27 November 2008



Starting early October I got a flu like virus which got worse and worse and then got better and better... totalling seven weeks of hell illness.

I was starting to get back to a semblance of life when..

I got a chest infection

If only endurance were an Olympic sport.. I'd be gold all the way.

Today's favourite cheery song: Alphabeat, 'Boyfriend'

3 November 2008


...you think you are reaching the top of the mountain. An unexpected storm breaks. You find yourself tossed to the ground.

Back to the shadows. Back to the corner of the bed.

Are you dying inside?


Don't tell me to be positive. Walk a mile in my wounded moccasins then you maybe you can speak.

Leave me in the corner of my room. Leave me on the floor where I struggle to breathe.

No fight left. Weak at the seams. After five years, My. Heart. Just. Broke...

All I can do is keep breathing...

Ane Brun, 'True Colors'

17 October 2008

Credit crunch

Wondering what on earth the credit crunch is all about?? Watch the genius that is Bird and Fortune:

Today's favourite song: Barenaked Ladies, 'Blame It On Me'

15 October 2008

Favourite quote

I posted this picture on TAW blog last week.

I'm posting it here because the quote has become so important for me to read: in any and every moment of trial and tribulation.

There really is only one of me in the whole wide world and I am learning how important it is to treasure that fact...

...and for a seasoned tree hugger, what a fabulous tree!!! ;-)

Today's favourite (I really adore this..) song: Joseph Arthur, 'Honey and the Moon'

13 October 2008

Blogger's block

So, it seems that bloggers have blocks too... I haven't been able to think of a single interesting thing to write lately. And the things I do want to write about suddenly seem far too personal to even let them escape my brain..

hey, on the bright side, maybe this makes me a real writer.. ;-)

So, in lieu of any interesting words, here is some music. These are the two songs that are rocking my world this week... both of which pretty much reflect my mood..

Today's favourite songs:

Kanye West, 'Love Lockdown'

Razorlight, 'Wire to Wire'

7 October 2008


I love trees.. huggin' 'em, lookin' at 'em, sittin' under 'em!!

Here is a fantastic tree in Savernake:

Today's favourite song: The Maccabees, 'Toothpaste Kisses'

23 September 2008


I love finding heart shapes in unexpected places, especially in nature.

Today's favourite song: Finlay Quaye, 'Dice'

15 September 2008

M.E. survival kit_2




Today's favourite song: John Legend feat. Andre 3000, 'Greenlight'

10 September 2008

Tips for coping

wear dresses in bed
get a cat
watch the little things
talk to your soul
love in the depths

Today's favourite song: Natalie Merchant, 'My Skin'

9 September 2008


As an ebay user.. this had me in stitches...

This man is a GENUIS!


8 September 2008

What Flower Did Next...

...The Artist's Way!

This is my third attempt at TAW.
(I am not alone, it takes most people a few attempts to really get going).

I'm doing it because I know that
in life at the moment, I am looking for something... and I know it's inside... and I know it's creative... but I don't know what it is... or where inside it is...

So I'm enlisting JC's help

I find the morning pages tough
(writing 3 pages of stream of consciousness writing first thing in the a.m.)
the artist's dates easier
(taking yourself off somewhere to do something creatively nurturing and fun)
the tasks hellish
(discovering and talking to your inner demons)

but this time. THIS TIME. I am determined to complete the course.

So far it has encouraged me to write on this blog, study photography and sign up for oil painting and photoshop classes..


imagine what I will do when I actually finish the course.. WOW!

Today's favourite song: Iglu and Hartly, 'In This City'

7 September 2008


So, I love music.

*That much should be obvious seein' as how I include a favourite song on every post.*

Like everyone, the best ones are the ones that speak to you.. tellin' ya to dance, tellin' ya to sing, tellin' ya they've been through the same crap, lyrics you love, melodies you love.

Then there are those..

yeah.. those..

you know, those..

the ones that reach right inside... touch you... speak to you... take you over... leave you tingling.. speechless... breathless

song on full volume you no longer exist.

these songs are rare and amazing.

This one does that to me:

Today's favourite (spinetinglin') song: Bhinda aujla, 'Dil Sada Luteya Gaya'

6 September 2008


My boy is OK!

Image taken by M. Coleman

He had his lump removed and it was benign..

Happy, happy me, happy happy him!

Today's favourite song: Noah and the Whale, 'Five Year's Time'

5 September 2008

Serenity, Peace and Strength

6pm, Friday night, I am in bed. I am breathing slowly and chanting my favourite mantra...

serenity, peace and strength

(it gets me through some tough times)

Am in my jim jams, two cats under the duvet with me. My friends Lucozade and Ibuprofen sitting by my side.

