Chit-chat September – Part 1

As I started creating this post before airing, it started short and now it’s got longer. I was going to air it as one, but now doing it over two posts, because there is something happening on what I was sharing and I won’t have an update yet, as this post airs. So see part 2 for that.

Over my two posts, it will contain mostly good things, as well as updates, but also a part regarding my mum, which is in this post. Not a heavy post written, but stressful for me obviously.
It also contains sweet things. I have been baking and there is a small bit of cuteness at the end. (I am imagining you, now the reader going, I wonder what that can be? and skipping to the end, before reading the rest. So don’t cheat now, will you? ūüėČ

So time for Part 1 and all being well, part 2 will air at the weekend.

Looking for flats

I shall start looking at council flats for me, near the end of this month. Being back at band 5 now will make it extremely difficult to get a council flat. But I will bid, because one day, I may be lucky. But until then, while I am renting private and even if I am lucky to be in a second cleaning job, I don’t plan to move within the next year, or the year after. I just don’t want any unnecessary stress, after the year I’ve had. Speaking of job, carry on reading and find out the latest on that.

While I continue to live where I am, I have put my large canvas picture of Miley back up on the wall. It’s now above the settee, so I could use what was already in the wall. (Well it was, until I moved the settee.) I have really missed having it up on my wall.
My peg lights I had there are down at the moment. They will go up again somewhere, when I have painted the the living room walls and ceiling.
A couple of my bedroom walls will be painted first, as this room is the room that looks tired still.

Job interview

Looking for a second job that I can do in a morning, since leaving that other one, has been quiet. There was either nothing being advertised, or I noticed it was jobs I have already applied for twice before and so I did not apply again for a third, because it makes you wonder what they are like as an employer, to have to keep advertising for another cleaner in just months. 
But eventually, something came up and I applied for a cleaning job of 15 hours per week.
This job was working Monday to Friday, preferably early morning, which was perfect for me.
I had an interview near beginning of September and I was very impressed with the company and so I hoped I would get the opportunity to work for them. I felt a good vibe about it too. The feeling was just like when I was interviewed for the evening job I do. 

I ended up getting this job and I started the next morning! And I still remain impressed with the company and I am enjoying it.

But now I am in morning work, means no regular volunteering. So I said bye bye again at the one I have done the longest and that I returned back to when I left my previous morning job. But I hope to at least see them once a month and depending on time I see them, maybe just help now and again for an hour, or so.
The conservation group one I not long joined, I let them know I wouldn’t be able to make regular monthly bird surveys. But anytime on annual leave from work and I am doing nothing, I will join in then, as well as when they advertise their litter picking.

I also had to see my mum face-to-face early September, as mum was still breaking a boundary when it came to texts. I did a meet-up because I had this feeling that mum wasn’t getting any texts off me when I reminded her of my boundary she was breaking. And I was right. So I sorted out her phone and we had a chat. This chat we both benefited on. But I still want this break, because there were still traits that are going to trigger me and mum said she would respect that, so I felt more confident that we would work things out.
But mum still ignored my boundary and so I really ended up being more assertive than I have ever been and said if she can’t respect this boundary, then I will make it no contact at all, until I am ready to contact her in November.
Mum’s nurse spoke to her about this and reminded her about the no contact until particular times and how I love her and she also praised me for looking after myself and that how I will contact her when ready, while she was reading the letter.
I am to contact mum’s nurse, should there be any problems, which I ended up doing, after still ignoring this one simple boundary. So now, I have done what I said I would do and that’s no contact at all until I am ready in November.

Going to Oxford

I am going to Oxford soon, to see my friend again. I’m looking forward to being there. It will be nice to have spending money on me this time.

I have baked the following, since last chit-chat post:

Lemon and orange marmalade cake with drizzled white icing
Lemon and orange marmalade cake

I don’t like marmalade, but I was open-minded and made the above cake, to see if I would like it. And I did.

As for my banana cake, not pictured, I absolutely loved it. It was the first time me making this and I added cinnamon to mine. It’s¬†one I have made again since, but minus the demera sugar on the top.
I can see why most people like banana cake.

