsome Greek men. It looked very like the island in the film of mama Mia. Moreover I am deeply serene and extraordinarily happy, no wrinkles of course ! Well some of it is true, I live by the sea, one of my dreams, I have children, but no goats, I am way more middle aged in my current reality and up until 8 o clock this morning would have said I was in fact very happy. The evil free floating anxiety started to hit me. It always does when I try to push myself too much. The physical effort of trying to get up when feeling unwell made me panic . And then I opened the door to all the other evils, the self doubt, the inadequacy I often feel , the critical voice in my head, the judgemental voice if others, the fear of not being good enough, only surpassed by the great of being too good. Wow I am some mess I thought. Who would ever want me ? I berated myself for being so proud with myself for achieving do much over the last few years. I told myself that all the critics were right. That my lifestyle is wrong, that I should be more like everyone else. That I should give up my silly ideals and just accept I am an abject failure and a worthless person. I really did have a big old wallow with my old favourites the hippos of discontent. Eventually I slept , I let nature and my best friend take their time and bring me around.  I had to get up to go grocery shopping, something I had not done for a week. I realised that I was not eating properly, that I was not exercising properly, that I was not being my own best friend. Yes I have work to do , yes I have kids to mind but I also have a responsibility to myself.  I reminded myself of the fact that I must treat me as I would treat my best friend. So I sent a txt and asked for help and help duly arrived in the form of a kick up the bum. Get out of bed and take yourself and the mutt for a walk in the fresh sea air it said . Later I said . Now it said . Big brother knows best I think so I eventually did just that. Kill or cure I thought as I took myself off at dusk, me and the mutt and what looked like Brent geese alone on the mile of sandy loveliness. Omg it certainly was bracing, freezing is a better word. I reminded myself of the time I ran into the sea in the freezing cold two weeks before my meltdown . It was one of the few moments of peace I had that month, running through the freezing water trying to stop my mind from overheating.   Doggus woggus lived it too she  ran like someone left the gate open . I love my dog, I love my life, I love myself. Life may not have turned out as I imagined but I think the 16 year old me could forgive me for that. Finally I am letting go of the past and the hurt  and being brave. As a wise man keeps saying the past is a nice place to visit but not a nice place to live.  My mission to make my life easier and happier may have had a setback but it has helped me let go of more baggage. And soon there will be none left :)

Monday, 18 March 2013

Moment by moment

The saying one day at a time is such a good one but sometimes a day is far too much to bear. Then it becomes moment by moment. That is true mindfulness. A kind friend gave me a book on flow and when I feel more settled I will read it. Flow is the ultimate experience and the pleasure that is possible in flow is wonderful. Being entirely absorbed by something is so relaxing. I find it when I swim, crochet, draw or sometimes when I am working on something complicated. I shared my current tools with a very stressed friend today. I wondered if it was time to close my blog, and the universe gave a resounding no. Thinking in ink will keep me well even if I only write once a year. My journey is just that and as they say it is better to travel hopefully than to arrive . So today enjoy your journey and remember you are in the driving seat. 

Just when you think it's all over

I was reflecting that I no longer needed to blog as I was well. Pride comes before a fall as the saying goes. A close friend is having some health issues and I am at a total loss about what to do. I wanted to hop in the car and drive the three hours to make sure she was not alone, she was taken to hospital last night. I realised that I would be of no use to her or myself or anyone else if I did that as I would exhaust myself totally. The guilt was astonishing. The worry was disturbing. I felt overwhelmed and did not know what to do. So I went back to basics I rang a friend who is good in a crises and she reminded me of how hospitals are the best place for people who are ill, that it is not possible to make a good decision without the full facts, that what I think is the right thing to do may not be and I was in a very subjective place. My wellness tools kicked in also. I know that after a shock I need to be physically active , the total opposite of my natural reaction which is to freeze. The activity helps me calm down and my preferred choice of activity is cleaning. You see immediate results and as I hate cleaning it is easy to find somewhere to clean. This morning I woke up feeling a bit worn out and realised I felt guilty that I did not go to her immediately. It was totally impractical and I knew I had to let that go or I would end up hiding under the duvet. So a few minutes of total relaxation helped. I realised I was dehydrated so I am having a few glasses of water and I know that I had a busy day yesterday doing way more than I had planned so I recognised that I was feeling genuine tiredness. I still have limiting beliefs. It is hard to let go of them. Stepping over the limiting beliefs is hard but I must do that so I can grow.  The last few days were a hiatus if calm in my life. I felt at peace totally. I   Lived for so long in a drama filled environment that it became the norm. I came across the concept of excited misery many years ago. It is where we get our pleasure from the bad things that happen. We recreate the pattern of drama and stress in our lives because we ate used to it and it is the norm. I love my calm life now. I love waking up and looking forward to the nice things that life brings. I remember the feeling of waking up and feeling sick wondering how I would get through the day. So today I will cut myself slack, I will do the things that keep me well. I will resist the temptation to hide under the duvet. I will be kind to myself and accept the latest challenge life had offered me.  I will take the opportunity to reflect on how far I have come. I have to look after myself first and foremost and that is such a hard thing for me to do. I started to blog as a means to track my recovery and keep a record as my memory was very poor. Rereading it on Saturday made me realise that when I trust myself and do the things I hate to do and fear the most then I move forward and built resilience. Re building resilience is my main goal in my recovery as it was lack resilience that caused my episode. So I will not push myself out of bed now . I will have another glass of water, relax and enjoy the last hour of relaxation before it is time to tackel  the housework.
It is time for me to accept I am not being selfish by not working to the point of exhaustion. Rest is an essential part of life. I shall take my cue from the dog who is occupying the best spot on my bed , curled up fully relaxed trusting in the universe that she will be taken care if.
So today put your trust in yourself. Trust yourself to know what the right thing is. Trust yourself, love yourself and pat yourself on the back for just being you.
Happy Monday . 

