Tag Archive | inspiring

114 Days of freed0m-Day 4

Today I arranged to visit my friend Jenny who has a 10 week old puppy that I just have to see.  I have seen some photos and he looks adorable and I made sure that I took my camera with me.

I arrived at the house, opened the door and he came to greet me straight away; no nerves and no barking just much tail wagging. What a cutie.


As with most pups he is all big feet and long legs which are still not quite under his control when he runs around after Jenny-mummy everywhere she goes. He bombed around playing with his toys until he flopped and although he fought to stay awake, soon he was fast asleep on Jenny-mummy’s lap.


Nite-nite Fenn.

Sleep tight.





Phenomenal Woman

Pretty women wonder where my secret lies.
I’m not cute or built to suit a fashion model’s size
But when I start to tell them,
They think I’m telling lies.
I say,
It’s in the reach of my arms
The span of my hips,
The stride of my step,
The curl of my lips.
I’m a woman
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.

I walk into a room
Just as cool as you please,
And to a man,
The fellows stand or
Fall down on their knees.
Then they swarm around me,
A hive of honey bees.
I say,
It’s the fire in my eyes,
And the flash of my teeth,
The swing in my waist,
And the joy in my feet.
I’m a woman
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.

Men themselves have wondered
What they see in me.
They try so much
But they can’t touch
My inner mystery.
When I try to show them
They say they still can’t see.
I say,
It’s in the arch of my back,
The sun of my smile,
The ride of my breasts,
The grace of my style.
I’m a woman

Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.

Now you understand
Just why my head’s not bowed.
I don’t shout or jump about
Or have to talk real loud.
When you see me passing
It ought to make you proud.
I say,
It’s in the click of my heels,
The bend of my hair,
the palm of my hand,
The need of my care,
‘Cause I’m a woman
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.

Maya Angelou

The Spoon Theory

The Spoon Theory

When I read this article this morning I cried. Not because I was sad or upset but with relief because I may have found a way to describe how I feel to someone who looks at me and thinks I look OK. Someone who thinks that all my moans and groans about being tired, exhausted, and wiped out to the point of collapse and tears of frustration and pain are fiction. That’s the problem with an invisible illness. You look fine but underneath you are fighting to stay as normal as possible with every ounce of energy you have. If I could only find a way to explain that feeling, I would feel better. People would maybe understand and not judge. A little empathy and genuine concern costs nothing but you would think it costs the earth for its paucity.

I face any number of battles every morning before I go out of the house. I often use all my spoons before I get to work, and then I’m in deficit; running on empty whilst all the time destroying my engine. You can run on empty for a while. We all know that there is always something in reserve from what the car manufacturers tell you. Unfortunately when your body says enough is enough it’s usually time to wave the white flag and retire to bed for a while. Rest and recovery is vital in managing chronic fatigue syndrome and I spend most of my weekends in bed, either resting or asleep, just catching up from the week’s exertion. What a waste of time.

I hope that you will read about the Spoon Theory and imagine how it would impact you and your daily routine. It is the closest explanation I have seen for normally healthy people to start to understand what it is like to have depleted energy resources and reserves. I used to take my high energy for granted; Sport, competition, manic activity and multi-tasking were key skills of mine and I thrived on it. Now, I have to manage my energy supply. I only have so many spoons.



Waterlilliesnef stands for “the new economics foundation” an organisation which has produced a great set of postcards to promote it’s initiative “Five Ways to Wellbeing” Continue reading

At least I’m not boring…

This week has been National Depression Awareness week in the UK and my thoughts and opinions about all things depression have been much in demand. I was interviewed by Sky news for a piece on antidepressants, the Sunday Telegraph about the dangers and risks of taking antidepressants and Thomson Reuters about my experiences of depression generally. In addition I have contributed the odd comment or two at work and on Facebook so it has been a busy week. I am looking forward to the 3-day weekend to recuperate a little.

Out of all the things I have discussed this week however, one person has struck a chord with me. When asked the question, “What defines good mental health?” her response was that for her, good mental health is determined by consistency. Consistency of mood and emotions so that she is able to plan events and outings knowing that she is well enough to follow through on those plans instead of having to change or cancel them at the last minute when not feeling so good. Going to bed as one person and waking up as another is also problematic and can lead people with these symptoms to stop planning altogether so they don’t let friends or family down.

I understand this but quite often forget that it is a symptom of my ilness. It’s hard to keep letting people down when they are so patient and understanding and the overwhelming feeling of guilt makes you feel even worse. I have always said that I don’t have many friends as if I can’t guarantee being able to be a good friend to them then I can’t expect the reverse to be true. It’s not fair. It’s not equitable.

But actually, that’s what friends are for. They do understand and they are forgiving. Real friends are the salt of the earth and you should cherish them as and when you can.

But being inconsistent, whilst it is incredibly frustrating, can also be veiwed as a positive attribute! If you are a constant surprise to yourself as well as others, you can never be called boring! Unpredictable maybe, off-the-wall and kooky perhaps.

But never, ever, boring!

strong women