I have been watching:

  • Norman Wisdom’s films I have in a DVD box set
  • Some Mothers Do ‘Ave’ Em
  • Fantastic Beasts The Crimes of Grindlewald

I have been re-watching some of my other dvd’s as well, as well as some other bought second-hand dvd’s. My dvd’s remain as one of my escapes.

I have been reading:

  • “No Surrender – Women’s Suffrage in Nottinghamshire.” This was compiled by Nottingham Women’s History Group.

I have re-arranged some of my furniture in the living room. Only my dining table has stayed where it always has, since living here. I have been debating on doing this for a while now and I like it. It feels even more cosy. I don’t plan to share a photo of my new layout, but if you look up an old post, just imagine it.
My settee is now facing the window, so I can look out at my lovely view.
My bookcase that has things on display of my last cat, Miley, is to the left of me when sitting on my settee. Books reaching distance, while sat down.
Coffee table is in front of me.
My lamp I had in the corner originally, is on my bookcase. So not moved far.

I don’t use my computer table now for my computer. The computer is now in the corner where my lamp used to be, on top of the filing cabinet. I stand to type, which is not regular I use my computer this way, as I watch dvd’s more on it. But it’s the right height to stand at, should I need to.
My 3-tier shelving is still on the same side as before. I have just moved it up towards near the door, where bookcase was originally.
Computer table has been lowered, so it’s one level. So now it’s a small table. And what I am now using this for, is for my lovely cuteness.

The cuteness

You are going to have to wait for part 2.

I know. I know. That was so cruel. But what I was going to write and what further I may end up writing about the cuteness, would have made the post very long. This was the part I mentioned near the beginning that something has come up and although I have the answers myself possibly, I just want them confirmed.

So do look out for part 2, where the cuteness can be talked about longer. For the very small few who know about the cuteness, or have an idea, please don’t reveal here. Lets not spoil the fun. ūüôā

 

© Elizabeth Fisher and My Wellbeing and Learning Journey.

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My dairy-free journey – Part 2

So in¬†My dairy-free journey ‚Äď Part 1, I talked about how I hit an area of confusion when it came to some labelling I noticed. I said I would talk about it further in my next post, so this post is just on that.

Just like in this link discussion, which will take you to Allergy Insight, it is shown how people cannot come to same agreement.
I doubt coming to the same  agreement will happen in my lifetime. But I would like to see it happen.

‘Dairy free’ is what I have known for years, as a label. I have known and trusted this term even before becoming dairy-free myself.

A new labelling I have come across is ‘milk free.’
I don’t know how long this has started being labelled on ‘Free From’ products, but I have only become recently aware of it, being dairy-free this time round. I am very cautious about this labelling and I have every reason to.

I wrote to two companies; one a well known supermarket and the other a manufacturer of a product I recently bought, but was hesitant to use, regardless it was suitable for vegans and because I just turned something else down at my mum’s that seamt ok looking at ingredients, but didn’t have faith in it, when it came to the pastry.

Supermarket’s reply to me was short. They did not answer all my questions because they did not answer a question I had on a particular product, in addition to their labelling. All they said was, “… products that are milk free are not always completely dairy free.

Our free from range is filled with dairy free and many other free from products, so always be sure to double check the ingredients.”

Where as the manufacturer of a couple of products I wanted to query, they were more helpful. They said “Milk-free and dairy-free do mean the same thing however this may differ on our packaging depending on what version is being used…

Whilst our chicken pies do not contain any dairy, they are produced at the same site as our quiche which does, which is why we do not make a dairy or milk free claim on them.

Our pastry is produced on a different line and as a result, is safe to be labelled milk free.

If any milk containing ingredients are used in our products then this will be clearly labelled in our ingredients deck…”

Now armed with the answers from both places I contacted, from this, for me, I know my choices. But you can see why there is still confusion about labelling on food products?
For me, as I don’t have an allergy with milk that it can harm me, I can relax. But can someone with a serious milk allergy relax with these replies?

