Tag Archives: poverty

Broken things

This has been bugging me for a while now.  Around once every six to eight months something breaks down in this house – usually Henry’s laptop or power supply.  Since Henry was seven years old it has happened regularly, he will be thirteen in May.

I learned the second time it happened that we should really be strict with how Henry uses his laptop; Paul still hasn’t learned this and is endeavouring yet again to try to afford buying a new power supply for Henry – just so the screaming fits about not having laptop access, stops!

The power supply breaks because Henry is a mindless twiddler, he twiddles on the sofa at the power supply cable mindlessly and ignores us when he is on it.  I told Paul that Henry is on the laptop too much every day, so an hour to maybe an hour and a half should be his limits and the power supply should be plugged in when he isn’t using it!

However Paul lets Henry have the laptop every waking second the boy wants it!  He is on his laptop more than I use mine!  As soon as Henry wakes up in the morning around 7:15am he is on that laptop, spooning his cereal into his mouth whilst playing Roblox until it is required for him to get dressed by 8am to leave the house by 8:20am, often leaving the laptop on to die out whilst he is at school!  To me this is and always has been unacceptable, to Paul it’s convenient.

As soon as he comes home from school at 3:25 he raids the kitchen cupboard for several snacks, plonks himself down in front of his laptop again and mindlessly eats until we say stop, or take the food away, usually with huge tantrums in tow!  He will struggle to get off the thing to come and sit at the dining table for dinner and will rush his food to be back on it ASAP until bedtime! 

The arguments I have had with both Paul and Henry over this and I have exhausted myself, because nobody cares what mama has to say – I’m a nobody here! 

Whenever it is the weekend or Henry isn’t at school he is on the laptop from around 9am when he will usually wake up until his bedtime’s which school is usually around 11pm if there isn’t the next day.  Again to me, this is highly unacceptable!

But for Paul, it’s convenient, because whilst he is on the laptop he is relatively quiet; whilst he is on the laptop he isn’t making messy robots and Lego designs or doing messy art!  Whilst he is on the laptop he is out of the way!

I am always made to feel unreasonable by both Paul and Henry if I were to criticise this routine they have.

I am such an unfair parent who doesn’t want him to have any fun; I just want to take away his freedom and happiness, because I like hurting him apparently.  Henry is allowed to say these things to me when Paul listens on, Paul says nothing other than tell me that he is alright, leave him alone, at least he isn’t getting in the way of the ironing or the cooking etc.

So every six to eight months, Henry gets a new laptop replacement from Paul and we get extra credit debt, because of Henry’s carelessness and Paul’s idea of an easy life!

Just before Christmas our oven broke down, Paul went into credit to get another one, it isn’t paid for yet – then the microwave broke down around ten to twelve days later, that hasn’t been replaced and then the washing machine around two week ago, that hasn’t been replaced yet either – but Henry’s power supply breaks down and Paul breaks into savings to get him a new one immediately – because that’s how much Paul values convenience.

You have no idea how hard it is to keep my mouth shut about all of this!  Time and again it happens; time and again needful things are kicked under the carpet for that boys addiction to computer games!

What is worse is that recently Henry was weighed by the doctor and the doctor told us that Henry is becoming obese!  I saw it, Paul didn’t!

For a year I have been trying to get that boy off his butt to do the exercises he used to love doing – he used to love running in the local field training for marathons and this year he couldn’t be bothered to do his usual annual charity run – which I was disappointed in and he gave up litter picking with the local environmentalists three months ago, purely because he wants more laptop time!

He is even starting to think about giving up his charity clubs that he goes to once every two weeks, because he loses a whole three hours a time away from his precious machine! 

Young Carers will do him well in hard times, he needs their support – but still he is considering giving it up, not worth it you see… he hasn’t the time you see, the club interferes with his plans!  Paul is OK with the boys obsession, I am livid by it!

I have always wanted an active, social family with strong family bonds – instead I get a bunch of bums who hate spending time with each other and often sit in separate rooms!

I am the only one who lifts a finger to actually tidy and clean anything in this house, but when I live with two people who addicted to their machines and don’t give a rats ass about how sick I am and what efforts I’ve put into the house – its hard to maintain.  I spend three hours cleaning one room because it’s excessively messy and dirty, only for the mess to be back all of the next day without any sign I have actually vacuumed the place at all!

You can clearly see my areas in the house, I am very territorial, my areas are spotless and organised the rest of the house is disgusting and sort of represents a junk yard or pack rat house!

The back garden is definitely a junk yard, old washing machines dumped out there with a rotten old sofa and computer desk because we can’t afford to get a skip and the junk man rarely comes this way anymore!

I find the whole thing, the whole house and the attitude of the family very humiliating, I am ashamed of the lot of it and Paul knows, because I’ve broken down in tears during my worst days telling him what I need in order to feel sort of normal again. But he whines like a kid and chants “I know, I know” it’s not like talking to another adult at all and to be totally honest – I don’t think he really does know what I am on about!

The other day, when I had my bout of suicidal thoughts and dark poems, it was such a day!  I told Paul again about how I can’t hack it anymore how I am trying and he snapped at me and said to me – “I do my fair share around the house, I do the cooking, the washing and the ironing” and I said that’s all you actually do though, that and cleaning the rabbit, you do nothing else, the house rots around you and you often forget to check on me or talk to me anymore!  He snapped and swore, he rarely swears “he said fuck it, I won’t do the laundry then, I won’t do anything anymore – I’ve had enough”!  So this is what happens when I ask for help – I get threats like this, that fewer things will get done.

I am afraid these days to ask anything extra of him anymore, because of these big outbursts!

I didn’t ask him to do anything other than to check on me from time to time, as he just doesn’t bother.   Even when I go downstairs to sit there, he will actively ignore me whilst he plays solitaire or a Facebook game. 

I was angry that day because I slept so long – I slept for thirteen hours solid, which is weird for me!  I didn’t wake up until 3:55pm, which is disgusting – but he didn’t once come and check on me to see if I was OK – his excuse was, he was busy hand washing the laundry all day and couldn’t spare the two minutes to check on me as he passed my room on the way to the only toilet in the house that he uses an average of once an hour because he drinks copious amounts of tea all day!

When I used to be very badly sick and bedbound, I was often afraid I’d die in bed and he wouldn’t find out until dinner or bedtime, the only two times per day I can actually guarantee he’ll look for me!

I once rose a concern to Paul how if I ever became paralysed or had a stroke, I’d die of neglect – the horrible thing about it is, he sincerely agreed as he wasn’t sure he could care for me either!

This was a huge wakeup call and this is why whilst I sat in bed several months ago I tried looking for bedbound to fit exercises on YouTube to try and help myself out of it.  But I had to do it in secret, because Paul doesn’t like knowing, I am doing anything out of the ordinary!

This is why my depression has been really bad since September. 

I am well enough now to spend around an hour a day cleaning, sometimes more – but you see I can’t!  Because either Paul gets in the way, or both Paul and Henry kind of leaves a trail of their mess behind me as I move to clean the next thing. 

When Paul suddenly knows I am cleaning a lot, he will (I believe) deliberately stop buying cleaning products to slow me down, as all of a sudden, he can’t find them in store or he had an unexpected bill so the bleach has to wait a week!

Yes, this house can go a whole disgusting week without bleach!

Paul claims he was never like this before I moved in – when I moved in I came with so much extra stuff, so that is why he can’t clean.  But you see it’s a lie, he was a pack rat before I moved in, I remember one of the first things I did when I moved in was to pull up all the carpets because of how thick the grime was in it that the whole carpet was hard like black gum and hundreds of silver fish crawled out as we pulled it up!

I wanted to go back to live with my mother so bad, but I grinned and bared it because I saw freedom and was intoxicated by it!

It took me nearly two years to get this house into a liveable state and remember I got pregnant within the first six weeks of living here, so it was no easy feat!

You have to also take into account, both gardens were severely overgrown and I levelled it all, by myself.

I was so proud by what I had accomplished and within six months of being ill – it’s like I never touched the place!

