It’s my birthday and I hope for better things!

It is my birthday today I am thirty nine and I hope that the saying “life begins at forty” is a true one!  I hope so much that with these emergency appointments I have at the hospital etc. is going to fix something and that I can have a normal life again!

There are so many things I want to do with my life, but when it is a tiring task to just get dressed and maybe vacuum a room in a day at most, it is hard to see past that.

Things I would love to do if only the health was there… obvious one would be study and work outside of the house.  I miss people interaction and I love jobs where I am in the service of others, not just my creative pursuits, of course I love my creativity and it would be lovely to have a job where creativity is a must, but generally I love jobs where I feel I am needed and relied upon for things – particularly hospitality.  I am a lovely meet and greeter, always happy to help, with a bubbly personality, professional manner and experience as head of admin and customer services. 

I often wonder if Sue Holderness remembers me, during my short time as Christmas staff at Marks & Spencer’s she would always gravitate towards my till because she said I was pleasant and she often added points to my services as Marks and Spencer’s have a point system in play for their staff to see who is performing well.  I was only there for a few days over one particular Christmas; I doubt she’d remember me!

I used to love work and if I had been allowed to keep my jobs in the past I would have.  It sounds funny to say that, because it is not a normal thing to say – but it is true, in the past many times I had a lovely job I loved dearly, but I was forced to give it up as it didn’t sit well with my mother.  For those who are new to my blog, I was micro-managed within an inch of my life by my mother who tried to isolate me for years and I only managed to get her out of my life fully in 2013, when I was twenty nine, just shortly after Henry’s 3rd birthday in fact.

Thinking differently these days, I may not go into hospitality if I had the health back though, I have other ideas.  I am not sure if starting university for a science degree and to have a science career would be something someone my age should really consider.  But it is interesting; I have an unnatural curiosity and obsession with microbiomes; but maybe that is more of a hobby thing… like gardening?

I had thought, what I would do if I found out my health problems are actually curable even if it is by 50% – I had thought what would I do with my life now?

Obviously still write and do art, but what else? 

I had thought about the concept that my lungs may allow me to once again do music and singing again and if it did, I have to say musical theatre pulls me;  Particularly writing operas or comedy musicals for the stage.  One of the things I have neglected about myself a lot since becoming ill is my love for music to the extent of practising my instruments and composing becoming non-existent.

I miss musical composition more than I miss the idea of sitting down to write a full length novel, to be honest… well a full length non-vampire or dragon novel that is.

I do know I miss sport a lot too, I was very active before getting sick – walking an average of nine miles per day, just for the fun of it and also because I am a cheapskate and walked everywhere for the sheer economy of it.  I love bowling, basketball, jogging, and cricket and wanted to take up rock climbing, to name but a few.  But one thing I did really want to get back into and that is dog agility training and judo.  I am also a true water baby and twice I nearly got into the commonwealth games in my life, once for swimming and once for judo, but shit happens.

The commonwealth audition was cancelled due to emergency life-saving mastoid surgery, which consequently ended my judo career before it even had a chance!

The swimming for the junior games was cancelled because my mother wouldn’t let me go and stay the night away from home without her and made me decline.

I know I have to think about practical things, but I do like working for charities, at least half of my previous jobs were helping disabled people, particularly those with mental learning difficulties or brain injuries.  I have a passion for helping people and fighting for their rights to lead a dignified life!

I have been in a situation myself where I have been in special needs schools for a few months in between home schooling, I also have a long history of mental health where for four years I had to go to a day care centre at Napsbury hospital for treatment as a child and schooling as well as being in a very physically vulnerable state with sensory deprivation for nearly two whole years!  I have seen two sides of people who are supposed to be “carers, in caring jobs” and it is not all good.

I went through a time as a child where I was absolutely terrified of all men, except male relatives who were close to me, I wouldn’t speak to anyone if they were a stranger for at least ten or more visits and I went into strange bouts of bulimia, anorexia and compulsive eating throughout most of my life – this cooled off a lot when I met Paul.  I was spiralling into food obsession for three years before I met him.

