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Always Wanting More

This evening, I’m wide awake guilty of something I’m forever moaning at my wife for, that’s wanting more. Its exhausting, and my wife is forever driving me mad with this, for example, we have 3 cats and one of them has just had a litter of kittens, and she wants to keep yet another one. Or we had a perfectly good Bugaboo Cam which we got only a few months ago and she’s gone and got a brand new Bugaboo B3 pushchair, what was wrong with the old one? Or new things around the house either way her desires always come down to spending money.

What I desire doesn’t cost money, in a way, it’s just a state or point of which I thought I would be by now, and I’m not happy I’ve not achieved it. When I was a child people would ask me what I wanted to be or what I wanted to do, and my answer was always working for myself. I want to be ‘independent’ and have a company or business that I’ve built up and earning my own money. By now I thought I’d have an empire, a decent house that was mine, a nice car and not having to worry about where money was going to come from.

Don’t get me wrong, with my wife and I now both working and bringing in decent(ish) money we aren’t worried, but we can’t afford to stop renting for example. I get frustrated with myself when I get into this frame of mind, I’ve got a lot to be thankful for and I’ve achieved a lot in my 28years on this planet. Despite my health and missing a lot of school I worked hard and got good grades and a good degree, I’ve got a good job, I’ve got a family and I’m able to provide for them, and I’ve been privileged enough to see a fair amount of the world with some nice trips and holidays in the past. So why am I not able to accept to myself what I say to my wife that ‘enough’ is good enough, why am I wide awake fretting about this?

Why, despite the fact that my rational mind knows this, and I am genuinely happy at the moment, that I feel so down about this. I had all these plans growing up of where I thought I would be right now, and I feel I’ve achieved barely any of them and I don’t feel I am now, or ever will be in a position to try and achieve them in the future. I hate it when I get like this, this feeling of being down, spiralling as I stay up, frustrated at myself for getting like this, reminding myself of all I’ve achieved but somehow making it worse in doing so, as I get more frustrated that A) I can’t accept those arguments, and B) it reminds me of what I haven’t achieved in my life goals, and the cycle continues, until eventually I finally fall asleep and wake up grumpy, down and even lower, which limits my ability to pull myself out of it.

I genuinely don’t know what to do, I say I’m fine to my wife, and that I’m happy (and I am happy for what I have don’t get me wrong) but I am putting on an act to some degree, much life I’ve always done for other people or other reasons, as a defence from admitting to her, or myself that actually, I’m not, I don’t feel I’ve hit my targets or aspiratoins, I feel there are things I haven’t given enough effort to, or even attempted, but I can’t tell her that, yet I don’t know why. We have one of the most supportive of relationships, especially recently, we can openly talk about our feelings to each other, in a supporting environment with no judgement or moaning back or taking offence but I just feel she would take this as me saying I’m not happy with ‘our’  life.

I guess this is just another area I need to note down to work on, I know people say if you want something go and make it happen, and believe me if I thought I could, I would. I have the drive and passion but it isn’t always that easy as much as the cliché would have you think, how could I just uproot everything to take a selfish jump into the unknown putting myself and my families comfort at risk, on the hope I ‘may’ achieve what I want and bring myself happiness, risking everyone else’s, and mine if it didn’t work, in the process? I don’t see how I can.

Well I should probably try and wind down and get some sleep, rather than beating myself up and going on like a broken record, I will admit writing it down has helped a bit, even if it’s just putting the ‘angst’ down on paper to get it out, it’s helped a little. I’ll continue my internal battle of wits, and maybe try to talk with my wife tomorrow about how I’m feeling, it comes in cycles it’ll go away in a bit but then will come back. Maybe if I talk to her openly it might got once and for all? Who knows, anyway, night all.

Bad Days, They Come As Part Of The Package

I haven’t posted again for a few days, and I really want to be writing a post about my weekend, and the last week in general as things finally seem to be getting into a routine and life seems to be becoming easier and settling down, but I feel the title is relevant, because no sooner have things started feeling better, and I’ve been feeling much happier, I’m brought back down to earth by starting off today incredibly rough.

Over the last 7 days this have been great, the girls have started sleeping through again (although this has been for the last 2 weeks nearly) and so I’m caught up on sleep, I’m getting into a routine with them during the days and they have been really receptive of that, and I’ve caught up with the house to the point things are manageable 5 minute jobs to keep on top of it now. So life has felt a lot less stressful. Our routine is now mornings play time or a film followed by lunch, when my youngest goes for a nap after lunch my eldest gets messy play, either painting or play doh or something while I blitz the house and then when my youngest wakes up again they go in the bath while dinner is cooking. Once we’ve had dinner and they’re dry from their bath I get them ready for bed for when my wife gets home from work and I go out to dialysis, and it seems to really be working.