This is why I struggle to see the Brightside of anything these days, living in poverty with two pure bums.

I can’t really remember what true happiness feels like anymore, true relaxation or comfort, or even love… but then again, did I ever really know what love was?  I kind of had it once… funnily enough with another Paul – not this one, there was another Paul once… but that one let me down.

I kind of new love once I guess!

No doubt I will get an earful if Paul reads this, that’s another thing – he is becoming very watchful of all my online activities lately, which is making me wonder if he is actually jealousy looking for anyone who might show an interest with me.  It’s weird because there was a guy who liked me a few weeks back, but they reckoned someone warned him off.

Didn’t know who, they didn’t either.

Anyway, just a heads up and thanks for reading! 

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Filed under Home and Family

Changes

I am struggling to eat and sleep properly, not sure really what’s wrong with me; I am barely able to eat more than 900 calories most days now and I am sleeping an average of 5 hours per night.

This is why I am going quieter than normal again.

I am trying hard to keep my activities up but I am just zoning out a lot during the day because I am tired and uncomfortable and there is this strange feeling as though, something in my life is going to be turned upside down… whether for good or bad I am not sure…

I know something big has already happened in my life, I have gained two new freedoms in this past month – one could be life-changing, the other was kind of predicted by me a few years ago.

Paul and I are living together but we are no longer in a relationship – we have our separate rooms and we are starting to kind of get separate lives too – but we’re still friends.  He is more of a guardian of me now, really.

The other change is my personal finance, I have paid off one of my personal debts which helped us get by Christmas to Christmas over the years and soon another debt will be completely gone too.  This will make my £25 per week treat money go up by another £15 in January!  Now that’s not all, because Paul is now officially retired, it means I have the option of self-employment without the guilt of cutting family funds down if I fail.

So Paul is trying to help me learn how to use technology in order for me to do the YouTube channel I am interested in doing and to also learn how to monetise Pinterest, Instagram and this blog.  So for the next month I may be quieter than usual, only doing one to two posts per day whilst I get educated about what I need to do for self-employment.

I am trying to write a business plan out to see where I could potentially earn an income and how; whilst improving my creative outlet, because ultimately I want my job to be creatively based – not just promoting and advertising.

Paul has a good concept I am thinking of running with – putting my poems on Instagram with royalty free videos as one of the things to do. 

As I am getting healthier and able to do more things physically, I think I may be able in a month or two to start going for walks at the local wildlife reserve again and take photographs to sell as postcards and other things.

I particularly like taking photos of dawn and dusk – the twilight hours, I love twilight!  I am not talking about the sparkly vampire novels and movie; I am talking about the time of day!

Our wildlife reserve has a very high hill that is perfect for landscape photography at those times of day for you can see for miles around you – the problem is getting up there when you are sick and not as fit as you used to be!  Five flights of stairs over a twenty minute walk; each step is a different size from 2 inches to 2ft!  Some of the steps you have to hoist yourself up or jump down!  They are wooden and rickety and look like something in a fairy forest because they are covered in moss and lichen and go through the darkest depths of the woods, which can be spooky at times!

Especially as these woods have something the locals call “Screaming deer” a small deer that sounds like a woman being murdered from time to time, unnerving when you get to the shady depths of the wood and you get to see the glimpse of one in the darkness scurrying out the brambles and hopping over the dark stream away from you!

They are a kind of muntjac, not native, but escaped into the British wildlife a few years back!

There are quite a few things I am planning to do, unfortunately a gardening blog and vlog will have to wait until I move away, because the bad neighbour practically lives at his window waiting to see me do anything in the garden before he comes out and harasses me again.

I had thought the garden blog and vlog would actually probably be 50/50 with my writing up until 2yrs ago when that horrible man move in next door!  He is so unpopular in the village he has been more or less banned from three of the local pubs for his obnoxious behaviour and nobody will employ him as a handyman either!

The dog he has he has made vicious lunged at Paul the other day and Paul fell into a dog rose bush and has really nasty gashes all up his forearm – Henry has a phobia of big dogs like that Dalmatian because of what happened when he was a toddler when he was playing in a park, a dog jumped at him and bashed his head hard.  He is OK with little dogs though.

Henry and I don’t use our garden path anymore because of both the man and the dog, we cross to the left and use an alternative neighbours path, which takes us about 300ft out of our way whenever we want to go out to the right side of the street, but at least we don’t get harassed! 

When the dog is in their back garden we can’t be in our back garden either, because it uses their outdoor dining table as a means to jump over the fence to try and attack us yet still Paul won’t complain to the police about it all.

So we are one of the lucky families to have a garden that is bigger than 20ft by 20ft which is rare in this country and area, but we can’t use it because of one neighbour and his dog!

My child stuck indoors all day every day summer or not – just so he is safe!

I am only thankful that I have a washing machine with a dryer, I would hate having to go into the garden risking all sorts of things to hang clothes up like how we used to a few years back!

You know this neighbour has affected my mental health so badly that whenever I so much as think about gardening, I have nightmares of him doing things to sabotage my efforts or hurt me or the family, that night?

Something as simple as a flippant comment about wanting to grow Blue Himalayan poppies as a goal, made me have a horrendous dream about him last night and no doubt today I will have a worse one!

What really ticks me off is that the man isn’t supposed to be living next door, he is a tenant – so it would be easy to have him moved on, but Paul is too nice and passive, just because he is fond of his nice step daughter.

Paul is trying everything he can to appease me about the situation whilst not solving it – he is doing everything he can to try and get me an allotment so I can garden again, but that would mean I have to go 10 minutes down the road to grow my flowers, fruits and vegetables on land that isn’t my own whereas I have a 50ft by 30ft back garden and a 20ft by 30ft front garden which we own!  Not only that but it will cost us around £80 a year for the privilege and we’re limited to what we can and cannot grow there!

Before this bad neighbour became a problem, I gardened so much it saved us £60 a month in fruit and veg, right now we need to garden more than ever – but we’re going hungrier than we should be, because of peace sake.

I’ve never known a man like it and I am talking about both Paul and the bad neighbour here!

I do know one thing – if an apocalypse was to happen Paul won’t help defend me against other men and that’s a scary thought!  Very scary! And I know my fears aren’t unwarranted because I first learned of Paul’s cowardice when Henry was 3 months old, when a man tried to attack me when I was pushing Henry in the pram – Paul was walking several feet behind me, whilst I dealt with the man myself, Paul walked right past us like he was pretending he didn’t know us!

I called after him about what happened when I chased the guy off – he claimed he never saw a thing!  I said, you heard shouting and roaring though didn’t you?  No.

So when I say I literally do a lot by myself, I mean it.  I can’t rely on Paul for anything, the house is falling apart – shrug, too tired and busy to do anything oh and play the poverty card too!

Very convenient for him!

So in the past few weeks in particular, he is becoming less like the Paul I know and more like someone I don’t want to.  He has changed a lot since he felt he could reject me and then reclaim me at the drop of a hat without ramifications… he had a shock when he learned I don’t work like that.  You reject me for someone you haven’t met yet, and then you reclaim me when she turns out to be a fake… on your bike!

So that’s why I am going self-employed and this is why I won’t be giving any of my money to Paul to help with anything.  I will give to my son and for us to eat, but that’s about all I will do –  I have had enough of him sitting pretty thinking I am totally helpless and I want a life – I can’t bare this mediocrity any longer, even I or this lifestyle has to die – one of us and I would rather it not be me!

I would rather not be lonely either, but hey ho, sometimes we’re lonelier when we live with people!

To say I am not heartbroken by how my life has turned out is an understatement; I had hoped I would do better than this!  Much better!

Thanks for reading!

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Filed under Defining myself

Got to be grateful

I have a bunch of friends, mostly online but there some friends that I once knew offline when I lived in London, but maintain contact with them online only these days.

Quite a few of these friends are new age, hippies, gothic, artistic or writers of some description or another and at least two thirds are part of the LGBTQ community – nearly half of which believe in doing one thing regularly;

Being grateful or finding gratitude in things, no matter how hard they might be.

