Saturday, 31 August 2013

A change is as good as a rest

So, yes i changed my nails AGAIN lol. Though i did only paint them once today which is an improvement from yesterday's 3 times haha.

However, that's not really the change im thinking about. Next weekend is the time-to-change village comes to Christ's Piece, Cambridge. This is an event centred around raising awareness of mental health problems and tackling the stigma that often surrounds them. It may be apparent by now that this is a cause i wholeheartedly support.....and since Cambridge isn't so far away from dear old Norfolk i signed up to volunteer at the event, rather on impulse i must confess. Anyway, yesterday i received details of my role at the event, as well as a prior training session. Eep. So i thought id share this event here :).
Basically my job is to wander round and engage people in conversation for the whole afternoon. Now ill admit to being slightly anxious about this (read: absolutely terrified haha), a few years ago i wouldn't have dared even think about doing something involving so much interaction with the public. i still remember the girl at uni who hid away in her room at every opportunity, checking the peep hole before leaving so i didn't run into anyone as i crept out to do laps of Parker's Piece in the middle of the night or clean the communal kitchen while everyone was asleep......yea i wasn't exactly at my best at uni! lol. But anyway, that was then and this is now. im certainly not 100% well these days, not by a long shot, but ive come a long way.
Counselling and therapy and all that aside there are two things i thank for that. One is my job...which throws me into close proximity with a whole range of people all the time. And when you're helping people wash and dress and other such intimate tasks it pays to be able to get chatting with them quickly! The second thing is bell ringing. There's a reason the professionals are always banging on about getting hobbies :p. Having an activity to do helps neutralise some of that awkwardness when you can't think of a thing to you know there's always at least one interest you have in common to discuss haha. Asides from that the bellringers ive met have been some of the most welcoming and accepting people ive known. An eclectic bunch of all ages and walks of life.....ive never felt judged there.

Oh dear shall i return swiftly to my original point before i start gushing? lol. The time to change village will be open from 10-5 and entry is free. There will be all sorts of things going on including live entertainment, information on local resources and the depressed cake shop. Volunteers will be around to discuss time-to-change, mental health in general and personal experiences (both yours and theirs).....including me :p. 
i could ramble about this for hours but i think ive probably gone on long enough tbh. Plus i have to start work at 6 so its probably bedtime. x

Friday, 30 August 2013

That'll larn ya!

... Little Norfolk-ism there Haha. I enjoy discovering new things and learning new skills so I figured I'd share a few of them with the world.... Or the small part of it that reads this blog Haha. Soooo:
- colourful stripes on the nails using tape, courtesy of these tutorials on chloesnails. Now admittedly I don't necessarily have steady enough hands for this game but I was reasonably happy with the results..... plus, Yay colourful!
- origami elephants (another slight obsession there I have an elephant collection Hehe) via the schemes origami app here I confess the was an ulterior motive to this one as it was an activity I was planning with my guide group.
- mindfulness exercises...I have a bit of a love hate relationship with Mindfulness tbh. I love the idea and there are a few techniques I use which are invaluable (mindfully listening to background noise for example). However there are a lot of the exercises that I find difficult or uncomfortable for various reasons, I struggle a lot with body scans for a start. It's something I should probably put more effort into as I struggle with disconnection/dissociation quite a bit.... But because of that I find it very hard and get frustrated Haha. Oh well I'll keep trying.
- splicing is more of an ongoing project really. Inspired by a rope breaking on us at ringing a couple of weeks ago. I have known how to do this is the past but that was a while ago, when I was a wee ten year old guide, and is like to know how to do it again.
That's probably it for now I think. Sorry for another 'links' post. Day off tomorrow so I'll make more effort :). X

Thursday, 29 August 2013

Polish is cheaper than therapy!

