Monthly Archives: August 2014

I’m supposed to be tidying…

Yesterday was pretty hectic.

Unplanned of course!

I went to H’s for a cuppa before we headed to the ice rink for extra practice before Monday’s exams.  Her progress has been amazing!  She has never skated or danced but in just 8 weeks, she had cracked levels 1 – 3 and we were starting to work on 4.  This is a hell of an achievement, the rest of us that have progressed that quickly all roller-skated or ice-skated in our youths.  Of course, those of us that told her how well she was doing are either friends, or people that she was having her classes with and she didn’t really believe us.  Then, yesterday, a random lady stopped us to say that she had seen us every week and was amazed at H’s progress, that she had seen her doing something new each week.  It was fab to hear that from a perfect stranger because it was affirmation of what everyone else had been saying.

We’d been on the ice for a couple of hours and I saw her left blade go tight in behind her right and went to catch her but she managed to right herself so I drew back.  That was when she fell and did a move on the ice that I’ve never tried – what the medical profession refer to as a FOOSH (fall on outstretched hand).

I helped her up and off the ice and moved it around gently to establish if anything was broken because I had heard a crack and it looked promising but I suggested that we go to the hospital just to be on the safe side.

After giving her details 4 times, the Nurse Practitioner asked if her wedding ring could come off and when she said that it couldn’t, she said that it needed to be cut off.  I suggested that we try soaping it off – that ring was NOT being cut off.  It worked.  Then she was x-rayed and then we waited for diagnosis.  Amazingly, there had been a 1″ swelling over her trapezoid bone that had almost gone by the time she saw the Nurse practitioner!

There was a lovely little old lady brought into the waiting room with half of her shin de-gloved.  I had heard her 40/50-odd year old daughter say that she had caused the injury by falling on her.  She traipsed in behind her brother, who was pushing the wheelchair and was barely able to remain upright and a waft of spirits accompanied her – she was ratted!  As the conversation between her brother and mother, her mother’s breathing became more laboured and she said, “Oh stop huffing and puffing mother!”  I started to get Northern.

Then it was all about her.  When her brother suggested that the other brother (who had been out for water and sandwiches) take her home, she loudly pronounced that she had to stay because people would want to interrogate her.  There was more claptrap about how she almost walked in front of a bus the day before, didn’t want to go home ever again, how her life was so sh*t, memememememememememe.

It was a good job that she was taken home, I was ready to take her out!

I was shocked at how angry she made me.

We were called back in and there were the x-rays on screen (last time I had an accident, you still had to carry the great big films around!) and there was a Colles’ fracture (distal radius – left arm) so out came the modrock and bandage.  The nurse got the position right but the cast was too long and you could only see the last inch of her fingers so it had to be cut back – another couple of minutes and it would have had to be completely re-done!  Thankfully, it was a stable fracture and we were working to worst case scenario of a really complicated fracture so that anything else would be a bonus.  I’ve done a diagram of her fracture with the break in yellow and a little fragment of bone shown in red:

Diagram of Helen's fracture

At least she had fared better than the girl receiving first aid when we left the rink, the poor little love had broken her ankle!  The rink was doing a good job of keeping the Minor Injuries Unit busy!

I took her home and fed the puppies before running to pick up the girls for a night out but of course, I had to run home, do my hair and get changed.  Despite not having a brew for hours, I decided that alcohol was required and wen I got back to the pub, there was a bottle of Smirnoff Ice waiting for me 🙂

The drink must have influenced me – I sang two songs that I used to do with a couple of my bands in my youth but hadn’t sung for years and one I had never done before!

The girls were brilliant though, one managed to hit notes that even she didn’t know she had in her when one of her songs came on in a very different key to hers and the other was on fire – not only with her amazing voice but her performance was second to none!  It was a great night, especially after last week’s debacle.

We’d aimed for one pub who proclaimed that Friday was KARAOKE on the sign at the entrance to the car park but after waiting an age for the guys to set up, discovered that it was an eighties electronic duo.  We went to plan C (that pub had been second choice to one that was hosting a darts competition instead of the usual karaoke) and found ourselves in a particularly rough pub.  Now, I have played some rough pubs in my band days but this was an eye-opener for me.  One girl (big fish, small pond) was backed up to a table where she lay down, knocking a glass onto the floor which was left there, shattered, continuing to sing as she was dry-humped by the lad that had guided her there; when she did get up, it was only to drunkenly climb onto the table and seat behind it to take centre stage – just in case anyone had missed any of her previous performance.  When she finished the night with a duet with her mother, I realised that the mother had been the one stood by my seat all evening with several of the men – of all ages – groping her backside.

Needless to say, it was nice to be back in a civilized pub where everyone, regardless of talent, was encouraged and applauded and without any dry-humping, who knew?!