 

© Elizabeth Fisher and My Wellbeing and Learning Journey.

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Over 5 years since not drinking

17th August was 5 years not drinking alcohol.

I have mentioned nothing more about this topic since in a post at my 3 year mark. I only kind of realised the time gone by since I chose to stop drinking, when I seen behind the scenes of my post for two years since I last drank, pop up in posts viewed.

Reasons the same for choosing not to drink alcohol

I gave it up as I found it to not suit me. I would feel low, or depressed an hour after having a glass or two of wine.

Prior to that, I had a time where I did not treat alcohol sensibly at one point, because of a relationship break up of 6 years. With that and how I felt at the time in other areas of my life, the aim was to just get drunk, not drink for pleasure. This last for a few months before I banned it from the house because I could not trust myself. Then later when I could, I drank sensibly until I realised that it wasn’t suiting me no more and I gave it up.

I have not missed it since I chose to stop, but during that time I have had the odd times I have fancied a drink. Most for the right reason and a couple for the wrong reasons. But I never gave in to my cravings for a drink and I still choose not to drink, as I feel better for doing this in many ways.

I am happy knowing I have still decided not to drink, as I come to this 5 year mark. Even when at times when it was tempting for the wrong reasons.

 

© Elizabeth Fisher and My Wellbeing and Learning Journey.

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I wouldn’t choose this life again

If there is a such thing as coming back in another life, I wouldn’t choose this life again.

Sorry if this upsets anyone, but I have been holding onto this for a long time.

My lifetime has had a lot of pain and sadness. What happened in my childhood meant it gave me triggers in later life. PTSD a counsellor said I have, for the traumatic things I witnessed/experienced, in my childhood

I don’t have PTSD like some people, so when not showing signs for some time (that I am aware of) meant I thought I was lucky there myself and cured. Yes, I thought I was cured, until I was triggered again.

I know many of my readers do relate and no doubt will relate and understand this post.

I wouldn’t want any child to go through what I had and to still put up with some of the things now, all for the sake of love. It took until I burnt out and for seeing my mum revert slowly back a little. Not helping herself.
The offers are there for her. She’s holding them, but not using them.

I was happy to help and support one time. But when the person is not continuing helping themselves, then I can’t help. I won’t put my emotional energy into it no longer.
The person has to help themselves and do the work too. Something my mum once said, but failing to follow her own advice now.

A family member on my mum’s side keeps saying I should meet up for you for coffee. She said it again after she had that basic update of how me and mum are. I kept saying that would be lovely. Do let me know when. But you know what? I have been waiting for that fucking coffee and meeting up since before my mum took the overdose! It’s gone on even longer than that, because I have been hearing this since last December.
If you do that to a family member, or a friend, then please don’t. Don’t set that person up with that kind of promise, or any kind of promise you can’t keep.

But you my readers, my friends and work colleagues have helped more than anyone else. (With exception of one family member who has unexpectedly helped me in the past, on a different matter.) And I really appreciate¬† that. But it would be just lovely to just sit in a park, or a cafe,¬† for that cuppa. Even if it’s just sitting in quiet. I don’t mind quiet. I like quiet.

I would like to see a person be in my position now and do what I have done for my mum in one year. Not forgetting the anxiety, stress, worry, frustration, scared of every text that comes to your phone, until finally it getting very heated and you are feeling burnt out. Would you still do it for another year?
Then try my life of doing it that long from my teens as a carer, but understanding and worrying from 11. You will feel resentment. When you have had the counselling and understood even more how your childhood is affecting the present, you will feel more resentment and maybe anger. And the disappointment and further feeling of being alone, because someone could not keep that promise of going out for a coffee.

If you was a fly on the wall, observing just the day time hours in my flat this past month, you would have seen how difficult it is for me. This past month especially when it got more tense.

