Tag Archives: schedule

Cross of changes

This time last year I would struggle to see how my habits and day to day activities would have changed so much in such a short space of time – I would want to question, what’s happened to me?

I still do… but I think I know what’s happened…

Yes, it all goes back to my instinct that everything is going to change soon and I mean everything!

For me on a personal level, on all levels of personal life – not the world, this isn’t some kind of big major worldwide prophecy; no… it’s very personal to me.

I think this energy has spurred me on to fight for life a bit.

Though I do have setbacks, I am not as depressed as I used to be and I am not so absorbed in unhealthy things and trying to zone out as much as I was.  As I said, I do have setbacks; there are days where I wonder if I should bother to fight – but then this energy shows up and acts like some kind of motivational coach with me.

Don’t dare give up on the idea of “me” kind of energy!

Somebody is coming into my life soon, I can feel it – and I think they have a strong spiritual connection to me whoever they might be.  They don’t want me giving up on them, because by not focusing on changes in my life and by not fighting for my life, I would have given up on them!

Now this can all be in my head – I may very well be suffering from imaginary friend syndrome or something along those lines… but is it so bad for me, if it makes me get up in the morning, change my eating habits, exercise a little and make outlandish plans for myself and make me fierce about any adversary? 

If it’s a spirit tricking me, then are they really malevolent for doing so?

Except for the fact that this idealistic person not coming into my life after all and heart-breaking me a year down the line… the rest of it is pretty good, no?

So, what’s changed?

Whether for good or bad, I am not reading more than a couple of pages a day on average now.

I find it hard to sit around for longer than an hour without doing some small thing.

I am singing a lot and starting to dance a bit.

I am not playing games online for longer than an hour a day anymore.

I am talking to strangers more – OK, they are online, but I never used to bother so much until recently.

I am forcing myself to eat a high protein and Vitamin C diet.

I am trying to get 20 minutes of exercise every two days at minimum.

I am fighting to spend time and be more active in my son Henry’s life more, instead of giving up without a fight to whatever his dad wants!

I am no longer afraid of telling Paul exactly what I think about him and what’s going on in our situation in regards to the poverty, the house falling apart etc. – I am no longer accepting our life!

I am starting to get back my old high standards for myself and living in general – unfortunately there are too many obstacles but I am trying to smash them down wherever possible!

I haven’t stuck to my goals in regards to my writing, because I am too focused on my transition and because the environment is too chaotic at times.

I also decided that I am going to throw caution to the wind and practise reiki on my son to see if it helps his behaviour and it has!

Henry was diagnosed autistic last week and since I started to treat him exactly how I did my former clients and since doing reiki on him, he is a different person.  Henry and I have come to an agreement that many things we like to do or say together should be kept away from his dad, because his dad gets hot-headed about it all.

Henry likes to learn about culture and religion, particularly the Jewish aspect of our ancestry and he likes to ask questions about other religions such as Christianity and specific biblical figures such as Moses and Jesus.  But if Paul over hears us, the arguments that blow out of control is… I can’t describe it, sorry!

So Henry and I have agreed to be more private about it and talk about it when his dad is downstairs and we’re in his room together or he is in mine.

Henry clings to tradition; it’s his comfort blanket, as it is mine… I can understand that, but Paul can’t!

Henry was so excited about something he learned about Jesus today that he absent-mindedly rushed off to tell his dad – but was met with terse rejection and then Paul started ranting about his mess and stuff and Henry came back in tears to me, hugging me tightly because he doesn’t understand why his dad hates it all so much!

Because Henry was raised to dislike Jesus for being a terrorist etc – yet I put Henry straight and said on the contrary, he was a God fearing man who respected God and was even a rabbi – Henry was shocked that Jesus was Jewish and Henry admitted to me that he was always afraid of Jesus because he thought he was a bad guy.  I said, no – but what is wrong is that he is would turn in his grave if he knew people worshipped him instead of God!

Henry’s eyes literally lit up, he looked so enlightened and it was a lovely change in him, he looked genuinely joyous!

But this and other things we can’t talk about around Paul – professional wrestling, robot wars, and the history of politics and good family memories to a certain extent.

Unfortunately, it’s all the things that Henry loves and shuts himself away doing on his own for hours every night.

Henry is slowly learning there is a vast contrast between me and his dad and Henry asked me a couple of days ago – “why didn’t you even share and say these things to me before” and the answer was simple and true… because your dad wouldn’t like it!

Why am I choosing to go behind Paul’s back now?

Because Henry needs the balance, Henry feels attacked at all sides and when I don’t take any stance at all and just sit there – he looks at me imploring me for help or a response and when I just say… do as your dad says, he looks defeated and broken and that’s hard to stomach long term!  Especially when you feel that what your partner or ex-partner has just done, is wrong!

Henry’s biggest struggle in life is learning that his father will not give him a cultural identity.