It is totally weird how, now I am away from the stresses which dictated my eating habits, that I have developed a sickness where I can’t eat a bunch of specific foods without pain and vomiting and some people who remember my past, have asked me on the quiet, “it’s not your old thing again is it”?  I still maintain some friendships distantly via facebook and pen palling with some of my day care compatriots, who remembers a the time where I ate half an orange and a quarter of a cheese sandwich without rushing to the bathroom and they celebrated it for me, whilst I just sat there frowning and grimacing at the fuss and the taste.

I will say though, that I am becoming more and more of a picky eater despite the dietary restrictions I am under because of my intolerances.  This does worry Paul, because with our current budget, he is struggling to provide for me.

I must maintain a gluten free and lactose free diet, I cannot eat flax seeds, I can’t have too much sugar in a day, I minimise citrus fruits, I can’t have soy, I can’t have vinegar unless I want pain (who does?), I may have a mustard intolerance as recently I am reacting against mayo and a couple of other sauces which have mustard in, I can’t have pineapple and I can’t have anything too fatty and if it is fatty it has to be because of olive oil, I must be careful with eggs, no more than 3 times a week!  I can’t have too much coconut produce either; I can only eat small amounts of beef and no more than twice a week!  I shouldn’t have tomatoes everyday either, but that one is a hard one to surrender as I like tomatoes almost with everything!  But ideally I should never have them according to doctors.  I can only have two Brazil nuts in one sitting before strange things happen to my mouth! I can only have a beverage with tannin no more than once per day and preferably not at night. So, yes, I am not fussy about all of these, this is just the foods I can’t have because my body will hurt me a lot if I do!  Because of all of this, I have according to the doctor a very low salt diet, because I don’t add salt to my cooking and he told me I need to start, because my levels are too low at times and could account for the cramps I get!

So, as perplexed as you all are, I know you are, because I have seen the faces of offline friends when I mention this to them – what the fuck do you actually eat then Tina?  Food, to put it bluntly, proper, wholesome, mostly unprocessed food, weird isn’t it?

It’s the reason I love sauerkraut so much, the salt my body needs, the cabbage is really good for you too and you get added microbes for your gut!  Ironically, my health is slightly improved for the gherkins (dill pickles) and sauerkraut I eat these days, without that being in my diet three times a week, I would actually be a lot sicker!  I know, I tested it out for a whole month and it thwacked me hard!

I think the unhealthiest thing I eat these days is the local chippy once a fortnight, because I don’t eat their battered fish, I prefer their kebabs without the bread that is!  They have their own oily sauerkraut with gherkins and pickled jalapenos and its sheer heaven with their homemade chilli sauce!  Their meat is also homemade, so they guarantee it has no gluten and lactose and they don’t spice it as much as the places in town, so it’s just like fatty lamb pates really.

My most usual food to eat for dinner is gluten free pasta with homemade chicken arribiata, pan fried salmon stir fry or sausage and bean casserole with mashed potatoes.

My most usual food for lunch is, fried tomatoes and mushrooms with gluten free toast, a smoothie, vegetable frittata, or Ham & lacto free cheddar cheese ploughman’s sandwich with gluten free bread, I know the sweet pickle has a bad product for me, but it is so little my body hardly notices too much.   I don’t have celiac disease apparently, it is an unidentified IBD.

My most usual breakfast is, air, or very rarely cinnamon gluten free porridge or just homemade fruit salad.

My snacks are nuts, celery, carrot sticks, lactose free Nutella with gluten free digestive biscuits or rice cakes, pancakes with said Nutella or lemons or honey or maple syrup or fruit compotes, fruit, or smoothies, rarely jellied pick n mix and crisps purely for the low salt days. 

When finances improve, I am excited to ditch a lot of the above for things I really love!  Such as honey nuts, dark chocolate with fruit in, fruit leathers, chicken legs, kimchi, , king prawns and the expensive fruits and veg like avocadoes, coconuts, pomegranates, figs, chickpeas, mange tout, things someone on my budget consider birthday or Christmas treats!

Well it’s a life I hope that will happen anyhow, I am trying my best to fight through it all and get that life, even if my body does seem held bent on killing me!

Happy reading!

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