Now don’t say I can change this, because changing this would mean cutting mum off completely and I nearly have done that. But for the sake of love, I haven’t quite yet. But I do need that temporary break. It’s very early days, but I do wonder if I will end up doing it permanent, because of what went off over a few days and what hasn’t happened today, which I won’t go into here right now. But it’s early days and I shall see what happens by November.

Until then, I am facing my own battles still, to keep out of that black cloud.

I have self-referred myself, back to counselling.

As for my blood pressure, it is going down. My lower number can be a bit high at times when taking readings. Only time it’s shot up, is when I have been upset.

My asthma is only triggered by the same upset, otherwise it’s much better. I have even got rid of that blanket from underneath my pillows, when I needed to prop myself up more. I didn’t think I would ever get rid of that.

 

© Elizabeth Fisher and My Wellbeing and Learning Journey.

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A change of heart with my mum

As you know with I choose not to… and If you followed last night’s post… it was getting more of a tense time and I was considering cutting ties with my mum completely. But as I calm down further, I am having a slight change of heart. But there is still going to have to be some changes, on both sides.

I’m not going to be her carer. I’m going to be her daughter. I will help top up her phone when I do see her. But that’s it. Nothing else.

From now, until November time, I won’t personally see her, as I still feel I need time away to calm, heal and concentrate on me. But I will allow my mum to text on the first of each month only.

I think mum needs a taste of what it is like, without a daughter. Maybe mum will discover how much she had depended on me.

I hope that from the short temporary break of not seeing her, that mum learns something from this. I hope mum takes more care of herself.

As for me, taking this step back from not being a carer, to just a daughter, as much as I wanted to help, I will know by not doing the caring role, it will be better for me long term. Hopefully, better all round, between me and mum too.

Also, because of the step back I am doing, means more time for me, making sure I do what I want to do and time for me as part of my self-care.

You have to remember, I have been a carer to some degree, since my teens. I’m now 43. So I think I very much deserve time out and keeping distance for a few months. It has only been this year where I have felt I have had some kind of support when it came to my mum.
But as I was still the one who seen her more than anyone else, it has been me that has seen the changes and bore the brunt of it.

When the time comes to seeing my mum in November and our first day meeting up goes ok, the plan will be to only see my mum either once a week, or once every fortnight, from then on. I won’t do anything more than once a week.

I will keep you updated and once again, thank you for your support. Xx

© Elizabeth Fisher and My Wellbeing and Learning Journey.

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If you followed last night’s post…

If you followed the comments in last night’s post,¬†I choose not to‚Ķ, you will know, after admitting to my blogger friend, Lorraine, that I admitted, I did glance at the letter.
I skimmed it quickly and I was right, another letter that does not benefit me in any way. It just caused me to be upset, regardless it contained what I expected and more.
I skimmed it because I wanted to be sure there was nothing in it to show that she was planning on harming herself again, with having a text that just said sorry on Sunday night, which I did not respond to as I said in last night’s post, because I was going to bed.
To say I texted her last night as I said in last night’s post that I choose not to read it, I heard nothing from that text. Not even an ok, as she normally would.
For all I know, mum could be dead on the floor. But then she could be doing her own thing, giving me space.
Since this year’s overdose, mum has always said she wouldn’t do it again. But given past experience and her mental health now, how am I supposed to trust that?
I should not have glanced at that letter, until I did my blood pressure reading. But I did and so each reading went higher than the one before. It was high.
I went to bed with huge anxiety. Thought I would never sleep. But I did.

This morning, I woke upset. I was tearful and I am also angry with my mum.
I am at the stage today that I want to disown my mum. But this, I would never say in a text.

I have emailed the email I was given by my mum’s nurse, should I ever need to use it as an urgency while mum’s nurse is not available. I have expressed my feelings there of how it has caused me to be off work last week.
How I wonder why as a child, I was never put into care when I have my mum as she was and a verbally abuse father.
How I was sick of holding responsibility as a teenager, when I had not experienced adult life.
So to watch it all unfold and see the signs that I see, in addition to seeing if mum takes this alternative help, when her nurse next sees her to discuss this, that I will not sit and watch all this again.
I have expressed that if mum does not take that alternative help, then it won’t surprise me if I have a mum by Christmas. I will expect her dead before then.
There was more I had written in this email, but it will make it hell of a long post.