Everybody needs some kind of cultural identity, even if they are mixed up like my family – it shows us where we are from and shapes who we are, take that away and you are left to wonder what you are… what do you stand for and all kinds of existential worries!

Something like that is hard on an adult, let alone a child, especially an autistic one that doesn’t even have the security blanket an autistic person needs of a regular schedule day to day.

Henry functions quite normally at school, because it is scheduled.  Since Henry was three years old, around the time I got sick – I have been fighting Paul to get dinner at 6pm sharp.  But dinner in this house can be anywhere between 4pm and 10pm, there is no regular meal time table here and its worse in the school holidays.

Since Henry’s diagnosis I have tried to instil in Paul, schedule is everything for an autistic child, please sort it out!

But it goes in one ear out the other.

It drives me crazy no having a schedule too, my stomach can’t stomach meal times that are all over the place!

You try giving a child a roast dinner an hour before he goes to bed!

I struggle sleeping if I eat too much before bed, but a child?

There are days where we have our dinner and we have our crepes for pudding and fifteen minutes later, it’s come on Henry, bed time!

After all these years and all the times I’ve told him – it’s got to change, it never has!

I am grateful I am getting better physically – that I am able to do a little around the house, not much – because my efforts aren’t respected, they are usually undone in a couple of hours by Paul.  But – I am trying to really fight to take back control over the house.

So I can stand on my own two feet and do so well enough that I can move out into my own home!

Paul is becoming rebellious lately because he knows what’s up; I haven’t hidden anything from him.

We had a good friendship which seems to be slowly turning toxic since he found that other lady – which no longer is in his life.  He has tried to make amends with me, tried to bump up a little affection by being more mindful about hugs goodnight and goodbye etc. – but I am rejecting them, because he originally rejected me.

I lived in this house dotingly knowing that I was never happy here, that the house was a disgrace, that the environment was uncomfortable, that he was financially lazy and insecure and that he didn’t have any inclination towards intimacy with me and he certainly never defended me from our neighbour.  I did so dotingly because it was my family and I made do… I don’t want to make do anymore, because I realised that I was more loyal to him than he was to me and that was a big slap in the face!

I can and will tolerate a lot from a person if I know that they love and want me – take that away from me and I won’t stay, I don’t like leaving people, but if I know I am unwanted or easily disposed of, it makes it hard for me to want to try and make do.

I really will tolerate so much from a person, if they remain consistent in letting me know how much they love, respect and want me!  Just those things, that’s all I require oh and don’t humiliate me or insult my intelligence. 

I can tolerate so much; I tolerate rude behaviour, wacky behaviour, selfish behaviour, jealousy, and control, loss of identity, being made to become a tireless servant and to a certain extent a little aggression.  But I can’t tolerate humiliation, being reminded I am disposable, people constantly correcting me, because they believe I am stupid or misinformed. 

As long as you want me, respect me, love me, never humiliate me or treat me like I am stupid – then we’re going to be OK! 

Because my very nature is easy-going, I go with the flow and I blend in with whatever people and environment I am around the most, I am a chameleon – I am happy to be like that.  I thrive on love and acceptance and I give so much back and I don’t complain – I may cheerfully joke around and be sarcastic about my guy’s malchauvinistic ways or ego or mock affronted about their laziness… but its all in jest, really I wouldn’t want things to be different.  I miss those kinds of relationships, which is why I used to be heavily involved in the BDSM lifestyle, I wanted a husband like that.

They love me, they keep me, they get everything – I make sure to give the world to them and more if I could!

Hopefully the guy would be a touchy feely kind of guy, hands on, obsessed slightly – because I like being touched and I touching too!  In normal relationships I am too clingy, I am too passive, I am too needy or odd because I want to do things for them all the time… does that make sense?  I know the only guys who appreciate the kind of woman I am, are those in the lifestyle who aren’t emotionally distant and healing from some obscure emotional wounds from their past.  The kind of dominants who know what they want and will get it out of me by hook or by crook!

I find the most painful thing about being in a relationship like that is being ignored for too long!  Or not being given a sense of duty or daily tasks to fulfil and it can be hard when things aren’t regularly appreciated in some way – when there is no reward, whether just verbal or otherwise.

Yes I know, I sound pathetic – but it’s just me and it’s what makes me tick!

I think that if these spiritual insights aren’t founded to be true within a few months’ time, but I manage to get fit enough to leave Paul… I may go back into the lifestyle, look for a dominant or a daddy figure and do that rather than be alone.

Thing is, most dominants don’t like women over 28yrs old, especially if she wants to have more children like I do!

So I may not get what I want from life soon enough.

But I am trying so hard to manifest this, you have no idea!

Thanks for reading!

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Filed under Defining myself

A habitual creature

I haven’t given up my project AD, but writing it in this environment is increasingly hard for me – there is little respect for my time for doing this and Henry keeps having a lot of time off from school due to sickness.

