5 years since my humanitarian award…

I have felt a little blue today… I think it’s because I don’t sleep very well at present. A friend cancelled on me and that’s never a good feeling.

Five years ago I got ‘Internet Star and Talented Writer’ for my humanitarian work. It was nothing I expected and I remember feeling very surprised and very humbled. By myself, I’ve accomplished nothing but have been part of several successful campaigns.

My femural nerve is griping slightly. It depends how I hold my leg. I feel tired. My garden is a source of pleasure as I watch fruit ripening. Flowers keep blooming too. It’s wonderful to see new ones.

My cousin has gone back to work. Our chats will be limited now. One has to be grateful, otherwise we could let life overwhelm us.

Both my neighbours and after the fall…

I found a graze on my shin yesterday which is mysterious but obviously due to my fall on Wednesday evening. Today there is a mild bruise…

I did wake during Wednesday night and hurt in a few places but it was all gone in the morning.

More of my tomatoes are turning colour now. From orange to almost red. It’s really satisfying. I need to pick my strawberries. They will be sweet and juicy.

You know, the other neighbouring house is also a let. I have never had a problem with them. It’s owned by an acquaintance of mine who owns a well known restaurant on the Quay. He is considerate and kind. While his friend was renovating it, I was asked if there was too much much noise. And I was shown progress as it became a lovely home.

He cares about community and the neighbourhood. That makes all the difference. The other side could not care less. And that is where they fail.

I bumped into a friend today. We chatted and then he kissed my cheek. I was touched.

I have cannibalised two watches. For ages I have wanted a purple watch face with a chrome bracelet. I have hunted every where. Finally I bought a purple watch that had a purple strap and had a chrome bracelet put on it. And so I have it! And it is unique.

An odd day in all. But ok.

Falling over…

I just took some recycling out to the blue bin. I used my trolley, and forgot to turn it off and part of my touched the reverse gear so I lay flat on my back. I wasn’t hurt but lay there for a moment to get my bearings. I half wondered if someone had seen me as I flipped my skirt down to hide my knickers.

I got up, finished putting the recycling in and went to water the garden. I am thrilled that some of my tomatoes are changing to an orange colour. So I took some more leaves off, to encourage more of this and then I found I have some blueberries on my little bush. They won’t ripen for ages, but it’s a joy.

My strawberries are getting beautifully red, so will go out with a bowl tomorrow. And there are more blooms so another crop will follow. The figs are growing but so is the tree, I suddenly have more branches and leaves. In the autumn I need to prune it hard.

I am writing this early as I feel tired. The weather has been windy and grey. They forecast rain tonight and tomorrow but I’m not relying on that. They’ve got it wrong so many times.

My left foot is painful at times. I saw some socks called Dr Soothers. Said they take away pain and improve circulation. What I imagined I don’t know. They are compression socks without toes. When I finally managed to get one on, it felt very strange. I wore one to bed and took it off as soon as I woke. As the day went on my foot felt better and better. I was surprised, but pleased. I will wear it when ever my foot feels achy or painful. (During the night.)

It’s been lovely to watch Test cricket highlights on terrestial TV. I love cricket. England v West Indies is always good. Brian Lara, W. I. legend, retired the summer my daughter was born. Her father and I talked about asking if one of his jackets with his surname on it was available, but we never got around to it. She has plenty of other places and music etc famous for her name.

At the weekend, over 100 hundred people looked up my blog on their browser before 9am. These figures aren’t unusual, but that early in the morning is odd. I’m given up being freaked out by the numbers who visit here. I’m doing nothing wrong.

I’ll relax now. Kick back and enjoy the evening.

A bad day that ended well…

I waited today for a delivery. Waiting made the day seem longer. Eventually it arrived and so I went out to get fresh air. I met a friend and we went along together, picking up litter and exchanging news. We found a learner’s driving licence, so I gave Simon directions to the address.

it turns out it is someone he knows vaguely. So that is great. My whole day is turned around and I feel good.

I will water the garden tomorrow evening. Everything in the garden is looking good.

Another day…

I deliberately wanted a quiet day. To read, to nap, and to ignore the dull weather. I got two very pleasant phone calls which I really enjoyed.

It seems the lifting of further lockdown measures has brought my county and the neighbouring two to gridlock. What did they expect? It’s happened twice before so why would today be different?

As it rained in the night (although I don’t know how much) I only watered my hanging baskets, the fig tree and tomatoes. There are so many tomatoes. They should start ripening soon.