Over the last week we’ve also had a mass clear out of the house, getting rid of old toys the kids have outgrown, clothes the kids have outgrow, rubbish that has been lying around because I’ve been too tired to get on top of it, and finally getting on top of the piles of washing that have been lying around. So now in my ‘blitz’ it is just putting a few bits away each time and a quick hoover, so even if I’m feeling run down and tired, it’s manageable for me to do and keep on top of, so the house is looking much better to, which again, makes me feel a lot more relaxed.

I’m going to feel bad for saying this, and I’m not sure how many agree, but dealing with the kids, and engaging them has felt almost like a chore, but recently, it’s been fun and enjoyable and I’m so happy I’m finally able to ‘enjoy’ them again, and that I’m in that frame of mind. We managed to get out over the weekend which was fantastic, despite how low I’ve been feeling recently, with my aches and pains and fatigue. Normally this would put me off feeling up to going out, but in being more relaxed and life feeling more enjoyable those issues haven’t felt as bad. So on Saturday we went to an open farm, and both the girls loved it, the youngest one especially enjoyed getting out of the pushchair and up close with the animals. I was so proud especially of my eldest, she is only 2 and a half but she really wanted to do a Pony Ride. I imagined that once she was up on the horse panic would set in and she’d start screaming to get off, which filled me with panic, as I imagined that could be quite a dangerous situation. However, she got up on the horse, held on to the reins as she was told, and she loved it, no panics, no cares that me and my wife weren’t following her, and I was so so proud of her in that moment, and the pictures were great.

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So we had her first ever experience of a Pony Ride on Saturday, on Sunday we took her bed shopping, as we are planning the furniture for our new place should we move soon. While out at the shops, I suggested we treated her to PizzaHut for lunch as a treat as she has been such a good girl the last week. That went down a blast and we all enjoyed that too!

So why am I feeling so down this morning, and leading on to my title. It’s a mix of things, my session of dialysis last night was a late one, I didn’t get home until 11pm which is one of the later time’s I’ve been home since starting dialysis, and they took too much fluid off last night which caused me to get cramps all through the night, keeping me up. The lack of sleep has impacted my ability to remain positive this morning, and ignore the long lasting headache and aches and pains I have had for weeks, which haven’t been half as bad recently, I assume due to my recent positivity. The worst thing bringing me down is the fact this is the first time since starting back at work I’ve felt not fit to work, and with all the sick I have had, I feel bad that I’m causing an impact yet again when things have been going so well recently. I also need to get in touch with the hospital as I think there are issues with my fistula arm, which is worrying.

Reading back through this, what I’m taking away from the post is that it’s OK to have a bad day. Everyone has them, and with the ups and downs of my health it’s going to happen. Looking back on the last week and how much easier life has felt and how much more like me I have felt, bad days are going to happen and I can’t dwell on them too much. It’s hard, I do feel bad and want to regress to my snappy stroppy self, and my poor wife has felt the brunt of that this morning, but hopefully she wont hold it against me, and I’ll try and make up for it later.

 

Lovely Fun In The Sun

This post I imagine is going to take some time to write, as I am sat in the garden enjoying the nice spring sunshine with the girls, but the eldest is enjoying serving me egg from her play kitchen in her Wendy house, and of course, I have to keep getting up and knocking on the door to place my order for egg!

I’ve been quiet the last few days, things have been quite busy as I’ve finally had a burst of energy and been able to crack on with long overdue jobs around the house, which has been remarkable.

With help of course, I’ve had the tall fridge freezer moved to the conservatory and swapped with the counter top freezer we had out there which has given us a little extra counter space in the kitchen and made the room look much more open. My wife and I have cleared several bags of old toys from the kids room and I have finally got around to getting all their clothes sorted and their room cleared. So progress is being made!

This has taken a lot of stress off my mind and I’ve recently been enjoying our living space, and so, when sitting down in the evening (when I get a chance) actually being able to relax, which has been great. We’ve also got the added benefit that our eldest, for the last 4 nights has finally been sleeping through again, so we’ve had a lot more sleep!

It’s been really good fun with this nice weather the last few days, and getting the garden tidied up at the weekend so the kids can come out here and play and burn off stream. Seeing them having so much space to run around and play in, and them getting on has been fun, but also seeing the imagination of my eldest over the last few months taking off really makes me smile. As I said earlier with the kitchen in the Wendy house and wanting to play and serve me food while we are out here is so funny, but also recently we bought a load of second hand Silvanian Family toys from Facebook sales, and seeing her sit down with all those and making up stories is so fun to sit and watch as well, and it keeps her quiet, which is great, I can sit down and watch the stories unfold, and it is hilarious.