This is something I have never really thought about for myself.

Ungrateful cow, eh?

But some of my friends are encouraging me to become grateful even for the hard times, because it will result in healing old wounds.

They have claimed it has helped them somewhat.

Becoming more self-reflective is key to understanding the pains and turmoil’s of the past, so you can then sweep the negative space clear and put in a positive vibe via gratitude.

Nobody has ever really taught me to be grateful, not in the way I have always tried to encourage Henry to be.

It’s funny that – how I’ve always made a point in ensuring Henry is always grateful for what he has, yet I never practised what I preached there for myself.  Well, to tell the truth, I am grateful for what I have now, even though it is much less than what is comfortable and much less than what I used to have – but I am grateful I am not in a worse situation than this, I’ve always have been.

I am very grateful for living in a country that cares for its poor and sick like they do, I am very grateful not to be a situation of many other people in the world.

I am also grateful for no longer being in situations I used to be or having certain people in my life anymore.

But that’s just generalising and in order to do this properly I shouldn’t generalise, I should be more in depth about what I am grateful for.

Things from my past;

I am grateful that although my mother wasn’t the best, she at least had one personality trait which stopped her being much worse than she was – that is the fear of what others thought of her.  This always held her back from doing the things she really wanted to do to me, because she would often tell me exactly how she felt, but how she wouldn’t do it, because of so and so.

But she was still who she was, despite this.  Imagine if she was more self-assured, what my life could have been like if she had been more confident to be herself.

I am grateful for the situations my family put me into, living amongst addicts and drunks and domestic abuse temporarily and then moving me onto more stable homes, so I learned to appreciate what my true home life was like in comparison!

I think that’s why my mother did that – move me around a lot to different people for weeks on end, to show me, that in the scheme of things – or in the scheme of what is available in the family, our house was a haven in comparison.

Even if it was a prison, it was quieter, more predictable and physically safe if you did what you were told.  In some of the other homes I spent time in, it didn’t matter if you were good as gold, if they were inclined to hurt you, they’d hurt you!

I was always grateful for how clean, organised and fresh the main house was in comparison to some places I was sent to live, where their houses were infested with rats and beds weren’t made, they had no bottom sheets and in the winter in order to keep warm you had to snuggle up with the kids you shared the bed with and the dogs just to keep warm!

It’s funny looking back at how those places were actually considered my happy places, my favourite places to go to, to get away from mum.  The people were nice, but poor, much poorer than Paul and I – this is something to be grateful for.  I don’t have to scrounge around at neighbour houses begging for 50p for the electric metre like the mother of the house did and then go to her dad’s house to get them fed, because her husband drank away the food money for her and her 5 children and an extra to boot!

It’s one of the reasons why I am tired of sausage and beans, it was a staple there.  My mum tried to teach me to be grateful by showing me we are much better off, because we would also have sausages and beans, but with chips and fried eggs and buttered bread and double portions to them around twice a week on average.  Good living, she thought, though she could afford more, it was laziness more than anything when she was home cooking. 

This is why from the age of 7yrs, she insisted I would be the main cook of the house as she had night shifts to do and couldn’t spend the time to cook for everyone, so left it to me – because it’s normal I her family that the eldest or only daughters are fully domestic by 7yrs old and can take a mothers place at the drop of a hat.

I learned by 9yrs old, there is one thing you should never do as cook of the house and that is ask dad what he fancies for dinner as it will almost always be steak and chips, pie and chips, fish and chips or a full English breakfast!

By the time I was 11yrs old I learned lots of recipes from other relatives and I diversified our diet a lot, mum pushed against it for a while, until she learned that some of the food I was making was actually nice.  She never had a Bolognese before I was 11 and it became one of her most favourite meals of all time ever since!

As time went on the diet got healthier, for them.

I am very grateful for the freedom I had in choosing what I cooked in my main home.

Always had compliments throughout all the family over the years about being “the proper little housewife”, someone who didn’t laze around, always willing to help, someone reliable and dependable.

It’s why it’s hard being here now, where I feel like I am not needed by anyone and if anything in the way!  Its poles apart from the life I used to have, where I’d skip from relative to relative, living with them temporarily and cleaning and cooking for them.

Everyone was happy to have Tina over for any length of time, I was a treat for them, I even remember my mum setting up rota system, and it was almost like a bidding war to get me to stay with them at times!

My maternal grandmother, Uncle John, honorary aunties Gina and Anna (which turned out to be distant cousins), Cousin Jenny and neighbour Debs, honorary granny Esme, got me the most though!  Seems a lot of people but actually weren’t a lot to me.  Mum wouldn’t let me stay anywhere more than six weeks in case I bonded too much!

I am grateful that I had that kind of life, shifting from person to person, it made me broadminded and adaptable, it also taught me how to change like a chameleon – I suppose it taught me acting skills.  Because each household was different, some were really poor and I mean this in the best possible way – but common, others were posh, others middle row and you had to adapt your behaviour and speech to where in the country you were going and the class of people you are going to socialise with the most at the time.

It really was adapt or die, or at least have a hard life there!

This even meant my religion had to change to whom I stayed with as many of these people went to church, the cathedral, the JW meetings and so forth.

I remember going to stay with some relatives where egg and chips is a luxury, you wear jog suits and hoodies, you have to be into RNB and rap and you have to play console games and learn how to talk about football.  If you didn’t you didn’t get to have friends, you were ignored in the corner as the weird posh girl.

I also remember going to other places where I have to groom horses and talk about horse racing, horse breeding, dog shows, dog breeding, gardening and sitting in watching cousins learn gymnastics and ballet – I wanted to join in but my mum wouldn’t give my relatives the money for me to participate.  Do you have any idea how humiliating it is seeing your thin beautiful cousins doing all that, whilst you are the fat girl sitting on a bench watching grumpily whilst the tutor tries to talk you into making your mother part with cash so I can join in for the benefit of my health and being told umpteen times at the age of 9yrs old that I am responsible for my weight, not my mother?

It’s really humiliating actually! 

Just as embarrassing is being the only fat person in a household of half-starved poor kids, especially as I was the most vocal about being so hungry all the time!  I feel bad for them now, back then I was very selfish upon reflection and didn’t have much empathy for them, I was entitled I guess.

I sometimes wonder if the universe is cruel enough to punish people for their lack of insight as children when they are much older… like living here in poverty like this with Paul is some kind of karmic debt?

But I was never mean or rude about it; I was just self-absorbed that’s all – I mean, isn’t every child?

I know I was ungrateful back then for a lot of the kindness I got.  I remember thinking sometimes that their dog ate more than we did in some of those homes.

I even remember saying this once half-jokingly and the mother said, we have to feed the dog he works!  The dog belonged to her husband who was a security guard and the dog went to work with him every night!

It’s a funny contrast too, when you are with the richer families who are super posh and they seem more self-absorbed than you – but on Sundays they go to do charity work as a family at soup kitchens etc. and you tag along to help them.

You try to tell these people, you know the soup they need should contain noodles, meat chunks or vegetable chunks, not be pureed within an inch of its life, it’s not filling.  They look at you and rightfully challenge “what would you know”?  Because they didn’t think I had other lives with other people who were like the people they were helping, they thought I was like them and they didn’t know any better!

I remember telling them once about what I have experienced, they laughed raucously and told my mother about the funny little stories I make up and how I definitely will be a writer some day!

Mum never told them the truth, just laughed along with them agreeing!

I will always be grateful for whatever food or shelter I get, whatever warmth I get, whatever attention I get and whatever help I get.  My life has taught me never to take anything for granted, because you never know how long it will all last.

You can be the richest person ever and lose it all over night due to a storm or a thief or anything, but you can also be a pauper and strike it lucky and find your feet and soar.  I’ve seen it happen to the best and worst of people – I am grateful for having such an enriched life full of varied experiences, no matter how painful they were.

I learned a lot.

I have learned what I am comfortable with and what I am not comfortable with and the types of people that make it better for me in the long run.