When Henry is home it is almost impossible to just simply function like normal, because Paul and Henry are constantly sniping and screaming at each other for one reason or another.

I would love to start a YouTube channel very soon, but to be honest, it may have to be in twenty minute snatches of time, because that’s as long as they go between slanging matches with each other. 

My project AD is definitely developing a lot in my head, I just wish I could get it down in writing – it is starting to give me a headache as I can’t do as much as I want to anymore.  There are times, like now, I have only written four short paragraphs and that is enough for me to lose my flow and have to come back an hour or so later to try and add more, because someone has decided to scream at another person 3ft from my ear.

Thankfully though, right now, it’s not so bad – it’s not the usual problem, but it could soon escalate. 

Project AD is developing into a gothic-noir in my opinion, though there are comedy elements in it and it is written for children I am seeing the artwork as quite similar to those found in movies such as The Crow, Batman or Tim Burton style.

I am loving the comedic scenes I am seeing in my head and there will be more humans in the story than I originally planned – normal humans, children specifically, which help the mutated animals come to grips with the post human ruled world, by learning how to adapt to their mutations.

All I need to write just one novel is two hours a day over six weeks for each draft, that’s all and I can’t even do that in this environment.

The irony is, I lived in a violent family where I was constantly stressed in London when I lived with my parents; but it was quiet a lot of the time and I always knew at specific times without a shadow of a doubt that things will definitely be quiet, because my family were creatures of habits and they didn’t like going outside of their routine.  So I always planned my writing around them.

For example, my mother would be out of the house between 10am and 1pm at least 3 days a week without me, which was writing time.  Then I knew she was addicted to her soaps on TV for 4 evenings a week, meaning that between 7pm and 9pm I was free to write again.

If I was lucky she’d want to watch a movie at 9pm till 11pm that I wouldn’t be interested in and that meant more writing could get done.

Which meant for me that I was writing an average of two to eight hours per day when I lived in London, compared to twenty minute snatches of time, now!

There is no routine in this house that is stable and it kind of drives me insane.

No TV schedules for other members of the household, no going out at regular intervals, it is all up in the air and uncertain all of the time! 

The only thing I can guarantee on (if Henry isn’t sick) is that on a Tuesday evening every two weeks Henry will go to a charity for young carers for three hours after school.  Young carers deal with much more than just children who care for their parents, they deal with kids in poverty who have experienced being around a lot of people who are disabled or sick and are helping them to learn how to cope mentally with that.  Henry specifically has experienced a lot of death in the family since he was very small and it is taking its toll on him.

What bothers me is there are so many other new stories I want to write as well and it is driving me bonkers – I just want two hours a day and apparently that is too much to ask for!

My attention span has always been really bad – but since living in this chaos it is nearly unmanageable.  I can write posts for my blog, because if I lose my flow it won’t be as damaging as when I am writing a novel.  If you get me?

This is probably why some of my posts seem to be all over the place and repetitive, because I am interrupted a lot.

My best posts are usually written when people are in bed.

I am getting so emotionally drained by all of this tension that I am not reading as much as I used to, I am falling asleep watching YouTube in bed and all sorts of places.

As my spirits have been trying to tell me, caterpillar you need to sleep as much as you can because soon you are going to transform into a butterfly and you need all the energy you can get to fly!

Anyway, thanks for reading!

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A day in serious writing

People have asked me to share what my hardest working day in writing looks like generally; basically from what my friends have experienced when staying with me, it contains too much stimulus during my work that they get terrible headaches within the hour of just watching me, let alone having it as part of their own writing regime!

But I will give you the general gist of what my serious writing days look like!

I wake up and it can take around ninety minutes for me to clear my chest before I can even get out of bed!

My instant reaction is to drink a small glass of water and then find some caffeine, either Pepsi original or a black sweet coffee and a salty snack or apple.

I open my computer, wait for fifteen minutes for it to load up and update stuff.  My instant reaction is to update goodreads, if I have been reading the night before.

I put on my choice of music to get me into the mood for writing a specific scene I left off from last time. 

To warm my brain up I write a blog post, some poems or research the latest in fantasy, horror and sci-fi entertainment or I look at my aspiration quotes in my positivity diary, depends on my mood when I woke up.

This can be a further ninety minutes before actually writing towards a novel.

I tend to avoid emails until after writing, because a bad email can completely throw my day!

Whilst writing, depends on the scene and my mood, I may switch the music to some TV or YouTube background stimulus, of scenes and subjects I am working on, it’s my attempt to try and move myself out of reality for a while.

When I am writing, I tend to write in fifteen minute bursts, pause, read what I have done, talk to someone who is around for a few minutes, watch or listen to more stimulus for around fifteen minutes, before continuing on different work entirely.

If I am on a roll, I generally can keep the roll for up to three hours if I am completely undisturbed, this never happens in this house before midnight!  So if I want a long roll in my writing, I have to start this after midnight generally!  Depends on how busy my household is during the day – what I mentioned here, is my serious working day when Henry is at school.