One thing I will say with being out in the garden with the kids is I’m constantly seeing things I need to sort out. I spent the weekend out here, trying to tidy it up and do skip runs as all the rubbish over the winter that needed to go to the skip just got put in the garden to pile up. But there are so many things I’ve missed, the kids are constantly finding things they shouldn’t have access to that I have to take off them and put away, I can’t believe I missed so much stuff, I don’t know where they are finding it!

The other great thing about them being out in the garden is I’ve been able to crack on with this house work and keep an eye on them, but them being out of the way. We all know how hard it is trying to tidy up the house, or put clothes away with a tornado of a toddler behind you pulling everything out again. Our conservatory has been the place for dumbing almost anything since day one of moving into our house, so it’s nice to see it finally taking shape as a usable room. The kids have been able to run in and out as they please and I’ve been able to do what I need to, winners all round.

I’m going to stop here for now, as reading over this, it has been a random post (as all mine seem to be!) but I things seem over the last week to have got much better, with the sleep issue out of the way and spring in the air, things seem to be ‘clicking’ into place and settling down, even with my health, and I’ve been a lot calmer, and able to enjoy life a lot more. So fingers crossed it continues!

To My Wife, Who Puts Up With Me

Today has been a very long, very hard day, for both me and my wife. As you may know if you’ve read any of my other posts recently my wife has been rough all week, with what I can only assume is the flu. I don’t envy her, I’ve been feeling under the weather, but no where near as rough as she has been, and as I stated in my earlier post this morning, I was out at 1.30 this morning getting her stuff from Tesco to make her more comfortable and help her get sleep.

With the few hours sleep I did get it’s understandable I’ve really had no energy or motivation to do anything today, but the girls have been such a handful, I’ve really not had the patience, so my poor wife has dealt with them, on top of dealing with how rough she’s feeling for a couple of hours, so I could simply take myself away from it all, and I did, I went to the kitchen and baked for a couple of hours, which was a nice distraction, if only for a little bit, before it was back to the grind of prepping dinner, dealing with screaming kids and my blood pressure boiling again.

Now, I’ve been finding it very difficult to deal with today, made worse as I say by the lack of sleep and constant pain in my hip and back. So I completely understand my wife’s frustration with them when she is feeling so unwell. It’s hard to deal with when your having a good day, and I am more the suited, I feel to be able to understand that point of view. What I can’t handle, and what I don’t appreciate is not long before I need to be getting ready to go to dialysis is my wife completely lashing out at me saying I only care about myself, that I do nothing to help and she can’t deal with it, she’s had enough with the girls and is going, that I will have to find childcare, or miss dialysis.

Don’t get me wrong, the ‘irrational’ I’m going sort dialysis somehow etc part I don’t begrudge, when you are feeling that low, it’s easy to say things like that, be irrational and not think. So I’m not going to hold that against her. I wish I could stay this calm when she gets so upset and gets like this, and support her, but it comes at times when we are both so low, that I lose that ability, she presses my buttons and I flip, making the situation even worse.

I know it’s just lashing out, but to say I don’t care when only 12 hours before I was getting out of bed, putting on clothes and going out in the dead of night in the freezing cold for cough syrup, when I get up majority of nights to allow her the best chance of rest because she works these days, and she does it for us because of my health, and going against the comparison that when I worked and she didn’t I still did the majority of nights is what causes me to flip. It feels sometimes as though if something doesn’t go how she wants, then she will just turn it on me, so if I don’t do 1 thing then I suddenly don’t care about anything. I do find this heart breaking, I feel a lot of the times I keep quiet and push through pain and suffering to try and facilitate a smoother life for her, partly because I feel guilty I’m not in good health and providing the life I should for my family and simply because I just want her to have a simple life and feel loved. But if she can’t see or appreciate the effort, then is there any point?

I’ve said numerous times that since being the one at home and her being the one working (so role reversal) that I see and understand how difficult it could be for her at times, and appreciate everything she did do (and does), but I’ve never really heard that back and so I can’t help feel taken for granted.

I guess the main point here is I’m mad at both of us. I am mad that she makes me feel like I’m taken for granted, and doesn’t ‘see’ all I do do, and that I feel I have to point it out when we have arguments. I’m mad that in the heat of the moment she says just the right things that prevent me from keeping calm. But that’s why I’m mad at myself, that I can’t keep quiet and tell myself that she’s allowed to have this moment, to get it off her chest and not to take it personally or hold it against her, regardless of my current physical or mental state, she should be allowed time to explode and vent, and I should afford her that opportunity I feel, and she should return the favour. We know each other well enough, and talk often enough about these habits we have that we know we only do it because we feel save with each other and can use each other as an outlet, it may not be healthy, but we should be supportive to each other.

