ellenscult: (glima)
I had my assessment today for PIP (Personal Independence Payment, replaces Disability Living Allowance). A very nice psychiatric nurse came out to my house and went through a long questionnaire. So, fingers crossed. I'd really like to be accepted for PIP - it's not a huge sum of money, but it'd mean that maybe every once in a while I could afford to go for a massage to sort out my neck and shoulders, or pay someone to cut the hedge or come and hoover for me. I could take the car to a car wash. Little things that'd make a huge difference. Mind you, I'd like more to be able to do all of those things myself - I very much resent ME for stealing away my brain and my stamina bit by bit. Gah! I miss rock climbing. I miss swimming. And yes, I could go swimming here - there are swimming pools in Antrim and in Ballymena. But what I can't do is drive to the swimming pool, get changed, go swimming, get showered and changed, then drive home.

Anyway, enough of that! As I mentioned in my last post (honestly, I had to check, I have slow brain today, I couldn't remember if I'd mentioned it or not, duh), [livejournal.com profile] palmersperry came to visit and stayed a week (the fool! You'd think he'd know better by now!) and it was lovely to see him and catch up. I have a few photos, so I'll pop them under a cut in case anyone's interested. We went round HMS Caroline, and Saturday we all went to Glenarriff and then to the Giant's Causeway. I sat in the back with the dogs and now have a lovely collection of bruises on my thighs from being kicked by Newton. Lovely! We went round Antrim Castle Grounds and Clotworthy House (Antrim Castle burned down in mysterious circumstances in the '20s. Hmmm) - they've done it up a lot in the last few years and you can go up the 12th Century motte, which is very cool.

Photos )

So there you go, a good week filled with going places and doing stuff. Today I am exhausted and my brain is slow and there's a really annoying bluebottle buzzing around the living room, which will freak Planck out when he comes back inside. I have a form to fill out. I gave up as a bad job yesterday when I made 3 stupid errors in the first 2 pages. Somehow I suspect today will be worse. Never mind, eh? Have a great week, all, and enjoy the sunshine if you've got it.
ellenscult: (boats)
My plan to drag myself out from under my rock is going well (for a given value of well) - replied to comments on my last post, chatted with some of my extended family on WhatsApp, actually phoned my parents, and talked to my parents-in-law. Couldn't FaceTime with Al yesterday evening, but I was already in bed and dozing off, sorry!

I did get a fun-filled exciting trip to the vet on Friday - while I was outside very slowly gathering up the hedge clippings (still to finish, there's a lot of hedge and also a lot of rain), Dante nipped Planck's ear and put a hole in it that's taken a couple of stitches to close. This, the day after I'd paid off some of the existing bill... *sigh* The vet duly laughed at me when I mentioned it, and agreed it'd be a good idea if I took a course to learn to suture. Think the St John's Ambulance lot do one, or should I just rewatch Grey's Anatomy and ER?

DH's first week in his new job went well; there's a lot to learn and a lot to catch up on, of course, but he's great at picking things up and I have faith he'll get there.

This week my plan is to get some writing done, a bit of gardening (by which I mean pick up the hedge clippings and the dog poo, cut the grass if it stops raining for long enough, and burn the weeds with a propane blowtorch without burning down the barn or any more of the hedge), and keep up with the housework. I also have the first of 6 sessions of counselling at my GPs tomorrow afternoon - I need to talk things out and there's a promise of maybe some CBT to help my anxiety, depression and chronic pain, which isn't that painful, but it is chronic, thanks to my ME. This autumn marks 14 years since I had glandular fever, which triggered the ME. I don't know whether to feel down about not being able to do anything like the level of activity I used to, or to feel good that I managed to do so much for so long - a decline in my health (other than normal aging) is very much not inevitable, but I've not had the energy, enthusiasm, time, money, etc, to do much in the way of exercise over the last few years. It's really hard not to simply hide under my duvet when DH is having a bad day and I can't actually afford to buy groceries.

Living out here is beautiful and quiet; there's space and I have dogs who keep me smiling. It's also very isolating, especially when I can't face picking up the phone to call anyone, and I can't face even opening my email. I've done a lot of knitting and that's done a lot to keep me going. And this is all very depressing for a Monday morning, which wasn't my intention at all, but it seems that now I'm posting on here again, a lot of stuff is getting dredged up. Eh. Time for a cuppa and Popmaster on Radio 2, then writing, then hoovering the house, and that'll carry me through to lunchtime, so that'll do for now. Have a great week, y'all, I'll likely feel better in the afternoon.
ellenscult: (boats)
Good Morning, World! )

Anyway, happy extra bank holiday day to those of you here in the UK, and don't work too hard, everyone else!

