Insomnia; Friend or Foe

Hello!!!

Apologies for the lack of recent blog activity, I seem to have been busy living that thing we call life. I say living, I mean I’ve been working my bottom off and spending my spare time sleeping / vegging out!

Right now though, I am on holiday and I swore to myself I would post while on holiday.  What I had envisioned was a lovely, photograph-heavy post, written in the sunshine. What’s actually happened is my insomnia is back with me and I’ve decided to post at 4.30am while the world around me is dark and asleep.

Not surprisingly then, my post is actually going to be about insomnia. It’s a strange thing, this not being able to sleep despite being super tired. I’ve always been a light sleeper and never been an 8 hours a night type of person but the insomnia has only reared its head in the last 5 or so years and I’m really not a fan.

Well, I say I’m not a fan but sometimes, like now, the middle of the night can be really productive. I get books read, writing done, planning done, etc. But then I’m exhausted, my wrinkles are deeper and my eyes more tired the following day. I can easily function for weeks when I suffer this curse but the enjoyment disappears from things because I’m constantly having to battle the scratchy eyes and pounding headache.

People who don’t get this, just don’t understand. They ask questions like, “Did you try closing your eyes? You can’t not sleep with your eyes closed”. Yes I tried closing my eyes, I’m not stupid! Then I tried a sleep mask too because once again, I’m not stupid!  It doesn’t seem to be socially acceptable to suggest that perhaps I am a superior and more complex being than they are, despite them suggesting that I am the utmost simpleton.

Insomnia seems to be divisive, there are those that do and those that don’t, with no bridge of understanding in the middle. I’m honestly not sure whether it’s just a pain in my backside or whether it adds an extra dimension to my world. It’s not necessarily a dimension I ever felt was lacking, but nonetheless, it’s another differentiator between me and Joe Bloggs.

I’m keen to hear from fellow non-sleepers…how you do tackle this beast and what do you think of it? 

Right now, I can hear one of my Schnauzer brothers awake in the next room. If there wasn’t a human in there with him, I’d have a playmate to see me through. Maybe he’ll read this post and “sleep” in my room next time! 

Day 2 of my James Vale, Juice Master 3 Day Detox – MAN DOWN!

It’s all gone pear-shaped…(do you see what I did there!?!)

My juicer has DIED! Well, it hasn’t exactly died but everything it produces tastes like burning plastic, the juicer itself smells like burning plastic and I’m not a huge fan of the smoked effect it’s started giving my kitchen.

This sounds like possibly the best excuse ever for flaking out of my juice diet but I am not making this up, not even a tiny bit. I’m now drowning in fruit and veg that don’t usually go together to make a meal. Hmm…

The advice from today, friends is not to buy a Phillips juicer. Hidden among all of the amazing reviews are lots of reviews that talk about the juicers going up in smoke after a few uses. Amazon have even stopped shipping my model because it is defective.

I’ve ordered a new juicer and it looks like I’m going to have to shelve this diet until it arrives next week. Yes, next week. I even ordered silver (yuk) instead of red (love) to expedite the recommencement of the juice detox. THAT’S HOW DEDICATED I AM!!!

Until then, I’m sorry. I failed. But really and truly, for once it wasn’t my fault :-) x

Day 1 of my James Vale, Juice Master 3 Day Detox

Things on this blog have been a bit serious for the last few posts and it’s been ages since I did any sort of review so I thought I’d jump back on it and try something new. With a hen do coming up this weekend, I’ve decided that I need to run some sort of detox program to try and get my body back to looking and feeling good. Given my past history of failure at these things, I’ve decided to try a 3 day detox.

I’ve downloaded Jason Vale’s 3 day Juice Master detox app and I’ve actually got as far as starting it. According to his motivational video, I’m already doing better than most because I’ve bought the food and started the detox. BOOM! This is the kind of information I need to hear to keep me on the straight and narrow.

The Shopping List

The Shopping List

However, the people who said I wouldn’t be hungry LIED. These are the same idiots who say their bloating decreases, their energy increases and they love it from day one.

I’m struggling, it’s 2.30pm and I’m thinking of going straight to bed post evening juice when I get home because I am THAT tired and hungry right now. I even cheated and ate a satsuma…a whole satsuma! My teeth loved the opportunity to chew something :-)

Then I ate an apple. Just now I ate an apple because I was feeling light-headed. I’m really not sure these diets factor in the extreme eaters like me. WHOOPS!

To be fair, I think it’s been extra bad for me today because my juicer overheated last night so one of my “juices” is full of bits as I had to resort to the blender. Tomorrow’s menu looks much better as there’s a fruit smoothie and there’s ginger in one of the juices which is pretty much my favourite flavour ever! Not that that makes me any less hungry right now. What I’m currently thinking is that might just eat the components of the juice for dinner. No juicing, just actual huge chunks of food. I can’t get more bloated than I am right now and it should fill me up enough to allow me to actually do some exercise which has to be a good thing.