The worst thing is the feeling that I’ve failed her, seeing that she has got to this point of verging on breakdown, I should be there to support her, and I’m not able to do that as much any more (or at all tonight, having to go out to dialysis and leaving her alone with the screaming kids). But it feels like she doesn’t see, or forgets just how capable and strong she can be, when she started a new, fulltime job, more hours than she’d ever worked in her career and picking up new skills, and having to deal with the girls on her own and arrange daily childcare because I had been admitted to hospital and chasing around before and after work when adjusting to a new routine was remarkable, and she did it, no one else. Despite everything, I am so proud of the strong women my wife is, which is even more reason I feel bad I don’t let her have these moments.

Remember this in arguments with your partners, make no assumptions and talk about everything calmly, understand the others point of view, and above all, if you can’t do this in the heat of the moment and it does escalate, take 5 minutes afterwards, calm down, try to talk it out and remember don’t hold it against them, we are all only human.

Sorry to my wife, who despite everything, still puts up with me!

So Much For Staying Happy

This morning I’m in a foul mood, I am absolutely shattered and run down. I’ve read through my last couple of posts to reflect on my good mood and trying to pick myself up but I’m just too run down this morning, the slightest thing is making me snappy, and my poor wife is getting the brunt of it, which is why I’m tucking myself away for half an hour and writing this post.

Basically, I was still in quite an upbeat mood last night, albeit confused about how I was feeling, and I couldn’t sleep. When I finally started feeling tired and went to bed my wife was up with a terrible cough and sent me out at 1.30 in the morning to Tesco to get her cough syrup. When I finally got home and tried to get some sleep so then decided my children to wake up. Needless to say I got only a few hours sleep last night. Add on top of that I feel rough from a cold, I’m assuming the one everyone in my family currently has I’m very run down.

Our youngest is just so clingy this morning and can’t make up her mind, she want’s nothing but cuddles, but when you give her cuddles she want’s to get down but the second she’s down, you guessed it, she cries because she want’s cuddles. It’s doing my head in this morning! I know it’s what kids do but I’m struggling to deal wit it. Luckily, in some respects my wife is home off work today sick so I’m not on my own to deal with them, and the eldest is currently at nursery but the youngest only wants me, she keeps running from my wife back to me so I’m not able to get any rest. I’m also dreading dialysis tonight, it’s bad enough on a good day, but when I’m feeling so rough it becomes very difficult. I’ve called my unit to see if they have any earlier machines today so I’m not out quite so late but it’s a long shot if they will.

I plan on doing some baking later if I don’t go out to dialysis, I find that often is a nice pick me up, something to distract me and shut myself away from the noise of life for a little bit, so I’ll post pictures of my end results if I get time. The final product is also usually a nice treat to make you feel better. Anyway, I hear crying in the background so better go see what has upset my wife. Oops I mean my daughter (if my wife actually reads my blog I’m sure she’d kill me for some of the things I will inevitably end up writing about us!).

Confused By My Feelings, I’m In A State Of Flux

Well this looks like it is certainly becoming a habit. Late at night (well early morning now) and popping up another post, but I can’t sleep because, yet again the little one won’t let me. I think moving forward, it’s going to be safer to assume I’m not getting any sleep, and I’ll say in a post when I do finally get some, so I’m not always repeating myself. Anyway, it’s been quite a long day, and now it’s winding down and I’m listening to the baby monitor I find myself feeling quite confused.

As I’ve mentioned a few times I been receiving counselling of late which has helped me get in touch with my feelings and understand me a lot more, and there is still a lot of work to be done, but I’m not understanding the conflict in my head right now. I feel happy, much like I did last night, which is great, I’ve longed for this upbeat, bubbly feeling where nothing currently is stressing me out and I’m able to breeze through the day despite my trials, but something seems a miss. I feel quite down at the same time. This is where my confusion starts, is it normal, or possible to be happy and sad at the exact same very moment, because I’ve never experienced that, and my rational sense of mind is “you feel an emotion, if you’re happy, why do you feel sad?” and I don’t know if this is just because I’m still learning about my feelings or because I have so much unresolved.

