The Mystery Blogger Award

img_0989I am delighted to have been nominated for this award last month by Kim – I have delayed sharing it to avoid boring you all, having already written about one award in January! It is always an honour to be recognised by a fellow blogger and I am so thankful to Kim at Keep It Mindful blog. I “met” Kim at the end of last year soon after she started blogging about living life as a young mum with 2 children and a chronic illness. Kim has Multiple Sclerosis and writes with frankness and honesty on all manner of things – about her illness flares to potty training! Visit Kim here on Keep It Mindful and find out more.

The Mystery Blogger Award:

“It’s an award for amazing bloggers with ingenious posts. Their blog not only captivates; it inspires and motivates. They are one of the best out there, and they deserve every recognition they get. This award is also for bloggers who find fun and inspiration in blogging, and they do it with so much love and passion.”
  Created by Okoto Enigma.

The rules are:

Put the award logo/image on your blog.

 • List the rules.

 • Thank whoever nominated you and provide a link to their blog.

 • Mention the creator of the award and provide a link as well.

 • Tell your readers 3 things about yourself.

 • You have to nominate 10 – 20 people.

 • Notify your nominees by commenting on their blog.

 • Ask your nominees any 5 questions of your choice; with one weird or funny question (specify).

 • Share a link to your best post(s).    

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Three Things about me:

1.  I am an avid reader, belong to several online book clubs and a local one where we meet monthly in the pub.

2. I started nurse training 30 years ago next month – March ’88 set.  We are having a reunion weekend in May – I haven’t seen some of the others since the early ’90s.

3. I have a fish phobia – live fish or fish with heads & eyes.  Not great when hubby had a huge tropical fish tank when we were first married!!

My Nominees:

 

My questions for you:

  1. What book has made an impact on you (at any age!)?
  2. Who from history would you like to have a drink  with?
  3. Tea or coffee? Cup or mug?
  4. What has been your greatest achievement?
  5. How would your friends describe you – in 3 words?

 

My answers to Kim’s questions:
1. What made you start blogging?

I was about to have a trial for a spinal cord stimulator to help control my chronic nerve pain and the blogging idea was to cover two bases: for friends and family to know how I was doing & save hubby on phone calls; I had received so much support from others online and I thought maybe I could give back some support & experience.  I must admit the fact my kids thought no one would want to read anything their mum wrote was a bit of a red rag to a bull!

2. Where would be your dream place in the world to see?

Thailand

3. What is your ultimate goal in life?

For me this links to number 5 – to live life to the full whilst I can.  We never know what is around the corner.  If my kids are happy, generous and thoughtful adults…and I have been able to support/help others for as long as possible (I know, I know – the nursey, touchy, feely bit!) then my job is done!

4. If you had one super power what would it be?

Recently I have watched the TV spin off from the X Men, The Gifted – the gift of one mutant was the ability to change/take away the feeling of pain.  This would be my super power!!

5. Who or what is your motivation?

One of my closest friends died aged 37 from breast cancer and I have cared for various young patients as a cancer, AIDS & hospice nurse who died.  They are definitely my motivation, particularly now I have chronic illness, to live life to the full.  There are too many to list here but a few names that stay with me are Clare (aged 21 uncontrolled type 1 diabetes), Connie (age 23 cancer), Paul (age 28 AIDS), Sunil (mid 40s Motor Neurone Disease), Samantha (age 27 breast cancer) John (mid 30s Cancer of tonsils).

 

My 2 favourite posts that I have written are: Today You Beat Me and Be Kind to Each Other

Thank you again, let’s keep the positivity and enjoy your day/night.

Claire x 

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Monday Magic – Inspiring Blogs for You!

Good morning – just about at the time of writing – and welcome to February.  It is a freezing morning here and we have even had a few flakes of snow – yours truly plans to stay indoors for the day.  It must be cold as the lovely girl actually put on a coat when she went out to do her paper round this morning, and believe me this is unheard of!.  Then it took hubby nearly 10 minutes to defrost the car windscreen, which was just as well as the student engineer and his other half wanted a lift to the station, but they were both still in bed 10 minutes before hubby needed to leave to get the girl to school!!  I have never seen two young men get out of the house so fast!!