As well as the above in how I feel, I may as well have a noose around my neck. That’s how it feels, as though I have that, wondering if mum has already, or will take an overdose. This is the only way I can describe my mental torcher I feel, as well as living in a nightmare I don’t want to be in.

I thank you to those who supported me in last night’s post and I send advanced thanks to this one, in case I fall behind in commenting, with how I feel in this torment.

Post update:

This post: A change of heart with my mum is an updated post, since this one was written.

 

© Elizabeth Fisher and My Wellbeing and Learning Journey.

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I choose not to…

As I said in Chit-chat August, I had a letter off mum to read when I felt settled, as mum said. When I asked  mum what was basically in it, given that past experiences of reading her letters has not benefited me and have left me upset since aged 11. All mum said was she wrote everything in there. I said I could not promise when I would read it, if I ever do, because all it is doing to me is filling me with dread to read it now.
No reassuring words from mum what so ever, than what she said, “I have written it all in there.”
So I know given the circumstances, this letter will not benefit me and only upset me, reading what I already know and more.
Why should I allow my mum to do this to me again, after many times before?
Well I am not. Not again and so after only having that letter in my hands to read one day, since Saturday, I chose to shred it tonight.

I sent the following text to my mum, to tell her I choose not to read and why.

“I have shredded your letter. I have not read it because I choose not to. I choose not to open a letter that could possibly upset. Given my experience of past letters from you since aged 11, a majority have never benefited me from reading. Only one letter ever did and I won’t allow myself to get further upset then I have already been. X”

How I feel right now. I am getting ready to disown my mum. Yes. That’s how I feel right now and I feel angry also for feeling this. I feel angry with my mum making me feel like this.

Work though. They have been bloody amazing and supportive as usual, when I told them what has been going off and how I feel about it that I mention here, after my first day back, from being sick off work last week.

 

© Elizabeth Fisher and My Wellbeing and Learning Journey.

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Chit-chat August

Blood pressure

I was concerned with this at home, while taking my readings for my doctor, after the last visit and so rather hand my readings in, I made an appointment instead, because they were higher than normal for home.
What I didn’t know doctors do with those readings is work out your average from that and he told me from that average what he would like to see go lower. This was the bottom number.

I seen a different doctor, as the other one I have seen mainly, did not work on that particular day I called in. He was a doctor who soon put you at ease and was aware before I started to speak, that I lipread.

I now have a couple of other appointments.
First one is ECG and blood taken. I am not worried about this, as been there before some years ago.
Then at the second appointment I see the doctor who I seen last, for results of my ECG and blood test. I also take a urine sample that day to him.

Between my last appointment and when I see the doctor again, in September, I am to continue taking my blood pressure readings, but this time, just two, or three times a week; morning and evening.

My break from work, helped me to feel more like me, than I have ever felt for a while this year. It helped my fatigue that I had been having for some time, although I still have odd times of bad bouts of fatigue. Does this mean I have to listen to my body more?
I crashed as I expected on the weekend leading up to my break from work. But my recovery was quicker than expected. Regardless, I still took it easy.
My mood during that time was stressful to start, but I got myself to relax after a few days. But I had and still do, have some down days with how things have been.

I plan to go back to work, tomorrow.

During this time, I felt I had to cut ties with my mum, so the next time seeing her from last, was just over a week. Seeing her for the first time yesterday, after my break, went ok and I ended up staying a little longer than planned.
I have a letter written by my mum, for me, to read when I feel settled. This obviously is not something I will go into detail, in a later post when I have. Not even a protected post. I said to mum this could be end of September before I read this, at the earliest. I am waiting until appointments are out the way and I know what’s what. But all the same, the letter fills me with dread, because I have mostly had bad experiences when it comes to her letters.

Learning something new, was when I learnt how to blanch. This was needed for my Tomato and broccoli quiche (dairy-free).

