Sunday, October 14, 2018

A letter to the younger me

Over the years and my time having therapy they have always advised on writing letters to help me clear my head. I wrote a letter to my step dad and that helped me so much. I have many letters to write, but I think as it's me struggling with my own self perhaps writing a letter to me may help, well let's hope so anyway! 

Dear my younger self,

I want to tell you to enjoy life to the full, try new things and meet new people. You only have one or two strong friends and you will push them away, one completely as you realise she is not a friend and the other you will keep pushing away and she will accept you and put up with you. You need to make more of an effort with her as she will help you out when you really need her in many ways. She will be your friend for life. She will force you to finally realise that you are depressed and it's ok to get help. She will make you see the doctor and she will be on the end of the phone to talk you through it. You need to be there for her too. You will struggle to make friends and won't want to go out ever, I know you are laughing as you are the girl out drinking and partying every week, wild holidays and having fun. That won't last as it's not really you. 

Relationships...ok don't be stubborn and push away those who you actually love because they won't come back and they will move on. Those who you want to meet and go out with do it or so many years on you will be sitting here wondering why the hell not as you missed out there! You will marry but not for love, and then you'll be stuck in a loveless marriage until you find the strength to leave. Yes it's tough and and yes it will be hard being a single mum of two but hey it's more than worth it for these two beauties. And you may meet someone else one day.

Drink, paracetamol or night nurse do not help. They may make you feel good at the time but that's just silly. You are stronger than that and you don't need them.

You will fight with mum but she is your best friend and is always there for you. You have some tough times but you pull each other through. You would be lost and broken without mum. 

When nan gets dementia and goes into a home you feel like you have lost your whole world, she has been like another parent and then she's gone and some days doesn't even recognise you. It's rubbish and it hurts. Remember to support mum through this as she will put on her brave face but is hurting so much inside.

Marks death will haunt you everyday for the rest of your life. You will never forget or get over him. And to date you still cry everyday. Hopefully one day the pain will get easier but I can't tell you that yet.

You will work in Italy and will find it hard but embrace it as you will learn so much from the experience and you will feel closer to dad, but that will make you angry that he was taken from us too soon. Make you wonder what life would have been like with a mum and a dad. How life would of been like with an Italian side of the family who wanted to know you.

As a early years practitioner you will have so much knowledge to help and guide you through parenting but there will be some really tough times and if you have a gut feeling go with it don't put it off or make excuses, your babies are the most important thing, make memories, take pictures and enjoy every minute with them.

You will struggle with everyday life even getting out of bed everyday. But you are so strong and you can do it! 

Monday, September 10, 2018

I'm fine

I can honestly say this has to be my most used phrase and answer to everything. 

How you feeling? I'm fine
Do you want a biscuit with your tea? No thanks, I'm fine
Fancy coming out with the girls? Thanks for asking but no I'm fine at home.

My step dad banned the phrase "I'm fine" and "whatever "  from the house and at that time I really was fine. Now this just rolls off the tongue without even thinking. I don't ever need an answer beacuae I'm fine is there ready to be used.

In reality I'm not fine....I'm far from it!

I speak to my mum every day usually more than once or twice, and she knows my I'm fine from the I'm fine, I don't know how she knows but she does. I wish I knew the difference because to me I'm fine. 

I'm starting to understand that I'm not actually fine and it's ok not to be fine all of the time. I know that I am not a failure and that is ok to ask for help and accept the fact that I am not fine.

At the moment I have many changes in my life and I'm fine is being used an awful lot to everyone....I'm not fine. My baby boy is starting big school, we have moved to a new area and do not know anyone or anywhere, my son is having a tough time and under paediatrics, I am trying to arrange my divorce and I have my own mental health playing games with me. So I'm really not fine. But now I know how to reach out and ask and accept help, when my little man starts school many things will change but he will be settled and we will meet knew people. I will get to baby groups with my daughter. I will help my son to feel better and learn how to help him. I will keep accepting help from health visitors, school and the childrens centre I know they want to help and not judge me and my family. I will accept help from my mum. I have one or two friends who really know me and accept that I will push them away but they understand me so I will make more effort. 

I will also make time for me even if it is ten minutes a day to sit and enjoy a coffee or listen to some music. I will get past fine.

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Married to a Narcissist

                                      Image credit pinterest

After a seven year relationship we seperated,  (I'm not perfect and there were many reasons our relationship ended), now looking back at what went wrong and why, I have realised that my husband is a narcissist. I have read many websites on signs, descriptions and narcissistic relationships and yes my husband is most definitely a narcissist.