I’ll admit I prefer the comfort and mindlessness of buying a whole bowl of fruit without pinching the pennies, I would love to go back to the place where the idea of choosing blueberries or pomegranates this week is laughable, just stick them both in the trolley, don’t be silly, we’re not that bad off!

Of course, anyone would! 

I remember spending £25 a week on just a handful of different magazines, £50 a week on take outs, £20 a week in lunch money, £20 a week in bingo with gran and anything up to £75 a week on books and clothes – this is a dream these days!  Those days died out for me fourteen years ago! 

I can’t buy any magazines anymore, not even once a month.  Take outs never more than £14 once a month if we can afford it or cut back on other things for the treat, we can’t spend money on the lottery anymore let alone bingo – £40 is our average food bill for the whole household and there is nothing spare for books and clothes, clothing money goes to creditors through catalogues if we’re desperate. 

I suppose I should be grateful buying things on credit is an option, especially as there are rumours the government wants to ban those sorts of enterprises. 

Thanks for reading…

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Filed under About Me

Why bother?

Here’s a little heart to heart, I am not sure where this post is going, but this is the gist of it so far;

Dreams die when you are told no all of the time, or you have to wait or this can’t happen or that can’t happen, because, because, because.

It’s not always money that gets in peoples way, sometimes it is other people, sometimes it is health, and sometimes it is the environment, sometimes it’s the fact that with so many obstacles you lose the will to try anymore, lose the will to fight.

My dreams got smaller and smaller over the years, especially since living with Paul.  My dreams have got so small these days that I am even frightened to dream about what to plan for dinner during the week, even the smallest things – because, ultimately, I will hear a no or a broken promise again.

Or I may get half of it, because the rest was forgotten.

A simple thing like, I think I will have a side salad with the Bolognese tonight, the salad will be forgotten; so I go and make it myself without making a fuss about the fact it is forgotten again – then I am asked, what you doing?  When I explain I am told to sit down whilst Paul begrudgingly leaves his dinner to do it for me, because for some reason he doesn’t want me to do it for myself – then he snaps at Henry because Henry too, would like some salad as well or a fizzy orange drink.

I am made to feel guilty when I get upset that he takes over everything all the time, I am made to feel really bad because he is rushed off his feet and made to feel bad for complaining that I could have helped… it’s a bizarre situation to be in.

The fact that I don’t want him to do everything for me – but he won’t have it – but at the same time he constantly gripes about how tired he is, how busy he is, how inconvenient everything is… yet I have said I will help.  It is like he enjoys being a moany martyr.  Henry tries to help but he gets the exact same reaction from Paul.

So Henry and I sit back and let Paul do everything for us, whilst he moans to the whole world about how much he does for this family who does nothing, because we can’t and I have to sit there and stomach it time and time again, knowing the truth!

I mentioned before, I feel I have no purpose here, because my purpose in every way shape and form has been stripped from me.

For years Paul and I have both denied we were over around 2013, it is only recently when he thought he had found another woman, which we both agreed yes it’s over between us.

My battle for eight years was my health, but my new battle since getting energy and health stabilised is now fighting Paul for my right to do things for myself!

He won’t let go and what is more, he won’t help where it really matters – the things I genuinely cannot do at present without his help.

Mostly buy the cleaning materials I need to whip this house into shape.

Both Henry and I are very concerned about some neglect of the house, the leaking roof in the utility room and the leaking chimney brest in the living room are not priorities and recently, as Paul is getting more tired and since he is struggling with our budget, my rabbit is not getting what he needs and I have offered to use my own treat money to compensate for him, but Paul won’t hear of it – but he won’t do anything about it either.

I have heart wrenchingly told Paul, then we have to give the rabbit up then because he needs to have more than we can offer him, but he won’t have that either.

Paul’s budget for the rabbit tightened when Paul realised I was healthy enough to start cleaning him out myself, every two days, but that’s too expensive and too often according to Paul.

Henry heard this conversation unfortunately; he came down the stairs when he heard us.  Henry got involved too and Henry is more assertive and aggressive than I am and when he felt the same as I did, Henry’s response was his usual fiery temper.  Which meant both Paul and Henry went at each other’s throats again.

Both the rabbit and I recoiled, I went dead quiet like I always do when things explode like that, because I hate conflict and I know if I was to so much as whimper whilst they are at each other like that, I would make them both explode more to the extent Paul will either leave the house for an hour or Henry will try to self-harm to get his point across. 

This is one of the reasons why I find it hard to do anything, because even a small suggestion could be blown out of proportion and I am made to feel guilty for wanting more for the family, even if it is a bit of bleach and a clean rag.

I have said before, it is fine for Paul to live like this but I am not used to it.  I was raised under OCD conditions, my mother’s house was like a show room at all times, never a crumb to land on the floor without a vacuum on it no sooner had it landed. 

I practically live in the bedroom now, not because I am bedbound now, but out of choice; I can’t stand leaving this room anymore, because to be honest with you, my stomach churns at the mess of the whole house.

I suggested to Paul, OK, you are struggling for space I will get rid of a lot of my stuff, my books around the house, the unused art supplies and the leather futon nobody uses and that will make room but then he asks me – how do you suppose we get rid of it all?  I said charity, but who is going to take all this to the charity shop?  I don’t have time, I can’t afford several buses to get there – we can’t afford the alternative skip.

I give up once again.

Every little bit of fighting spirit and will power is just being sucked out of me with every month I live in this place!

It was ok when I knew I was wanted, but Paul has made it abundantly clear to me that yes, he’ll tolerate me here as he feels he has a duty of care for me, but who wants to hear that?  Who wants to know they are tolerated by a duty bound martyr?

Am I the one being unfair?

He took away my role as mother years ago.

I can make no decision about the boy at all, I can’t play with him how I used to because apparently it is my fault when he gets hyperactive, I can’t talk about our mutual hobbies together, because some are things Paul disagrees with and he will lose his nut when Henry obsesses over them again.  I can’t cook or bake alone in the kitchen anymore with Henry to teach him (Henry wanted to be a cook), because it is a dangerous mess out there and Paul generally takes over because he is scared with my disabled left hand that I may have an accident!  I can do nothing.

I can have my opinion about Henry anytime I like but I am always over ridden, Paul rarely tells me in advance if there are any appointments for Henry because he presumes the role of parent and completely forgets I am also the parent!

So what am I here for?

I have no value here and every time I open my mouth it starts a war or a pity me cycle!

What hurts is, when I find something I can do behind Paul’s back, he undoes it just as quickly – like he didn’t even see what I had done, so it makes me feel as though any energy expenditure is constantly unrewarded and for nothing.

When I started to use my exercise bike again regularly, Paul got into the habit of using it as a coat, umbrella and shoe stand, so I have a lot to clear around it before I get to use it again.

The house stinks, I am the only one who opens any windows here and Paul has put obstacles in certain windows so I can’t reach them, he thinks I haven’t noticed his trick, but he has.

He tells me the windows shouldn’t be opened now until spring because of the heat or eat crisis, it will be too cold in the house if I opened it for just one hour a day!

Paul and Henry are both nose blind because they live downstairs a lot – I live upstairs, my window is opened a couple of hours a day and when I leave the room I have to say… it’s not pleasant and is there any wonder I lose my appetite a lot these days?

Three days ago I decided to shut myself in my bedroom all the time, only go downstairs to eat dinner and pet the rabbit a few times a day, that’s all.

I can’t bear being down there anymore, especially with the vitriol between the two of them that seems almost constant these days.

They are bitter because I put my Amazon music on up here to drown them out and when I use it, nobody can use Alexa downstairs that music subscription comes out my treat money.

To think when I first moved in I thought the world was literally my oyster, I dreamt big, I had endless energy and ambition and I was ecstatic to get away from my mum!

I don’t know where all that enthusiasm has gone, but I worry about dreaming about a piece of candy at the weekends nowadays, because that is too big a dream at times.

I had massive dreams in comparison.

Maybe I can dream big again someday, eh?  Maybe…

I’ve never reached for just comfort in the past, I’ve always wanted the best that I can be, the best that I can have.

But now, comfort is the dream as I am definitely not comfortable here.