But a majority of my work is done between the hours of midnight and four AM, when I used to take my writing more seriously!

Because of the kinds of stimulus I need and I am deaf, I have to rely on headphones to get the full benefit of the stimulus at those hours in the night, because how loud I need it to be to be functional is anti-social!  My hearing is at just less than 1 hertz in my right ear and 6.7 hertz in my left!

So generally I work in fifteen minute bursts, rest for fifteen minutes and whilst resting from novel writing, I am actually preparing blog posts, writing poetry or increasing the stimulus to prepare me to write more.  Reading books and watching appropriate similar scenes elsewhere or looking for art similar to the scene I am writing about.

So, in fifteen minutes I average at writing two hundred and fifty words!  On my serious writing days, towards one novel I will sometimes get three thousand words done, my record has been twelve thousand words, but that was when I couldn’t break my roll and even went hungry for it!

My average words in a serious writing day I would say is anywhere between fifteen hundred and four thousand words, depends as I said, on my mood, stimulus and household noises.

But ultimately I write towards one of four projects day to day and only treat one as the serious project, which is likely to get the fifteen hundred to three thousand words done in the day – the others may get anywhere between two hundred and fifty to a thousand words done.

My average daily word count on a serious writing day towards all current projects could estimate anywhere between two thousand and eight thousand words!

But on my not so serious writing days, it averages around eight hundred words to three thousand towards all projects, including blog posts and poetry!

I think in the past five years, since my burn out, I have a serious writing day about once a week, when I am sick, like I was between February and May this year, I got nothing written whatsoever.

For the past three weeks I have got back into the swing of writing again as I am not as ill as I have been, still sick, but it’s not enough to completely keep me in bed!  So I have been writing around two thousand five hundred words per day, usually towards practise snippets, ideas, blog posts and poetry.  I have not yet started to add towards my current projects.

Though saying that, I have scheduled this post in advance, this post was written on the 24th May 2022 and I believe in the next couple of days I will be writing towards my comic project and one novel project a lot, because it’s really grinding at me in my head, it won’t let me ignore it anymore.

So I think the brain is going to win by the 26th.

The reason I haven’t written towards the novels now is because I am trying so hard to decide which way I want the character to go.

The character I am working on is a complexed character with a complexed past and a huge twist at the end of the plot, but the thing is I need to be sure how he is going to react to his daughter’s decision accurately and realistically, in order for it to feel believable to my readers.

Because what she does is a pretty big thing that will take some digesting!

The problem comes at this – Paul is the only person I can talk to about my writing and he is so neutral all the time and says that everything is good, I can’t be sure if it really is!  I am too sick to go to regular writer’s group’s offline and I have been trying to decide if I should do an online group instead.  But I am scared of sharing my work with strangers, because once bitten twice shy and all that!

I’ve had my work stolen by longstanding family friends before!

I don’t like being on my own regarding this, I do need a group, but a lot of my friends who write abandoned me as soon as they knew I was having a baby in 2009.

Happy reading!

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Filed under About my work

Formatting my life

I have concocted a plan (it is not a resolution for the New Year, I never go in for that sort of commitment each year, it can be demoralising at times), but the plan is a sort of schedule of a kind of commitment to my writing; specific writing, not just any old writing – this is a new technique I am starting as from the 1st February 2022.

From the 1st of February 2022 I will allocate Friday and Saturday as a weekend for me, as those days work best as a weekend for me than any other day, because those are my busiest family and shopping days, when I could get out and about.  I have also allocated the time slot between Sunday and Thursday where I know I am least likely to be interrupted by the household on a day to day basis, which is 1pm to 3pm.  This 1pm to 3pm time slot is my time block for working solely on one specific novel only.

I have chosen to write a minimum of 1k words during this time per day, with the goal to finish 5k words in one week and 20k words in one month.  If I do not manage to write 1k in two hours of writing (which will be very unlikely), then I will work over that time until I do!

Normally, when I set out to write my stories, I tend to write an average of 500 to 750 words every fifteen minutes, if the story has been rigorous planned beforehand.

By forcing myself to use the regular time slot of 1 to 3pm each day, I hope to eventually build a habit, where my mind will trick itself into focusing on one single project at that particular time of the day and therefore I should become more productive.

I am doing this because I would like to be the sort of author that can finish at least three books per year.  I have always worked best with a schedule and deadline and unfortunately Paul is not very good at keeping to timetables and so forth, so he is not the person who will help push me… I have to learn to figure it out for myself until I develop professional relationships that will do that for me eventually.

I have pinned messages on walls around the house to remind me on what I should be focusing on.  All of this was advice from a book I borrowed from the local library called “The One Thing” by Gary Keller; the messages I have pinned around the house are “UNTIL MY WRITING IS DONE… EVERYTHING ELSE IS A DISTRACTION!” and I have also made another message which says “1K WORDS PER DAY IS 5 BOOKS A YEAR”!