How have I only just realised and why did no one point it out? Ah ha because this is the narcissits way to make you feel rubbish and that it is all your fault. To make you feel worthless and useless. In the seven years we were together I lost all my friends, confidence, life and put on an incredible amount of weight. I stopped going out, stopped talking to people thinking everyone was judging me.

My husband (soon to be ex husband) always blames everyone for everything that goes wrong, this was always his family or me. He gets very worked up if an event goes wrong, our wedding he will still complain about to this day. He is horrendous with money and has a huge debt. He is addicted and lives in a fantasy world, not a usual liking but a complete unhealthy obession. He cannot accept blame for anything and will find blame somewhere else, usually he will blame me, his family or his dyslexia. He would never compliment me unless my mum was around to hear. He would blame any relationship issues we had on his family or my depression. If I was to ever try to talk about anything I would be picking on him and trying to cause an argument, in the beginning he would also seem to convince my mum that I was always picking on at him. When mum said something I would believe her and then I would blame myself too. Mum soon became wise to his ways, but for me it took much longer as the damage was done., tools anything he would borrow and never repay, why? Because he would find an accuse or blame in order to never payback I just find this rude. Speaking of rude he would criticise and seem to forget his manners all the time, and as I would be embarrassed I'd find myself apologising and making excuses for him. Greed and paranoia would often take over especially when at my mum's house, he would withdraw himself and think we were all talking about him and trying to upset him. 

There are many other points I could list but these are the main ones. He is now continuing to blame everyone for everything but is getting on with his perfect single life and good luck to him. For me I will find it hard to trust, love and have another relationship...but at the moment that is the last thing on my mind my children and I are happy and that's all that matters. The old me is in there somewhere and very slowly coming back. 

                                      Image credit pinterest 

Saturday, June 30, 2018

Is it OK to feel rubbish?

Did you get out of bed the wrong side this morning? 

Go back to bed and start again.

What's wrong with you?

Crack a smile will you.

Snap out of it.

These are just some of the helpful things people have said to me over the years. When in reality it has taken all I have to actually get out of bed that morning. People don't understand. We all get the feeling I don't want to get up today, I'd rather stay in bed. Suffering with severe depression means that sometimes physically I cannot get out bed, I could just stay there forever, I don't want to see nor speak to anyone at all, ever. The thought of getting up and getting dressed is all too much. And having to go into the outside world and see other people, hell no. Please just leave me in my bubble I have a permanent do not disturb sign hanging over me. I'm done.

Now if I didn't have such a wonderful mum that would be the end of the story. But mum forcing me to talk everyday meant I had to. Mum calling in and checking up on me I knew that I would at least have to get out of bed. And now having my two babies means I can't feel like this. Yes I wish I could stay in bed, but with these two no chance! My children and my mum have saved me from myself. But yes I do still feel like hiding away and not communicating with the world but that's just not possible at the moment my son needs to go to pre school and soon school. I have to go out, I have to make the effort. I have to talk to other people. And we all no what school mummys are like...I have to look half decent and not like I have dragged myself out of my pit, my comfy black hole, where I feel safe. 

We are currently in the process of moving. I'm so excited to have a fresh start exactly where we want to be for the best for all three of us...I'm scared. I've got to do it all again. Meet new people. Find my way in a new area. Force myself to join groups for the children. But I know I have to. If it was just me I would stay in my new home making excuses but the babies need to go out and explore. Shane will be going to full time big school, still coming to terms with this! So I will put on my brave smile and go out and face the world. When my babies are asleep I can take off my brave smile and settle in my bubble until tomorrow. 

It is OK to feel low, it is OK not to always feel happy. It is OK to want to sit and cry. Tomorrow is a new day and I will be OK. YES it is OK to feel rubbish!

Sunday, June 17, 2018

A letter to Mark

Dear Mark,

It's been sixteen years since you left, and I miss you everyday. I'm writing you this letter because I need to tell you how I feel and clear my head.

Why did you leave? How could you do this to us? How could you tell you would always be here for me and then never see me again? 

I hope I haven't been a disappointment to you, I've really struggled everyday since you have been gone. So many times I have thought, if I were dead then the hurting would stop and I could be near you again, but I couldn't do this to mum loosing you was horrendous enough. I wouldn't even think this now that I have my two babies and they would of loved you. You would have been the best granddad to them. I talk to them about you, I want them to feel like they know you. Shane likes knowing his granddad Markie is living with the angels and looking after us.

There are so many reminders of you, red candles, yellow roses, bright coloured pansies in spring, tacky Christmas decorations, chocolate limes and Gambian trousers to name a few. And obviously every time I see an Eddie Stobart I smile and check the numbers! 

