TIME AFTER TIME| JOURNAL

For once in my forsaken life, I managed to watch the clocks go back at 2am this morning.

I can’t say it was as iconic as seeing in the new year, but there was a certain air about the place.

Mainly due to the cats poorly timed sulphuric wind-passing.

I quite fancied recording my thoughts on the day of the clock change as I feel it is something that happens twice a year,  and something no one ever gives a real frig over.

Granted it could be the 4 day-old left over Spaghetti Bolognese I ate yesterday, or the old hormones, but something does feel different today.

Is it the time shift?

Is it the fact it’s a damn sight colder?

I don’t know, but it definitely feels more like Autumn/Winter.

And that’s fine by me.

However, what isn’t fine by me, is how quickly said time seems to be passing these days.

Everyone’s saying it.

And the more I think about it, the more I realise how little I’m achieving.

How little I’m getting done in my life. How little I’m enjoying ‘time’.

Days, months, years are just merging into one and nothing feels special anymore.

I live in a constant fear of what’s around the corner so much, that I lose sight of how precious the present is.

And for someone who has studied Buddhism, that’s quite embarrassing.

It’s 2017 (fast approaching 2018) and I don’t know if, as a race, humans have really grasped the concept of time.

And how it cannot be reset, travelled back to, fast forwarded…

Paused while you get your shit together…

Our earthly clocks are ticking constantly while we figure things out, get drunk, eat Burger King, feel resentful at our Amazon delivery taking a little longer to get to us than usual.

Jeez, trust me, if I could turn back time and right all my eff-up’s and change decisions then I would because I’m not one of those lucky buggers who claim they regret nothing.

I regret a lot.

And that is how it’s meant to be.

So we can learn from mistakes we make and keep growing into a more mature, knowledgeable and informed person.

Basically, time is not slowing down or pausing for anyone and the need to live in the moment and make each second count, is greater than ever.

Cringe and vomit, I know.

But it’s kinda true.

Maybe I’ll just speak for myself instead of the rest of us here, but going forward from this moment, I am going to make far more of an effort to be in the present and focus on making that work, before making my unknown future the first priority. Because that may never come.

OK, I need to wrap this fella up. I’m getting far too morbid for a sunny Sunday morning in Autumn.

Live now and live honestly.

K, bye.

 

HEARTLINES| JOURNAL

It’s not been a great summer, and my normal enthusiasm for Autumn is non-existent.

I’m currently sat on my bed, recovering from a 3 day migraine, which I thought yesterday I was going to die from, feeling very bitter and resentful that my cat is having a shit-ton more fun than me, curled up on a letter from my bank, fast asleep.

I’ve been pretty absent in the blogging scene so far this year and even though no one appears to read my blog, I thought I would document why I have been so MIA, just in case someone drops by.

The start of the year saw me immerse myself fully into a motorhome obsession, which laid me to then buying one. I spent quite a lot of time renovating it and painting bits here and there and actually living in it for a few months. A genuine interest which soon turned to complete disaster and has now resulted in me putting it up for sale. I had planned on blogging the whole journey, but something always stopped me. I realise now it was probably the lack of trust that it was the right thing to do.

I have explained in previous posts the reason behind the motorhome; it wasn’t a purchase-on-a-limb.. It was a well thought out project to enable me to have my own space and live independently but still be close to home. Where I’m needed.

Anyway, complete write off. Moving on…

Spring. My mother’s health starts declining again and she is diagnosed with Osteoperosis. This is an ongoing problem and causes a lot of stress and worry on my part. Something I have experienced my whole life. I cannot remember a time when I have not been worried about her health, and I just pray (in my own little way) that it doesn’t get any worse than this.

Alongside said stress and worry, came the difficulties at work and in my friendship circle. Everything felt so turbulent and for a very long time, I felt as though I didn’t have anyone to turn to. To talk.

And not be judged.

Because that’s something I’ve felt up against so much this year.

Being judged and misunderstood by those I previously thought had my back, in times which have been extremely dark for me.

Spring also saw me go to the doctor and explain said dark feelings and after admitting just how tough everything seemed, she prescribed anti-depressants and told me to self-refer for talking therapy again.

Well, the anti-depressants were a complete and utter shit storm of near death experiences and the realisation that because of my M.E. my intolerance and sensitivity to medication was all too strong to continue.