1k words per day are very doable, but it wasn’t focused on anything in particular. 

I spent the whole of January trying to figure out my writing habits and typing them up on a spreadsheet to see what projects and things I am likely to write day to day, how many words per project I do each time and how long each time I spend writing towards them;  The spreadsheet was a revelation.

I spread myself around nine different projects and most of those projects are years old!  I write an average of 1500 words per subject and approximately 90 minutes per day.  However, I mostly focus on future blog writing, diary entries, journal entries and research notes, more than I do my actual novel writing.  Using a pie chart, I learned that the average time I spent adding towards a novel was around 20 minutes every 3 days and just under 1500 words each time.  In other words, I spent a lot of my writing time, not writing towards stories, but just playing around with ideas.

I felt there has to be a change in order for me to become productive.

As from the 1st February 2022 I will use the time slot of 1pm to 3pm to write towards one specific project daily until it is complete, then I will store it away for six weeks and look at it with fresh eyes to edit.  But during the maturing process as I will call it, I will immediately start on a new piece of work and so on and so on.

Any research papers, journaling, diary entries and blogging must be done outside of the hours of 1pm and 3pm, or else things will never change.

During writing the story, I will not interject ideas into the story as I am doing the first drafts either, it should be following the direction of the plan that I have laid out beforehand.  If my brain does another direction, then so be it, but it must be written like it is intended to be the final draft, though it won’t be.

I feel this is how I am going to get things done.

I am so dedicated to this new system starting on the 1st February, that I am not even making myself feel bad about not completing anything right now.  I seeing it as a sort of holiday – Paul thinks I need to do this too, he felt that I needed to have days off and I was always very angry at the idea of that – primarily because my imagination has never had a day off in its entire existence.  But I think, doing the actual work, does need to have days where I can allow myself time to relax from it.

I have made a holiday schedule for myself of days I won’t force myself to write at all, those weekend days, Friday and Saturday, but also bigger blocks of time where I can guiltlessly do other things if I want to.  I have allowed myself time blocks for Henry’s school holidays and other days in the year which are typically busy for me, though the six weeks summer holiday I have only blocked out three weeks, because I feel six weeks is just too long a time.

I can write if I want to, outside of those hours, but I am not going to be unkind to myself if I don’t!

I know all told I have blocked out 136 days a year, more than anyone would in normal jobs, but I do know that I push myself when I know I am expected to and I know I tend to do so much all at once that I easily burn out. 

I don’t know if any of you remember that a few years ago, I think it was 2017, not sure, that I did NaNoWriMo and I did 60k words by the 19th November and I completely wore myself out creatively for over two years because of it.  I came to the computer with dread of revisiting the project and writing any novel at all.  It was a really hard hurdle to get over.

I can’t go there again.

But I do know, at my writing speed and rigorous planning habit, that I will be able to produce three books per year by doing this new method.

I never said it is going to be easy, but I do know my limitations and I understand that keeping to two hours per day will be a doddle for me.  But, I do know this is not a perfect world and most of my hospital appointments are usually around 12 to 2pm, on those particular days I will have to force myself to do my 2 hours later in the day or try to reschedule the appointments.

Happy reading everyone!

P.S I know I said 1k per day is 5 books per year, but my aim is only 3 and I won’t be working every single one of the 365 days of the year!

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Filed under About my work

Schedules & personal butt kickers

Reading as much as I used to have taken a back bencher in the past couple of years, my Goodreads.com account is evidence of this; but I have a plan which seems to be keeping me on track with my library rentals.

Before this downturn in how much I read, I used to borrow ten books a week from the library and read them all, then it lessened to just three per week, now it is around four to six per month and I haven’t been able to read them all by the end of the three week period either.

At the moment I have six books out from the library and some of those I have re-borrowed the maximum amount of times, one such book has only nineteen days left for me to read it and it is only halfway and I have already re-borrowed this book three times in the past and I can have it no more after that!  So, noticing that I have just nineteen days left to read this book, I panicked, because there are approximately two hundred pages to read of this enormous essay about “The History of Judaism”.  Why am I reading such a book?  I will explain later in another post…

So how do I solve the problem of reading things in time?  I have only just started this idea from yesterday, so who knows how well it will work for more long term!  The plan is this… I calculate with a calculator as I have dyscalculia, the number of pages per book I have and divide that by twenty one, which represents twenty one days, the average length of time to keep a book without re-borrowing.  So, I did this will all the books I am currently reading on Goodreads that are borrowed from the library currently.  This breaks down each book into littler bites and gets every book picked up daily! 

To a lot of people who love reading this sounds like a nightmare plan, because I know a lot of readers can’t put a book down until it’s completely read for another book.  But for me this works a treat because I lack focus and have a very shoddy attention span.  Paul believes I may have undiagnosed attention deficit disorder, because I can’t stick to one thing solidly and concentrate on it for more than fifteen minutes at a time.