Paul is fine with making do and coping and adapting to less and less – I am not like that.  I always have this spark of… we can always find a way to get more?  Sell this, do this and do that… but it’s shot down by him hard, because ah, it’s too much effort or whatever. 

You get yourself into a rut when you live with people like that; people without ambition are dangerous energy vampires to the more ambitious folk.

I’ve learned the hard way – you can’t teach someone like him – he likes things handed to him on a plate without any effort.

I am not like that.  Well at least I wasn’t once, these days I think I am too apathetic to try, I am too tired and it is making me feel old and bitter!

I am scared I am going to become like him soon, because… why bother?

Why bother if I am going to get shot down and stopped again?

My son Henry is only 12yrs old; he is getting the mind-set of why bother… that’s too young!  Too young!

I want to bother, I keep tying to pull myself out of the dirt – but I can’t help but feel that Paul is there with a big stick poking me back down into it if you get my drift?

Thanks for reading!

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Bored of sausage & beans

It’s likely that in the next two weeks that my YouTube could be set up, still struggling to understand the technology behind it all, but I am hoping that I will have it up before December now.

I am totally not confident about showing my face on there right now, because I still have that missing tooth and the dentist hasn’t given me an appointment for the braces we’ve discussed yet as she has a backlog of appointments to get through.

I did try to remind her, but I seem to be lost in the paperwork somewhere.

So until the braces come I am not confident about showing my mouth in particular.  The tooth was pulled July 28th and though some of the gap seems to have closed itself with an exercise I found online to move teeth without braces, it isn’t happening as fast as I would like!

Stupid tooth would go and break on a chicken bone though wouldn’t it?  Gosh that makes me sound like a Neanderthal with chicken wings doesn’t it?  I guess I am though, lol, pretty crazy about wings.

I forgot to have my medication last night so today is pretty painful to eat for me and I may not keep things down.  Especially as the planned meal is a rare treat of a steak pepper pie with salad, can’t change my mind as the alternative is worse – Chicken Arribiata, I have problems with that at the best of times without having it when I’ve missed medication!

I love Arribiata but it’s too acidic for days like these!

I took the medication by now, but it won’t work in time for dinner.

On a positive note my size is slimming down faster than I expected, even my smallest clothes are getting big on me now.

Although I love it I am scared of it, because I can’t afford to replace clothing and at the rate I am losing the weight I will need a full wardrobe of clothes once every six to eight weeks!

To be honest with you, it’s why I am bringing forward the YouTube set up, I am hoping to try and get some money in order to replace my clothing so I don’t have to stall my exercises for a while, like I have been doing, just because I can’t afford the transition! I don’t have much choice over the diet, we can’t eat much lately as it is.

I am not confident I’d earn enough with YouTube alone, so I am going to be posting things in Instagram and putting my blog up for monetisation soon as well, because I need to try and get some kind of income coming in now that Paul is officially retired and our money looks cut again.

We really can’t stretch our money if there is another cut; we have lost £60 a week from this past Monday, so things are getting awful right now.  But Paul assures me it is temporary, The Royal Navy will give him a pension by the end of the month that will boost us again, but we have a whole four weeks of having £60 a week less than normal, we may not be able to pay our utilities this month.  Probably going to be the hardest month of my life!

I am just so glad I am not like my cousins who ignored my grandparent’s stories about how they coped with rationing during the war and actually partook in their lessons to learn how to stretch things out.

How that just because you opened a can of beans yesterday doesn’t make them inedible today – you just pour them into a pot with leftover veg and hey presto a vegetable soup, ok not ideal, but least you won’t starve!

But I’ve learned a lot from them, you see, I learned that those can of beans you open yesterday can be mixed up with fried sausages, onion and dried herbs with mashed potato as a lovely sausage & baked bean casserole – which is a family favourite!

I think every poor family in the UK was raised on sausages and baked beans; it seems to be the go to meal for the poor here.

To be honest with you I hate sausages, had them so often I actually don’t like them anymore, same with baked beans – I like them sometimes, but I am getting to the point I will be happy never to see sausages again!

Unless of course its garlic sausage, chorizo, salami or saveloy – gosh I miss having those!  But economy brand 60% breaded sausages are, well they are just ew ok?

You can more or less tell who is poor in the UK by their weight, if you are fat; you are probably on the tight budget – as healthy food comes at a premium here.

It’s a strange world when the fat is the poor and the rich are the slim.

You know we can go days without vegetables and that’s not a choice!  Meat and potatoes keep the poor fed!

You have no idea the trouble poor people have with their kids, because we’re taught that meat is unsustainable and your kids are like, but we heard eating meat is killing the planet mum; you don’t care about the planet.  Oh my gosh have you tried to explain to a child that it costs £20 a week to feed us in our 5 a day plan but it is only £12 a week for the meat and £5 for the potatoes?  When you are on a £30 – 45 a week budget, you can see why we’re not healthy, the poor!

I’d love to have fruit and veg every day, I don’t believe in the 5 a day plan, I am more of  anything over 7 is great kind of woman, before all this started to happen in my life!

Before our money got cut in 2017 for the first time, Henry was waking up to vegetable frittatas and carrot muffins, lunching on tuna and avocado pasta and dining on Roast lamb salads and we always had soup before dinner and a dessert after it!  Not anymore, often times we go without breakfast and lunch to help Henry at school and our dinners are rarely over 900 calories! 

I have to skip the protein shakes this month to survive!  Or dip into my £30 savings?

I already told Paul, leave that Christmas savings alone, we barely have £50 for that so far and its so hard telling Henry we just can’t do the Nintendo 64 you want love, we aren’t like your friends who can have that! Anyway, that’s a old console, weren’t that out when I was a teenager? Anyway Henry definitely said that’s what he wanted! He does like vintage stuff, so I am hardly surprised really!

Anyway, rant over, thanks for reading!

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Things are different but hard

Disclaimer, this is a very long post, nearly 3k, sorry.

Things are definitely changing in my life, I have a little more personal freedom – not much, but it’s a lot for me and I haven’t had this amount of freedom for at least eight years now.

My physical health is improving enough where I am no longer staying in bed most of the time; in fact I am able to do a little exercise and chores on a daily basis now.  I believe it has everything to do with the new high protein diet.  I do however choose to escape into the bedroom for up to three hours a time these days, because I am not coping with Henry’s behavioural problems and the arguments in the household.

I am trying my best to do the housework, but Paul and Henry have got into the habit that I have been sick, so when I have made the efforts to tidy up, no one appreciates it and undoes my work around the house almost as soon as I have done it.  There is no respect for me in this regard.

I clear an area and Paul or Henry fills it again, in less than half a day, I have to say, it makes me wonder why I bother.

The other day, I spent forty five minutes cleaning the carpet in the hall and clearing away coats, hats, garden equipment and the vacuuming the living room, clearing up shoes, clothes and robots all over the floor.  Paul and Henry were both out – they came home and threw their coats wherever they liked, it had rained heavily and the mud was trapesing all over the floor, they sat down and not one of them mentioned about noticing I had done anything.

When I asked them about if they had noticed, all I got was an “ooh sorry, yeah, thanks”; But no effort to amend their slobby mess in the hall.

There are things I am desperate to clean, but with the finances being really hard on us, Paul is reluctant to buy the cleaning materials I am used to.

We have mild bleach and antibacterial wipes and a sponge for the bathroom, but that is all.

I struggle living in this house because a house usually reflects the quality of the wife or mother of the house – believe me when I say, this house is not a reflection of me at all!  I have been sick for years and Paul was a hoarder/pack rat before he met me and I had to struggle and deal with this problem of his for ages before I got sick and I nearly sorted the whole house out.

There are things Paul leaves for months, no matter how much I complained when I could leave the bed, he still never got around to doing things.  There are four rooms in the house that I ban everyone from going into, if they are guests because I’d die of embarrassment over it – Paul doesn’t have the same inclination as I do.  He doesn’t see what’s so bad about things, though he admits it needs to change.