Never a dull moment in our house this week with umpteen trips to see different doctors.  Gastroscopy on Monday – “would you like sedation, Claire?” “err…do I look stupid? Of course I want sedation!!! I’m a nurse and I have seen these….” – orthopaedics on Tuesday,(will write a proper post), GP on Wednesday.  Dad was really disappointed that I couldn’t arrange anything for Thursday and Friday!!  But of course there was the Blue Moon to distract everyone…or not in our case as it was too cloudy to see….and for me it really didn’t matter as fatigue and brain fog as dense as those clouds took over.  Well that is my excuse and I’m sticking to it!pexels-photo-271897.jpeg

I wouldn’t want to leave out the middle child – particularly as we did receive contact from our politics student that wasn’t football related.  At 11pm Saturday night the ipad pinged and a message popped onto the screen – words to the effect “I have flu, I’ve thrown up everything I’ve eaten…what do I do?”.  Isn’t it amazing how these young, independent adults suddenly want their mummy & daddy for advice?  I mean what does he really think we are going to do from 300 miles away?  That makes me sound awful, and I’m not, honest – it just amused me. pexels-photo-416520.jpeg“Keep drinking….no, not alcohol, water!  Paracetamol….well ask a friend to go buy you some…..and don’t exceed the 24 hour limit!!”  We did speak to him yesterday and half his halls have flu, but I think he will survive.  I mean, I have had a shoulder hanging out again all weekend – what is he complaining about?? (This is tongue in cheek for those of you now wondering about my sense of humour – believe me, the son in question has the driest, darkest sense of humour around!)

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In England the 1st February was #TimetoTalk Day – recognising and talking about mental health and illness.  I hope that opening up about this health issue is not confined to one day only, and I have found some great blog posts that focus on different aspects of mental health.  There is also a cosmetics review, some tips for all us bloggers to help our writing, and tips to juggle a busy life.  Two posts that really jumped out at me this week: one is published on a new blog, Chronic Pain India – please read the story of Namrata, A Hashi Warrior; the second is something close to my heart as an ex NHS nurse – the decision of The Ealing Mummy to leave the NHS.

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Monday Magic 5th Feb

 

So give yourself that break from whatever you are doing, grab a cuppa, sit down and explore some fantastic blog posts!

https://avionneslegacy.wordpress.com/2018/02/02/staying-afloat-while-riding-the-waves-of-depression/

https://myanxietymatters.wordpress.com/2018/02/05/the-amazing-power-of-storytelling/

https://chronicpainindia.com/2018/02/02/the-winning-horse-a-hashi-warrior/

https://phayteaspulse.wordpress.com/2018/01/19/simple-guide-to-having-a-daily-blog-routine/

https://www.raisiebay.com/2018/01/dont-look-forward-look-back.html

https://orianasnotes.com/2018/02/02/review-urban-decay-naked-illuminated-trio/

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Image courtesy of Oriana’s Notes

https://chronicillnesstraumastudies.com/patient-medical-history-new-doctor-appointments/

http://honestmum.com/my-tips-on-juggling-work-and-family/

http://theealingmummy.com/the-day-i-was-interviewed-live-on-bbc-television/

http://butstillbreathing.com/hypocratic-oath-a-letter-to-all-the-doctors/

Please give some feedback and comment, like, share posts!

Have a great week,

Claire x

 

 

Monday Magic – Inspiring Blogs for You!

Monday Magic 29 JanGood morning on the last Monday of January!  Our week has passed in a flurry of parents’ evening, book club, Burn’s night celebrations and not forgetting our son’s better half being offered a great new job.  Funnily enough we haven’t had any news on the politics student other than a text about football scores – oh, the life of a first year student!

Parents’ evening was like a speed dating event…five minutes per teacher and when the bell rings get up and run!  Not sure the computer goblin automatically churning out slots on the online booking system had allowed for mass movement between the hall and the library, and he hadn’t allowed for a wheelie like me – although hubby just used the wheelchair to barge through other parents!  For Burn’s night we were greeted by a piper resplendent in kilt , sporan and full regalia.  How is it that one set of bagpipes can sound as loud as the  (what is the collective term for bagpipes – haggis? sporan? noise?) whole Edinburgh Tattoo?  It certainly had the desired effect of moving guests swiftly from the lobby to the dining area, but I think the ladies serving whisky must have been deaf and in need of a few drams by the time the meal was served.  Slightly disappointing this year was the lack of kilts….couldn’t persuade hubby into one!