Saturday, 16 March 2013

In the groove

One of the many things I learned on my journey is that the language we use is important . For years I was in a rut, stuck, unable to move. Routine and habit are important in maintaining wellness, however I am not in a rut , I am in the groove . Ruts congruent up images of stage coaches with thin wooden wheels stuck in a foot of mud unable to turn as the horses are rushing along pulling it at a furious speed. While similar in concept a groove reminds me of the joy of putting on my favourite stories on the record player as a child and the excitement of the first time I was allowed place the needle in the groove. Once the needle hit the groove there was an hour if pleasures as my favourite story played or my favourite song. How we perceive the world is important. I am now in the groove because I dug myself out of the rut. I allowed my heart to thaw. I allowed others to take charge. I relinquished my need to be responsible for everyone and by doing that was able to be more responsible for myself. I now make decisions from a place free of guilt and shame. It is over 25 years since the thing that changed my life and my perception of life changed me forever. Last week I let it go. Forgiveness is powerful and if we cannot forgive directly then I think wanting to be able to forgive is the next best thing. I want to be able to forgive those who have hurt me. I feel 20 again. I feel all the joy and optimism I felt then. Hard work pays off. It has been a painful journey in many ways. While I feel that I have reached my destination I know I have not. I know that the next phase of my life is about to start. Recently I visited my homeopath as I had a difficult situation to deal with at work and another at home. She gave me a remedy for taking on too much responsibility. I worked on the reasons I do that for the lady few weeks and the origin of it is fear. The fear that I will be made do things I don't want to if I am not in charge. Over the last few months I have learned that I don't have to take on the responsibility if I am true to myself and my feelings and abilities. No one can really make you do something you don't want to do and if they do it is abuse. We all have a choice and we all can say no. I was brought up to obey my elders and betters and that I did for years under great protest and to the cost of my health and happiness. Now I have regained my trust in myself. I have persevered and rebuilt my boundaries. We all need boundaries but we don't need barriers when we trust ourselves not to allow others to abuse us. A rut is a barrier but a groove is a boundary. Soon I will be closing this blog as my recovery is almost complete. I have loved sharing my thoughts with who ever happened to come across it. I am branching out into other things now and do not have the time up write . I hope me need to think in ink had lessened as I have learned to open up and express myself.

So today ask yourself am I in a rut or in the groove. Which ever you are in it is you who put yourself there and it is you who will keep yourself there. Hope you are in the groove and enjoying the music and stories of life. Life is for living and enjoying.

Happy Saturday and happy st Patrick's weekend. First bank holiday of the year and the fist year since 1988 that I am truly happy. 