So for me, the idea of skipping through books one after the other in the same day works well. 

So my current list is broken down like this;

History of Judaism by Martin Goodman 11 pages per day for the next 19 days

Fermentation on wheels by Tara Whitsitt 9 pages per day

Preservation book 17 pages per day

Abundance by Aly Fowler 10 pages per day

Burning the books by Richard Ovenden 11 pages per day

The last book from the library is actually currently completed, so I shan’t add that here.

To me, each from the above would take around twenty minutes to accomplish when not having a bad sinus day, which in comparison to how fast I used to read, is very, very, slow.

But it is doable if I break it down throughout the day, rather than sit back with sixty two pages a night in bed in around ninety minutes.

It is not a maximum requirement, it is a minimum requirement, if my attention span is enjoying the book naturally I will read more if I feel I can and have the time.

Yesterday, so far, I have read more in a day, than I would have otherwise, if I had not had given myself a schedule and deadline.  I think I have mentioned before I am a person who thrives on deadlines? 

Yes I am one of these weirdos who literally rot away in a corner without some kind of schedule or motivational person hounding me to do things all the while.  Unfortunately Paul is rather passive on this matter and so, Henry, my doting eleven year old son, has taken it upon himself to be my butt kicker and I thank him tremendously for it!

So, any future postings, writings and art and even YouTube videos and podcasts, will really be, to the thanks of my son who is prodding me to accomplish things.  He too, has made a sort of pact with me that I should do the same for him and we will together, become a successful family.  Totally Henry’s idea and isn’t it brilliant?   I am so proud of him!

Happy reading!

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Filed under About Me

Self Isolation Experience

As the world is forced into self-isolation, many aren’t coping, both physically and mentally; but there are some (introverts not included) which to them, it is a way of life; many not by choice or design and I am one of them.

It has taken me a time to write this, because I was not sure what to really say on the matter until now, purely because up until now, I didn’t think much of the world would understand the frustrations and things that I do in self-isolation before this moment in time.  Now I think or rather hope, that I would become crystal clear in what I am about to say and with a depth of understanding from those who are now forced into a similar situation by forces not of their own design too.

The isolation I have been forced into throughout my life by my mother, is entirely different to this pandemic, there was no fatal disease which could have affected me during that time, nor was there any government ruling set about to enforce my mother’s commands, though saying that, to me (at the time I was living with my mother) her word was law and any deviation from that law was harshly punishable.

My life in isolation day to day was like this;

There was no real schedule outside of dinner time, my day to day life was higgledy-piggledy and often turned upside side with the craziest stuff going on most of the time, there was in a word (insecurity), there was no predictability in my day.  The only things I could rely on to be part of my day were, cleaning and eating dinner at 4pm on the dot.  I was taught there was no comfort or security within the home, because nothing would remain the same day to day – in a literal sense.  My mother suffered from OCD which meant she cleaned everything thoroughly and demanded that everyone in the house do her crazy cleaning rituals too with her, with the exception of dad because he worked – even if I went out to work occasionally on the times she allowed me to, it didn’t apply to me.  Cleaning wasn’t so bad, but her obsessions to have a constant supply of household projects were both wasteful and sometimes downright silly.  She would move the furniture around the house a lot, just for the sake of it and often she would end up putting the furniture back in the same way it always is by the end of the day unhappy with her new lay out – sometimes those lay outs would last for weeks, but often it would go back to the same old design.  It wouldn’t be so bad if it was a table now and again, but it was entire rooms being moved in one day!  You was never warned when this would be, sometimes it would have started before I even woke up in the morning, sometimes it would start after dinner and there were even occasions she started it around midnight!

She would also have decorating projects, where she would re-carpet, or laminate a room and expect it to be done in a day maybe two days at most, painting walls was very popular with her, we did this more often than we should have.  Redesigning the garden was another love of hers, constantly moving plants around and then wondering why her favourites die so easily.  She never liked to leave the house more than three times a week herself for shopping or visiting, but would often insist in going out every day even for 20 minutes for walks.  Funnily enough even when we had dogs, the dogs would usually be left behind whilst we, the owners go for a walk without them – which was something that never made sense to me – as a consequence our dogs were usually classed as obese by the vet.

When going for walks, other than the neighbourhood gossipers, mum wouldn’t talk to anyone no matter how friendly they seemed.  Often she couldn’t be bothered with the neighbourhood gossipers and would literally drive to another street within a 3 mile radius and walk around there, so she didn’t have to talk to anyone.  But one or twice she would walk the same places so often, their own local gossipers would come out and talk to her, thinking she was another neighbour from nearby, when that happened, she would avoid the area for several weeks.  My mother never liked me standing with her when she was talk to other people, even when I was an adult, she would often require me to walk away and come back occasionally and she would give me secret hand signals to tell me roughly how long she will tolerate this person and what the conversation might be about.  She had her secret codes to talk to me, so others never knew how she was controlling me and my actions and even my own conversational input.