The reason for this early retirement from the world is 'The Warning Signs'.

The Warning Signs are the signs I get that I am headed for am m.e. episode...

.....my limbs ache, my head is fuzzy, my chest and throat are sore, I feel very tired and very weak. When I get the warning signs I need to STOP and REST in order to stop the attack. Sometimes I'm too late, sometimes I'm ok. Tonight, I'm somewhere in between.

So, that is why, on a Friday night at 6pm I am in my jim jams and in bed.

Sometimes I feel sorry for myself, thinking about the revellers next door and how much fun they're having
(i live next door to a pub). Sometimes I feel sad, for having been interrupted from doing something I love in order to force myself to rest. Sometimes I don't feel sad at all... like tonight.

I think about all the people out there who dearly
wish that they could settle down in bed at 6pm on a Friday, with nothing to do and no one to see: all those cooking dinner for their families, all those still at work, all those starting their late shifts, all those still on their way home in the rain.

And here I am, all quiet, two cosy cats at my side, breathing slowly and deeply into the quiet.

serenity, peace and strength.

..I. AM.
Serenity ... Peace ... and Strength.

These precious words that keep my alive, keep me going, keep me brave, keep me strong.

Today's favourite song: Nas, 'Hero'

Where are all the photographs...?

... well, I wanted to set up a blog exclusively for my piccies!

This is because as I learn more and more, I wanted to have somewhere I could chart my progress, somewhere to look back on and see what I have learnt, remember my journey.. won't it be great if I can look back at this in 10, 20, 30 years time!!

So that's the grand plan for my photos. That isn't to say I won't still post them here, I will but mainly, they will be here:



Today's favourite song: The Shins, 'New Slang'

29 August 2008

Ode to a friend

She's wicked.

She's my angel in blue jeans.

She sees me out of a rut.

She listens to my moans.

She hugs away my tears.

She makes me laugh

She is beautiful.

She is talented.

She's my best mate.

Today's song: Wham, 'Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go'

27 August 2008


i shout i scream I cry, and still he watches. I shout I thump I protest. And still, he watches. I won't I can't, no No NO, i say. He. Watches.

I reach for the floor, the bottom of my will, the end of my line. Tear my hair out, scream the house alive.. spit and holler...

i pant, i moan, i lie wounded. And still. He Does Not Move.

I'm quiet. I breathe softly. I go inside. I raise my arms.

He Moves. His arm stretches out. He lifts me up.

He rescues me.

Today's favourite song: Lucinda Williams, 'Rescue'

24 August 2008

I met God at the Cowley festival

I went to a festival recently, and the most extraordinary thing happened.

There I was, minding my own business, listening to a reggae band with ex-boy. The band finished and ex-boy wanted to go and congratulate the djembe player, which we did. He was about 40ish, hippie-ish and very smiley. As we turned to go, he gave each of us a great big bear hug..




Something happened in that bear hug...

All I felt when he hugged me was love. Huge, all encompassing, unconditional love. I couldn't let go. When I eventually did, thinking he must think I was a nutter.. I walked away and burst into a flood of tears.

I have never, ever, felt love like that... it was pure, it was huge, but most of all it was
unconditional. It felt like that no matter what I did, what I said, or who I was.. I was loved..

Was he God in dreadlocks?? .. an angel in human form? .. an ordinary but exceptionally loving person..?

I don't think it matters.

What matters is the experience, and me never forgetting it, taking it with me and gripping it tightly to never let it go...

Today's song: Joan Osbourne, 'One of Us'

23 August 2008

Let Go, Don't Be Mad

One of the greatest challenges brought by m.e. is:


There are so many things that just break your heart in two if you let them...

Things you can't do, people you can't see, aches in your heart you can't fulfill...

I have this one this weekend. Someone I haven't seem for 17 years is in the country for a brief moment. I'm supposed to be driving down tonight to see them..

But I can't.
m.e. has me in her tight grip.

I want to rage, I want to beat myself.

But I have to let go
and not be mad
stay sane
and be my own friend
hold myself
and wrap me up in the tighest of embrace

Love me
Hold me
Be me

Today's song: James Blunt, 'Wisemen'

What do you do when...

...you just lose interest in life..?

haven't wanted to write
haven't wanted to blog
haven't wanted to photograph
haven't wanted to participate

This month has been... awful

I have lost myself.