Wednesday, 6 March 2013

Do more feel better do better

That motto is written on a sign on the way into town. It is a statement by one of the pharmaceutical plants that is a major employer in the town. I love to read it as I drive past. The last few weeks have been challenging, at home, at work and on a personal level. I am reflecting on my progress and was reading back over some posts from before I was fully better. I can see the fragility in them but also the hope and love for myself. This years motto is pace myself. Learn to take small steps forward so that I can make a great leap when I need to. My daughter was confirmed at the weekend and unusually for me I was on time, relaxed and organised. I put in a great effort to getting ready and started the preparations months ago. I was concerned that my family would treat me like the old Jane or in fact silly old Jane like they used to. But I worried needlessly everyone was relaxed and enjoyed it. Everything was as good as it gets. The lesson of pacing myself , allowing plenty if time, accepting help and just doing my best paid off. It reminded me of how much I like to work hard but now I also know how to relax. I am reaching a point where I choose what I devote my energy to. Yes I can do many things but I choose to limit what I take on. I have finally let go of the belief that I must use all my talents at all times. Learning to listen to the advice if others, learning to accept help, learning to ask for help from people who can and are able to help is the best thing about being well. I love the way I can think clearly, I love the way I can love unconditionally ( except for the dog when she barks in my ear) I love the way I feel , I feel like I matter. Feeling that I matter is the best part of being well. It was a painful lesson to learn. If I don't show others that I matter they will think that I don't and then treat me as if I don't. So today show the world that you matter and step out into a world of possibilities.
Happy Wednesday 

Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Speak up speak out

It has been a funny week on all fronts. I realised that I do not trust my own judgement enough and have learned to check with others if my thoughts are normal. I attend a wonderful support group now so I am blogging less as am learning to express my feelings in a safe and confidential environment. It is do good to be able to share things and be supported and not ridiculed or mocked. I noticed that recently I was clamping my mouth closed and had no urge to speak. I remember that childhood feeling of doing the same thing. So I have worked on that and become aware of when I was doing that. For weeks I have been feeling the foggy sensation of confusion and lack of clarity. I have been learning lots of new things for work and I think my brain was getting fairly full. So today I took a day off . I was supposed to be painting the kitchen and front room but instead I did a big clean out if my own room. As I did I felt the gig lift and my mind went back to the lovely memory that helped me get out of the black hole. My earliest happy memory is sitting in my mothers bedroom and watching her make the bed. Little sparkles if dust floating in the sir catching the sunlight. When I could not temenber what it was like to feel joy I searched for that first memory, something to trigger that feeling of joy. I keep finding that little trail of breadcrumbs I laid out for myself do that I could find my way back if I strayed off the path of happiness. It is do easy to let the bad triggers rule our lives. It has taken me almost two weeks to overcome the latest bad trigger but in doing so I not only overcame the problem I also replaced the trigger with a good feeling. This good feeling has eliminated the original problems that caused me so much pain. It was almost like a the slate was wiped clean and the bad stuff is now gone and I am free. Things happened 6 years ago that I left affect me very deeply and yesterday I finally  succeeded in dealing with a similar situation. I feel so free now that I think I have turned a real corner . Standing up for myself, speaking up and speaking out has cancelled that awful time in my life. I hope that I will keep moving forward with this and know that my voice has just as much a right to be heard as anyone else's. maybe now my inner child will feel safe enough to tell me what it is she needs to say. I hope that she can finally move on and grow up. It would be a shame if she stayed 6 forever .

So today use your voice without fear. As Churchill said you have nothing to fear except fear itself

A very happy Wednesday to you all :)

Thursday, 14 February 2013

Ginger beer

Sitting in bed drinking ginger beer about to read the next chapter of jilly copper , thinking back over the year. This time last year I could never have predicted all the great and awful things I did. I feel another episode comming on and don't know what to do. Should I rest should I exercise. Should I take to my bed drink ginger beer and read trashy books , what should I do??? so as usual I thought it was time to blog. I looked back on some old posts for the sign posts to show me the other way forward, the one that leads me away from depression. I found lots of clues but no real definate answer . I found some of the tools I forgot. Today was a spectacularly difficult day. I was reminded of the incident that triggered last years episode and how I forgot one of the best spots to use. Recovery inc works on the basis that we treat our mental health as a business and not a game. I know I am feeling unwell when I get an image of a frightened child hiding at my feet. My poor little 6 year old self is still with me and wants to tell me something. I must remember to allow her to whisper it to me next time she appears.  Inner child work helped me recover so well. It is most unfortunate she only appears when I am at work.
So how to move forward perhaps if I just stand still moving forward will take care of itself.  There only is now. So there it is I need to stay in the now, I need to make time to listen to my inner child, I need to be brave and stay in my adult.  Oh and happy valentines day :) 