I was taught this by her aggression after events happened, she would tell me what she did and how I should have reacted and often told me that other people in the world would understand what she did, but because I don’t go out and is active in the world, I haven’t learned these basic social instincts.  I learned through my therapist that what she said was bullshit.

Sometimes mum would catch herself out, if we had a visitor sometimes she would absent-mindedly call me into the room, give me her secret signals which were both hand movement, sitting positions and various snorts which could be mistaken for her clearing her throat but I was taught that was a sign of displeasure and to please steer the conversation for her.  Sometimes people were so used to the idea that when they visited I was the tea maker that if I was called in and mum didn’t say anything to me about the tea or spoke to me at all, that they felt they had to remind mum to prompt me to make more tea for them as obviously, that was the reason she called me in, wasn’t it?  As rude as it may seem, they often did this; most of our visitors were family or rarely long-standing friends and Jehovah Witnesses.

Although we had visitors and talked to neighbours my life was socially isolated in that I was only allowed minimal conversation with them and was often shooed away with mums secret language to me, we would visit one person a week on average, sometimes we would visit more depends on either what mum wanted from them or what the person was going through at the time.  Again, we could be sitting at another person’s house for several hours and during that time I would probably have said less than ten sentences in all of that time by mothers prompt.  It was usual though that she would encourage me as entertainment occasionally, where I was made to play spiritualist as it were.  As I have a clairvoyant talent and I also do various readings, such as tarot and things.  This was the only time I was allowed to talk as much as I liked to whomever I was supposed to be entertaining.  Another thing I was allowed to do was to talk as much as I liked about philosophy, religion and spirituality; but even there, there was a limit to how much I could say and for how long.  Sometimes mum would give me permission to mock her, be cheeky to her to liven things up and make it seem like I had a personality of sorts.

It all may seem very strange to those who have had a normal life and upbringing, but to me at the time, I thought it was normal stuff, because my mum would often tell me, that this is how the world is.  Everything is finite, there is a finite way about people that as someone who is not worldly, doesn’t understand and that is why, when I socialised independently I got myself into embarrassing situations because I misread the person.  Often I reacted to other people based on how my mother interacted with me and the other person, obviously being unaware totally misread me or felt I had a split personality as I would often drift in and out of conversations quickly, thinking I have displeased them in some way, but no one understood what I was on about and to be honest, they shouldn’t have as it isn’t normal.

My activities also included gardening, I gardened a lot, I would garden a small collection of flowers but most of the florals I wasn’t allowed to touch or even learn about as my parents were possessive of them, as strange as it is, they would not teach me a thing about them at all, not even their names.  My main gardening duties were the fruits and vegetables that my mum wanted for that year, I was also allowed a small area entirely of my own which included herbs and a couple of small tightly controlled trees, which at the time I never knew would have been called a bonsai version – which generally just meant heavily pruned and small in size.  I wasn’t allowed to tell anybody that I did the gardening as much as I did, I was only allowed to mention my designated section, not the other work I did for my parents – that was their glory and they fiercely protected their reputation for being amazing gardeners.  So I had learned from an early age that I had to swallow my pride and see all my hard work as the credit to someone else other than me, I even had to lie for my parents to make them sound amazing and even praise them for the work.  Basically I knew, that I was praising myself but mum was prompt in reminding me when visitors had gone that I was not to feel proud of myself for what they had said, because I would never have done it if it weren’t her wishes for me to do so, so I had no right to take pride in my work because it wasn’t really my work.  I just cared for it for her that is all, the credit will always be hers.

My dad was very sweet, he would occasionally tell people that I did it and taught them whatever about certain things, but mum would often attack dad for it when visitors were home as she felt shown up.

I was taught to cook for my family from the age of seven, everything from full English breakfast, lamb stew to meat and potato pies.  I would cook the main dinner for the house approximately three times a week, sometimes more, but I mostly made lunch which would be anywhere between 11am and 3pm depends.  Come what may, main dinner was always 4pm, except for Sundays and special occasions, where it would then be a 2pm dinner.  Some Sundays I would visit my paternal grandmother and would have to consume two full roast dinners in one day, one with gran around noon and another when we get home to see mum around 6pm, because mum would anticipate we were fed at grans, so would knock Sunday roast dinner back by 2 hours.

My other gran didn’t have a specific day for being visited, because she was a fully mobile and energetic old lady who would quite often visit us and stay the night, or sometimes she would manage to steal me from my mother for the day or for a night at her house; which I loved, despite the very different and contrast environment of her home compared to my mums.  My gran was the total opposite of my mum, not house-proud at all, just saw home as a place to sleep and store stuff she liked.