Today's song: Sia, 'Breathe Me'

21 August 2008


Thought I would know an enemy a mile off

Thought I'd know instantly who they were

Thought I would stand like a giant to fight against them

Didn't know the enemy could be close
much, much closer than that

a sheep in wolf's clothing
a twisted caretaker

Those that say they love you aren't always telling you the truth.

Today's song: Eels, 'I Need Some Sleep'

16 August 2008


One of my boys is in trouble:

Looks like cancer

Looks like an op on Monday

Looks like I gotta be a strong momma

Every finger and toe crossed
Every angel called upon

Here's hoping for my boy

Today's favourite song: Shakira, 'Antologia'

1 August 2008

Photo Friday: Beauty

I love this picture ... the child curiously peeking out into the world behind the safety of her mother... beautiful.

Today's favourite song: Kinnie Starr, 'Sun Again'

31 July 2008

The Verve...

Are Back...!!


Their new song rocks my world..

Love is Noise.

Ain't it just.

Can't wait for the album.

Today's top tune: The Verve: 'Love is Noise'

Train wreck

Single again..

From 0-60-0. How Did That Happen??!!

What a train wreck..

{Long drawn out sigh}

Praps one day my life will be sorted - job, money, partner, own place
, health, no debts.

But screw it, happiness is being happy where you're at right...?

So, here's to singleness, joblessness, own-homelessness, sickness and skintaspoonyness... but happYness. :-)

Today's favourite song (currently being mesmerised by it!): Friendly Fires, 'Jump in the Pool'

10 July 2008


I found this piece in my 'unpublished' draft list..


I'm struggling to eat at the moment. My current diet consists of:

Pitta bread

Not enough and
not very healthy.

I do love food: I'm a true foodie. But my spirit is low, and with it my tastebuds have become dormant.

I'm not unhappy
as such. In so many countless and wonderful ways I'm happier now than I've ever been. But I've just entered the 5th year of this illness. And that's got me.

So I'm blue. And I've lost my appetite. The gnawing of my hunger happily manifests the gnawing of my spirit.

I think I need to grieve. Recognise my losses. But I do have hope. And I do know that
this too shall pass...

...And it is indeed passing, though I can't say my eating habits have improved much - It's such a paradox.. to eat healthily you need energy to go out, buy the ingredients, cook them, and eat them... but with no energy... it's peanut butter on toast .. but it is indeed passing.. and things are indeed getting better..

Today's favourite song: Black Kids, 'Hurricane Jane'

9 July 2008

Wow, or, Jill Bolte Taylor's message

The scientific and the spiritual meet...

Today's favourite song: India Irie, 'Video'

8 July 2008

Boys, boys, boys

My poor little neglected blog..

I blame the new boy. I've gone from a 'me' to an 'us' in about 60 seconds flat. Whirlwind is most definitely the appropriate term here..

It's amazing. Passionate, Intense, Loving, Mind-blowing ;-). I'm doing things I never do, experiencing things I never have. Knocked sideways and every which way.



Back to the blog soon though... :-)

Today's favourite song: Timbaland 'Scream'

27 June 2008


Frankly, laughter is a bloody necessity when you think your life has gone down the toilet and you feel like death warmed up...

Remember ventriloquism??! I hadn't seen any for an age when I came across these.. and they had me rolling around the floor..

Three of my faves:

Nina Conti

Paul Zerdin

Jeff Dunham

Today's favourite song: Paramore, 'When It Rains'

18 June 2008

Natty rocks

Saw him live last night.

Wow, he was just amazing.. felt like he woke up every bone in my body.

Feels so good to feel his music; feel the words

Loving this man...

First in the queue to get the album:

Loving this song (Bedroom Eyes) {shiver} does sumthin' to me:

Today's favourite song: Natty, 'Last night'

17 June 2008

Things I Am Grateful For. Part 2.


I know what you're thinking... Are you ker-azy..??!! Hear me out!

Ok, so amongst the raging fevers, the crippling pain, the days in bed, the lack of energy, the lack of income,
the myriad of cancellations, maybe I'm not so grateful, but when I look at the Big Picture, and look at who I am now, and who I was then, I am very grateful.


Because through m.e., I have learnt happiness. I'm talking about actual, bona fide, non-fleeting happiness, happiness that comes from deep inside. And it is real. And it is genuine.

Before, I wasn't a particularly happy person, not inside. I was eternally searching for it; through spirituality, consumerism, work, relationships, anywhere and everywhere. I constantly suffered because of it, through eating disorders, addictions, self-destruction. I questioned life incessantly and always got the same answer: 'Love Is Everything'. But I didn't believe it. I thought that far too simplistic and obvious to be true: and that love, I just couldn't find.