Like I said yesterday there is a long list of things I’m happy for, and with the recent new medication lowering my high blood pressure as a side effect of my illnesses, and simply life the last week has been calmer and slower, things have just seemed easier, which has brightened my mood and made me a bit more like the old me. I always used to be happy, a smile on my face, nothing would phase me, except, and I never told my family this (or myself for that matter), that was mainly a face I would put on for them. I grew up not understanding half of the things I was going through as I was too young, and given my age, I assumed they were the norm. Comments from family that then followed as I grew up of “oh it’s fantasic despite what you go through you are always smiling” I didn’t want to disappoint.

There were often times I was unhappy, but the thing is, I didn’t realise that then, it’s only now when I think back over memories, and pay attention to them, I am seeing the times and understanding what I was going through. I’m scared I’ve repressed so much. I’m not sure what is making me feel down though, as I say, this week seems to have been good, but like my counsellor would say, “listen to your feelings and give yourself time to tend to them”, this is what I’m trying to do now, and why I am doing this blog in a way but I don’t know why. It’s frustrating me, and I want to know what is happening in my head that I can’t access to be bringing me to this mind frame. I mean, yes there is a lot going on that is understandably wearing me down, and that will contribute to it, but I’m worried. I’m worried I could be regressing and acting in my old ways of thinking I’m happy when in fact I’m not, am I trying to fool myself? and is this new found ‘happiness’ a cover for something I can’t accept, or not ready to?

This clearly shows I’ve got a lot more on my journey of understanding myself. I hope this is a normal thing, this state of flux and that one can be happy and sad at the same time with no sinister meaning behind it. I hope I’m over thinking this because it’s a scary thought that I could be trying to hide from myself like I used to ‘act’ or ‘hide’ from others, I know where that path lead me. If I’m really honest, I guess I still haven’t adjusted to dialysis yet and the change it has brought to our lives (although I tell family and friends I have and I’m doing fine), it’s just such a huge thing and having to go out late 3 nights a week is a struggle. I’m also worried about my joints, I’m getting terrible pain in my knees and wrists, which is making it difficult to deal with the girls at times and help my wife, but I’m scared to let on and have her worry even more with enough going on at the moment, she’s been ill the last week so I’ve been working harder to let her rest back to full strength.

Reading that last paragraph back, I guess I can understand some of the things wearing me down, which could impact on this feeling low, so I’m glad I’ve had this ‘brain dump’, but I still can’t shake this fear there’s something more. I hope there isn’t.

Feeling Happy Feels Weird

As I sit here, watching The Goldberg’s (yes I’m a fan of the show) I find myself feeling quite happy this evening.

That’s a weird feeling for me, I’ve not felt noticeably happy in a long time, and I find myself wondering why. I’m still shattered from lack of sleep and late nights, I’m in pain and run down from dialysis and I’m full of stinking cold. Not to mention a whole long list of other things that of late have been wearing me down. But again, tonight, I feel quite chill and upbeat.

I like it when I feel like this, and I’m glad I’ve started this blog, for my own benefit to write it down and revisit it later.

I’m taking this time to reflect on why I’m happy, and I hope (or like to think) that I am happy more often than not and it is the point-in-time daily trials that just cloud the feeling and that tonight, some miracle second wind has given me the energy I need to not let those things wear me down quite so much. Again I don’t know. But what I do know is what I’m happy for, a few obvious ones listed below (I won’t put a whole list it would take forever):

  • My wife;
  • My kids;
  • Our Home;
  • My Job;
  • Despite my poor health that it’s not life limiting

But the strange thing I keep coming back to is just why I don’t understand how everything seems so amusing, my daughter is up next to me, keeping me up, and I don’t care. My wife is moaning at me that she is ill and got a long list of things wrong with her, and I’m finding some sort of funny side in that and laughing. Not in a mean way, but when she’s getting hysterical “I’ve had enough of the girls tonight, seriously like every ten minutes, I can’t deal with it tonight” that’s how I’ve been, and I’m finding it funny seeing, what you could consider my reflection.

I need to understand what is helping me see the world with this emotion right now, so I can hold on to it, and get it back at times when I loose sight of the good in my life and get snappy and tired and run down, and that’s what I’ve been working on in counselling. A long time ago, I was so disconnected from my feelings, when asked how I felt about situations I couldn’t tell you. I’d never give myself time to reflect life was very much a thing I did, without a second thought and once a moment had passed it was gone, “what’s the point in wasting time with feelings” I would say but I was so wrong.

I’m glad I can write things down like this now, and know I am changing, noticing my feelings and taking the time to take care of them and listen to them, it’s certainly made a difference in who I am of late, and I hope I can continue to improve and make progress, but as it is, for tonight, I’m signing off, happy, chilled and most importantly ready for bed!