Watch this space to see if I’ve fallen off the wagon by this time tomorrow… (think thin, think yummy smoothie, think bikini, think…oh sod it!) x

A Controversial View on a Controversial Subject

I can’t imagine a day when talking about suicide won’t be a controversial topic but once again it’s been thrown into the air as something people are openly discussing on the back of the recent passing of Peaches Geldof. There’s no current evidence that her death was a result of suicide but due to the Tweet she posted the night before, speculation seems to be rife. I’m not especially interested in discussing what happened to Peaches as I think rumours are rather disrespectful when somebody’s family are grieving. However, the wider topic of discussion that this throws up is something that is always going to be interesting to me.

Today in the office, a couple of the team started talking about this and then discussing how selfish it is for a mother of young children to commit suicide. While I can see their point, I popped my opinion out there and I’m popping it out here again to see if I receive anything other than shocked responses. My opinion, and I promise this is the honest truth, is that it is more selfish for someone who is that seriously depressed to carry on than it is for them to move on to whatever comes after the life we know.

Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not suggesting this is a decision that should be taken lightly and that human life should be wasted but I do believe that people who have spent long enough wishing they weren’t alive will never truly come back. I’m talking about those who can’t get through daily life without throwing the lives of all others around them into disarray. Essentially, I’m talking about people who are like my own mother was. For a good 10 years, (the entirety of the time I remember when she was alive) she wasn’t right. The tiniest things would cause her world to collapse; the sausages not being defrosted leading to hours of tears and anger is one of my earliest memories of such behaviour.

As a child, this is distressing. You’ve no idea what to expect from your parent, no understanding of why they’re so different to everyone else’s parents and no idea what it is you’ve done to deserve having it all taken out on you. Now multiply those confusing feelings by 10 years and factor in physical violence but also mixed with a huge amount of love and I hope you can start to understand why my opinion on this is the way it is.

How can one person love you so much and be the absolute centre of your world, pushing you to be the best version of yourself you can be yet also be the person that screams at you when the car won’t start? Or the person who cries and then screams and then slams doors, punches worktops and shouts at you because they spilled their dinner. It’s a very strange world to live in, is that and to be perfectly honest, life is a lot easier without it.

So, for those on the outside looking in at a world they have no experience of, I challenge you to say that it’s always better for a suicidal person to keep pressing on now that you’ve had a glimpse of the reality. Yes, when a mother leaves her young children, they’ll probably never get over it but they’ll probably also never recover from the damage she could inflict by sticking around for an eternity. So what’s best? My opinion is that every situation is different and requires a resolution unique to itself but sometimes, the controversial answer is the right one.

I’ll never change what the masses think but I’d like to at least challenge it so here’s hoping I’ve achieved that today! X

 

P.S. – All of the above is an extremely moderate version of real events, so if my viewpoint seems extreme, consider the words I haven’t written as well as the ones I have.

No Likey, No Texty

It’s been a while since I really dipped my toe into the ocean that is dating and the main reason for that is simply that I’ve been busy with other things. Those other things have calmed down now though and I’ve reached the point where it would be nice to meet some hot, young men. I thought I’d pop out of my shell, meet some new guys and hopefully go on some fun dates; I haven’t even reached date stage and I’ve climbed back into my shell!

What has happened to the world!?! While I’ve been busy sorting out other areas of my life, it would seem that men have become more desperate, emotional and needy than ever. Obviously there’s the usual selection of bore-me-to-death chaps out there who I can barely sustain a 2 message conversation with…and they’re reassuringly constant. However there are also stacks and stacks of guys who want me to think about them every second of every day, message them constantly and fall in love with them before we’ve even met. WHERE HAVE THESE WEIRDOS COME FROM???

Take my latest example, this guy and I had messaged a few times and arranged a date for Friday. On Monday night he sent me a message which, to my mind, ended our conversation for the evening as it contained no questions, no obvious lead for further conversation and we’d been chatting a while. Midway through Tuesday I receive a message telling me I don’t say a lot. I replied, slightly confused and asked to what he was referring. I was told he had expected a reply last night or at least a “hello” this morning. From that point the conversation went roughly down the path of me saying that I was at work, didn’t have time to start a conversation and couldn’t see the point in saying something just for the heck of it. I was told I was arrogant, it’s clear why I’m single and I have no idea about basic human interaction. I’ve now blocked that needy weirdo from my WhatsApp because I got bored halfway through the argument which went round in circles.

The way I see it is, essentially, a guy I’ve never met expected me to message him in the morning just so he’d know I was thinking of him.

I wasn’t thinking of him.

I wouldn’t have thought of him until Thursday night when I realised I needed to wash something to wear on Friday night. I thought this was normal before a first date, I thought the crazy stalker-ville only kicked in once you’d had a chance to get to know someone well enough to miss them…apparently I thought wrong.

So between him and the snore-a-minute guys that I keep having the misfortune of finding, I’m pretty much done with that foray into the dating world. I’m not fussed whether I have a boyfriend or not, I just thought I might be missing out on some fun. It appears that is not the case so I’m backing up into my shell of singledom again and hoping that next time I pop out there will be some men who are bit more level-headed and at least meet me before they get obsessive and weird. The only sure thing here is that I’m now terrified that I’ve fallen into the pool of crazy undateables and I’ll never get out! x

What’s Appearance Got To Do With It?