But just because it's simple, doesn't mean it isn't the truth.

Love is everything. It's love for oneself that is everything, and that is what m.e. has given me.

I was stripped of my life, my career, my money, my friends - in short, everything that makes up a 'life'. I became desperately ill. I visited many, many dark places. When you're life is taken, and you suffer intensely (physically, mentally, emotionally) you are taken to a place where you have a choice: you can hate yourself, berate yourself, blame yourself and despair, or you can search and find the real you inside, and love yourself, cherish yourself, take care of yourself and survive.

And in the craziness, that is what I did. And love for me is what I found.

So is it worth it? Well, don't ask me in the middle of a fever or when I'm doubled over in pain, but when my body is calmer, and I'm at a low 2 on the pain scale, then hell yeah, it's worth it.

Today's favourite (officially, my favourite ever, ever) song: Toure Kunda 'Emma'

About a boy

He's delicious

All cheekbones and luscious lips

Blue eyes and dirty laugh

Sure wasn't love at first sight,

Thought he was delicate; made of china..

Oh, how wrong I can be

Strong as a iron and spouting fire

Need to step back lest he gobble me up

Secret garden's waiting but can he find the key?

Today's favourite song: Icehouse, 'Man of Colours'

16 June 2008


Honestly what will become of me
Don't like reality
It's way too clear to me
But really life is daily
We are what we don't see
Missed everything daydreaming

Flames to dust
Lovers to friends
Why do all good things come to an end

Traveling I only stop at exits
Wondering if I'll stay
Young and restless
Living this way I stress less
I want to pull away when the dream dies
The pain sets in and I don't cry
I only feel gravity and I wonder why

Flames to dust
Lovers to friends
Why do all good things come to an end

Well the dogs were whistling a new tune
Barking at the new moon
Hoping it would come soon so that they could
Dogs were whistling a new tune
Barking at the new moon
Hoping it would come soon so that they could
Die die die die die

Flames to dust
Lovers to friends
Why do all good things come to an end

Today's favourite song: Nelly Furtado, 'All Good Things'

8 June 2008


A couple of interesting books are winging their way to my bedside reading pile:

The Alchemy of Illness - Kat Duff

CFS is a call for soulwork
Gretchen Brooks Nassar

Am looking forward to gaining new perspectives on this illness business.

Reviews later.

Today's favourite song: Alphaville, 'Big in Japan'

7 June 2008

Three Things I Wish For

Three things I wish for

  1. A faster computer.
  2. More money.
  3. Sunshine.

Today's favourite song: Madonna, 'Spotlight'

Three Popular Misconceptions

Three popular misconceptions

  1. That I sleep a lot = pain + sleep doth not a good combination make.
  2. That my brain functions normally = um, that would be a no.
  3. That I get bored = wrong again, you need energy to get bored with.

Today's favourite song: Madonna, 'Gambler'

Three Things I'm Looking Forward To

Three things I'm looking forward to:

  1. No pain (yippeeeeeeee!).
  2. More energy for my niece.
  3. Dancin' (yeah!).

Today's favourite (spotted
the theme yet? ;-)) song: Madonna, 'Pretender'.

Three Ugly Things

Three ugly things:

  1. The fact that laughing makes me more ill (and the pain worse).
  2. The fact that those who should be my biggest supporters are in fact, my biggest detractors.
  3. Being wide awake when I'd rather be fast asleep (5am on a Saturday morning anyone?).

Today's favourite (oh the clothes, the hair!) song: Madonna, 'Dress you up'

Three Beautiful Things

Three beautiful things

  1. Brothers and Sisters (the programme), for making me realise that the craziness {that is} my family is actually normal.
  2. Maya Gold chocolate. Yummmmmmmm.
  3. Lie ins with my boys when it's raining outside.

Today's favourite (80's icon) song: Madonna, 'Stay'

6 June 2008

My M.E. Survival Kit

A Good Mattress
Unfortunately, I don't have one of these - mine is rubbish. It's cheap and cheerful and I can feel the springs through it. To make it more comfortable, I put a quilt and a duvet on the mattress before the sheet goes on. My sister on the other hand, has a mattress that was hand delivered by a legion of angels straight from God's Heavenly Mattresses Inc. If I could shove it under my jumper and run out the door with it I would. At her house, I sink deliciously into this mattress and have the best sleep ever.

With M.E. you spend a loooooot of time in bed, sleeping, suffering, reading, tossing, resting, turning; so you do need a mattress that is good. Alas, for me, a good mattress is the 'one-day-when-I-have-money-list'.