Our book club read the new Emma Donoghue book The Wonder this month – review to come – and as usual we had lively debate from the actual book, to last month’s book again (The City and The City by China  ……..) which is being made into a TV series starring David Morrisey, to the current BBC TV series McMafia and Hard Sun.  Amongst the blog posts that I have for you this week is an online book club aimed specifically at those who would find it hard to get out of the house to attend one.  This could be spoonie friends, elderly, young/new mums….anyone who enjoys a good book.  Talking of which, I am taking part in a blog tour this week so will just drop a flier in for it – more info later this week.Review Tour

I am sitting here Nil By Mouth and have a hot date with a gastroscope this afternoon, so it does pain me somewhat to invite you to pick up your coffee…..but I will do just that and encourage you to kick off your shoes, sit down and enjoy some great posts from some lovely bloggers.  Maybe I will give the pilates a go whilst you down your caffeine….

https://survivinglifeshurdles.com/the-surviving-life-book-club/

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courtesy of Surviving Life’s Hurdles blog

https://www.midlifesmarts.com/theres-new-ism-plump-ism-and-its-rife/

http://achysmile.com/index.php/2018/01/25/daughters-migraine-school/

https://www.nicolefrancesca.co.uk/homepage/2018/1/22/i-am-the-1-10-statistic

http://millysguide.com/6-reasons-pilates-good-mental-health/

https://www.chronicmom.com/2018/01/how-to-deal-with-people-who-dont-believe-youre-sick.html/

https://reclaiminghope.blog/2018/01/26/whats-your-favorite-01-26-18/

https://www.trulymadlysassy.com/2017/12/19/the-gift-of-loneliness/

https://ribbonrx.com/2018/01/29/two-frightening-side-effects/

https://emlinthorpe.com/2018/01/22/being-blanked-made-me-smile/

 

Please comment, like, and share the posts you love.

Have a lovely week,

Claire x

Why Me? Well Why Not me? A Trip in the Tardis won’t be Changing my Lot!

Today I finished reading a science fiction book that has got me thinking – not my usual cup of tea but I have been asked to review it, so that will be coming!  Anyway the premise of the story was of life taking different turns and thus different timelines – the what if? or sliding doors scenario.  The main character finds himself with 3 different versions of himself due to time travel – the timelines all run from 1965 to 2016 and the world is a very different place in each one.  Which timeline is the correct one for the world? Is there such a thing as the “correct” one? How can one minute action change the whole future of the world? If we were all given different life timelines would it be possible to always make the right choices?

Life is full of uncertainties and every day is full of actions that will have consequences. How many times have you wondered after an event “what would have happened if I’d gone left rather than right?” It made me think about a recent conversation where a mother was saying that her poor teen child was always the one that things went wrong for, had the worst health problems, and suggested everyone around them should be sympathetic.  She said “When my teen gets upset and asks why does it always happen to me, I agree that it isn’t fair.”

Why Me

But is this the right way to answer?  Is Mum allowing the teen to always put the blame for every situation on to someone else? It may be better to stand up straight, shoulders back and tell the world “well I don’t like what has been handed to me, but I’m going to damned well get on with it”.  Over the years a powerful message that I learnt from so many patients was the “Well why NOT me mentality?”.  As you all know I can apply this to my health – I don’t have a fatal condition (neither does the teen!), but it is tricky to live with and I find it hard to think I may be like this for another 40 years.  I wonder if I hadn’t taken up rowing aged 12, or if I hadn’t become a nurse, or if I hadn’t fallen down the stairs in my second pregnancy and hurt my back again (hmmm….might answer some of the questions about son number 2!!), or hadn’t had a third pregnancy, or had genetic testing, or, or, or…..there could be so many different timelines if only something had been done differently.