Reading List )

E(again)TA: And now it's raining. Bah, humbug!
ellenscult: (car at my head)
That'd explain the weight gain... )
ellenscult: (bad day)
Fire, flood and transportation... )
ellenscult: (funky)
On Saturday, I got to see my godson, his shiny new sister and his parents on Saturday, which was ace, even if all the frogs and frogspawn seem mysteriously to have vanished from the pond. On Sunday, I met up with my older sister and her mum and step-dad over at Lotherton Hall and got to go round the bird garden and see an Andean condor, a hornbill and some rheas, among many other birds, then went home and played D&D. And yesterday I couldn't get my brain into gear at all, spent an out-of-focus day on the sofa with some SG-1 fanfic, and in the evening, cut for being a bit depressing )

I didn't sleep well over the long weekend, least of all last night. I'm tired and I'm shaky and I'm going to be out of touch for a while, in all probability. Hopefully I'll get my batteries charged this week and be back in the saddle again soon.
ellenscult: (fist of doom)
Rolling the bottom of my trousers... )
ellenscult: (rock)
[livejournal.com profile] ravenlas had laser eye surgery on Friday. He went to the Vision Optical (sorry!) Express clinic in Leeds and they were very good. Only... they popped in the anaesthetic drops one eye straight after the other. By the time the drop went into the other eye, it was already watering. So when they came to cut the flap, his left eye wasn't properly anaesthetised. He worried everyone in the waiting room - including myself - by saying *extremely loudly* that he was in a lot of pain. The procedure seems to have gone okay, though, and after a traumatic trip home in which the sun caused even more pain through his darkest sunglasses and closed eyes, he's doing fine. His vision's good, his eyes are healing up just fine. It's been a touch stressful, though, and predictably, I've been very tired today.

So, knitting. I've got a lot done Friday and yesterday. I bought some Debbie Bliss Donegal Tweed which I thought might make a better sleeve, so now I have a sleeve done in that and one done in Debbie Bliss Rialto Aran.

photo here ) - Which do you think? Either? Neither? I'm not convinced. So not convinced that I spent today starting to knit a shopping bag instead. Meh! )

Been a bit headachey to go with the tired, but I also spent a good while soaking in the bath, and this evening we used up the huge pile of veg in a chicken stew and garlic potatoes. Yum! And Transformers is on the tv.

Thank you, [livejournal.com profile] o_faolain, for the CD - I'll be putting it onto my ipod tomorrow. :)

Work tomorrow. *sigh*
ellenscult: (bunk)
Well, not quite - I've finally uploaded a few photos, though, so I'm putting them under a cut to save bandwidth for those who aren't interested in suchlike.

This way to the photos! )

In other news (not under a cut so people don't run into the photos if they don't want to, sorry...): my bike is in the bike shop! I took it down Sheffield with me last Wednesday and dropped it off at Decathlon for its free 3-month service, expecting them to adjust the cable tension and leave it at that. Instead, it appears to have some kind of gear problem, which I'm hoping they've either fixed or replaced the gear arm (under warranty) by tomorrow so I can pick it up again. I'm starting to feel as though I have finger-of-death for bikes... Or it could be that they use cheap derailleurs...

I went to my ME course on Friday and learned about Graded Exercise Therapy. Which is how to, when my energy scores are consistent and I'm feeling as though I'm ready to start increasing the amount of, well, anything I'm doing, increase my activity level without causing an increase in my ME symptoms. Of course, since my bike's been in the shop since Wednesday, that's meant I walked home from the train station on Wednesday evening, then back in on Thursday morning and out again, then to my course at Bootham Park Hospital on Friday morning and from there into town and home again, and into town on Saturday. I got the bus home on Saturday afternoon. (I also walked into town and back on Tuesday night to the writing group, but that was because I didn't get [livejournal.com profile] ravenlas to get me a lift because he has an ear infection, which is now clearing up nicely.) So today has been spent largely on the sofa doing little more strenuous than knitting and occasionally hanging out another load of washing on the washing line, and I am tired, and my legs are a little wobbly and I'm running just a touch of a temperature. Ho hum, so it goes. I shall go to bed shortly and should be fine in the morning.

Anyway, thanks to the ME course, I have a letter, which I took to the council offices on Friday, and I filled in a form and had my photo taken and as of in a few days time, I should have a free bus pass, enabling me to travel on the local buses and not have to pay the extortionate fares. Awesome! It'll mean I can try walking into town to the station one or two mornings a week and be able to catch the bus back, thus getting a bit more exercise but not tiring myself out. Hurrah!

So, I have handouts. I'll type them up soon and post them here for anyone who's interested. Have a great week, y'all! I'm going to duck back below the parapet again.
ellenscult: (too pretty)
Five things make a post...

1. The guy who tried to attack [livejournal.com profile] ravenlas was found guilty, ordered to pay compensation and court costs. I can't help but hear Margie (Fargo) tutting and saying 'All for a little bit o' money!' - well, all for a little bit o' impatience. That garage visit has cost the guy a criminal record and £360 quid. *sigh* Not his finest Sunday afternoon, I'm betting...