Today's colourful, if a little scruffy, effort :). i got very over-excited when i came home to find a parcel on my doorstep...i only placed the order with Tara's Talons on monday so i was very impressed. Aaaanyway couple more pics, since im feeling lazy and wordless:

im a sucker for anything wrapped up in pretty paper....and since i had no idea what polishes to expect (i went for the lucky dip option) it was like getting a present from myself hehe. i haven't tried the other two yet but i used the orange and the yellow as part of my little rainbow...i never would have chosen a yellow polish but im a little bit in love i must confess. Here's a (very slightly!) better pic of the two polishes in question:

Sorry for the photo and nail overload today, my brain is a little mushy. Though in case anyone is curious about the polish obsession (im clearly not a nail artist :p) the facetious title pretty much sums it up. The nail painting thing is really very new, in fact until recently it was rare for me to paint my nails more than once a year. i bought a random bottle of purple polish on a whim in the accessorize sale (i struggle to resist purple...and bargains haha). To my surprise i found nail painting strangely relaxing....i say surprise since most of my forays into the world of makeup and beauty result more in frustration than anything. i also found it killed a nice little block of time when i otherwise would have been left with my own silly thoughts and headnoise. i started playing and experimenting and researching and whilst few of my efforts turn out as i intend im having great fun. When i made the decision about 6 weeks ago to really start fighting the sh urges again (i confess i had become a little resigned to myself as a self-harmer for a whole) it became my go to distraction technique. The thing is i struggle with distraction techniques, i guess maybe i differ to some self-harmers in that i don't get intense waves of wanting to do it, more just a constant nagging itch. So, while yes i can write out my feelings or go for a walk or any of the great suggestions that can be very helpful, i always find the urges still there after, and eventually i cave in. The thing with the nails is, it can pretty much fill up as much time as i need it to......but without making me feel like im constantly busy, moving, running. Plus i can do other things while i wait for coats to dry....but not sh.

Does that make any sense?
My collection of different polishes is disgustingly large considering how young it is, and tkmaxx and boots are getting exorbitant amounts of my money....but then a bottle of polish is a few quid, when i was in private therapy i paid £134 an hour, so as the title says............x

Wednesday, 28 August 2013

Keep it light....!

So, yea, a couple of rather heavy posts to start a blog with no? So i figured today id change tack entirely and do something more frivolous. There's more to me than my craziness afterall!
Since its been a long day and ive just got in from ringing bells here is a random assortment of things im loving (read obsessed with!) right now....

Ah totally and utterly in love with this song atm. She has a beautiful voice and i love the playful-serious lyrics.

Rainbow connection uk ....opening in september stocking international and indie nail polishes, but based in the uk (the name gives that away though right?) So very excited. So many of the polishes i drool over are from sellers that either don't ship to the uk or cost waaaaay too much for postage to be feasible.

Speaking of which, Emma at Manicurity posted some beautiful swatches of the KBShimmer fall collection...particularly in love with 'you go ghoul' got a real glitter thing going on at the mo it seems.

Ok, ok ill stop talking about nail polish just a quick sneaky pic of a few of my current favourites:

On a different note, how about Charly's BBQ food at sciencegeekchic? Looks tasty! Plus there's a bonus pic of the amazing dress she wore for the event!

Other random loves that spring to mind include hummus, Gold radio, red wine, the words with friends app, Karin Slaughter books and alanis morissette's latest album.
Ho-hum. Sorry slight splurge. Bed time for me i reckon. x

Tuesday, 27 August 2013

"But why?"

Aka the most frustrating and often asked question in my life. For their part, others are generally left frustrated by my responses too.
Us human being seem always to want to understand everything. To string together the causality and figure how things came about. Maybe it makes us feel safer, more in control? Maybe we believe if we can figure out why good or bad things happen then we can alter whether they reoccur? It would be pretty scary to believe its all just entirely random afterall wouldn't it?

This is me being me.
And that's who i always intend to be on this blog, so far as the constraints of the internet allow.
Who else can i be afterall?