A Chillow Pillow
One of these I do have. And this too, was invented by the Gods. It is basically a mini water-pillow. But somehow, it stays cold: All. The. Time. It is always within reaching distance and has soothed my brow on many an occasion when I am raging with fever or have the headache from hell (like last night). Like a lover, I wrapped the entire thing around me and h
old it there until I can't feel my arms anymore. Suffice to say it provides stupendous, miraculous, positively angelic relief.

(+mobile phones)

I find talking knackering. It's one of the things that takes my energy the most. This is why I love the internet. I can know exactly what's going on that there world out there without ever needing to speak to another soul. Texting on a mobile phone also falls into this category. Frankly, I {heart} texting. It is the quickest, easiest way to communicate with someone and takes barely any energy. Hurray for Nokia!! The internet also of course, is the home of this icle bit of bloggyness. My lovely creative outlet and a place to put my thoughts when they need a home. Hurray for Blogging!!

I have blogged about my cats before, here and here, but I can never overestimate their importance in my recovery. When you're flat on your back, day in day out, in pain, unable to read, watch tv or see anyone, a little feline ball of furryness purring at your side can make all the difference. Especially when they also spend every night with you and snuggle up to your neck and sleep. You obviously have to get up to feed them, but other than that they look after themselves so are very little trouble.

Nurofen Plus
Not that I advocate the use of drugs, medicinal or otherwise, but these have been my saviour. I have been through the chemist's array of painkilling tablets, right and left, up and down, and all over again, and I always come back to this little white tablet. It makes the pain I'm in bearable, and allows me to live just that little bit better and whilst I do hope that once I'm well I never have to take one again, I am grateful for the tiny little powdered miracle that they are.

Today's favourite song: Tracy Bonham, 'Something Beautiful'

3 June 2008

Dang, I gotta face it..

Ok, so something is up. I know this because:

a) I am eating more than I need..(otherwise known as comfort eating)
b) I am craving alcohol..

Together, they always means the same thing: something is up and I just ain't facing it...

... so I eat to make me feel better.. and I drink to make it go away..

Except, I barely have any food in the house, so am eating mouldy rye crackers and (vegan) cream cheese. Both of which I'm sure would be disqualified from a comfort eating contest. I've also been tee total since October, and don't plan on changing any time soon, so I haven't actually had any alcohol either...

So no hiding for me then..!

Something is UP and I don't want to DEAL with it...

But know I have to, else I'll put on a stone and end up in a vat of cheeky vimto...

I know where it is, oh that hideous, ugly rotten dark place called.... The Past. And it's n
ot the nice past either, oh no, the murky painful depths of memories you'd really really like to put in a box and watch sail away into the sunset.. but no, instead, I need to watch Dr. Phil and:

name it to claim it..!!
feel it to heal it...!!

Oh Dr. Phil, what fun that sounds, I just can't wait!!

Today's favourite song:U2 'The Ground Beneath Her Feet'

19 May 2008

Things I am Grateful For: Part 1

My car.

I had wanted a car so badly. A way to become that little bit more mobile in the darkness that was those first years of m.e. A way to give me back a little of my life and lessen a little of the isolation. With a meagre government income however I could no where near afford one, so I just imagined. But one day, it became real.

And it was thanks to my dear friend.

She had only known me for just over a year. We shared an instant connection but were still getting to know each other when she and her family decided to emigrate to Australia. She offered me her car and in doing so, demonstrated how she already trusted me. Implicitly:

she gave me the car
before I had paid for it,
the night
before she emigrated to Australia
trusted that I would make the monthly payments to her whilst we were half a world apart.

Not only this, she also asked for a price well below its market value. Just for me.

I was immeasurably grateful for her trust in me, and a little under a year later I completed my final payment.

She was (and still is) my angel.

Today's favourite song: Jason Mraz, 'The Remedy'

The Alchemy of Illness

In bed again, with a sore throat and no energy.


Have just cancelled a date with a friend to visit some photograph exhibitions which are only on this week.



In my sadness I reached out and received this message:

A sacred illness is one that educates us and alters us from the inside out, provides experiences and therefore knowledge that we could not possibly achieve in any other way, and aligns us with a life path that is, ultimately, of benefit to ourselves and those around us.

Deena Metzger


What an awesome, thrilling, inspiring message. It is my path! it is my journey!

How grateful I am to be honoured with this sacred illness and all the blessings it brings me.

Today's favourite song: The Organ, 'Memorize the City'

12 May 2008

Poppy and me

My very talented dog-photographer-friend let me go on a dog shoot with her last week. The sitter was Poppy, a golden retriever.