I am pleased with the soap holder I made from twine. It’s like a bag and gives the soap something to stop slipping out of ones hand. As I’m trying to be plastic free, I no longer buy bottles of shower gel etc. I get organic bars.

It has been obvious for a while that I am not over my sister’s death. So many negative things happened at that time. It stuffed everything up.

I have other emotional loose ends too. I’m in a weird sort of place.

Weird things and no closure…

So I wrote two posts thinking that only people logged in to WordPress would be able to see, but no, it turns out they have to be logged in to my account. So that didn’t work and someone asked twice to be let into my account…

Here’s atcha, willowdaydreamer, whoever you may be.

I wanted to stop the trolls from nosing at everything I write. This isn’t really that interesting.

I slept late this morning after waking early. I had coffee again. It’s so nice to enjoy it again.

My left hip has really been troublesome today. It feels like it’s numb, and this travels down my leg, but my sciatica has a sensation too. After 5pm it became hard to walk, but I planted a plant and checked my strawberries. A large crop is coming in the next week. I’m looking forward to that on my muesli. Or porridge.

I haven’t needed to water as we have rain on and off. It’s spitting now, and a storm is brewing very close by. Soon it will pour.

I’m glad because I forgot to water my hanging baskets whenever I last watered. I must remind myself to do them. They are filled with perennials as I don’t do temporary plants. Some will start trailing soon. They should look good.

On Wednesday night I slept well after eating an entire carrot cake. I started with a slice and then had two. And the rest is history.

I am planning a cheesecake for my daughter’s birthday. I bought chocolate biscuits for the base. I need to think about this, but see no reason why it won’t work. The base is simply smooshed biscuits with melted butter and chilled.

I might grate chocolate on the top. I’m thinking of using juice of orange to set it. Orange and chocolate go well.

I’m bothered about my hip. It catches me unawares. It seems to function better if I ignore it, but that isn’t always possible. I don’t see what can be done though.

This morning I disturbed a cat in my garden. This vexed me. Then I found lots of white feathers on my path. I’m thinking these belong to a seagull, so I’m not too upset. I just don’t want a cat in my garden.

My cousin phoned. We laughed. Mostly at the absurd in our lives. Laughing is such a gift. I’m glad every time I laugh as it is good for my soul and my body too.

I’m aware I have no closure on the man who nine months ago crooned over me that he would not let me die alone and that he only cared about me and him from that point on.

It’s a strange place to be. No closure.

My nightmare symptom…

I have set this so that only wordpress users who are signed in can read. Yesterday’s too. I am tired of every Tom, Dick and Harry trolling me.

Today a nurse from the surgery came to look at my horrid symptom. I call it that because I can’t bear to talk about it. I care for it every day and try to forget it.

She seemed concerned but didn’t ask any ridiculous questions, which really helped. She was pleasant without being ‘sweet’ or sickly.

After that I had three deliveries, and the window cleaner came, which I had temporarily forgotten. All that done, I wrote for a while and then made pizza for dinner. I used loads of cheese, much more than usual. I wanted to feel very sated.

My hip has not bothered me at all in the last few days. How fickle the body is.

I haven’t watered the garden as we are due rain tomorrow and if I water the tomatoes too much they will have no flavour. I want flavour.

So now I have read for a while and am drinking a small glass of rose Pinot Grigio. It’s very pleasant.

It’s been greyish today but warm. Quiet except for birds and the odd voice here and there.

A good day in all.

A very quiet day…

I’m still having trouble with images.

Yesterday I got very tired. I finished planting my hanging baskets which was more work than I expected. My washing machine has gone wrong and a load was soaking wet but not washed.

After watering the garden and making dinner, I felt really tired. I watched some TV and slept.

This morning I made myself a cup of coffee for the first time since my first pregnancy. I went off the taste completely until recently when a friend made some. They then gifted me a pack of the brand they use.

I make it with a reusable filter. It takes me back to when my Dad would make coffee on a Saturday morning. It feels like home.

Today has been quiet. I’ve had two naps. I’ve read and hand washed my laundry. My mobile phone woke me but it always fits into my dreams as my ringtone is a Coldplay song. I did some admin.

Apart from the radio, all I’ve heard are birds singing. It’s been lovely.

Yesterday, my specialist phoned me and after discussing my breathing he talked to me about his distress at having to admit Covid-19 patients to ICU everyday for weeks. I could tell it had affected him. One would have to be a monster if it didn’t.