The dining room has been unusable as Paul’s hoarding is coming back; this has been unusable for three years now.  The kitchen is just plain dangerous and dubious.  The utility room is dangerous and the roof has caved in and there is fibreglass hanging from it, every time it rains the whole room gets soaked and that is where we do our laundry – or rather where Paul does the laundry as it’s too dangerous and narrow for me to get out there, as whatever Paul can’t throw away, old broken electricals etc. gets stored out there.

The other room isn’t a room a guest would go to anyway, that’s the big bedroom, which is now Paul’s room and the room where we store Christmas decorations, DVDs, towels, linen and clothes.  It’s basically an enormous disorganised store room.

Paul is very tactical, he knows with my balance problems and weight, that I can’t get to places if he puts things a certain way.  This means there are lots of places I cannot access around the house unless he assists me; this makes me completely dependent upon him to help me.  The thing is, with this new diet of mine I am slimming down and I am gaining better balance, dexterity and agility as well as energy.  This is starting to cause ructions between us, as he doesn’t like the idea I no longer need him, despite knowing we’re separating soon.

I am a house proud woman; I was raised by very domesticated OCD housewives through my mother, paternal grandmother, various cousins and aunts I was sent to live with over the years.  I am meticulous about the house, I am an organised person who is driven nuts by the idea of piles upon piles of things and a throw it anywhere attitude. 

I am the kind of woman who goes into cafes and wipe the table down before I do anything and wipe up after myself too, I am that tidy it’s my nature.

I am the kind of person who has dinner, take the plates out and the sauces.  Whilst Paul says, leave it on the table I will deal with it later.  The plates are taken out and washed immediately, but the sauces can be there for days.

My little bit of freedom is that I can now do a little per day around the house, but living with people like this I often wonder if I should bother at all?

I have also paid off a debt, which means I now have for the first time in three years £25 a week to treat myself with.  I haven’t seen this kind of money for three years!

Paul won’t let me spend the money on anything but treats for myself, but the thing is, I need to.  I need to consider putting £10 a week away for savings, for travel money to the doctors and hospital.  Paul doesn’t know that’s why I am saving the money.  Because of the heat or eat crisis, I have tried to give Paul £5 here and there for treats for me and Henry, he accepts it but doesn’t like it if I extend that to say… fruits or meats I may want to add to the diet too as he sees that as part of the family money.  He doesn’t want me to spend money on the family or the house.

He admits he is proud and he doesn’t like that he can’t provide for me.

I want him to spend some of my money on getting the cleaning equipment I want but that is hard for him to digest, Paul tells me, he will clean it himself with what we have.  I am still waiting…

To be Frank with you, I can’t wait until I move out.  But Paul doesn’t like the idea of me being alone, because of my inclination towards avoiding meals and going into bouts of depression where I could self-harm.

I wasn’t depressed like this before I got sick and lost control around the house.

My depression was mostly to do with being sick and in constant pain, then it got worse because of my helplessness, followed by seeing the declination of the house hygiene and my son’s mental health and then the severe poverty, where we relied on a food bank for Christmas and for other occasions.

I don’t care that Paul is starting a new relationship with another woman, I care that I will lose my son, because Henry wants to stay here with his dad because he knows I go with the flow  and I probably wouldn’t stick around Rugby town when I move out.

I go where I am wanted or needed.

I am very flexible.

I am able to start going out once a week without it affecting any budget, this is why I have chosen to go to the library once a week on a Saturday afternoon around 1 to 4pm or thereabouts. but not today.

I will take my laptop so I could get extra writing done there for my novel, because I can’t write in a smelly, untidy house where Henry and Paul have screaming matches every fifteen minutes.

Perhaps as I get fitter, I could eventually walk to the library like I used to instead of getting the bus and then maybe go every day? 

I remember around 2014 before I got sick, that I regularly walked 9 miles per day, I miss that!  I also had enough energy left in me to be meticulous around the house, chasing a toddler and doing 45 minutes of Tae-bo a day too, this is not counting whatever I did at the recreation ground near the house, I used to power walk or jog around that five to seven times three times a week!

Paul was in constant exhaustion as he followed me everywhere, because I have a weird problem.  I don’t like going anywhere alone, ever.  Unless I have a dog, then that’s different as I don’t feel alone with a dog.

I can go out on my own, if I have a dog.

I’m weird I know, but there is something that makes me anxious when I am not in a small group.  I like groups, I thrive in them, but make me alone or put me into a situation where I am having a 121 or a 2 on 1 discussion with people I hardly know, I get so tense.

I tell you, it’s this weird… I will willingly go and talk to an audience of a thousand strangers about any subject you want as long as there is one person back stage or on stage that I know is there, the more people I know, the better; than say, go into a small confined room where I am far away from a door with two complete strangers.

It’s a trust issue.

If people are friendly with me around three or four consecutive visits, I will relax to them very quickly and they go into my trust circle, but if they are rude or mean in anyway, they will never get into that sense of security with me.

It’s just the way I am.

I am very much a pack animal and without my pack I am lost.

My fitness efforts are part of my project to get myself fit enough to find myself a pack, so I can feel like I want to live again.

I think finding my tribe or people who want to be in my life, as the key to my happiness.  I did have a wonderful community here in Rugby before I got sick, but when my sickness got so bad I couldn’t leave the house anymore, people dropped me over a time.  Nobody wanted to come and visit someone who was so sick they could hardly talk and they couldn’t get off the sofa.  Especially as I wasn’t diagnosed with anything that was potentially fatal!

I was just recovering from pneumonia and having multiple chest infections over the years that meant I became very disabled, it badly affected my mobility and I gained a lot of weight. 

In 2017 I decided that perhaps food could be my medicine?  I read a book called “The Wahl’s Protocol” which enlightened me enough that I went on an elimination diet, no gluten, no lactose, no eggs, no soy and as paleo as you can get.  I did see some improvement but not a lot, but I then developed certain deficiencies.

I then decided to try going slowly back on everything; it was fine until I started back on soy and mustard.  Then I decided to listen to my body from when I used to be athletic – go back to a high protein diet.

It’s the protein I need.

It’s the protein fixing me.

I try to get 75g of it per day at minimum, but it’s hard on our budget and I am writing this on the 28th October 2022 – today I haven’t been able to eat much at all.  I had some chicken barely enough to fill half a sandwich and a protein shake and a little light snack, but I was unable to keep things down today.  I had barely 800 calories worth of food, this is becoming regular these days and it’s scary.

Paul think its stress, because I can’t cope with Henry’s behaviour and Henry’s behaviour is worse at the dinner table, where things get so heated between everyone, my stomach goes into knots and I physically cannot eat more than a couple of mouthfuls for a couple of hours.

We have discussed that I should have a separate meal time, away from Henry.

Henry appears to be developing such bad behavioural problems that it is almost like autism, the thing is, he didn’t have any of the signs of this when he was younger.  He is nearly thirteen, but his behaviour is so erratic and sometimes dangerous that it puts tremendous stress on us, especially me.

I half believe he is putting it on, so he doesn’t go to school.  He also finds his behaviour hilarious and doesn’t seem to understand that this behaviour is not funny, the more we show our concern and try to calm him down or even ignore him, the worse he gets.  We can’t win. Paul believes there is something genuinely wrong with him, but I think he is playing us a fool.

Why do I say this?  Because Henry is a huge attention seeker and because I used to work with the mentally disabled, that are far more severe than Henry and they were adults and I can tell you now – Henry’s behaviour is extreme and Henry is an A+ student, he only acts like this when he wants attention or when he doesn’t want to do something.

This is something the school has noted.  Henry is fine in certain classes and when he is around his favourite people, but put him into things he don’t like, he goes berserk literally.  He isn’t violent, he just plays up – acts the fool, reverts back to a toddler, if you get me?

For example, whilst at home if he gets his favourite dinner he is happy, naturally.  But he starts to grin really big and make repetitive noises such as heeee heeee heeee almost donkey like and starts to bounce on his bottom rapidly and shake, then he will hand the food into his mouth without using knives and forks.