I didn't realise how much fun it could be..

..mostly due to rolling around in the grass trying to find an interesting angle and shot to take! Here are my best shots:

Today's favourite song: Oliver Shanti 'Onon Mweng'

11 May 2008


Ah yes, agony, I know it well.

Far too well.

I recently had a piercing done. It was painful, but it gave me a moment to experience a 'different' pain to the one I am constantly in - it was a blissful experience.

The pain I suffer runs on a spectrum from say, 0-10. I am never at zero, and too often at 10.

Last night it reached 100.

I literally did writhe in agony. How could my body, the only one I have, feel so utterly, utterly dreadful. How it could betray me so much?! With wet towels wrapping my head, I sat in front of a cold fan just to try and reduce the fever. All. Night. Long. And that was only one part of it.

The difficulty? This is my silent pain. Why not talk about it? Because:

"Are you in pain flower"?

"Yes I am * [delete as applicable: friend/sister/parent/lover].

You might as well ask me if I breathe and if my heart beats.. the answer would always be the same. Do I continue having this conversation going into my 5th year of pain??! I choose not to.

The downside? People think I'm ok when I'm not.

The upside? If I told them the truth they'd be sick to death of me and the pain, plus, I get to be me (m.e.-less) now and again..

It's a difficult balance: sometimes I like that people can see me as 'me', sometimes I want to scream at them..'do you know how much I'm suffering?!
But I think I do ok.

Pain killers lesson the effect. They're like cotton wool that takes off the edges. I couldn't be without them. I have to have something, something to lessen the agony. I don't want to take so many. But I don't want to constantly suffer either.

I do wonder what a pain free body is like, I really can't remember it. What is it like to have a body that feels, well, normal?? After all, I did used to have one! I don't know, but I do know that
I am striving for it every second. And I will know, again.

Today's favourite song: Frou Frou, 'Let Go'

6 May 2008


I came across one of these widget thingys and had a go.

Was horrified to be a snake!! ;-)

Not least because snakes and crocodiles are the animals that really scare me and the ones that always bite me in my dreams (if anyone knows what this means symbolically....do tell!)

You Were a Snake

You have a primal energy that drives you to explore the mysteries of life.

A nearly immortal soul, you'll live a very long life.

Today's favourite song: Beth Orton, 'Central Reservation'

5 May 2008


With hindsight, I am lucky to have grown up with three sisters. At the time I was most unhappy about it, too aware of the lack of space, the niggling and fighting, the jostling for attention. As an adult, I am gratefully aware it, grateful for the many nights spent in conversation, the comforting arms around me in times of trouble and laughing, lots of laughing.

We comprised: big sis, momma sis, myself (dreamy sis) and baby sis. Big sis’ moniker was not a reference to her size, but rather her age. Momma sis received her name long, long before she became an actual momma, due to her the momma-like tendencies she had been born with. Baby sis was (unsurprisingly) the youngest and I, dreamy sis, was called so due to a love of being forever mentally absent (though physically present).

Big sis was considerably older than the rest of us, and was thus viewed with a mixture of unadulterated adoration and awe – she was our Goddess. She existed on a pedestal, and has done ever since. At an age where make-up and boys was a world undiscovered, she would horrify me with tales of a future – my future – that would involve boyfriends and marriage. Aghast, I would argue that my beloved red BMX and climbing trees were all that mattered to me, thank you very much.

Big sis left us just as we were approaching adolescence and life was getting more interesting. She disappeared at an age where I didn't realise that people, certainly not those I loved so intensely, actually died. For the three of us that remained, our childhood innocence also died that day.

We were now three sisters, and rather than cling to each other in the madness that followed, we each clung to our own individual rafts to survive: the pain in each others' eyes was too much to witness and our individual memories of her, much too precious to share, were jealously guarded. The fact that we were simultaneously limping into adolescence with its requisite moodiness and confusion only served to emphasize our separation. We drifted apart on those turbulent seas and only drifted back to each other once adulthood had begun to show its face.

Momma sis has never shed her moniker and, I suspect, never will; actual motherhood has only strengthened the endearing ways in which she continues to mother baby sis and I. As the second oldest she heaved the mantle of 'big' sis onto her small shoulders and tried to lead us towards the light and resurrection from grief; though she herself was blind. Taking on the responsibility was not an easy option – her younger siblings looked to her more and more for a replacement of the 'Goddess' they had lost. She struggled, but ultimately succeeded, and perhaps it was ever meant to be so.