Your favourite music, mum still wont allow Eminem to be played when she is around, beautiful south, Mel C and Cyndi Lauper. Talking of music Boyzone have just announced their final tour, would you break your arm again to get out of going to this one! 

I have so many feelings towards you I hate that you left. I hate that you had an illness and the fact you were suffering so badly and I couldn't help. I hate that if I mention your name there are tears all around even now. I hate that I miss you so much it hurts, I don't go a single day without thinking about you, talking to you and crying. I hate that I can't accept your gone. I hate that I'm forgetting your voice and your funny ways. 
I love the way you made mum feel in the good times. I love how you made me laugh. I love how you would do anything for me. I love the things you taught me. I loved the days I came to work with you. I love that you would go out of your way to help me. I love the way you wore the silly headdress I got you from Egypt on my school cruise. I love our nicknames and miss using them. I miss watching football with you. I'm sorry for everything maybe I wasn't a good step daughter I wish things were different. I wish you was here. I wish I could hear your voice, even to tell me off! I wish I could see your smile. I'm still so hurt and confused. 
I wish I could of seen you to say goodbye properly, I understand why I wasn't allowed but I feel I needed to see you and know you were at peace. I wish I could of seen you be buried but again I understand why I couldn't. 
I feel I never got the chance to say goodbye to you that one last time.  I love and hate that I am the only one to visit your grave. I hate that your headstone is so bare because they wouldn't allow our input. Your funeral was all wrong and I'm sorry, we knew what you wanted but none of it was allowed. 

I used to feel you around but I don't so much any more, have you gone for good?  

It's fathers day and I can't treat you, or give you a cuddle. But I love you and always will. 

Thank you for the times we had, and for being my dad. 

Happy fathers day x

Thursday, June 14, 2018

First day of pre school

Working in childcare for many years I said my children would never go to nursery at least until they can tell me everything. True to my word Shane didn't go to pre school until he was three. I will be ready by then........How wrong was I.

Morning pre school 8.45-11.45 a whole three hours, what will I do with my time, I haven't had that much time on my own in three years! Well for anyone wondering three hours flies by, especially when you get chatting to the other mums!

We have just moved to the area and know no one. Its a scary daunting thing standing outside the school gate with the other mums. We've all heard the stories of the school mums haha!! Shane is so excited and I'm feeling sick, sad and so emotional, but I wont show him, I put on my brave mummy face.

What if no one likes Shane? What if I embarrass him? What if he has a threenager temper tantrum, yes they all do it even the perfect ones have tantrums! Shane has never been left with anyone, anywhere how will he cope with it all, sharing and joining in. I'm a wreck.

Shane is so excited, "look mummy its all my new friends" his little face lights up.

He is straight in and playing, here it comes I've got to say goodbye, "Shane, mummy has to go now but I'll be back soon, you have fun", I'm scared what reaction will I get? "OK bye mummy see you soon"...................That's it.

Now don't get me wrong I'm pleased he is happy to stay and play, for the first time ever without me, but not a tear or anything, really! He does look up from the home corner as if to say really mum you're going, for a split second, and then back into play.

Mummy on the other hand, well I have to literally run from the classroom in a teary mess. I phone my mum and we both cry.

I pick him up later and he is full of joy so happy and cant wait to go again tomorrow, my baby boy has grown up.

Best decision ever, we have both made some of the best friends.

I now have to prepare for full time big school, tissues ready! 

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

My step dad, I'll never get over you

"Give it time" "times a healer" "it will get easier"

Yes for some, but not me. In fact I think it gets worse I feel like I'm forgetting Mark, his voice, his jokes. My step dad was far from perfect I know this, some have tried reminding me of the bad things, maybe to make me angry and so it hurts less, how could I possibly forget the good and the bad.

So here we go, mum met Mark the lovely, fun caring father figure I needed. He was a train driver and worked shifts so I got to spend so much time with him. He loved us all my mum, me and my nan and we all lived together. He had a great relationship with nan and spent time with her while mum was at work and I at school. Mark and nan would go to the pub for lunch or stay in and watch an old film! 

Mark was an alcoholic and had manic depression. He was also suicidal. This is where the bad comes in. 

Mark would drink and drink a lot, and we didn't always know. Often when he took his children home he would pop into a shop for his drinks to help aid indigestion...these miniatures were in fact neat alcohol, no wonder he didn't share with me! I never told anyone, why would I it was a drink for indigestion! 