But what a waste of energy.  The past can’t be changed and sadly I don’t yet have a time machine…..and even if Dr Who did offer me a spin in the Tardis, how much would it change?  Not my genetic condition…..I could think “Why me?”, but actually the bigger question is “Why not me?”.  When a close friend died aged 37 from breast cancer, I did ask “Why her?”…….but then look out the window and it could be anyone’s mother, father, brother, sister, friend couldn’t it?  If I could change our family timeline I would want to ensure that my kids hadn’t inherited EDS and that nothing bad would ever happen – but I can’t do that, so my job is to ensure that they accept it, live life to the full and for the moment.  If problems arise – the politics student’s migraines, the lovely girl’s dislocations and pain – then we will deal with them…..but by shouting “why me? it’s not fair….” is not going to help.

So, back to my novel – the main character found that every time the scientist invented a new machine, he also invented the “accident” of that machine; every time he was sent back to try to alter the timeline/revert to the original timeline, his actions would have a knock on effect….with unforeseen consequences.  I think I am actually starting to sound like my old physics teacher – for every action there is an equal and opposite action – or something like that!  So I guess for me and the teen, it means we have to get up, not dwell on the bad bits (sometimes easier said than done) and get on with the good bits.  But this is only one old crone’s ramblings!

Although if I’d had that time machine and could have made it so that I could join in at the SHS Burn’s night dancing last night…..equally I think hubby, Duncan, would be turning his back so that he wasn’t swept up to do the Gay Gordons!!

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Burns Night Celebration – picture from SHS Association

Have a great weekend!

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Monday Magic – Inspiring Blogs for You!

Here we are at the start of a new week and time to explore some more blog posts.  This week has passed in a blur of hospital visits – as you know if you’ve read about my rusty old body int the last couple of posts! – and I must admit complete brain fog and cluster headaches.

The brain fog has caused much hilarity at times when my words have come out as something completely different to how they started in my brain.  Officially called expressive dyphasia, and commonly seen with strokes, I don’t think I’ll tell you how it is described in our house….I have experienced it once before when playing football at school aged about 12.  I had a head on collision with a friend, nearly knocked her teeth out, and then proceeded to become very concussed over the next couple of hours.  By the time I reached hospital, I couldn’t walk, speak or see – as the swelling inside my head started to subside, I remember being asked questions, knowing the answer but the words that came out were not connected to my brain!  I am sure that some family members would say that nothing has changed…..

Monday Magic - with brain fog

I’m just reading a science fiction book and came across this passage “There’s a small subset of people whose cognitive functions get scrambled in outer space.  Something about how the pressure change of the vacuum affects the bonds between molecules in the neurons of their brains.” (All Our Wrong Todays by Elan Mastai) I had a light bulb moment – “YES! This is brain fog – even if it is in space”.

But moving on – checking over my spreadsheet of Monday Magic posts, I am amazed to see that there have been links for an amazing 354 blogs and some of those have featured several times. What a fantastic number of inspiring and motivational bloggers there are out there, and I feel that I find more new blogs every week.  So please take some time, sit down with a cuppa and enjoy some great posts with a bit of a self care theme running through them – all spoonie mums, my mate Jen Hardy would be really grateful if you would answer her survey ahead of a podcast.

https://loveisconfusing.com/2017/08/16/three-steps-to-loving-yourself/

https://iterryblog.wordpress.com/2018/01/20/signed-and-sealed-with-love/

http://wherecomesthesun.com/practise-self-care-year/

https://fancy-like-that.blogspot.co.uk/2018/01/me-myself-and-my-cfs.html

http://www.chronicallyroyal.co.uk/2018/01/just-asthma-why-we-should-take-asthma.html?m=1

https://shannondianax.wordpress.com/2018/01/20/talking-about-my-mental-health-has-made-me-into-the-person-i-am-today/

https://www.jenhardy.net/take-survey-podcast-chronically-ill-moms/

http://www.sunshineandspoons.com/2018/01/25-products-that-make-life-with-chronic.html

https://kellyontherun.com/2018/01/16/single-not-pregnant/

http://www.fibrotofabulous.com/index.php/2018/01/09/why-i-restarted-meditation-and-10-reasons-you-should-do-it-too/

Heated Butter Knife
Who wouldn’t want a heated butter knife???  Find this on Sunshine and Spoons list!

Please remember to share some love by commenting, liking and sharing!

Have a great week,

Claire x

Monday Magic – Happy New Year! Inspiring blogs to start 2018

Happy New Year, Pain Pals! Welcome to 2018….