As well as making the quiche, I also made some strawberry chia jam tarts, from the left over pastry, with me having the strawberries and chia seeds to hand.

Chia strawberry jam tarts
Chia strawberry jam tarts

I also made some petticoat tails. The recipe for those you will find in an old “McDougalls better baking 33rd edition” book.

Here are just some of mine made, on a plate.

A few of my biscuits on the plate
Petticoat tails

It’s been a good number of years since I last made these biscuits and when I made them again today, I put less caster sugar in them, than the recipe says, because I find them too sweet otherwise.

From the same book, I made cheese scones. Again, adapting so it’s dairy free. I made these yesterday. ūüėä

I have read a book called, “Keeping Secrets,” by Andrew Rosenheim. A fictional story.

DVD’s watched:

  • Fantastic Beasts and Where to find them
  • The Phantom of the Opera (film, staring Gerald Butler.)
  • (Re-watched) As good as it gets
  • (Re-watched) The Phantom of the Opera at The Royal Albert Hall
  • (Re-watched) Man of Steel
  • (Re-watched) Sum of all Fears

 

 

© Elizabeth Fisher and My Wellbeing and Learning Journey.

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Dreams

It’s nice to have dreams. We know they may never come true, but I is nice to dream them, isn’t it?

So… What is my dream?

My dream would be, if I was very lucky to win the lottery, or be in a position without winning, to buy a bungalow. This was once in hoping mum would one day live with me if she wanted. But as I blogged about in Chit-chat catch up, this won’t be happening now, whether rent, or bought.

Owning a bungalow feels like a big dream that won’t happen. But it is nice to hope and dream all the same.

On a realistic level, my dream is to one day be living in a council property. Although that situation is nearly as hard as winning the lottery. Although I am looking at ground floor as well as first floor, if I got a ground, then brilliant. Getting a council property in my chosen area, would be really nice.

What is your dream?

© Elizabeth Fisher and My Wellbeing and Learning Journey.

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Chit-chat catch up

So I have done everything I need to do that was needed with my blog and I am back to posting earlier than expected. So it did not take as long as expected.

I would like to thank all my readers for their support and hello to new followers that have joined, for the short time I was away.

Everything is still going fine with my electric and gas supplier. They use meter readings every time compared to the previous. So whenever I move home, I shall take them with me. (Unless I find them there already.)

My previous supplier who I left some months back, surprisingly sent me a cheque for credit I was in, as well as compensation. I was very surprised to see for a rip-off company and so I wasn’t expecting a penny. I would still not recommend them and I will avoid.

Me and my mum won’t be living together. I have now removed her off the council list. I won’t go into too much detail, otherwise it would make this post a protected post. But I am going my own way and mum can go hers, should she choose to take it. My mum’s nurse will advise and guide her should she choose to and if she does choose to, it means she can still move to Mansfield.

In the meantime, because of the situation and my health, which is now high blood pressure, (and I still have asthma issues,) I refuse to do those unexpected stop overs sleeping on the floor at night in a sleeping bag. Mum will have to use that 24 hour phone number she has, should she need it.

Work has been very supportive, as they always are, in these difficult recent times and I took their offer to have a week off work this week, so I could rest.

I will continue to live where I currently live, as I can’t afford to move in another private property, unless I am in a second job. But I shall hold out anyway, to see what happens with bids I make on any council properties.

I will walk away from arguments

As I have said in the past to my mum and now I am actually having to do it to my own mum, is that I won’t continue talking in a heated conservation. I will walk away.
Heated conversations don’t get you anywhere and don’t do anymore any good. I will and I have done, will walk away.

I have gone back to my old volunteer place, with not yet securing a cleaning job in the morning. They were happy to see me back. I do the same day and hours, each week as before.

My other volunteer role in my local area, I go bird watching this week. This is my second time with my local conservation group, since joining this year.

I decluttered. Yes. I managed to fill a carrier bag full of things, ready to donate to charity.

© Elizabeth Fisher and My Wellbeing and Learning Journey.

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