When I was with my gran, she demanded total independence from me.  I had to be responsible for myself and as she was elderly, I had to help her, which meant going out alone and fetching things for her, walking her dog called Star and giving messages to other relatives around the area as they were all more or less neighbours within 10 streets of each other.  I had to make her tea too and occasionally she felt that if I had a problem with how messy and unclean her house was, then I should deal with it how I see fit – which meant I was housekeeping for two people – my mum and my gran.  But with gran, it was a choice, it wasn’t expected.  At least with gran I got recognition and whenever I finished anything she would comment that I am such a good girl, now how about treating yourself to something from the chippy and getting me something to eat too?

I liked it when gran stole me from mum, because sometimes it would be for a few days at a time and gran never liked staying indoors for long.  She was an early riser and out the door within half an hour of waking up, going to random places, visiting other relatives on a whim, going to car boot sales and whatever, wherever, anywhere within a 4 hour car drive one way, was doable in a day!  Life was an adventure with this gran.  Where my mother was obsessed with not going out much unless necessary and cleaning and decorating her house, my gran (her mother) was obsessed with going out, living day to day and avoiding housework full stop!

I think my gran had such a carefree attitude to life because she nearly died on several occasions throughout her life, she was born with a heart condition, lucky to live, had her first open heart surgery when she was 14 and has a new operation approximately every 2yrs throughout her whole life, more heart attacks and deep vein thrombosis than you could count along with haemophilia because of warfarin use.  To say my gran was a very lucky person is an understatement!  This includes finances too, she wasn’t rich, but she was never put in a situation of being too needy as she had the luck of the devil as she calls it.  At her direst she would often feel it is time to go bingo-ing and would often win big prizes, sometimes she didn’t even have to leave the house, as she often did government bonds and would get letters proclaiming big prizes, once for 20k!  I was one of the 5 grandchildren gran offered to take to Florida’s Disneyland but mum wouldn’t let me go, so she chose someone else, gran was angry about that as I was more into Disney than the other gran kids.  But what made gran more pissed off was the fact that mum put it about the family that she never even asked me!  Mum often lied, but was rarely caught out.

It is hard to stomach hearing someone slag off at every opportunity someone you know to be almost super hero like in quality to you, always spilling nasties out about them to someone who doesn’t know them.  Mum absolutely hated my gran, but only tolerated her because of a promise she gave to my grandad on his death bed, when grandad begged mum to look after my gran for him.  Grandad knew the hatred between gran and mum, mum never forgave grandad for putting that on her.  As mum said, if it wasn’t for what he said, she would have abandoned gran the moment he died.

People often asked why tolerated gran mum if there is so much contempt, but mum would never answer them, she used to use me to steer the conversation to something else.  The contempt was plain to everyone, because mum constantly spoke down to my gran and I think gran only tolerated it because of two things, she knew I needed a break from mum occasionally and stayed for me, and secondly, nobody else would tolerate her either as they were too busy.

Sometimes mum would try and stop my relationship with gran for a while, by sending me away to other relatives to live, so our relationship stalled.  Gran caught mum out a couple of times as she would drive all the way from Burnt Oak, North London, to Market Drayton in Shropshire to visit her daughter and to see me, just for the day, which is why mum decided to concentrate more on dads family.

When I wasn’t required for entertainment, cleaning or companionship, my days consisted of playing games on my PlayStation or the internet, writing vampire stories and reading horror books and books on spirituality.

Basically, I was kept too busy to harp on the fact that I was both lonely and stuck indoors most of the time, which I think is a key thing for self-isolators to learn.

As my mum often did, she did a spring clean of the whole house once or twice a week, gardening, if you don’t have a garden do window box or window sill gardening.  Read books, knit, sew, make your own clothes, draw, paint, write something, read magazines, play your with pets, do something with your kids, re-arrange your furniture.  There is always something to blooming do, so do it. 

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The last 8 days

For the last eight days I haven’t been writing as much as I should in regards to poetry and fiction, I hope that this following week will change.  I should think about essays and real life less and fiction more; well I will try my best.  I know you’re all hankering for the next pieces to my already shown short story snippets, well, I am unsure if I like either of them, but I’ll see what I will do over the next couple of weeks.  I really should focus more on fantasy though and not sexual fantasy either that’s not what this site is supposed to be about.

Yes, OK, some forms of dark fantasy fiction can come under erotic horror and I do write that from time to time, but at the moment it seems to have become the dominating formula of this site and that’s not what I have intended.

In future I will write more about gargoyles and that sort of thing, which has been my intention since middle May and have I got around to it?  No.

My friend Erin Cooper the artist is more on top of things than I am, she has already drawn a gargoyle for me to use on site, but I never got around to finishing the story I had planned for you all.  I had planned to schedule it for the 10th of June, three weeks ago, I was sure I was going to finish it by then, I had saved drafts on here for it, but to no avail, it’s severely late and will take me at least another four days to finish if I start now.  So that schedule has been cancelled and I’ve withdrawn the draft from this site and put it safe and snug on my PC desktop.

It’s such a lovely story too; I must get around to it.

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