A Bit of a Catch Up

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I thought, as I’ve been away for a few weeks, I’d start blogging again with a bit of a catch up. I haven’t really done that much of an update on my goals, my planned no buy September and what I’m doing with the blog coming up. I’ve actually found that the few weeks off, though the reason for the break wasn’t great, has actually helped me clear my head and get more focussed on what I’m going to do with my blog, or want to anyway.

I did get a bit stuck in a rut, despite posting about trying to get out of it before, and did find myself wondering whether I should keep blogging before all of this happened as you look around and see newer blogs doing better with views and likes and things and getting more companies working with them and it did sort of sit there in the back of my mind. However, having had the break, I’m really looking forward to blogging more and have ideas as well as all the things I had planned on posting the past few weeks.

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An Afternoon at Bletchley Park

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I realised I don’t tend to do any of these kinds of blogs recently so as we visited Bletchley Park I thought I’d post about it. Last week, after the rush of the Bank Holiday, I went and visited Bletchley Park with my parents. It’s one of those places that I’ve always known about and we live about an hour away but none of us have ever been to so we decided to give it a visit. Given the amount of things to see there we thought we’d do two visits, or see what was there and then decide, and I am so glad that we went in thinking that as we saw about half of it and I was exhausted afterwards, I’ve only just recovered. One thing worth knowing before you go is that the tickets are valid for a full year and you can have as many visits as you want in that time. I can’t find that anywhere on the website so it was a nice surprise when we went and picked our tickets up.

Bletchley Park is a museum dedicated to the codebreakers from the second world war. They were based here, at its peak I think there were 9,000 people living and working in the complex, and it was all top secret. They broke the Enigma code that the Germans used to send messages to each other along with other codes used at the time, I think Enigma is probably the most famous. There’s a mix of standard museum style exhibitions, some of which are temporary and change, and quite a few blocks and rooms that have been restored and furnished as they were at the time.

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M.E. Myself and I: What Do You Do at Home?

It’s been a while since I wrote anything M.E. related but after a trip to relatives I thought this would be a good time. This question, along with ‘do you go out much?’ and ‘do you have any friends you go out with?’ are innocent enough questions, at least in this case they were, but they’re some of those that are so hard to answer when you’ve got a chronic illness. It doesn’t help that elderly relatives can forget they’ve asked so I’ve been asked repeatedly on the same day which doesn’t exactly help to just brush it off.

I guess that’s the thing, it’s harder to brush these off when you don’t actually so much. In everyday life I tend to think I’ve achieved quite a bit if I’ve managed to get my blog posts up for the week, gone for walks, done some volunteering and maybe get some jewellery making done. Looking at each day individually most of the time is spent what would probably be classed as ‘not doing much’ which translates to resting in chronic illness terms. It’s harder to feel like you’re acheiving something when you look at it like that and easy to forget how much improvement there has been over the past few years, even the last year or six months.

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Keep Asking Questions

This is probably another of those posts where I’ve already kind of posted about in the past as part of another topic but I feel like it deserves its own post and it’s something that’s kind of relevant in my life at the moment.

Sometimes it’s easy to fall into the trap of blaming every symptom you have on ME, I know in the past I have been guilty of this and when doctors tell you it’s all a part of your chronic illness this doesn’t help. I know I’ve been very lucky with doctors in general as every one I have seen at the surgery I go to believes in ME and has ideas on the treatments available. One of them said ‘Just because you have ME doesn’t mean you can’t have appendicitis’ which is maybe a bit if an odd statement but I totally agree and think it’s a great way of thinking about it and does stop you from just sticking every new symptom into that diagnosis of ME.

If you have a new symptom or something that doesn’t fit with the ME that you have, let’s face it we all seem to be different and things that are everyday symptoms of ME for one person aren’t for another so it’s no wonder doctors get a bit confused over it sometimes, then be sure to mention it to a doctor, maybe push for tests. Even if they’re the same tests you had done five years ago or even six months ago if it’s a new symptom that’s appeared then it could be something​ that’s developed. I’ve had certain symptoms for years, they even landed me in hospital overnight eighteen months ago, and have had so many ultrasounds and scans done that came back as nothing but I had the same tests repeated and something showed up. I’m not going into too much detail as there’s blood tests and I have no idea what it is yet but it shows that, although every one of these symptoms could fit into my diagnosis of ME and IBS this is something new, at least it’s newly discovered (though saying that feels like it’s a new species or something in a nature programme) andtheres a way of treating it that will hopefully mean I don’t have all of these symptoms. 