We took H to the ferry this morning for her girlie day out and spent the food budget on the Italian market before walking the dogs.  Angel’s little boot for her tender paw defied me though and I had to re-tie it several times!  Aunties just aren’t as good as mummies.

They are knackered now and pretty much collapsed when we got them home after a big drink but we will take them out again when their mum gets home.

Now, I must get on with tidying this room – I’ve been avoiding it for months!

Progress

This time last year, I was no longer able to walk a mile without it wiping me out entirely.

Yesterday, I had an optician and hair appointment, the shops are no longer within the same mall.  I planned it so that I could go and sort my glasses out, then meet a girlfriend so that we could go and get our hair done before heading for lunch and cocktails.

I could barely move when we got to the restaurant but the little fizz in a Cana Royale relaxed my muscles sufficiently to be able to stand upright again,  When I got home, I put my route into mapmyrun.com and discovered that I had done 8.14 miles!

It seems nothing to most people I know and it would have seemed a trivial amount to me in the days when I walked 15 miles a day but it has taken me 10 months to get to this point so I am over the moon!  I thought that I would be a mess today too but although I woke up in a lot of pain after a long lie-in, I had a nap later and have since been able to do some stretches and open up a few of my vertebrae.

Now I have to push myself a little harder every day.

Restoring the Work/Life Balance

I’m four months into a new job and it has been a massive challenge.

I’m used to that, the last two jobs were big challenges too and the first of those took 6 months of working 14 hour days and working at home at night and at the weekends to get into.  By year three, I had succeeded in everything that had been required, and was at a point where I was busy but relaxed, the job had changed into manage and improve.  I was offered another position out of the blue and that was a very different world with another steep learning curve with some pretty difficult challenges.  Two years in, I was at the point of manage and improve but was being made redundant.  Thankfully, I had another offer and after taking a two week break, started my new job.

I didn’t apply for any of those three jobs, they found me and at exactly the right times too – I needed to get back into my career and relocate when the first came along.  The long hours were easy because I didn’t know anyone locally so throwing myself into my work was great for me, I didn’t have too much time to think about the fact that I was 250 miles from some of my closest friends.  I would never have left that job before getting it to a point where it could be handed over without any challenges left to tackle.

When I began the next job, I decided to do some things that were just for me.  I joined a theatre company, started Tai Chi classes, did a foundation diploma in art, design and media and started ice-skating lessons.

Work stresses caused my health, and consequently, my new life activities to suffer and then redundancy and a new job and boy, did I have to hit the ground running!

Equilibrium is in sight though.  I’m over the hump at work although still massively busy, I am at least working almost normal hours again and I finish early on Fridays and go skating with the girls.  I’ve resumed my studies with a BA (Hons) in Creative Arts and I have even had two social events in the last 4 weeks with a barbecue for my friends and a girls’ night out!  We did karaoke at a local pub and all had a great time, even managing to recruit a couple of new members to the theatre company.  More exciting still, I had my new shoes to wear 😀

Even more amazing, I had the energy to do most of the housework this weekend!

I’m starting to feel a little bit more like me again and hopefully, I will be able to go back to Tai Chi again soon.  I really miss it.   It was the one thing that I could do on my own at home but I miss learning, the rest of the class and our fabulous instructor.  I also think that I am getting rusty because whilst i was really ill, I could only manage a little so I haven’t practiced as much I would have liked.

I have a full page to-do list at work (31 tasks) and at home (32 tasks) but I am working my way through them slowly – none of them are massively urgent so it’s all good.

Most impressive of all, I transferred my entire music library from my old XP machine to my lappie in preparation for the replacement desktop that I’m saving up for.  I was most disappointed though – I couldn’t find the stats on how much music I have and how long it would take to play that used to show at the bottom of the window in the old i-tunes.

It’s been such a long time…

…since I had a pretty new outfit.

Those of you that know me well and have known me for over 10 years will remember my shoe collection that peaked at 90-something beautiful pairs.  I still have some of the loveliest but rarely get the chance to wear them.

Well, for the first time in an age, I spoiled myself this weekend and bought these beauties:

20140802-Faith Shoes

I was devastated when Faith shut its shops, as much as when the same fate befell Ravel Shoes.  Thanks to Debenhams (for Faith) and the internet (for both), neither brand truly died but it has been such a long time since I was able to really treat myself that these were more than just a pair of pretty shoes.  I still insist on comfort and refused a rather pretty pair in T-Reds because they didn’t have my size, despite the assistant trying to convince me to try a size too small and then I found these and they feel like slippers on.

The display shoe was dirty from dirty bare feet so I asked for an unsullied pair – well, for that price, I wasn’t willing to put up with someone else’s dirt!