The departure of big sis fell hardest on baby sis. They were not on speaking terms at the time, and the chance to repair the bridge of misunderstanding between them (for that was all it was) was lost forever. Regardless of the comforting words from her remaining sisters, she needed to re build the bridge herself single-handedly. It took many years and her courage in finding her own peace at the tragic timing of events was, and still is, an awesome feat.

Now, as remaining sisters all 'growed-up', I truly recognise the blessings of my sisters' presence and pour gratitude upon it (this, despite the niggling and fighting that has never quite managed to leave us). Though her presence is now ethereal, big sis is still very much the first sister in our quadrangle. Though I don't really know what the afterlife has planned for us, I look forward to the day where we are four once again.

Today's favourite song: Mike Oldfield, 'Crime of Passion'

29 April 2008

Bed Day Today

Another bed day today.

so tired.

All limbs ache; head is heavy; the beginnings of a fever chase my brain.

so lacking in energy.

Still under the duvet.

Willing the pain to go away.

Tick tock tick tock.

There but by the grace of God go I.

Today's favourite song: Sting feat. Cheb Mami, 'Desert Rose'

26 April 2008

Scrap Your Day

I'm taking part in this project.

So yesterday was spent taking pictures of everything I did, and everywhere I went.

It was soooo rewarding!

This was because I took lots of pictures that I just wouldn't have taken otherwise...

like the painter decorating the outside of my flat...

like the dvd I was watching...

like my local pub...

What a great (new) way to spend a day!

Today's favourite song: Fool's Garden, 'Lemon Tree'

23 April 2008

Photo Friday: cold

Tjörnin Pond, Reykjavic, Iceland

Today's favourite song: Umalali, 'Nibari'

22 April 2008

Shutter Sisters: reflect, remember, recycle

This is a shot of my sister breastfeeding my niece.

You can't see it in the picture but mother and daughter are gazing into each others eyes with pure love. Is there a greater bond than that of a mother feeding her child?

I love that I have captured this bond for them: through any tribulations mother and daughter may have in future years, they can look back time and time again at this photo.

Today's (ooooh, loving this, LOVING this) favourite song: MGMT, 'Electric Feel'

20 April 2008


I'm just loving this artist at the moment.

Really seems to capture how things are right now: and with great choons to boot.. ;-)

Today's (3) favourite songs: Natty, 'Cold Town', Coloured Souls Mix', 'Bedroom Eyes'

19 April 2008


I was on a long drive home and was pretty tired. I just wanted to get there. Get into a scented bath and soak away the day. I wasn't taking much notice of the landscape around me, though it was beautiful.

Then the light changed.

As dusk approached, the landscape was transformed in a glorious orange glow. I stopped the car and watched. With my camera on the passenger seat I immediately started clicking and capturing what I saw.

The change of light lasted only a few moments.

I returned to my car and went home: so grateful to have witnessed this fleeting beauty; so grateful that my Pentax was by my side; so grateful to have been brought out of my rush to get home and given a chance to lose myself in the beauty of the moment.

Today's favourite song: The Script 'We Cry'

17 April 2008


I have embarked on two different techniques that claim to heal/cure m.e.

The first is called 'Emotional Freedom Technique' or 'EFT'.

Wikipedia explains:
Proponents of EFT claim it relieves many psychological and physical conditions, including depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, general stress, addictions and phobias. More claims have been made for multiple sclerosis and one proponent claims that "you can also use it for everything from the common cold to cancer.'" The basic EFT technique involves holding a disturbing memory or emotion in mind and simultaneously using the fingers to tap on a series of 12 specific points on the body that correspond to meridians used in Chinese medicine. The theory behind EFT is that negative emotions are caused by disturbances in the body's energy field and that tapping on the meridians while thinking of a negative emotion alters the body's energy field, restoring it to "balance."

The theory states that negative emotions are built in the following stages: A negative experience occurs; negative emotions are felt in response to this negative experience, leading to inappropriate programming inside the body; and then the body's energy system gets disrupted due to these negative emotions. The contention of EFT is that in order to remove the negative responses, tackling the negative experience is not enough, because doing so cannot correct the energy imbalance. Rather, the energy imbalance must be restored along with curing the negative emotions.

It is an odd process!

I basically hold an image in my head of what having m.e. means and then tap various points on my face and body. (How to subtly do this whilst in Sainsburys I have yet to master...)

More info:

The second technique I am following is called 'Gupta Amygdala Training Programme' and is pioneered by Ashok Gupta.

