This week I have mostly…

doing not much. It’s been mostly sedentary activities and background music has been essential. These have been my most played.

Obviously Lewis Capaldi’s new song has been on repeat. Like the rest of the sane population I have been dying for him to release new music. Forget Me doesn’t disappoint. Poignant lyrics and epic remake of a wham video clearly add up to a hit. I even bought the single. The first single I have purchased since the 90’s. It must be good. Factor in the bonus of having him back of social media and the world is a better place.

Forget Me vinyl single

Reflecting Light wormed it’s way into my play list via Gilmore Girls. I’m currently very annoyed at that stupid show. I started it in a fit of insomnia because a friend told me it was great (you know who you are!). Gilmore Girls is not amazing. It is a sort of ok sitcom with a few really annoying characters and main folk doing occasionally hideous things. I couldn’t stop watching, though because they suckered me in with Lorelai & Luke. I can resist a meant for each other but keep fucking couple. Thus, I had to press on to ensure they ended up together. Amongst my tears & frustration came Sam Phillips singing Reflecting Light.

I rode the pain down, got off and looked up Looked into your eyes The lost open windows, all around My dark heart lit up the skies’

The waltzing and those lines got me. I’ve been humming it all week.

Another Love by Tom Odell is the song you hear in the videos of Iranian protests. An uprising prompted by the death of Mahsa Amini, a 22 yr old woman beaten to death by morality police for not wearing a hijab. The courage of women refusing to submit to these laws is immense. It is incredible to watch people stand up to this totalitarian regime. Their bravery is awe inspiring. I get shivers every time I get this song.

Protester holding up photo of Mahsa Amini

Last but not least we have Harry Styles’ Matilda. It’s just such a beautifully sad song. I can’t relate, my family are wonderful, it’s still making me cry. Something about that reassuring voice saying it’s ok to let go just gets me. Poor Matilda.

Bronan approves of both the tunes and the sitting still.

Black and white cat sleeping on his paw

Pale September…

I just lit the first pumpkin shaped candle of the season. It is rainy, windy and cold. The timing is right.

Today did not bring my favourite autumnal weather. The gloom did, however suit my mood. I had the long awaited appointment with the consultant this week & she had no good news for me. PoTs ✔️ Treatment to improve symptoms ✖️. I can’t take beta blockers & I’m already doing everything that is supposed to help. She also thinks I need to see someone else about the extreme breathlessness. So, it’s status quo with the passing out every two seconds. Oh and back to square one on referrals & tests re breathlessness. I’m very tired and exceptionally fed up. This is what happens when I pin all my hopes on one Dr.

On the bright side I live in Glasgow and it’s nearly October. I am certain I will have many opportunities to wallow in gloomy weather. I also know a very annoying man. No doubt he will frustrate me so much that I will occasionally forgot almost no part of my body works.

Gold pumpkin candle holder on bookcase with picture frames

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Charity of the Month…

The floods in Pakistan have been devastating. The world seems to paying much less attention than we should. This is catastrophe of our making. The people of Pakistan are paying the price for climate changing behaviours that they haven’t engaged in at anywhere near the rate we (in the west) have. It is absolutely our responsibility to help them recover.

A third of Pakistan is now under water. Millions of people have lost everything. If you can please donate to one of the many organisations providing aid.

UNICEF are working to provide food, shelter and healthcare of children. They are also providing families with hygiene kits to reduce disease outbreaks and setting up temporary education centres.

Alkhidmat are providing regular meals, clean water and medical assistance in flood impacted areas.

IRC have already reached 20,000 with critical food, water and medical supplies. They a desperately need donations to continue this work.

If only I could hold you…

Dear Baby,

Today came around very fast this year. It frightens me how much time has past. You’d be older than I was when I carried you now. That feels incomprehensible. All those missed years. A grown man’s worth of memories. I can picture you at every age. Yet, I still call you baby.

We’re trapped together in this restless limbo. I hope it’s easier on your side. I dream of you kicking. Always the same sensation. Never the same place. We’ve travelled my emotional map together. You have been everywhere that ever really mattered. I wish I could give you more than words & dreams. I’m sorry I couldn’t save you.

Love always,

Mum

Xxx

Top 5 Breakups…

Whilst drowning a light weight case of the Sundays with 90s films. I dived into the top 5 originator; High Fidelity and I felt like doing my own countdown.

Before I get to that, I must say how fucking awful Rob is. I loved the book & subsequent film back then. Now I want to punch the lead & Nick Hornby square in the face. Whiny man baby, how did I ever find this character sympathetic?

Back to the top 5; no nitty gritty. Just broad strokes with humour. Let the countdown begin. 

5: The Chaser

Yup that old clichè. Friend of a friend I met on a night out. Pestered folk for my number. Just happened to be there every time I went out. He was cute and quite funny, but I wasn’t all that interested. Of course we all know where booze & proximity leads when you’re attractive young things. Skip forward a few meanginless fumbles and this prick has the gall to call for a big ‘I’m not looking for anything serious’ chat. Imagine having the arrogance to think you need to break up with someone you aren’t even going out with. I do not miss 22yr old men.

4: The Flying Dutch Man 

He was Dutch. He was handsome. Spoke 5 languages & said romantic things in all of them. He had a job that involved a lot of travel and I’d join him in cool places at weekends. We had a blissful 6ish months and then that fancy job required a move to Stockholm. I really didn’t want to move to Sweden and off he flew. That one smarted. 