The whole “don’t judge a book by its cover” thing is always a tough one as we seem to have a natural tendency to do just that. I think it’s partly human nature and partly the way we are bred. When we are children our parents tell us not to talk to strangers in case they are the bad kind of person that will hurt us. How do we determine strangers? Oh yes, based on what they look like; if we don’t recognise them, we should treat them as the enemy. It’s no wonder that we find it hard to shake that approach when we get into adulthood.

Even so, as adults most of us try and overcome our fear of the unknown and at least pretend that we aren’t judging people based on their appearance…except in the workplace. At work it seems to be totally acceptable to judge people based on their appearance. How often do people go for job interviews where the interviewer takes one look at them and decides they haven’t got the job before they’ve even had a chance to speak? We have all sorts of laws in place to protect people from this but I’m not talking about people who are disfigured or disabled in some way, I’m talking about people who just look different to what the boss expected. The girl with the green hair, the guy with the ponytail or even the guy wearing a pink shirt instead of a white shirt. These are the people who dared to be different yet are paying the price, sometimes unknowingly and it seems to be a completely acceptable part of our culture.

Does it really matter if the man who stands in front of you presenting a fantastic business case, dressed immaculately, speaking very articulately has a nose piercing? I would say not. I’d say I’d listen to him more because he looked more individual than some people. I’d also say that he immediately outshines the person who comes in with the average-to-badly-fitting suit without the nose piercing because he’s taken more pride in his appearance, put more thought into how he will be received. But the nose piercing? An extra hole in his nose…it’s getting in the way because that tiny hoop or stud is blocking a lot of people’s view of his talents.

Nowhere does the fear of the unknown seem so great than in the world of business, in this crazy corporate land where people are supposed to conform to some outdated set of ideals. We’ve ended up with 2 camps: the cool kids working for the tech start-ups and media firms who are forced to be more expressive than they feel comfortable with and the old-skool crew working in banking and suchlike who are supposed to speak with a plum in their mouth and wear ultra-shiny shoes. If you don’t fit the mould, you aren’t coming in. Your work ethic and your mindset are completely irrelevant if you don’t look the part because most employers are too scared to shake the tree. They’re too worried that their customers might run away if they employ someone who looks different.

Here’s a novel idea, how about people just employ those who can do the job well? Why don’t we give this engine a jump start, provide exemplary service and learn to deal with those who look different in work as well as outside of work. Surely anyone in their right mind would rather do business with somebody competent who looks a little different than an incompetent oaf with a side parting, black suit and white shirt!?!

Packing Up and Moving On

For those of you who don’t know me personally, I’ll give you a little bit of context which is essentially that I am moving house at the end of this month. Anyone who would recognise my face on the street probably already knows this as I may have mentioned it once or twice :-)

Anyhow, as a precursor to moving, I have rather a lot of packing to do; a whole house and 2.5 years worth of packing to do if you want to be specific about it. Packing is one of those things which as a whole is a pretty dull task but actually, as you are doing it, it can be like a form of therapy. You look through things you’d forgotten were there and remember how you came to have them and what they meant to you at the time. Some of those things you decide to keep so you can relive that memory again and again and some you decide to say goodbye to as the significance of the memory has somewhat faded over the course of time. This is the process I am going through at the moment. I’m incredibly excited to be moving in with a friend and the flat we’ve chosen is lovely but even the walls of the house I live in now will be hard to say goodbye to.

You see my current house is the house where everything fell apart so spectacularly. It’s the place where I had to dig deep and find a strength I never knew I had so that I could rebuild my life in a way that actually worked for me. It’s also a place where I’ve been happy, honestly happy and without relying on anyone else for that happiness. I feel like the house has witnessed and supported me through a transition that I had no idea I was going to make when I moved in. It’s been my comforting shell, my safe place and also a sign to me of my independence. I chose to stay in this house, I chose the furniture that’s in it and I’ve chosen the people that have been allowed through its doors.

When I moved in I was pretty much walking along a tightrope of sanity, literally one little wobble and I was over the edge and completely floored. I didn’t really realise it at the time though, it was how I’d been for most of my life and I hadn’t noticed the tightrope getting thinner and thinner. I’m pretty sure it had started as a full on bridge but each fall had chipped away at it and the falls had been getting more and more painful. I was waiting for the day when someone would come along and fix everything, tell me that things would be ok and take control of my life for me. It was only during my time in this house that I had the realisation that I could re-build my tightrope each time I climbed back up and now it’s a huge platform, I haven’t even found the edge yet because it’s that big. Seriously, massive! I can lose my footing any number of times and still not fall. 

So now I’m clearing out my house and it’s reminding me of how I was when I moved in and how much more content I am now. To leave feels a bit strange and a tiny bit of me worries about finding the edge of my huge platform, but the majority of me is looking forward to finding the edge so I can look over without fear. Thank you house, you’ve been truly awesome and I hope the next people to live here appreciate just how comforting your bricks and mortar are. It’s time for me to move on up now but I’ll be sure to stop by and check they’re treating you right every now and then x