This gets him noticed, this causes a reaction from Paul – Henry sees this reaction and likes the attention, so does it all the more and does other things that Paul will notice and comment on, making Henry get all the worse.  Till it escalates and they scream at each other, Henry hits himself and runs away, Paul makes chase, scream, scream, scream, Henry comes back at the table going on about how everybody hates him.

It is happening daily.

It’s exhausting.

I have suggested that we talk to Henry calmly, I am ignored.  I have suggested not giving attention to bad behaviour but noticing and praising the good behaviours instead, I am ignored.

When Henry has lunch when Paul is out, he never acts like this.

This is why I have severe reservations about leaving Henry with Paul.

Henry doesn’t react badly like this, when Paul is out, Henry is attentive, vain, clean and tidy when it’s just me and him.  Around Paul he loses it, he doesn’t want to take care of himself, he doesn’t want to do anything good and I can understand why.  Henry gets more attention when he is bad and is completely ignored when he is good, except by me.

I over compensate for Henry’s good behaviour, because I know it is lacking from his father.

There are times when Henry and I speak together away from Paul, because both of us do not want to trigger another screaming match by being overheard.  Henry often talks about how he doesn’t feel wanted or loved and because I am anxious about any shouting going on around me because of my PTSD, I am eager to be out of ear shot of Paul when he tells me these things.

It’s difficult here.  This is why I am finding it hard to do much.

I am constantly drained; I am running on empty lately.  Whenever I sit or lie down, I am inadvertently falling asleep very easily.  I have black circles under my eyes and it’s not lack of sleep or dehydration.

Sorry for such a long post, but I needed to get this off my chest.

Thanks for reading. 

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Some clarity on me

There is a problem in my life at the moment;  Paul and I are trying to work out how to handle this together, because things are moving faster than the both of us has planned.

It all has to do with the open-relationship we have.  Paul has found someone else, this means that we are in a predicament about what to do with me?

It’s not simple for us both to part like any other couple would.  Paul is scared this lady might run away from him no sooner had she got to know him more personally and then there is the issue of me.

What’s the issue with me?

I have never recovered properly from PTSD and I have a lot of anxiety issues, self-care issues and I have been struggling with dark suicidal thoughts for a long time.  Paul feels it is positively dangerous for me to live alone, at all!

In his mind, even at the loss of his own new found happiness with another woman, he is not happy about letting me move out unless he knows I am going to be cared for by someone who understands what is happening with me and who can take that on willingly.

Sometimes my mental illness can be so bad that I self-harm, but also my physical health can sometimes leave me zoning out at inappropriate times because it’s the way I manage pain.  I am also not reliable in medicating myself.  I have no mental health medication, it’s all physical.  But still, I forget it.

I am also not known to eat and drink regularly and often needs to be prodded to do so.  Though Paul often forgets the food aspect himself, I only really reliably eat a dinner every day, every other meal is usually skipped or I just snack.

It’s not as simple as just moving me out and Paul won’t have it.  Also Paul has told me, if I found another relationship that is willing to take care of me properly but they then decide that they no longer want me – he wants to just let this be clear, he would have me back here anytime.  Which would put a strain on his new relationship, but Paul feels responsible for me, like a father really.

He kind of adopted me when he helped me get away from my parents and he takes this role very seriously. 

But there is another problem with this.  He also agrees he is not the best person to care for me, because he is so absorbed in other things, he doesn’t have the time to talk to me or snuggle with me like he should.  He has also admitted that he feels quite neglectful towards me, because he is absorbed with caring for Henry and being chair of the governors for the local schools. 

We don’t share a room anymore and only hug each other to say goodnight or goodbye and he has told me that this is not enough for someone like me who has been attention starved most of her life – but he can’t spend more time with me, because he is exhausted with everything else.

I am only just recovering from a long standing sickness which made me bedbound for nearly nine years.  It has only been since Easter that I have been able to move around the house more, do some small exercises and even help a little with chores again.

The notion of just moving away into my own home without anyone living with me is not realistic right now and Paul wouldn’t let me anyway, as its too dangerous for me.

We are also in quite severe poverty, where paying taxi fees to see doctors is an issue.  I should be seeing the doctor very regularly, but we just can’t budget the taxi fares without starving ourselves for it!

So, even if I did find someone online to take me on – they’d have to literally go out on a huge limb to get to me and make so many compromises, that both Paul and I are very uncertain anyone is up for the challenge.

So we see ourselves as pretty much stuck together.

What hurts Paul the most is that this new lady of his, really wants to marry him ASAP and she is so much like a former fiancé he had, that died before they got married, thirty years ago.

Paul is twenty seven years my senior.  I am forty years old now, Paul also worries that if I cannot find a new relationship quite soon, that I may be alone anyway, because he might die of old age whenever and that scares the both of us, because it is likely at this moment in time – if I were to lose Paul tomorrow for example, I am likely to be made to go into a residential home for the mentally vulnerable and my son may spend a temporary time in welfare care, whilst they make arrangements to a distant cousin.

That’s my situation in a nutshell.

However, it’s not that simple again…

There is big interest in me from a handful of men.  I am not leading any of them on as such, just a little friendly flirtation with one or two, but I am not looking seriously.  Because I think nobody would be interested in someone like me… not with the problems I have.

Not genuinely and not in a non-toxic kind of way.

I don’t drive, we don’t have a car, we rely on public transport and we can’t afford to travel outside of our town Rugby in Warwickshire and I don’t have a passport.

When I said in the past posts about my isolation in life, I was being VERY sincere about that.  Until I met Paul, I rarely went out without anybody being with me.  I have always had someone accompany me to places; I have been that badly micromanaged.

I virtually never do anything alone outside the house; the idea is alien to me!  It’s alien to people reading this, but it’s normal to me.

My PTSD has never been treated properly because when I refused medication for mental health, the therapist refused to further management of it.  I am triggered by tiny things; things which can make me zone out and even lose wads of time, black out or panic.

I am not a social phobia person like my mum would make you believe; on the contrary I am quite an extrovert.  I prefer being around large groups of people, I am more anxious in quiet places that are unfamiliar to me or haven’t got anyone familiar in them. 

I am more secure when it is an open space with lots of escape routes, because I have experienced a lot of outside violence too, not just abuse at home, but it has to be filled with lots of people as it makes me feel safer in crowds. 

What I am trying to say is, I am even nervous alone in my own home.  I have always strived to live in places where the idea of being alone will be at its minimum.

A lot of people hate the idea of always having people around them, but for me, it’s what helps me thrive.  I need people.

Also I dislike handling people at the door, I would rather someone else deal with them because new people make me anxious, because again, I have experienced a lot of violence even on my on doorstep with people coming in to attack my mum or brothers! 

I don’t talk on the telephone either because I am deaf, texting is OK, but most people conveniently forget I am deaf, so all telephone calls are taken on my behalf.

Well, that’s me and my situation.

Happy reading and please understand!

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Brent Cross Shopping Centre

A concrete tomb smothered in glass

Come buy your wares here

Come push through the vultures for a bargain

Push through the surge of angst and plastic gold

Strangers ram into you spilling coffee on your shoulder

They are shopping here but there’s a rush

A rush to what?

I never knew, because here bargains are few

Screams of children and laughter and loud voices echo through the sarcophagus

Piercing your ear drums as you pass

Fresh dough scenting the air with expensive perfume

Choking on the gilded air

Poor people watch and stare

Buy lollipops from Marks and Spencer’s just to get the bag

So people back on the estate think, they aren’t so poor – the snobs

That’s what it’s like in old Brent Cross

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Push or die?

I will not be participating in Inktober this year due to lack of supplies and lack of money to buy new supplies.

I will not ask for a crowdfund for Inktober, I have had friends online suggest I do this, but I am uncomfortable with that.  Also, I don’t think I’d have the time between now and my deadline to do four hours of artwork per day on top of it all.

I am having a hard time emotionally in the last few weeks, lots of bad news in the family, near and far. 

Really, instead of sticking to my deadline I should take a couple of weeks off everything but housework and child rearing to recuperate; but I set this goal and I won’t forgive myself unless it is accomplished, even if I don’t get an agent like I want to, at least I can say I did try on my set timeframe.