Rain and wind…

WordPress has altered and I can’t add a meme as easily as before. I need to talk to Jim…

So Friday night brought rain and also strongly gusting wind. Fortunately, the rake, mop, and other garden tool handle proved strong enough to keep my tomato plants upright. This was a huge relief.

I have trimmed away foliage that added weight to the plants and side shoots with no blossom. This also exposes the fruit to more sunlight to ripen. They are are small variety, I can experiment with others next season if I wish. Since I want to use them primarily in salad type meals, the size is almost irrelevant. The flavour is my goal.

I had a visitor to my garden on Thursday evening. My water butts were knocked over. They were caught on my security camera.

There is a community website that I have stopped using because other people who have misbehaved on it are causing trouble and using my blog as a source of information to make false allegations. The admin are aware, and monitoring.

On Friday night I slept within minutes of going to bed. Last night I was tired, but took a while to sleep. The left side of my pack hurt and it took a while to find comfort.

My hair salon contacted me today – I have an appointment in three weeks. I am looking forward to it. I won’t know my self, as my hair is ‘long’ and I make gaps for my eyes.

I emptied my dehumidifier. Half a litre. I put it on the garden. Manufacturing water. It’s our most precious commodity.

I want to share this… CPTSD…

Most people are familiar with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), an anxiety disorder that results from a traumatic event, such as a natural disaster or car accident. But, there’s a closely related condition called complex post-traumatic stress disorder (CPTSD) is becoming more widely recognized by doctors in recent years.

CPTSD results from repeated trauma over months or years, rather than a single event.


What Are the Symptoms of CPTSD?

The symptoms of CPTSD usually include those of PTSD, plus an additional set of symptoms. Oh how fun. We get additional symptoms!

Here are just a few symptoms of CPTSD, that I’ve experienced myself at times:

1. Reliving the traumatic experience

This can include having nightmares or emotional flashbacks. I have these.

2. Avoiding certain situations

You might avoid situations or activities, such as large crowds or driving, that remind you of the traumatic event. This also includes keeping yourself preoccupied to avoid thinking about the event. I definitely avoid crowds a lot and also even driving has been a trigger for me.

3. Hyperarousal

Hyperarousal refers to constantly being on-alert or jittery. For example, you might have a hard time sleeping or concentrating. You might also be unusually startled by loud or unexpected noises. I also call it hypervigilance. I have this symptom often. Even yesterday when babies were crying next to me at the bank, I felt extremely startled and it affected me.

4. Somatic symptoms

These refer to physical symptoms that don’t have any underlying medical cause. For example, when something reminds you of the traumatic event, you might feel dizzy or nauseated.


These are definitely not ALL the C-PTSD symptoms, but just four of them. I know without a doubt I suffer from these. Not always, but sometimes — which is also why this diagnosis can be complex. It’s important to know that symptoms of both PTSD and C-PTSD can vary widely between people, and even within one person over time. (Another complex thing!)

Sometimes people with CPTS are irrational too. Their thoughts and beliefs might not always match up with their emotions. They might know that, logically, they should avoid their abuser. However, they might also hold onto a sense of affection toward them.


What Causes C-PTSD?

Researchers are still trying to figure out exactly how traumatic stress affects the brain and leads to conditions like CPTSD. However, studies on animals suggest that trauma can have lasting effects on the amygdala, hippocampus, and prefrontal cortex.

pixabay.com

These areas play a big role in both our memory function and how we respond to stressful situations.

Any type of long-term trauma, over several months or years, can lead to CPTSD.

However, it seems to appear frequently in people who’ve been abused by someone who was supposed to be their caregiver or protector.

My ex husband was a Vietnam vet (he himself had PTSD ). He stalked and threatened to kill me for many months before leaving me in a foreign country , South Africa, where I was singing in a show. This happened in 1996 but is still traumatizing to think about. He took all our money out of our joint bank account and left me penniless with no way to get home, to the U.S.

OH DING DING! So, THIS (according to my therapist) is considered a long-term trauma! Hence C-PTSD.

Even though in many war veterans (and in the fictional Jack Ryans case), they experienced physical trauma, emotional trauma is also a legitimate and real cause of C-PTSD.


Yes, this is a complex medical condition but I believe that the more we talk about it and bring it out of the shadows, the sooner we can come up with better solutions. I’m glad that trauma related disorders are finally getting the attention they deserve and that scientists are spending more time on researching them.

Maybe someday these trauma issues won’t be nearly as complex to understand. That’s my hope.


Contact: michelle@michellemonet.com