Gooseberries & mind games.

 

Well we picked 3lb of gooseberries yesterday, not a huge amount but enough to make some jam, it’s a job to time picking any fruit in our garden, as I have said before it’s very much a cottage/wildlife garden, and the wildlife seem to get their fair share of the bounty, but that’s the way it should be we all have to live, and at this time of year the are all trying to feed their young, and it’s lovely to be able to see all thous young fledglings in the garden. So my first job today after posting this blog is jam making, and I shall post a photo of the finished produce, have our scones ready lol.

I have been starting to feel stressed today, and I know the feeling will grow completely out of control as the week goes on, I felt at ease when we returned from our long weekend break last weekend, testing out our new eriba caravan we really love it, it’s very retro and comfortable, and having achieve our first get away I was now ok that we were back home, I could relax again and enjoy looking at the photos from the weekend, really like looking at the for the first time as if I had not been there and I was looking at someone else’s adventure, I was now safe at home. Then today the subject arose about going on another trip, and right away I can feel the tension inside, I want to curl up into a ball and hide away, I could shake myself, tell myself how daft I am “I’m 62 in a couple of weeks” why do I have to be like this, why can’t I just be like others? I will try and fill my thoughts with other stuff, but it will just be there all the time, tapping me on the shoulder when I let my guard down, I want to tackle this but honestly I don’t know if I can! I have great support from my family but it’s so difficult to open up and put things into words, especially when your supposed to be the head of your family. It breaks my heart when my we get to the shops and my wife or daughter ask if I am coming into the shops, and I say no, then the little voice of my 4 year old granddaughter says “come on grandad, please!” The mind is so very complicated, but a day a a time that’s all I can do.

On a lighter note I’ll share a story of when I was an apprentice chef, training under my father. It was a very busy kitchen in a seaside three star hotel, I was about 16 at the time and most of us were smokers then, so every now and then we would say “just off to the toilet chef” and my father who was the head chef would say don’t be to long, knowing that we were really just going for a cigarette. My father had a funny side to him and loved a joke, we had all been caught by him, he would wait for us to enter the outside toilet that was in the passage leading to the garage, the toilet had a gape above and under the door, and as soon as he saw a puff of smoke come over the top he would throw a full bucket of ice cold water over the top, you can imagine the shock lol.

So one day we all planed our revenge, and it was not long before we had our chance, my father headed off to the toilet, and we all filled our buckets and marched outside, the light went on so we all let loose our buckets of ice cold water…… the screams and shouts from within were not that of my father, oh no! What had we done? We all ran back into the kitchen where we each kept our heads down and got on with our work, but each one of us kept an eye on the door to see who would come in. To our horror the door opened and a raging head porter in his top hat and tails came in drenched demanding to know who had done this to him, no one uttered a word, there were some muffled sniggers, but when he left to get change my father returned, he could hardly stand up, and there were tears of laughter coming down his face – yes he had set us up really good, he had suspected what we were up to, no one but him had notice the head porter head for the toilets we were to busy watching my dad, he then followed the head porter but instead of going to the toilets had run into the garage where he watched the whole thing unfold, it’s laughable now but we were bricking it at the time.

Just thought that may lighten your day, I post pics of the gooseberry jam later..

Gooseberries

First blog post

 

Thanks for visiting my blog, I guess it’s always hard starting off, a bit like an artist making that first brush stroke on the canvas, but here goes, I’m basically going to chat about my life and how my symptoms effect my day to day life, and have stopped me from doing things I would love to be able to do.  Just as if you were sat in my front room with me, I will try and put over how I feel, tell you of the things that have helped me, and things that have set me back, prevented me from achieve my goals.

Now I have mention in my (about) page that I was diagnosed with lymphoedema in the 90s and if you are not sure what lymphoedema is, it is what was known as elephantiasis, some still call it that. Now if you are about to eat your breakfast, lunch or dinner, then I apologise and you may want to continue reading later when you have finished, it’s not a pretty sight but it is me, still human with feeling, just a little misshapen, this is a photo of my legs at their worst two years ago, and my life was pretty low then.


As I said not a pretty sight, I won’t show you the backs as they had open wounds approximately 4 inches which did not want to heal. Without wanting to bore you with to much detail, I felt, I was and I am let down by our local Lymphoedema NHS’s clinic, and if it had not been for the great support that I have received from my own doctors surgery, along with the incredible support and care of the district nurses, then my health may be a whole lot worse today.

It was after reading in a magazine for lymphoedema patients that I saw an add for Farrow Wraps, a compression garment for people like myself, but my lymphoedema clinic said they were no good, my doctor on the other hand supported me and got them for me, and they have transformed my life. I can now walk without my legs banging together, my legs are more normal now and do not attract so much attention as they did before, I feel more human.


As you can see, there’s a bit of a difference, (yet the professionals in this field in our area, said they do not work, shame on you!) however after living years with extremely large misshapen legs there were and still are side effects, anxieties, phobia and depression, this has made living the life I would love to live very difficult, but I want to change all that and I want to take you on that journey with me, I will update as much as I can, and will tell you tales of when I was a chef, take you on our journeys in our amazing Eriba caravan, maybe play some songs I wrote, show you photos I have taken, and much more, and hopefully I’ll make the goals I want to reach, defeat my fears and who knows maybe inspire you to tackle yours.

Well I did it, that’s the end of my very first blog, thanks for reading, hopefully you’ll come back.