Sunday, 27 January 2013

It's so simple

They say the simple explanations are the best, and they, whoever they are, are usually right. Yesterday I learned that the simple explanation for feeling exhausted was exhaustion, the explanation for feeling tired was tiredness and yes you guessed it the simple explanation for feeling stressed was stress. I visited the homeopath yesterday mostly because I recommended her to everyone who mentioned an ailment to me. I realised long ago when I say to people you should do that I am really directing the advice to myself. So I unwound and realised that I have not been pacing myself very well, I have given in to the flattery of being told how capable I am and have taken on too much again.   I did make the space for some me time today and realised that I need a two day break doing nothing other than lazing in bed reading , swimming and eating.  I was thinking how I cannot afford that when I realised that I live in a town with 3 swimming pools to choose from all within cycling or walking distance, a town with two book shops plus numerous second hand ones, a town within driving range of Michelin star restaurants . I don't have to go very far to get the simple pleasures in life. I think it is the fact that I spend time on the necessary stuff like washing cooking cleaning that makes it difficult for me to take  a real rest at weekends. I am in need of a recharge. Simple explanation is that I have not allowed myself to treat myself well. I realised that I feel like everyone wants something from me and I don't want to give anymore. So how to reframe this? I need to actively choose what I do. I will turn off those voices I hear telling me I should and I must and why don't you...... I have worked hard to get myself back on track. I have changed my attitude, learned tools to help myself and I think I did well. I am proud of myself. I endorse myself for my efforts. Everything around me is changing very rapidly. I love change I choose but transitions and uncertainty  challenge me. Time to do the basics that keep me well , taping, blogging, aromatherapy, sleep , vegetable soup, and hugging my family and playing with the dog. Above all I need to practise self compassion and forgive myself my short comings. When I am ready to be fully present again I will be. A little hibernation is good for the soul. No idea what the point of today's post is but I suppose not everything needs a meaning. Happy Sunday sweet dreams. Give yourself a big hug and tell yourself just how much you love you . X x x x all you lovely creatures in blogger land

Thursday, 24 January 2013

Give your inner child a cuddle

Sometimes I forget to be kind to myself, I forget how to show myself I care. This week my hopes and expectations were dashed and I was disappointed when that happened.  I have Ben feeling unsettled and realised that I had a lot of pent up pentupness in need of release.  I have felt like going  for a swim for about a week but denied myself that, today it was go for a swim or shoot the kids so being the good mother that I am I went for a swim and sauna. Instinctively we all know what we need to make ourselves feel better. My inner child is 6 and after my swim she was very much better. She cannot understand why the grown ups fight and sometimes laugh at her so she just stays quiet and tried to make herself invisible, her favourite place is under the water where they cannot find her. It is quiet and warm and she is free from everything. One day she will move on and maybe grow up a little more. She is happy tonight and is cuddled up with me all happy . It is months now since she needed to hide under the desk.  I did quite a lot of work on my inner child and when she appears to me I work to sooth her.
I suppose such visualisations help me label my feelings and help me connect with what it is keeps me in the child's place.  I forgot to listen to my inner child for so long. Time to let her have a voice I think. Good night everyone in blogger land. Happy Thursday . 

Wednesday, 23 January 2013


I woke up and remembered that what we dislike in others is a reflection of the traits we dislike in others. Well now I have had a slap in the face and a reminder of the things I have to work on. Listening. I need to listen to what others have to say and to myself. It is easy to get caught up in our own thoughts and only half hear. I need to listen to others and to myself. 

Tuesday, 22 January 2013

No drama

I have not written for a while as I had nothing to write about but today was as strange a day as I have had in a while. I attend a support group now and I find it a great help Ho know I am not alone in my suffering. Tonight I had the most unbelievable trigger and cried at the meeting. It is easy to think that once we are well we will stay well but that is not the case . It is similarly the case that when we are ill we will not stay ill forever. Recently I have started to feel my own value and realise my self worth but today I had a setback . I was pulled back to a place I no longer wish to be. Someone took out their bad temper on me at work and I was incredibly upset. Until recently I would have been upset for a long time and bottled it up instead I spoke out and used my tools , tapping is a great release for me. But it reminded me of what anxiety feels like , how the waves of heat rush over me, I feel dizzy , I loose rational thought, I get stuck in that emotion all day or even for days . It was a painful reminder of how I ended up in the bad place I got to before my episode. At tonight's meeting there were more reminders of my mistakes, my bad experiences and my faulty thinking in the past . It is hard for me to  step out of my family role of the one who is always at fault. It is a role I now reject . A role I no longer wish to play. I have that foggy feeling again that I will learn something new or have a new revelation soon. I think it might be that I sometimes shit just happens for no fecking reason at it . It just does. To Iight there are no answers  just a sense that there are a lot of mean people in the world that I need to avoid. I might be less of a Pollyanna now than I was yesterday but at least I know when I slip backwards there are a whole load of people ready to reach out and help me. Best of all I know how to accept help and can seperate out the genuine offers from the bogus. I suppose perhaps i am learning that it is easy to fall down but not ok to stay there . I want a calm life free of drama and that is what I shall create.