And as for the talking therapy (which is so what I need), the only day they don’t work is the only day I don’t either.

So I’m back to square one, considering private £50 a session counselling which I can’t afford and wondering what the point is anymore in seeking help.

Off you go with a prescription and a leaflet but there doesn’t seem to be anything beyond that.

If the talking therapy lot don’t work 5 days a week, you’re stuffed.

If prescription meds are too strong, you’re stuffed.

For now its chocolate cake and Bach’s Rescue Remedy. (Not sponsored)

Moving on to end of Summer, beginning of Autumn.

My grandfather has a bout of shingles and is admitted to hospital for 2 months.

At 90 years old, he’s always been a resilient man, but watching his health decline has been a horrible thing.

His mobility, which was not great before the shingles, has worsened and now he is back home with my Granny, things are more stressful than ever.

I just wish I could do more to care for them on a daily basis. And care for my mother too.

If that could become my full time job I’d do it.

Then there is my own physical health.

My M.E. has been worse than ever this year and I guess that’s because of the stress I’ve been under. I find I feel worse when I’m very worried.

Holding down a 36 hour a week job is also getting the better of me.

I’m having more sick days than I would like and although I have an understanding team who can see when I’m struggling, it does make me wonder for how much longer I can really keep it up.

And that freaks me out so much.

I recently flew out to Norway to stay with my very lovely friends again. I was so ill leading up to going and the day before I was bed ridden with a temperature, but something in me rose above it and convinced my poorly state to get a grip and go.

Honestly? It was difficult to go while everyone was so unwell and things seemed so unsettled with the family, but I knew I needed a break from it. Something I very rarely give in to.

The pressure and worry had been eating away at my already prominent depression and to get away would be the calm in among the tornado that I needed to gather stock and come back refreshed and more able to cope.

And while I would have loved blogging to be my saviour through all this chaos of mind and body, I couldn’t bring myself to write. And as an aspiring Journalist, this has worried senseless too.

I think seeing all the glossy blogs out there with their successes and brand triumphs, I feared writing from the heart. Because I don’t know if that’s what people want from a blog anymore.

The raw, unfiltered, un-edited version of someone’s heart.

Their soul.

But here I am. With my heart and my soul.

Risking it.

I am going to blog more, but it will be more this style. Rather than advice and reviews and beauty hauls I can’t afford.

The style I’ve always seen blogging as.

From the heart.

Raw.

And honest.

Amy

10 WAYS TO SURVIVE A FLIGHT

You know how it is; You’ve just sat down in your seat after being battered by crappy British weather, while standing on the aeroplane steps waiting for the diva a few passengers ahead to find space for her three over-sized cases.

You’ve been pushed, shoved, brushed up against and had numerous pieces of luggage get to know the side of your head very well and the struggle to find your aisle seat is real.

So, hiding your exhausted glee when your seat number magically appears in front of you like a handsome dark-haired knight on a white horse, the next round of horror appears when you see who you get as a plane buddy.

Now, this could be a grumpy middle-aged person who smells of coffee and cigarettes, being very obvious with their disdain at being in such close proximity with youth. Or it could be a stuffy businessman with his bluetooth tusk attached to his ear and has already ordered three double whiskey’s before the plane has even taken off, and smells only of the whiskey’s the night before and the mint gum to ‘mask’ it.

But you know realistically it will never be a sexy doctor with the face of an angel, the scent of a Dior male model and the personality of someone with actual social skills.

Never.

So, feeling like an expert at this having spent the whole of yesterday plane hopping and travelling around Europe, I thought I would share my sanity (and health) saving tips to make any plane journey, a little more enjoyable.

No matter who you’re sat next to.

1. Windeze

I mean, I know it’s probably tempting to release your intestinal gasses freely if you’re sat next to the world’s most awful person, but the air is circulated so… What goes around, comes around.

When I fly, I find my stomach often bloats due to air pressure or thanks to the excessive amount of air I’ve over-breathed during a period of panic about the left phalange. (Cue Friends nostalgia)

In short, pop a Windeze just before the flight and you and your plane bud will enjoy the air you breathe, a little more.

2. Keep Hydrated 

And I don’t mean with alcoholic beverages, free or not. Alcohol only ever dehydrated you and will serve no purpose whatsoever. The effects of alcohol are increased at high altitude so you’re at risk of getting drunk very quickly, having a shocking hangover and/or acting a total k-nob on a plane. Which, lets face it, aint a smart move.