I will miss doing Inktober, I enjoy this event every year and I tend to do my best artwork during those times (autumn theme is the best), but this year I just can’t manage the time to do it.

I am juggling my own mental health problems along with my son’s problems and Paul’s stress about the heat or eat crisis here in the UK as well as general family grief over the diagnosis of cancer of two relations, the death of a cousin and the loss of a child friend who recently broke her back horse-riding and has to live for several months in a hospital fifty miles away and my own yet to be diagnosed neurological issue.

Henry’s issues are existential, he is having gender crisis issues and is suicidal because he wants to be both genders at the same time, but is being severely bullied at school over it as well as his very elaborate fashion tastes, a penchant for pink, faux fur and glitter as well as tailored clothing; it isn’t so bad, but he is being picked on because of his surname and the fact that he speaks excellent King’s English – in other words he is quite posh for the area.

The bullies threw sticks and stones at the house at the start of the year, the police had to deal with it.

It is hard to manage his behaviour at times, because he is constantly punishing himself physically and it is exhausting to constantly be his sentinel to watch him and physically stop him harming himself.  Paul blames Dobby from Harry Potter for him starting this, because before Henry got into Harry Potter, he’d never harm himself.  Although people find Dobby funny, living with a child who is re-enacting what Dobby does is far from humorous, it’s downright blooming scary, especially when the child starts punching himself in the chest during dinner and forgetting he has a knife and fork in his hands!

This is not the reason however, that Paul and Henry often argues with each other over, on the contrary, it’s almost everything, they see eye to eye on very little.

For me it is mostly mental exhaustion, because Henry is particularly challenging lately.  I am also exhausted because I have no social life and the only person I have to talk to is exhausted both physically and mentally to the extent we hardly talk more than twenty minutes per day together alone anymore – Paul.

I haven’t written towards my novel since the 20th September 2022, hopefully by this posts scheduled date I’d have written more towards it, but it is difficult. 

I am trying to keep myself active in some kind of creativity though, mostly poems and scheduling blog posts, reading about how to structure different kinds of poetry and learning about screenwriting, just to keep doing something to keep me sane.

But I have to say, I am struggling to make sense about anything and I am pretty sure in a couple of months’ time, when things have calmed down a bit more and I re-read this month’s posts, I will wonder where the heck my mind was all through these weeks?

A couple of friends of mine have DM me who are already published authors, they believe because of my stressful time and because it is generally a bad time of the year for finding representation, that I should hold off until February – but I am debating this.

You see, I fully want to approach an agent before Christmas, because I’ve planned it for so long.  January I will start my YouTube channel and I will look into affiliate programs and my blog will become more focused too, with photographs of me and my artwork etc.

I am determined that life starts at forty and I am forty on the 3rd October 2022.

Paul is super stressed out by my proclamation of starting a new life in October, because he sees his cup as half empty and doesn’t see how I am able to do all my plans for a new life, when we can’t pay our heating bills and our food budget is going to be halved from next month. Remember I’ve said in the past I don’t go to doctor appointments anymore, because we can’t afford the taxi fare, well, whether I am sick or not from next month or onwards, I can only go now in a life or death situation, meaning I am neglecting myself medically all the more!

It’s that or food, or it used to be like that – now its the doctor, food or heating and we’re choosing food right now, we’ve stocked up on hot water bottles and over the years we’ve bought fleece blankets, thank goodness!

But I say, financially our lives will improve from January, because I am stubborn and I will make something happen, I am not like Paul – I don’t like making do and I don’t like making excuses for being in poverty, I don’t whine and sit back hoping for someone to give me a leg up.

I was bedbound sick for years, but I eventually got a little better and now able to do more around the house – but still not strong enough for my January plans – but still, I am going to force it, because I can’t stand this life!

I refuse to tolerate it any longer!

Paul has convinced himself our relationship is over once I get published, because he doesn’t see why I would want to stick around, it’s almost like he is pushing me away these days.

My choice is to push myself out of the mud no matter what the pain or the embarrassment or commit suicide; one or the other and I chose life!

Happy reading…

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The vulgar subject

People sometimes ask me if I ever became successful, what would I spend my money on? 

I have answers to that, but first I want to ask why do people believe that just because someone has become rich for whatever reason, that for the rest of their lives all they will ever do is try to spend it and that they must and often do so? 

It’s just puzzling, because for me, I have known rock bottom poverty and the idea of squandering money when I get it, is not something that I am comfortable with!  Though saying that, I do resent having money when I know someone else is suffering and I tend to give generously when I do have it – never privately, I do it through charities and campaigns, because I wasn’t always poor you know?

It’s a weird thing about life and me, my relationship with money has always been boom and bust to both extremes.

Now for what I tend to do when I get lucky.  I tend to gift people I haven’t been generous to for a while, such as close friends and family if it is a special occasion and I tend to splash out on a nice group meal either cooked at home or out.

My next tendency is to buy things to improve my pets quality of life and things for my garden; then books in my “to buy list” and then little curios from spirituality shops, like crystals, mythological ornaments, tarot cards and Feng shui specific things.

I reckon if I won the lottery in life or literally win the lottery, my ideas would be to get myself a bigger menagerie of pets (domestic and small farm ones only) and a property with a lot of land so I can practically live outdoors in my edible forest garden, whilst playing with crystals and tarot cards and making miniature worlds with miniaturisation hobbies, I can never afford to get into currently.  I love miniatures!

I am also with Henry in the idea of all these train sets, purely for the joy of making miniature worlds for the trains to go through and little towns scattered here and there – if I had the room and the money! 

I don’t intend to grow up, I am and always will be childish and playful and for me its bills first, then fun then education then I will contemplate other grown up things like clothing and furniture. 

Weirdly enough, clothing is something that is way down on the list, despite my love for fashion!  I love fashion, but only if it’s not too expensive and only if it’s comfortable and I like it – comfort is essential above everything else, I don’t like to suffer whilst looking good!  I do like big brand names like Moschino and Alexander McQueen, but I look at the price tag and I think… well… don’t be stupid, the amount of beautiful giant crystals I could get with that or a lovely playhouse for the rabbit in the garden for the summer, or Henry a lovely trip at Severn Valley and yet another Hornby trainset special edition I could buy instead!

I’ve never understood the people who say enjoy your life, spend 10k on a dress and get yourself a yacht and go on five holidays a year mind-set!   A yacht would be wasted on me as I get home sick after five days away, after two weeks of being away I have more or less rooted myself elsewhere and don’t want to go back.  It’s the gypsy in me; my maternal grandmother was half Romany, hence the love for crystals and tarot –she taught me when I was 7yrs old – they say don’t teach kids that before that age as they are not strong enough to fend off spirits who may try to make changelings out of them!

This is the same grandma who watched horror movies with me and wrestling, as I was growing up – she was a cool gran, but completely and utterly non-domestic, couldn’t cook to save her life, in fact she’d daren’t cook, it was safer not to!  A complete anomaly to her gypsy roots, where every woman polished their brasses daily and knew umpteen recipes off by heart!

But I think the most lavish thing my money would ever be spent on is lots of temporary homes everywhere I am likely to visit regularly, just so I don’t get home sick, if that makes sense? 

The second elaborate thing would be 5k on giant crystals or getting a new pony or a goat, but other than that – I am pretty simple in my hopes and dreams for life.

All I really want is The Garden Of Eden; a lot of love from lots of close relationships, good food, lots of snuggles with animals and wildlife in the garden, freedom to be myself and peace.

Once I have that, I will feel in paradise and I won’t need to die.

I’m a natures child who is very kooky, playful, childish, sensitive, have too much love to give and who needs a garden of organic edible wonder, an animal enthusiast and a tardy creative, because I get side-tracked in my daydreams.  But I am also fierce and passionate and I hate injustice and ignorance and I was the kid who got beaten up because she saved the other ones who weren’t strong enough by taking the blows for them – that’s me, nothing more and nothing less!

Happy reading!

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