Monday Magic - Inspiring Blogs for You!

I hope that you have all had a wonderful holiday season – I appreciate that for many of you this will have been hampered by health problems, for others it may be the first year since a bereavement, or just simply a difficult time – but we have to believe that there is always something positive, even out of negatives (hope my eldest is reading…..we call him Mr Glass half empty!).

I’m not going to do a look back at my year and bore you silly…..this week is probably enough.  Our week hasn’t gone exactly to plan – when does it ever? – with yours truly managing to fall off the sofa (I know, I know!) and putting out my shoulders, neck, ankle and hip in one foul swoop!! Of course this would be the night before we were due to travel to visit the in laws…..add hubby having a horrendous case of man flu (actually he has the most awful chesty cough and was banished to an empty child’s bed last night!) and the trip is off.  if you are reading, Dave and Wendy – I am so sorry! Kids are too as it meant any plans for New Year’s Eve parties in this house were ruined…..the teen girls due to gather decamped to another location and at the time of writing we have had no communications from the lovely girl! Plus one boy still old cold and snoring in bed here, having made it home.

Boxing Day

But two huge positives for me were managing a lovely family meal out on Boxing Day, and hosting the extended family the day after.  My brother’s family, the student engineer’s partner, and of course my lovely parents…..plus the drone that one very silly auntie bought her nephew for Christmas.  Well I didn’t think he would be flying it around my living room!!!

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I have put together a huge list of New Year blog posts for you from some of my blogging family…..many from the Big Up Your Blog community, others from Chronic Illness Bloggers.  There are reflections, good wishes, goals & resolutions, poetry and don’t miss Phil’s hilarious Predictions from a legit Psychic!  Plus the first is a great blogging invitation on Smorgasbord.  Sit back with a glass of something good (dry Jan can start tomorrow!) and enjoy.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2018/01/01/happy-new-year-and-the-start-of-the-2018-series-of-smorgasbord-posts-from-your-archives/

https://cristianmihai.net/2018/01/01/a-new-beginning/

https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/prepared-give-your-100-2018-jez-cartwright/?trackingId=o8g10gFzhm1TEUaBd7y6nQ%3D%3D

https://mashaellman.com/2017/12/30/my-wish-for-you-2018/

https://medicalmysterymusings.wordpress.com/2018/01/01/reflect-and-restart/

https://www.navigatingthestorms.com/fun-things/holidays/making-new-years-resolutions-first-do-this/

http://shesnotsobasic.com/new-years-affirmtaions/

https://therightdirections.wordpress.com/2017/12/26/2018/

http://www.theressomethingaboutkm.com/the-circle-of-knowledge-2017/

https://thephilfactor.com/2017/12/30/2018-predictions-from-a-legit-psychic/

https://blushandbrewsblog.wordpress.com/2017/12/29/faves-2017-book-edition/

http://sportfitnessjourney.com/running-resolutions-newyear/

https://brainlessblogger.net/2017/12/31/my-new-years-resolution-compassion/

https://mistybooks.wordpress.com/2016/12/31/resolutions-be-careful-what-you-wish-for/

http://supermomhacks.com/lessons-in-parenting/on-new-years-goals/

https://wheelescapades.com/2017/12/28/best-nine-of-2017/

https://suzie81speaks.com/2017/12/18/smoke-and-mirrors-how-to-avoid-hating-your-blog-in-2018/

https://www.midlifesmarts.com/celebrate-new-year-scotland-style/

https://illness-to-wellness.com/2017/12/28/preparing-for-the-new-year-pick-5/

https://vinzpoetry.wordpress.com/2018/01/01/new-year-better-be-nice/

Please be kind and share some love for these bloggers with likes, shares and comments!

Happy New Year! 

Claire x

Ode to Excess

My lovely friend Cathryn wrote this little ditty that we hope will amuse you all!

Ode to Excess (December 2017):

How many years have we said at this time
We’re not going crazy, just a few gifts are fine.
The kids have so much, they don’t need a thing
We’re lost for inspiration, the money does sting.

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Determined to stick to the rules that we’ve set
We proudly congratulate ourselves not to get
Handfulls of gifts from Poundland to fill
Stockings and boxes, a bitter sweet pill.