Though in real life im not always me. Or rather, often i only allow certain aspects of me out in public.
There's nothing particularly unique about that, we all do it to a greater or lesser extent.
The part of me that gets held back more often than not is the part which is mentally ill. The depressed part, the anxious part, the part that looks to razor blades for comfort. That part isn't very socially acceptable, and isn't very fun to be around. Its my choice to hide and im happy to do so i don't like that side much either.
My close friends know most things, everyone else knows....bits and pieces. Sometimes i chose to tell, and sometimes i slip up: the panic attack at work, the scars that accidently show as my leggings roll up, slips of the tongue, trips to the hospital. Whatever.
i don't mind people knowing so much nowadays....ive had some bad reactions but ive also had some amazing ones. More people understand than you'd think. Whats the current statistic? According to its that one in four of us will be affected by mental illness in any year. That's a lot. So why not talk about it?
i guess the short answer is fear of judgement and backlash.
The long answer brings me (finally!) back to the title of this post.
"But why?"
Why do you freak out in crowds when i don't?
Why do you feel 'down' when there's nothing really wrong?
Why does adding another ugly scar help?
Why did you take all those pills?

i still remember an a and e doctor asking me whether i thought it was reasonable to overdose and not know why. i didn't particularly thinking it was a reasonable action at all but i didn't think that was a sensible answer so i just shrugged. No it wasn't reasonable. But it was true.

But oh dear, im not here to share war stories and broadcast all the self-destructive things i do...bear with me im not quite with it today lol.

i don't always, or often, know why i do the things i do or feel the things i feel. 'that's just the way i am' as the song says. But that is a terribly frustrating answer to anyone outside trying to offer support. How can they help if they don't know what's wrong? And its my brain, my thoughts, my feelings, so i must know, surely? So they think im holding out and continue to ask, and i continue to repeat the same aggravating i don't knows.......and they get frustrated at me for the lack of response and i get frustrated at them to continuing to push and everyone ends up feeling pretty damn crap.

So thats why i sometimes chose not to share, why its sometimes safer to hide.
And that's part of why this blog is try to piece together some clothes to put onto the naked from of 'i don't know'. i truly believe in ending stigma, and that people have the right not to be judged for illnesses that they can't control. However, with rights come responsibility so maybe we have a responsibility to try to HELP people understand.
This could be interesting....its not like i understand it myself......tbc.

Monday, 26 August 2013

Oops i seem to have started a blog...

...and i have no idea where im going with it!

i suspect it will probably end up being the dumping ground for all sorts of brain mush. 
i will confess this blog is pretty much designed to be the dumping ground for all sorts of brain mush.
i guess there will be a predominant theme of mental health awareness since this is an issue very close to my heart (or, more pertinently, my brain haha). However i don't want to label it as such, im not on a crusade. This is more about me blurting out all the random things that occur to me throughout the day. My thoughts, my opinions, my experiences Me, basically. im certainly not always right, im open to debate, to being proven wrong.
Bah, heavy. 
No, im not on a crusade. i would just like to try and show people a little bit of my world. How i cope, how i fail to cope even. What its like to be mentally ill (and i could write a whole blog on what it took to accept that label was applicable to me). But also the bits of me that aren't the illness. i HAVE a mental illness, that doesn't mean i AM one. 
i really don't want to preach and i will try my best to restrain myself, but i will include posts on things ive found helpful, self-help stuff, therapy stuff, distraction techniques ya know the drill.
Oh speaking of distraction techniques: Nails! :D. ive discovered the joys of painting my nails, so expect to see lots of photos of my hands. However, this is definitely NOT a nail art blog, since, whilst i found a lot of enthusiasm, i seem to have failed to find any talent. There will probably be frequent links to some of the many nail bloggers i find myself in awe of though, and posts when i can't resist sharing a new polish ive fallen in love with, like Revlon scandalous:
Purple glitter :D 
...yea im not a photographer either :p lol.
Other recurring themes and pet causes including (but not limited to): girl guides, bellringing, care of the elderly (i work as a carer in the community, i love the job but frequently hate the system), music, my confused forays into the world of beauty and make-up, science, psychology and.....purple? There's not much to post about purple i just love it hehe.

Clear as mud right? Oh well we'll see what happens. x