Since having ME I have ended up being diagnosed with other things that effect my health, even things as simple as good intolerances, that could have just been dismissed as part of ME so it’s important to push and ask questions if something feels wrong for you. I’m not saying self diagnose with the internet, that can be dangerous, but do ask your GP about things. Here may be something that you didn’t mention that leads them to something new. 

For me know if the most frustrating things about ME is the fact that there is no treatment, or rather not cure, so it’s all a case of trial and error. So if there’s a blood test that can either rule in or out something that could be causing my symptoms then I’ll get it done. Even if, at one time, I was going in for blood tests every month or every couple of weeks. If there’s a possibility some of my symptoms are part of something else that can be treated then that means my body has less to deal with and my ME improves as a knock on effect.

I know it can be hard, I know at times I’ve felt like I’m just wasting my GPs time if I keep going back for the same thing, but it can be worth it. If all the tests come back negative then maybe it is a fun new symptom of ME, they seem to pop up from time to time for me, but at least it ruled out the other options.

Also, try to find a doctor who is prepared to keep pushing. As I said before, I’ve been lucky that all the GPs understand that ME is a physical illness as well as having a mental effect but some have fallen into that ‘it’s probably ME’ trap. If you can then get a second opinion and if you find a doctor who is willing to push for more tests then stick with them. Unluckily for me I seemed to go through a patch where my GP left a few months after i started seeing them so I saw quite a few at one time. I know it’s not always possible but getting into a waiting list for an ME clinic, if there’s one in your area, is something I would definitely recommend. You may have had ME for years and be able to pace yourself and control it, if that’s the right phrase, but ME specialists will have ideas on new trials and ideas that have come out or what symptoms could be, it was only when one near me mentioned POTS and postprandial hypoglycaemia that I knew what they were and that they can be common for people with ME but they were causing some of my problems with energy and since changing things and treating those aspects my ME in general has improved a bit.

Sorry guys, this post got a bit longer than I meant it to and it might be a bit of a wall of text but I hope it helps someone​. Even if it’s just hearing someone else say, or read it, I find it reminds me to do things that I sort of forget so maybe this post might do that. I don’t know.

Anyway, I hope you’re all as well as possible and had a good Easter weekend! 

First Impressions: Lush Mother’s Day

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I recently made an order online with Lush, mainly because of the Marathon bubble bar they had in the kitchen which is sadly no longer available, and most of it is from the Mother’s Day range. I did get a couple of extras but as you can’t get them online any more this post is mainly my first impressions of the Mother’s Day products I bought. They’re still available for a while, until Mother’s Day at least, and I know that stores tend to have these seasonal items in stock beyond the date they’re available online.

I have to say that, for the past few years, I kind of went off Lush. The quality and consistency seemed to have gone downhill while the prices went up but recently they seem to be going back to the older scent strength. I also love the recent trend with their limited edition products and the citrus scents. They may not be everyone’s favourites and they don’t always have the complexity of some of the Lush signature scents but I do love a good citrus bath product.

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I Don’t Do New Year’s Resolutions But…

For ages I would make new year’s resolutions but there are only so many times you can have learn to drive on there but kit be able to achieve it purely because of health reasons before it gets a bit demoralising. 

Instead I have decided to make goals, I did his last year and I failed most due to a mix of health, mediation side effects or other family member’s health issues that were more important to think about but since having ME I have definitely learnt that goals should be flexible as being to rigid with them leads to disappointment and it’s just not how chronic illnesses work, in my experience anyway. Continue reading

Happy New Year! & Snowflake NOTD

Happy New Year everyone! I hope 2017 brings you everything you want and you’ve had a fun New Years Eve, whether it’s out with others, staying in at home to see in the new year or falling asleep. 
I don’t know what happened to 2016, not the best year as a world or me personally but it did see my blog grow and I know what I’m doing with it (kind of). I promise to get better at blogging next year but that’s for another post. Basically have a great 2017! 

Also, the nails in the photo used Red Carpet Manicure Aquamarine, which I got for Christmas and wanted to play with despite originally planing a NYE themed nail look. The nail art uses my much loved Rio Professional Nail Art Pens in white and light blue. I love how sparkly the RCM colour is and my snowflakes actually turned out ok. 

Liebster Award!

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Hi guys!

This is a bit late as I meant to do it as the Tuesday post but things happened and I had to use the other post so sorry this is a bit late. The lovely fangirlingowl (I love the name) nominated me for the Liebster Award, thank you so much! I’m probably more excited than I should be about this but it’s so great to have people even reading my blog let alone nominating me for this!

Also sorry if anyone I’ve nominated has already been nominated before or if you have over 200 followers (I couldn’t find the follower number if you do), you don’t have to answer the questions. Continue reading