Yet here we are a week yet to go
We’re edging close and even had snow.
The doubt starts to niggle, we wrestle our minds
“maybe just one more” gift we can find.
One turns to two to three and to four
Then Amazon calling and banging our door.

Panic sets in, have we equalled the spending
Presents still coming, bank balance bending.
Wrapping in secret, while the kids are asleep
Shoving up lofts and cupboards in heaps.
Convincing yourself the spend isn’t too great
Hiding receipts and getting into a state.

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Last minute guilt buys for mum and for dad
They’ve leant you money all year but if you don’t you’ll feel bad.
Passing the shops and buying one more
Rushing back home to find somewhere to store.

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All under the tree and ready to go
Kids are oblivious how little they know.
As you rock in a corner clutching a gin
Maybe next year you’ll be strong, not give in.

by Cathryn Watters

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Monday Magic – Inspiring Blogs for You

Happy Monday PPals!  I am currently sitting here cursing as WordPress decided to wipe my writing of this post and I can’t recover it.  It was finished too!! Aghhhh

Anyway I will attempt to replicate it….the Uk’s Strictly Come Dancing is whirling through the weeks in a series of foxtrots, tangos, quicksteps and more.  This weekend saw the couples entering a whole different level as they performed at the spiritual home of ballroom.  Professionals and celebrities alike are all in awe of the iconic Palace Ballroom, Blackpool which takes centre stage and steals the thunder of the dancers, as it is so breathtaking.

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Image from Google images

This weekend saw the end of the road for an inspirational young man who is a gold winning GB Paralympian and 100m sprinter.  I am of course talking about Jonnie Peacock, the 24 year old athlete who aged 5 years underwent surgery for a below knee amputation, having contracted meningitis.  He is the first contestant with a disability to take part in the main series and there have been questions along the way – Is it fair for Jonnie to perform the same dances as his able bodies counterparts? How can the judges possibly give Jonnie the same level of critique?  Why are the judges picking on Jonnie’s posture, bottom position and stature when he has one leg?

But these questions have never come from Jonnie himself and in his farewll speech last night he said that he was honoured to be the first disabled contestant, and he thanked the judges for judging him as an equal saying

“That’s what I want. You’ve been critical with me and I want that criticism. I think that’s fantastic and hope it paves the way for more people to come through and I think they may be able to stick their bum under a bit better than me.”

His tearful professional partner Oti Mabuse said

“This has been one of the most life changing things that could ever happen to me. Jonnie is not only an inspiration but he represents so much more. ‘If anybody wants to do anything, if you put your mind to it then you can achieve it and that’s what he represents.”

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I am not suggesting that we will all, abled or disabled, reach the heights of this remarkable young man, and for those of us living with chronic illness invariably daily pain and fatigue won’t even allow us to reach the putting our minds to it bit, let alone anything else!!  But this is surely a good mantra to aspire to and Jonnie Peacock has left Strictly a dancer.  Watching him jive on his running blade was a highlight for me…..and not forgetting him as Jack Sparrow on Halloween.

So from one inspiring young man to a handful of inspiring blog posts.  With another weekend of dodgy dislocations, I have read lots of blogs, interspersed with cheesy family movies and heat pads!  I have picked a selection of posts for you from a variety of bloggers – and as yesterday was World Prematurity Day, the first comes with a mascara alert as it is a post from Nicole that is written from the heart.  I have also managed to slip in a Christmas post – never too early – and will aim to do so each week in the build up to the festivities.

So grab a cuppa, sit back and enjoy some fab posts!

https://www.nicolefrancesca.co.uk/homepage/2017/11/19/november-never-forgotton

https://themswire.com/2017/11/19/four-airport-tips-for-disabled-flyers/

https://chronicallystrong.com/lupus-aibd/

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2017/11/17/people-forget-kindness-is-free-2/

http://www.themonochromeblog.com/single-post/2016/09/11/How-to-move-to-a-foreign-country-go-travelling-when-your-a-spoonie-TBC

https://thewildreaderwithacat.wordpress.com/2017/11/18/paint/

http://www.thirstydaddy.com/2017/11/10/the-good-guys-dont-always-win/

https://thedreamgurusite.wordpress.com/2017/11/17/how-i-found-out-about-eds/

https://mydailyjournalonline.com/life-rulebook-guest-post-riya/

https://medicalmysterymusings.wordpress.com/2017/11/19/christmas-expectations/

 

Please like, share and follow these blogs if you enjoy them!

