[I'd like to start this post with a quick note regarding the previous post. I was incorrect about the Frog Song as it was produced by a close family friend, not my dad. But that being the case...it was often talked about by our family and was still made by a friend so is still personal to me].
It's now 2015 and as of yesterday, I'm 31. Officially in my 30s.
Christmas Eve and Day were spent with Tom's family and was a pleasure as, due to my minor bouts of anxiety and depression despite the medication, they made a particular point of making me feel comfortable by having no issue with my leaving the dining table early after eating or cocooning myself in Tom's room whenever I needed the space. What further helped was talking to the family about the operation. Can't recall if I've mentioned this yet, but my donor is Tom's sister. And she's such a close match, the doctors originally thought us to be sisters.
On top of that, I'm now under the impression that the anti-depressants I'm on actually gave me the courage to play with Tom's oldest niece. I've always been wary about approaching her as she seems extremely unsure of me and I didn't want to freak her out. At Christmas, she showed less signs of caution, so that and the medication gave me the confidence to very carefully approach her and play with her...which resulted in us bonding...and was such a wonderful way to conclude Christmas with the Brands. Especially as she was happy to do the type of playing that involves me being curled up on the couch. I struggle to physically keep up with children as I have pleural effusion: a collection of fluid next to the lung. There are various causes. The effusion may cause you to become breathless.
Which is why, despite the fact that I love children...I never play with them. When they get over excited, I can't keep up. So I don't start in the first place so they don't get disappointed.
But...lying back on the sofa or the floor, I was able to play with her and keep her in high spirits. And she's got such a gorgeous laugh, so it made my Christmas.
Boxing day, we went to my parents to see my brother, his girlfriend and their kids. And again, had a lovely time with family and again, anti-depressants allowed me to relax enough to play and chat with my nieces in a way that I believe I've not been able to before.
That evening, we went to Kew Gardens for the Light Trail. I have a huge weakness for pretty lights as they can have such an affect on the mind. So it ....was....bliss.
|Water show with music|
|Big light plants|
|Tunnel of light with smatterings of coloured light...I walked through purposely slowly|
|FIRE SHOW....with light projection in the background and music|
The house we'd rented was basically my ideal house, so I was in my element. And the hot tub was AMAZING! After a day or so of just relaxing, we went to Glastonbury (which I fell in love with), then to Glastonbury Tor....just in time for the perfect sunset.
It was...breathe taking.
Minus the wind desperately trying to blow us away (Glastonbury Tor is really, really high), the colours were so rich, I actually got a touch emotional.
Heading back home, we decided to return the next day for some shop browsing. This was when my New Years was officially...made.
I'm a non-frequent user of Tarot cards. I've never actually bought my own pack, but acquired a collection from people giving me packs they thought suited me most. However, my first pack was given to me by a friend because I just couldn't keep my hands off them so she offered them to me (for which I'm still grateful).
Due to readings I've done for myself in the past, the Judgement card has now become personal to me.
I didn't realise at the time of developing a liking for this card that it can stand for 'rebirth'.
So anyway, we're walking around Glastonbury and I see an illustration in a shop which rings a huge bell in my head. I walk in and see more. Blimey, this shop's awesome! I then see a selection of loose prints and the woman behind the til walks up and informs me that they're on sale and if I'd like, she can sign one for me. What? Why would I.....wait....is she the illustrator? The bell is now ringing louder in my head...and I start flicking through the prints. And there it is.....Judgement.
I turn to the woman at the counter and ask '...do...you illustrate cards by any chance?' and she points to a deck on the table. My deck.
In a huge daze, I walk up to the counter with the print and offer it across for her to sign, which she informs me it already has been.
Since falling ill, I find myself looking for signs and patterns pretty much everywhere. I'm not religious, I don't believe in God, but...when the human brain struggles, it tends to turn to something external to find strength to push it through. And given the odd experiences I've had in life, I've found myself turning more and more towards Paganism. It's more....earth based.
And seeing this card in the shop was like a big neon sign that everything was going to be ok.
I found myself feeling a bit daft at getting emotional over this card, but then the artist said 'ah you've chosen Judgement' to which one of my companions said 'that's your card...' and gave me a slow smile....which made me realise that they all probably understood the impact this card actually had on me. Making me feel a little less silly....a forcing me quickly out of the shop after I'd paid, to hide behind a statue, and have a bit of a teary moment by myself.
My Christmas and New Years was a touch marred when I developed an infection before the holidays, took antibiotics to combat it, but then had it taunt me over the next few days, and as an extra kicker, a pain in my back slowly bloomed, thus interfering just a touch with my yoga (of course!). So with infection coming and going, back pain blooming and Sciatica threatening, as well as the anxiety towards the impending operation on the horizon, there were moments I had to run away, curl up in a ball and just go 'wwhhhyyyy' at everything. Infection appears to have passed, but back pain is still there...aching just slightly. I don't know if the pain is due to the infection, muscular or nerve...I'm going to the GP tomorrow to sort it out once and for all.
However, despite all this, I had truly wonderful company throughout the holiday season. Whenever I left a room, I felt I was able to join people sooner than I would have done, even if it meant sitting with my tablet on as I could feel their company, but was in my own little world. And they were tremendously supportive. No one questioned me or my actions. All of which made me feel safer. I can't thank them enough for that. It actually helped make the festive season perfect for me (the crappier moments are overlaid by the fact that I had so much support).
I have to admit, although we ate very well and the worry of the pain made me drink a ton of water, I'd stay up until about 4am everyday: 1) so my head wouldn't do 'the thing' and wake me up ridiculously early (you can't wake too early if that's when you go to bed) and 2) the feeling of mental fuzz this gave me meant it helped blur the anxiety and depression I encountered...just a touch. It also meant that when I found something funny, I found it hysterically funny. Yes I pushed myself...it just meant I enjoyed myself more as I was in a constant state of numbish high.
Came back home....and for the first time in months...possibly a year....I can say I'm actually at peace.
I've slept deeply 3 nights in a row now. I get the feeling pushing myself to breaking point meant my brain sought the sleep it needed and thus reset itself.
My sense of distraction, my focus and my memory are worse than they've ever been. In fact it's now reached the point where I'm struggling to verbalise sentences properly, forgetting simple words or saying one thing and meaning something completely different. My verbal dyslexia is based on the fact that I've so many thoughts going through my head, I can't process them all enough to verbalise one at a time. The memory thing...I recently learnt is the brain's way of entering survival mode: you find yourself in a crisis, so your brain automatically ignores what doesn't benefit you in the here and now or for your future development and remembers everything that will be vital to your survival as a human being. Which is why I tend to struggle to remember even the most basic facts. The other day, I honestly couldn't subtract 1 from 3. That's when I knew I had to stop playing games for a bit.
But otherwise, I'm at peace with myself...again. After New Years, I thought I was in a constant state of terror regarding the operation, but I'm actually not.
At one point I realised, when I get excited, an adrenaline shot flows through me and instead of feeling happy and excited, my fight or flight instinct is activated and I become terrified instead as I can't take the flight option. That said...now I know this...I'm trying to control it. And find myself looking forward to the operation now. That....and feeling better.
Just 5 weeks and counting...