2. The holiday was lovely; I got a lot of knitting done and not a lot of skiing, but enjoyed myself anyway. I managed not to be too frustrated at not having the oomph to get out skiing until the Thursday. It's a waste of good ski hire, but equally, I got out eventually. I highly recommend staying in a Le Ski chalet - we were looked after brilliantly by Ben, Elise and Poppy, even to the extent of baking gluten and dairy free shortbread and flapjacks so that I had something to have for afternoon tea. Awesome! I'm going to try baking some shortbread as that was so tasty.

3. The Xbox 360 Elite wot I got for my dearly beloved for our quarter anniversary should as of today be winging its way back to Play.com (intermittent graphics fault) and we should have the replacement by the end of the week. I hope.

4. I'm still tired, still lacking in stamina, so I'm cutting right down on 'doing things'. I'm attempting to stick to a 10pm bedtime (gah!) and take a 5 minute break in every hour to sit or lie down without distraction, etc, which is harder to manage than I'd have thought, especially since I don't particularly want to. I need to conserve more energy to my HPA-axis will fix itself, but I don't want to not do *anything* at all - I need to exercise! I don't want my weight to go up any further! I'm not entirely sure how to reconcile all this, but I'm working on it.

5. Hard Times isn't as difficult as people made out. The 1951 recording of Aida with Maria Callas, Del Monaco, Taddei, Dominguez, conducted by De Fabritis, is absolutely incredible. Recorded live in Mexico City. Wow! Watchmen is visually stunning, quite slow (thus allowing for appreciation of the stunning visuals), very well done and has animated giant blue wang. So what's not to like?

I meant to put up some links to fantastic things, I really did. Maybe I'll post a five links post later...
ellenscult: (Kipper)
This are yet another 'Aten't Ded Yet!' post, brought to you from my busybusy workdesk... *grin* From which you may surmise that I'm skiving and really should get back to doing some work.

The CFS/ME, life, work, yada yada stuff: )

Right! I probably had a bunch of other things to blog about... Birthdays!

Many happy returns of the day to [livejournal.com profile] evieb, [livejournal.com profile] gaxx and Miss India!



Mazel Tov to [livejournal.com profile] vin_petrol, [livejournal.com profile] trash_petrol and [livejournal.com profile] evie_petrol on the latest addition to their family!



Plugs:
Hub - Europe's largest weekly SF, F & Horror ezine. Fiction! Articles! Free!
Pseudopod - the world's largest horror podcast. Also free!
Kiva Loans - changing the world one loan at a time.
ellenscult: (bunk)
Handouts from session 3: Relaxation & Energy Conservation )
ellenscult: (comesee)
Today I went up to the hospital and had an endoscopy. It was probably the least pleasant procedure I've had done. Blech! Possibly in compensation, it has the nicest nurses. Still, blech! I have had a duodenal biopsy taken to finally, absolutely rule out coeliac disease. I've also had a stomach biopsy taken and seen a photo of the inside of my stomach (largely pink) because the doctor found a half-healed ulcer and some ulcerous striations. So all the acid pain of last week kicked off by the wheat? More proof that stuff is just Not My FriendTM. Bah, humbug! And even more annoyingly, I have to go back for *another* endoscopy in 10 weeks. Now I've had one, I'm *so* not looking forward to it. Volunteers to go for me? Anyone? No? *sigh* I suppose I'll just have to suck it up and take it like a woman. Which is to say, block it from my mind until a few days before. *grin* Also? Sword-swallowing is not the career for me.

Blech!

Still, no more wheat. So my oomph should come back in a couple of days. Who knows, I might even make it into work this week! What a crazy idea!

The snow is pretty much gone here - just some ice. Meh. It was lovely yesterday, though. I'm going to go put the heater on, though. :)
ellenscult: (bunk)
Weekend update, CFS bites, fanfic... )
ellenscult: (ignorance)
The pieces of paper from Session 2 )
ellenscult: (car at my head)
!!!! )
ellenscult: (boats)
Wii Fit age: back up to 37, then 36 over the last couple of days. I have unlocked the boxing and snowboarding games. Hurrah! And today I was down ever-so-slightly in weight. So that's good.

My bike - which wot was in for a major service at Decathlon in Sheffield, is, alas, no more. The bottom bracket was utterly seized and they couldn't get it out even with the new tool they bought to try to shift it. And so - given that I'd had it for 3 or 4 years - they replaced it. With a new bike of (pretty much) the same make. Which came with a set of lights and a bell and a free 3-month service and a stern lecture on bike maintenance.

What stars!

I spent my lunchbreak adjusting the seat and handlebars and fitting a front mudguard and rear pannier rack, and I brought it back up to York on the train this teatime and rode it home. It is white and shiny and I will do my best to take photos tomorrow.

I'm getting a little more sleep and a little more exercise, and that seems to be off-setting the extra bit of tired from eating wheat again, although my stomach's getting rather sore. Still, nothing that a one-a-day Pepcid Complete (from the States) isn't keeping under control. Ho hum. And now for that bit of extra sleep...

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