Have a great week,

Claire x

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Monday Magic Nov 20

 

 

 

 

 

One Liner Wednesday – My Bendy Body

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So……Life with Ehlers Danlos today meant opening the microwave and putting my neck out!!!

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#1linerWeds

From Linda’s One Liner Wednesday – visit her blog to see other participants’ one liners! https://lindaghill.com/2017/11/08/one-liner-wednesday-this-is-your-brain/

 

Nobody said it would be easy – cake, life and curveballs

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Tonight is the 3rd birthday for The Book Club on Facebook – a fantastic group that I belong to full of authors, reviewers and readers.  Basically book people.  Yours truly has been making the birthday cake over the last few days and with a shoulder slipping in and out of socket it has been no easy task!

TBConFB

Of course I have been too ambitious and I always start with an image of the finished cake, and then am disappointed in my results.  This has taken me longer not just due to my lack of a right arm – yes, I am right handed – but also down to the design and needing to let it harden in phases.  More of that later.  It has made me draw parallels with expectations of everyday life – don’t worry I’m not going to get too deep here.

But how often do we set out with expectations of how an area of life will turn out only to be disappointed.  So many people talk about their life plans from university to careers to marriage to children etc, etc.  But life has this habit of throwing in a few surprises and curve balls along the way doesn’t it? Isn’t this true for everyone?

Life with illness – be it chronic, acute, mental or physical – is something few of us can anticipate and much less embrace.  When I set off to nursing college as an eager 18 year old, I never dreamed that life would turn out like it has.  But then I guess it is a good thing because with each setback it is so important to be able to get back up, brush yourself off and continue.  If I had known when I had major back surgery at 21 that by 38 I would be heading for medical retirement, I might not have tried so hard to get myself back on my feet and back to work.  I loved those years nursing and I think that I was a pretty good nurse.  If I had known my genetic diagnosis – Ehlers Danlos Syndrome – and all that it covers aged in my teens, I might not taken up rowing and then gone on to nursing – probably the worst things I could have done but great experiences.

But then some of the curve balls can be pleasant surprises.  For me probably the biggest surprise was falling pregnant when I had been told I would never conceive naturally.  The tiredness, anaemia and nausea/sickness turned into a pregnancy when my GP carried out a PAP smear and informed my cervix was blue – a classic sign of a 13 week pregnancy apparently!  I was taking HRT and had gone for a check up ahead of a new job – but came out as a mummy.  A huge curve ball, not in the game plan but fantastic (although I wasn’t saying that half an hour ago when said babe, 21 years on, created havoc in the kitchen with a pot of pasta on the stove!).

Being Mum
The surprise. aged 4 weeks….now a cover board on Pinterest!

I suppose what I am getting at is the importance to strive hard but also to accept that not everything will go exactly to plan…..and this is ok.  For me I’ve been thinking about the periods of needing to let my cake set before I can continue with it – living with chronic illness has these periods when fatigue hits and symptoms flare equalling a need to rest and pace.  Wait for the cake to set!  Don’t rush it, don’t take short cuts because there will be some sort of pay back.  In my experience this is life – illness or not.

So back to the cake….it is for a book club, so clever clogs here decided to make a stack of books.  The individual books were made – one chocolate, one Victoria sponge and one lemon – and then the icing covers started.  This is where the patience and waiting was required and I’m not good at this part!  Then last night came the final assembly of the three tier cake to form a stack of books……it wasn’t completely straight forward, there have been a couple of corners broken, some scaffolding was required and this morning some patch were required to plaster a few stress fractures.  The result is a stack of books that are not altogether straight and definitely look like they have been well loved if a little dog eared.  Not so different to life, I’d say – starting with high expectations (nothing wrong with that and I am not saying they should be lowered), hitting a few bumps along the way, the odd curve ball and maybe the finished product not quite as expected, but nevertheless created and to be made the best of.  Not always easy to do or accept, but as the infamous anonymous quote says “Nobody said it would be easy, they just promised it would be worth it..”

Will let you know if this holds for the cake when it is tasted, as for comparisons with life….what do you think?

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