His website explains:
Although this is a drug-free therapy, Ashok clearly states that ME/CFS is a real physical condition, with real physical symptoms. This is based on his medical paper which was published in a medical journal in 2002. The explanation is based on the role of a brain structure called the Amygdala, which Ashok believes keeps the body in a permanent imbalanced state, causing all of the symptoms.

This programme is so powerful and Ashok believes in it so much, that it comes with a guarantee that it will definitely help you recover from your condition. If for any reason you don’t find it improves your health within 6 months, after 6 months you can return the whole programme and get your money back. And in fact 6 months is the maximum amount of time anyone has taken to show significant improvements, so the results are likely to come well before that.

The medical research behind it is very, very interesting and I'm jumping into the programme feet first!

More info:

So, will either of these techniques bring an end to my m.e. journey...?

Time will answer that question...but here's hoping..

Today's favourite song: Lorraine, 'I Feel It'

13 April 2008

Three Beautiful Things

Three beautiful things for today..

1. Afternoon nap with my boys.
2. Cuddles with my sister.
3. Snuggling in bed as it's cold outside.

Today's favourite song: Ulrich Schnauss, 'Blumenthal'

11 April 2008

Red ball

Loving this video. A red ball if ever I saw one...

Today's favourite song: Deep Forest. 'Lullaby'

My boys...

Today's favourite song: Don Henley, 'Boys of Summer'

Wordless Wednesday.. or.. Oscar & Hope

My first posting for 'Wordless Wednesday'. Oscar is the cat. Hope is the bear.

Today's favourite song: Peri & Filo, 'Anthem'

9 April 2008


Went for a walk with my sis and took some piccies:

Red Flower



Garden flowers


Secret garden




Today's favourite song: INXS, 'Original Sin'


This is a quote from David Putnam, a Film Director who also suffers from m.e....

"I had a six-month period when I couldn't do anything," he says. "Nothing, really nothing. Going to the loo was like climbing Everest. It is impossible to explain to people how utterly debilitating it is".

Everest is a useful geographical metaphor that does justice to how ordinary life can feel so utterly extra-ordinary with this illness.

I live in a small town. I live in the centre of this small town. A very good friend of mine lives 10 minutes walk away on the other side of town. Getting to my friend's house involves climbing down a steep hill, then climbing up the other side. In ordinary pre-m.e. days this walk would pass in the blink of an eye and was certainly far too short to be considered any kind of serious exercise. Now, this steep decline and incline is my Everest. The walk to her house is unthinkable, unmanageable, unachievable.


Something has changed.

Today, I walked to my friend's house. And perhaps the most important part, I didn't feel too horrendous for it.

For me, it was a HUGE, huge achievement. On the way back I wanted to hug everyone I saw and say 'hey, I did it!!' I. DID. IT!

Everest, here I come!

Today's favourite song: The Editors, 'Munich'

6 April 2008


I love this photo. Partly because I took it and am proud of it. Partly because the dog belongs to a very good friend. Partly because of what, to me, it represents.

The dog is Cujo. In the photo, he is chasing a red ball that has just been thrown. The same red ball was thrown over and over again but Cujo never tired of watching the ball; racing after the ball; catching the ball; bringing the ball back.

I *loved* the pure joy that shone from his eyes and the furious wagging of his tail. At that moment, nothing, but nothing else mattered to him other than catching that ball.

Such a simple, simple process, but such utter utter joy.

My thoughts turned to another species - us. How often do we do this? How often do we just focus on doing something that gives us pure joy, freeing our minds of every other thought?

Where's our red ball?!!!

Today's favourite (80's) song: Howard Jones, 'New Song'

Vacation photographs...a few more!

Today's favourite song: Stereophonics 'Dakota'

1 April 2008


I have been well and truly dumped.

Dumped that is, by my best friend.

I do understand why (he has found his soul mate). I do understand that things are a little more complicated (we are exes). But for a year after we broke up he was still my best buddy. I told him everything, he told me, we hung out every week, we talked lots, laughed lots, and when he disappeared he did so overnight...

I'm having trouble adjusting.

Maybe, maybe, we really only half broke up for a year, and this is the proper break up.... which is why it's hurting so. Maybe I just miss my best friend. Maybe, as a wise woman told me, soul mate can't appear whilst I'm still best buddies with someone else (particularly a male, particularly an ex). Time will let me know.

Long drawn out sigh...

Just another stitch in life's big ol' rich tapestry...

Today's favourite song: REM, 'Day Tripper'

29 March 2008

Vacation photographs

A selection of my favourite photographs from my recent trip.

Local wildlife...

Pace of life...

Threatening skies...


City life...


Today's favourite song: Kate Bush 'Aeriel'