3: The Accidental Rejection 

On our first date I really liked him, but didn’t find him even a tiny bit attractive. We were friends for a few weeks and every time we spoke I got more into him. He was so smart and thoughtful. He’d save bits from Private Eye or London Literary Review that he thought would interest me. He did my dishes and saved the kitchen herbs. That shit is sexy. He stayed over every weekend. Just when I should have been making things ‘official’ I was taking fright. He definitely could have been something. But you snooze you lose, while I was having a wobble he thought I was trying to let him down gently. Hence, the accidental rejection.

2:  The One I Said No To

He was a professor at my Uni and  I met him in the smokers room (that should give you a clue as to just how long ago this was). He didn’t teach in my faculty, so it wasn’t dodgy. He was a genuinely lovely man with a sculpted jaw. He wrote academic books, was an amazing Dad to his littles & he treated me perfectly right. He would probably have given me all the things I wanted. Alas, the one who came before totally wrecked me. When he popped the question; I said no. 

1: The One I Said Yes To

A deeply selfish little man who bulldozed my life. Obviously that’s the one to say yes to. Lessons learnt. Thank God we never made it down the aisle.

Up in my air balloon…

I’m still not getting out much, but I did wear two cute outfits & have a little fun this week. I used my auntie time to try out some new thrift finds. I’m quite pleased with the results.

First up was some time with my littlest niblings. The babas are walking now and so much fun. I tried my new twirly skirt and it was perfect for sitting on the floor and wrangling babies. Getting back up was a bit of a challenge, but hey ho.

Skirt – Thrifted
Vest – Primark
Shawl – Gift

On Saturday I had my first big day out in quite a while. We headed to The Hot Air Balloon festival in my Mum’s village. It was wonderful. I have always wanted to go up in a hot air balloon, but watching them take off was a close second best. My nephew was crazy excited watching them launch. He also had a lot of fun on various rides & bouncy castles. He even managed to convince his Mummy to let him have green hair. For this outing I wore another of my 2nd hand finds; an amazing cat print skirt. I went full crazy auntie & teamed it with a petticoat and nirvana vest. Then finished the whole look with a deeply hippie dippie shawl. I got some looks, but I loved it!

Vest – Very Old
Skirt – Thrifted
Petticoat – Lindy Bop
Shawl – Gift

Today I am in recovery mode. I expect it’ll be jammies for the foreseeable. Bronan approves.

Come away with me…

Several weeks ago I came across a word I’d never previously encountered. I haven’t been able to stop thinking about. It encapsulates a feeling that lives with me, but has eluded succinct definition. The word is Hiraeth.

It’s Welsh and doesn’t directly translate to English, but it means a homesicknesses for a home to which you cannot return or perhaps never was. It was in an article and I didn’t understand. I had to look it up. When I read that definition it felt like I breathed it in and it found a spot inside me where it fitted perfectly. It explained something I already knew.

It is exactly what I feel in those moments that I’m not sure what I am doing or who I am. The thing caught in my throat when I hear children shout for their Mummy. It’s the longing for a world that only ever comes to life in my head. Except I can feel it. I know the intricacies. I have plans for every eventuality (& even strategies for the inevitable unknowables). Pet names, values & handed down treasures thump in my chest. The sensation of heavy sleeping breath and hot ‘it’s not fair’ tears. The music I play, the books I read them. Dancing in the living room for no reason just like I did with my Mum. I close my eyes and conjure how crushing the responsibility can be. Losing my patience, the swamp of guilt that follows. The days I am certain I said absolutely the right thing. The pain of knowing I missed the mark. I’m not imagining it; I can recall the emotions. They’re fizzing under my skin. The flick of hair from a face or a tut of exasperation are as decernable as memories. I long to go home.

Homesick for the home I couldn’t build. That’s the feeling that perpetually lurks. Now I know it’s name.

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Why am I like this?

If you are a regular reader you will know that I have been going through a process of diagnosis related to Long Covid complications. I had hoped that I would have definitive answers by now, but alas, my body is being a dick.

When last we spoke I was awaiting tests to confirm or rule out POTS. Well, after it seemed unsafe to continue with the first part of that test, the second was scrapped. Now I have more waiting to do. The consultant will decide our next move. I’m really disappointed as I had thought we were close to diagnosis. I know the idea of hoping for positive tests might sound strange to most, but the sooner my condition is labelled, the sooner it can be treated. Being chronically involves so much limbo. Waiting to see drs, waiting for tests, waiting for treatment, waiting to see if you respond. Having someone say this is definitely the problem and here is the plan, is a huge relief.

White women wearing large glasses and a mask is looking at camera
Worn out after test fails.

In the meantime my spoonie adventures continue. Lots of pain, fatigue and dizziness are the norm. Fainting at the drop of a hat and constantly fighting to catch my breath have further restricted my activities. I spend way too much time at hospital appointments, and too little doing what I love. I’m struggling, but trying to remain even a little upbeat. On we go.

Long hospital corridor

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Love me, love me…

My favourite purveyors of fine spectacles recently celebrated their 7th birthday. They very kindly offered me a frames for $7 deal that I immediately snapped up.

Now obviously I don’t need new glasses, but I wanted some. These heart shaped delights were calling out to live on my face. Of course I obliged and now look how happy we are together.

Glasses – Where Light

I buy all my glasses from Where Light. I adore their kooky frames and excellent prices. If you would some for yourself you can use my code (LHK30)* for 30% discount.

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