So, buy a bottle of water after security or on the plane and get drinking. It will help keep your skin hydrated too, as flights are prone to dry out skin. If you’re not keen on neat water, you could carry a small fruit juice squeeze bottle in your carry on as they’re under 100mls and are very compact. Most supermarkets sell them.

3. Wear Roomy Layers

If, like me, you suffer from bloating or the odd roll of extra stomach when sat in the worlds most uncomfortable chair, wearing loose-fitting clothing is the best thing you’ll ever do. We all know that those plane lap-belts are positioned in the very unflattering area just under your belly, and despite efforts to yank it up and push one’s stomach under the belt, you still end up looking like you’re on your way to audition for the next docudrama for The Worlds Fattest Woman.

Also the temperature on planes is more unstable than the current UK markets, so wearing layers will definitely keep you comfortable and covered.

Win win. (I hate that saying)

4. Anti-Sickness Tablet

But don’t do what I did and take it too soon before the flight and dramatically stumble to the toilet as soon as the belt sign light turned off just after take off, and heave loudly into the metal loo. In a room the size of a coffin. During turbulence. Then have to make your way back to your seat looking worse for wear, rummaging around for mints.

No, take the tablet at the time stated on the packet like a sensible human being and it’ll work a treat.

*Always read instruction leaflet before taking because safety first.

5. Anti-Bacterial Hand Gel/Wipes

Airlines are very open these days on admitting planes are not the most hygienic of places.

If you’re flying with a budget airline or with an aircraft that does multiple flights a day, it is well-known that thorough cleaning is not always guaranteed, therefore, many germs will still be around the aircraft and on your seat/ table.

So pretty simple, use hand gels or wipes regularly and before eating. And you should remain fairly healthy.

6. Headphones

Audio books, music, downloaded films… The list goes on for the many uses of a pair of headphones. But there, for me, is nothing worse than the annoying sound you get with sitting in close proximity of someone you don’t know.

Chewing gum, noisy eating, low murmuring, snoring. ARRGHH!!!

Give me a plane-ful of screaming children or a crying baby any day but noisy eaters and crisp packet rustling is my petest hate, as my mother would say.

So, on top of entertainment, headphones are very useful for drowning out the inconsiderate.

7. Pay Attention To Instructions

When I said in the title “10 Ways To Survive A Flight”, I didn’t just mean surviving the annoying, germy bits.

Those safety instructions demonstrated by the flight attendants are for a good reason. And what better reason than your safety.

If you’re a frequent flyer you may assume you know all the safety procedures and therefore, may not pay attention. But safety procedures can differ slightly between airlines and it’s always good to be fully in the know of where your life jacket is and how the oxygen masks work.

For example, it was only this flying trip that I fully understood you have to tug on the oxygen pipe to activate it when putting the mask on. I didn’t need to thankfully, but it was helpful to know.

Don’t be that person on their phone or already with your sleep mask on while the flight attendants are ensuring your safety.

8. Smelling Salts/Olbas Stick

So, the worst thing possible (apart from crashing) has happened.

You’ve sat next to someone smelly. They either haven’t taken a Windeze or they haven’t washed in three years and now you’re sat next to them with air circulation and stomach protruding lap belts and your nose literally feels like it’s about to die.

Ah ha! But you have brought along a small jar of smelling salts or =, my favourite, the Olbas inhalant stick and you can use this essentially to block out the hideous smell next to you. All the while pretending you have a cold, so you’re not blatantly obvious that you can’t handle the odour.

Also good for congestion if the air pressure is getting you right in the sinuses.

9. Move Your Legs

Because deep vein thrombosis.

10. Lip Balm

Unless you have an unfulfilled desire to look like you have just trekked the Sahara Desert, I strongly suggest you invest in a lip balm. It doesn’t need to be a million pound one from Diptique (or whatever), but just a simple lip balm with good moisturising goodness will keep your lips smooth and hydrated.

So there you have it. 10 ways to survive a flight.

A couple of disclaimers:

  1. This post is not sponsored by Windeze
  2. Yes I do bloat, I did vomit and my tolerance levels to vile noises is unhealthily low.
  3. I’m not glamorous. But I don’t smell, drink or eat noisily so 10 Gryffindor points to me!

Safe travels…