When Mark was drunk he became aggressive to the point mum would hide all the knives and get in my bed, this was usual, wedging up the bedroom door so he couldn't get in. But we loved him and he had an illness, we understood that the drunk monster was not Mark, we wanted to help him get better. Mark had a few stays in rehab. One was a beautiful rehab in London and I was allowed to visit him there. The other that I can remember was a terrible rehab that he eventually discharged himself from, I wasn't allowed to visit in this one. Mark wanted help, he wanted to get better he loved us and wanted to spend as much time with us. Before he died he was actually doing really well and I was and still am so proud of him for really trying. 

I cant tell you the amount of times Mark went missing and we thought the worst had happened, or the times mum and I had to try and rescue him from rivers and boat yards, the sound of the boats rattling in the dark still sends shivers down my spine. The nights we sat up calling him, listening to how distressed he was, trying to make sense of where is was so we could find him. The times the police would return him from his car with the exhaust turned inside, or his motorbike recovered from the river. Thankfully all of these times he came home. 

We had some great times too, a great family holiday, a caravan in Hastings mum and Mark, my first boyfriend and me, and Marks two small children. It was the best. We all had fun and all the troubles were gone.  We did it all, crazy golf, bbqs and the dancing in the club in the evening. For this week everything was normal no depression or suicide.

Mark liked to cook and treat us, one night nan was at the pub for crib so Mark cooked for mum and I....banana chicken curry and rice, to this day I can tell you its the worst thing I have ever eaten, I have no idea where he got the recipe but hopefully someone has destroyed it now! This was the candle wax night. Mark asked "do you know how to put out a candle without blowing it"? Mark sucks all the air around the candle and it goes out, clever....until he gets the giggles and blows back into the candle and the wax explodes all over his face and in his eyelashes! Good job he was drunk or that would have hurt. I still cant look at a red candle without laughing!

Then it comes to marks final day with us. I come home from school and I'm struggling with my maths coursework, Mark sits down and tells me it will all be OK, he is always here for me and will never leave...these were the last words he ever said to me and I would give anything to hear them again. Soon after mum comes in from work and looks at Mark, have you been drinking? that's it yes he had he storms out taking a drink with him. He had been dry for a few weeks and then he had started but he was on medication that would make him so ill if he had a drink, we were really worried. 

This night we didn't get all the usual calls, we didn't know where he was, we phoned his friends and family and to be told by his sister "oh not again I cant deal with this I'm watching Eastenders" I hope she feels guilt every day. Mum needed her help. This night I slept like no other so at peace, I didn't keep waking up to hear if he had come home scared of the state he was in or if he was going to hurt mum. I slept like a log. He was dead and I didn't even know. I feel guilty everyday since that while he was lying there I was sleeping. That evening he went my boyfriend came around and to cheer me and mum up and he invented his fart aerobics, we lived in the same village and would come round most evenings so often knew or helped to look for Mark or try to cheer us up. 

The next day at school in sitting in English and my boyfriend phones me, he never phoned me while at school. I call him back straight after lesson, "oh its nothing don't worry, see you later" I knew something was wrong. I get off the school bus and there is my boyfriend waiting for me...this never happens. As I walk down my road I see my cousins car, why is she here today?

I know what is happening, I know my dad is dead. I walk through the door and I'll never forget the faces of mum, nan and my cousin. Mum takes me to my room and tells me Mark is dead. He was hit by a train and the damage to Mark is so horrendous I cannot tell you. I try to say that it cant be him. He would never throw himself under a train, he was a train driver he wouldn't do that to another train driver. I cry for what feels like forever and then I have to face everyone. 

My boyfriend at the time was amazing he spent the whole day making tea for my family and the police. He picked me up and kept me going. He was the one who stopped me trying to take too many paracetamol or drink vodka straight from the bottle at fifteen. He saved my life and I really don't think he knows that. He was a rock to me and mum especially at the funeral and for the months after. I owe him my life.

Marks death was an open verdict. Many, including his family believe it was suicide. I am 99% sure it was not suicide. He had tried more times than I can count but this time it was an accident. The diver that hit Mark said he saw something fall from under the platform and then a person scramble out and tried to get back. The driver couldn't stop, he just shut his eyes. It turns out Marks bottle rolled out and he tried to get it and get back.

Mark is at peace, he is no longer fighting his own demons. His troubles from being abused as a child. Being an alcoholic, manic depression and struggling to accept and feel love and part of a loving family. 

I hate the fact he left us but I love Mark and always will, he was my dad.

A letter to the younger me

Over the years and my time having therapy they have always advised on writing letters to help me clear my head. I wrote a letter to my s...